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Hiring Contractors for Your Rental Property

October 17, 2017

Whether you’re a property owner in Singapore or a newly hired property manager, when it comes to handling a rental property, keeping every unit in tiptop condition is a number one necessity. Therefore, it really pays off to hire a professional contractor.

Before you start scanning the yellow pages and asking family, friends, and neighbors around, find out first how you should hire a qualified contractor to take care of your investment property.

Professionals Are a Must

Professionals provide quality work, and it is the most important matter in making sure that your rental units are in their best condition. Professional contractors vary mainly in knowledge and skills, and a little research beforehand can ensure that you hire the best worker.

When hiring contractors for property management, you need to consider the quality of work and the completion time. Though the cost must be considered as well, it shouldn’t be the only deciding factor. Look for someone who is an expert in a specific task, and not someone who claims that he knows how to do various things. For instance, if you need someone who does property management in Singapore to fix your electric lines, hire an electrician. If you need someone to fix the pipes and faucets, hire a plumber. Never be fooled by a contractor who claims that he “specializes” in 10 different jobs.

Require Certifications and Licenses

Singapore has a public database for licensed and certified workers related to property management and construction industry. Hiring someone with valid license and/or certification will ensure great work and protect you from great loss if in case the hired worker damages your property or himself. Countries have created regulations to protect property owners from scammers that agree to contracts that will never be fulfilled. When you choose to hire professional contractors, estimations are often free of charge, and all works are invoiced and well-detailed after problem inspection is completed.

Payment System for Contractors

An initial payment of 20 to 30 percent is typically required by contractors to get the work started. This enables your workers to purchase all necessary materials and start the work. If your managing agent employs separate workers, the salary of those employees are already included in the down payment. Your managing agent should not require you to pay an additional amount because additional workers are required when the job starts. Always be mindful with the expenses and never fail to check it every after major purchase. Your remaining balance should only be settled after the work is done, and the contractor should be able to provide you with a warranty in case of component failure or workmanship error.

Hiring a reliable contractor for a rental property can be difficult, especially when you’re not informed with the right things to do. Following the tips above will help you avoid scammers and ensure that your property is maintained professionally. Lastly, if working with a management company, you can ask these experts for recommendations for hiring quality contractors.

Kahuna Ho Tram: Prime Investment Opportunities by the Beach

October 13, 2017

Big waves are set to take Vietnam in terms of real estate. Property investment opportunities have recently opened up, and they’ve never looked better with Kahuna Ho Tram, the newest addition to The Ho Tram Strip. Currently, it holds the title of the largest foreign-invested development in Vietnam, with over US$1.1 billion dollars’ worth in investment.
Having only been unveiled in the fourth quarter of this year, Kahuna Ho Tram sits as the hottest growth area in Vietnam, attracting investors looking to invest in condo units far and wide, with so much to offer and more.

The Condotel

The Kahuna Ho Tram condotel is conceptualized and designed by the leading firm in Ho Chi Minh City, Korn Architects. The design resembles a luxury liner about to make its maiden voyage across the open waters, with sleek, nautical lines capturing the essence of the perfect holiday beachfront experience.

This twelve-story beachfront tower has 244 keys divided among 164 condotel units. Of these units, fourteen have their own private Jacuzzis, and eight of them are penthouse units, each with its own indoor pool.

Surrounded by water from both the sea and the resort’s swimming pools, kahuna ho tram resort offers an amazing view of southern Vietnam and the vast field of The Bluffs that owners can wake up to every morning in the comfort of their own prime Vung Tau condo unit in Dur an Ho Tram.

Villas

Kahuna Ho Tram boasts of thirty-six double-key and eight beachfront villas, situated in the very heart of the development area with their own pools and private gardens. To add to that, each villa is fully furnished and in good turn-over condition.

The crown jewels are of course the eight single-key beach villas. Every single-key beach villa for sale not only has their own walkway and direct access to the beach, but also comes with maximum security to ensure the privacy of each guest.

Investors looking for a villa beside golf course will surely be delighted, as each beach villa for sale sits not far away from The Bluffs Golf Course, designed by golfer Greg Norman, which made Rank 78 in the world’s Top 100 golf courses.

Amenities

The Kahuna Ho Tram Strip and Kahuna Ho Tram Resort come with endless amenities for an enjoyable time. Complementing the view are the different restaurants, bistros, and bars lining the strip, making for an endless selection of fine food and drinks to indulge in by the sea.

Recreation and entertainment is never in short supply with Ho Tram, with multiple swimming pools, cinemas, karaoke, mini-golf, and so much more to choose from.

For an even more enjoyable time, guests looking to spend their holidays here can also make their way to the Grand Ho Tram Casino, which now services Vietnam nationals as well as foreigners. The Ho Tram Project currently leads the country in offering an international-level experience for enthusiasts.

Investment

First-time and veteran investors of all kinds looking to invest in condo units need not look further than Kahuna Ho Tram. There are several advantages to be gained in investing here, such as a minimum of eight percent guaranteed return within the first two years.
Throughout the ownership of the unit/villa, the net rental revenue is split sixty-forty in favor of the lessee. To achieve a twenty-year extension, the balance of the current lease is 41 years with the company’s resolve.

Another benefit is the ten-year rental pool agreement that applies to both the condotel units and villas, which when coupled with the 21-day-per-year free occupation per annum, means that owners too can fully enjoy the luxurious beachfront experience that Dur an Ho Tram has to offer.

10 Ways to Protect Your Children from Electrical Hazards

September 29, 2017

The moment you bring your baby from the hospital to your home, you should start thinking about child-proofing your entire house.

Do not wait too long. Before you know it, your child will start crawling around, exploring the house, investigating every single thing they can put their little hands on. The sooner you hide hazardous household chemicals and keep potential dangers away from your child’s reach, the better. Keep in mind that accidental injury is one of the leading causes of death among babies and toddlers, claiming more lives than health problems.

When setting up your home into a safer place for your little one, don’t forget about electricity. Other than blocking the staircases and using play mats in every room, you should also secure outlets within the reach of your child. Electrician services companies in Singapore recommend taking these precautions to ensure not just your baby’s, but your entire family’s safety from electrical hazards.

1. Install GFCIs

Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters (GFCIs) are essential in rooms with water source, such as kitchen and bathrooms. Enquire with some electrician services in Singapore to hire a professional electrician install a few of these around your house to protect everyone, but most especially including your child, against electrical shock. These devices automatically shut off the power when they detect current leaking from the circuit to the ground.

2. Avoid Using Extension Cords

As much as possible, avoid using extension cords and power strips in your child’s room. Kids have the tendency to chew on things, and you don’t want them to chew on something electrical. Moreover, you don’t want your kids to play with cords and wires and knocking over appliances that are plugged into them.

3. Use Electrical Outlet Caps

The cheapest way to prevent your child from sticking objects and his fingers into outlets is to use a packet of electrical outlet caps. These outlet covers are made of plastic and can be plugged directly into your power outlets. The exposed area of the cap is completely flat, making it difficult for a child to grip on it. If your child cannot poke anything into outlets, the safer he is. It’s that simple.

4. Unplug All Appliances

Before going to bed, turn off and unplug all your appliances at home. Just in case your toddler wakes up in the middle of the night and decides to play, no live wires within his reach. However, do still keep outlets and wires out of their sight, just because they are never good toys for children.

5. Shorten Cords

It happens many times—a lamp (or any other appliance) sits a foot away from the outlet, but has 10-foot long cord attached to it. The excess cord can loop around your child’s foot and either cause him to stumble or pull the lamp down on them. Either way, there will be tears. The best you can do is to buy a cord shortener. It looks neater than a coiled cable and is much safer when you have kids at home.

6. Cover Power Strips

Power strips are common in residential properties here in Singapore. They are convenient and economical since they can power multiple appliances at once. The downside is that they sit on the ground, which for a baby, could look like something to play with. A power strip cover is the ideal solutions for this. The cover slides into the strip and has an opening for the cords to hang out.

7. Use Nightlights

Use a nightlight to provide illumination in the dark for your child’s safety. Perfect for your kid’s bedroom and bathroom, so they won’t stumble over on things when they wake up in the middle of the night to pee. These lights come in a variety of styles, such as outlet-mounted or table mounted. One practical style is an outlet-mounted nightlight that fits over the two outlets of a duplex receptacle, blocking the unused electrical holes from the prying fingers of your toddler.

8. Educate Them

Older kids and pre-teens are old enough to understand the dangers of playing with electrical wires and devices. Explain to your kids that outlets cannot be overloaded with extension cords and power strips. They should not be using the TV, laptop, video game console and phone charger all at once in a single outlet. Make sure to explain the same thing for their room. Check every night that everything in their room is plugged out.

9. Regular Electrical Maintenance

Take care of loose and frayed wires that are located in accessible areas of your home. At least once a year, have a licensed electrician check your home’s electrical works. Ask your professional contractor to get those loose wires fixed and loose cords fasten to walls to avoid electrical shock and accidents.

10. Replace or Repair Faulty Appliances

If you have appliances that are hot or feel tingly to the touch, have it checked by a professional electrician right away. You really wouldn’t want your kids to get their hands on these appliances and possibly cause an injury to them. A good electrician will be able to detect the problem and fix it immediately before anything severe happens.

If you have kids at home, regular maintenance and repair of your home’s electrical system will not only keep your entire family safe, but also enjoy the benefits of properly-working electricity. With the help of a reputable electrician services company, you can protect your family and property from the risk of serious injury, damage and fire.

Trends in VoIP

September 26, 2017

Voice over Internet Protocol or VoIP is a type of service that allows you to make phone calls for free or at a cheaper price than a traditional phone system. As the name implies, it uses the Internet, that is why it is also referred to as Internet calling, IP telephone or Internet telephony. VoIP is hailed as the most innovative way of communication not just at home, but also in different business sectors, especially companies that have offices overseas.

In Singapore, it is considered by the business and communications sectors as the best way to cut down communication costs and is also an opportunity to tap into features that are not available in the traditional phone system.

Types of VoIP

VoIP works by converting the analog voice signals into digital signals (communication experts call this packets) and then transmitting these through a network or the Internet. Below are the different ways to use VoIP:

    1. Phone to Phone

    Sometimes called analog telephone adapter (ATA), phone-to-phone communication will let you receive and make calls if your standard landline is connected to a computer network. The phone will need the ATA to be able to convert analog into digital signals and transmit the converted signals with the use of VoIP.

    2. Computer to Computer

    Using VoIP, you will now be able to make and receive calls through a computer if both the sender and receiver are connected to the same network. This replaces the long-distance calls that are expensive, because you will only be paying for the voip in Singapore Internet service. Both the receiver and sender, however, need to install and register for the same software and use a speaker and a microphone to be able to connect. These VoIP software are usually free and easy to use.

    3. Phone to Computer

    Sometimes called IP phone, phone-to-computer communication is now possible and is gaining popularity even among those at home and not just in business. An IP phone is similar to your smart phones, but it needs an RJ45 connector so that it can use a network through a router. The IP phone already has built-in hardware and software for such purposes and it can even connect to Wi-Fi so that you can make calls anywhere even outside Singapore.

    4. Computer to Phone

    The same is true for making calls from your computer to a phone as long as both devices are using the same VoIP software and are connected to the Internet. It’s possible to make video calls as well if both the computer and the phone have microphones and speakers installed.

    5. Mobile Devices to Other Devices

    It is now possible to make calls from your phone to other mobile devices and vice versa, as long as both devices are using the same VoIP software and are connected to the Internet.

VoIP in Business

A hosted VoIP system for your business in Singapore is an investment that allows the company to do more things efficiently with less cost. Why is it cheaper than a traditional telephony system that has been used in business for years? VoIP integrates all the phone, video, and data bundles into one service that primarily uses the Internet.

That is why VoIP is a cheap, fast, flexible, and secure communications system for your business. But how will you know which hosted VoIP system is the right one for your company? Most companies hire a third party to host VoIP and to provide the necessary hardware as well.

When looking for a company that will handle your IP PBX telephone system, make sure that their services will fit the needs of the business. The perks usually include services and products for computer networking, cloud VoIP, PBX phone system, data management, telephone/computer and cabling, and video conferencing options. Other host companies have different packages for business VoIP and those that need special and advanced features.

The following services are the trends in business VoIP:

    1. Cloud VoIP

    The cloud VoIP is a system that is based on the technology called cloud computing. It means that all the data that are received, transmitted, and stored are placed in the Internet instead of storing them in the computer or other hardware. You may be surprised to know that cloud has been around since the 1990s as a means of storing data from point to point. Nowadays, cloud VoIP is considered an efficient way of storing data that will allow all users from the same company to access files regardless of the device used and the location of the user, as long as there is Internet connection. Businesses in Singapore can use cloud VoIP or cloud PBX (private branch exchange) even without the use of an IP PBX telephone system that will be discussed below.

    2. Hosted PBX

    Hosted PBX (private branch exchange) is type of VoIP system does not require the business to have their own VoIP system, but they can hire a third party to let them lease equipment and services. The company’s current telephone system may be used or replaced, and other devices such as mobile phones can be used through the hosted PBX. Employees can work outside the office premises with the use of different mobile devices, but they are still connected to the same VoIP system.

    3. PBX Phone System

    Some companies prefer a separate network for voice communications and another for data communications. This system is called IP PBX telephone system, PBX phone system or hosted PBX, which uses a converged voice and data network so that each employee in the company has one line to access the Internet, phone, and other non-traditional communication systems. It works as a telephone switching system within the company, allowing the employee to switch between the local traditional lines and VoIP, and vice versa.

Learning the Proper Form in Tennis for Beginners

September 08, 2017

Once you have learned the basics of playing tennis, it’s time to practice consistency of your form when serving, creating a spin, and judging the ideal height and distance (trajectory) of the ball.

 

Although having the correct form will not matter in the number of points you’ll get in a match, being able to do it naturally will help you hit the ball faster and to control the ball with less effort.

 

Basic Drills

Learning comes from repetition. The correct form and movement should come as natural as breathing for you allowing you to concentrate on your opponent. It might sound easy, but those endless drills given by your tennis coaching staff during your tennis lessons in Singapore are the key. You might be itching to play matches, but techniques that could win professional matches are learned through boring, repetitive drills; such as grips, swinging your arm with the racket, running around the court, receiving, and serving.

 

Basic Strokes

These are the basic strokes that the tennis coach in Singapore will teach you. Later, you can vary your strokes to adjust to different attacks.

  • When practicing this stroke during your tennis lessons, the tennis coach will tell you to use your dominant hand while the other will load the racket before you hit the ball. Tennis coaching instructions will drill you to bend your knees while the torso and hips are coiled.
  • This can be either a one-handed or two-handed backhand depending on which one you’re comfortable with and your reach. Some younger players will be advised by the tennis coach to use two-handed backhand to add more power to the stroke.
  • This refers to act of striking a ball while it’s still in the air and has not yet reached the surface of the court. To do a volley, you need to practice backswings while hitting the ball in front of you or from the side.
  • An overhead will not need a ball toss, but your coach will tell you to practice proper footwork to pull this off. Balance and positioning are key when trying to anticipate where the ball will drop next so that you can make adjustments to hit the ball overhead.

 

Basic Grips

To learn tennis by developing your own style, you should at least be familiar with the construction of the racket and with all the grips, which are all based on where the heel pad and the index knuckle are resting in your hand. The basic grips you will learn in your tennis lessons are the continental grip, eastern forehand grip, semi-western forehand grip, western forehand grip, two-handed backhand grip, eastern backhand grip, and semi-western or extreme backhand grip. The tennis coaching staff in Singapore can help you find which one works for you best if you’re still a beginner.

 

Basic Serves

There are four types of serves you should learn as a beginner from your tennis coach in Singapore, such as; the flat serve, slice, serve, kick serve, and underhanded serve. But what is common among these serves are the proper positioning of the feet when you make a stance, the tossing of a ball, the backswing, weight transfer and bending the knee, the trophy pose, racket drop, leg push, and the swinging up to contact or pronation. All these can be learned during the drills in your tennis lessons, that is why the only way to get better in tennis is to keep practicing.