Monthly Archives

April 2019

5 ways to save energy at your home

Reducing your electricity bill not only save you some extra bucks but also brings you one step closer to being an ideal resident of our dear planet. Lower energy bills mean less energy consumed, which means less harmful emissions are released into our ecosystem. Reducing consumption not necessarily means baking yourself in the scorching heat or taking bath in freezing water, there are many other easy and effective things you can do with little investment and little or no experience. Here are the 5 little ideas you can start with.
1. Reducing the phantom loads
This refers to the load (electricity) that an appliance or electronic device consumes when it is not actually turned on. A report says that phantom loads account for about 6 percent of all national residential electricity consumption. Phantom loads can be eliminated by unplugging appliances and electronics when they are not in use.
2. Energy efficient appliances
Buying a new appliance, make sure to look for the Environmental Protection Agency’s Energy Star label before making a purchase. These appliances use between 10 and 50 percent less energy and water than their conventional counterparts. Star labelled appliances may cost more than the appliances without the Energy Star designation, but they sure make up that additional cost through energy savings.
3. Changing your light bulbs
This is one of the least expensive and most effective changes you can make in your home. Fluorescent bulbs are things of the past. Now the CFL technology is replaced by LED. Longevity, efficiency and less consumption of energy are some of the many benefits of LED lights over other types of lights. Clear white light with less consumption and even lesser heat emission makes it ideal for home use. The LED light can be also used in ways that can complement your interior design and architecture.
4. Use Fans for Cooling
In the summer, instead of AC use stationary, ceiling and whole house fans to cool your home. This will reduce the need for air conditioning and thus the electricity consumption.
5. Proper insulation for air conditioning
Proper insulation will prevent cool air from escaping from your air-conditioned room. Any small cracks and gaps where the air is leaking into and out of your home should be sealed. Doing this you could potentially save 10 percent on the annual energy bill.
Effective and efficient use of electricity is not just about saving on bills but reducing the stress on the environment. India’s electricity sector consumes around 72% of the coal produced in the country. Coal consumption by utility power is 608 million tons in the year 2017-18. Each unit we save now contributes to a better environment and to a better tomorrow.

5 tips on How to decorate your bedroom

Every home is a haven to open up our true self. And in every home, we have bedrooms to express our unbiased nature and a wide range of pure emotions. The bedroom is ought to be a personal space at home where you don’t need to fake your choice. That means from the selection of wall paint to the softness of bed you are expressing yourself. The bedroom is a private space and every material in it must give you complete satisfaction. As you spend one-third of your life sleeping in this room it must be unique than the other spaces. And a well organized bedroom itself represents your personality. That’s why this article shares five helpful tips on decorating and converting your bedroom into a special space.
1. Bed is the Focus
How can you imagine a bedroom without a bed in it? The selection of an appropriate bed for your bedroom is the main concern. Even the placement of the bed makes a huge difference. The bed you selected can act as a focus decorative because of its size and visual impact. Before selecting bed check the following
a) Why size matters
Before selecting bed don’t forget to consider the room space. Remember a too small bed is uncomfortable but a big one can steal the room space. So make your choice between room space and comfortability. The predefined size options like single, double, queen, king, etc. can make your choice easier.
b) Pillow and bed combination
In bedroom decoration, the pillow and bed combination can do wonder. To make combination you can use two to six pillows. As the number increases try to reduce the size of pillows. For an adorable look, you can use feather filled pillows with neck rolls and bolster. And remember to stick to one color pattern to compromise with the room theme.
c) Canopy beds
Canopy beds are born as a decorative. It’s like adding a frame to your bed and an easy method to draw attraction. Adding a canopy to bed gives options for more drama and creativity. You can hang curtains or lights to increase the visual appeal of the frame. Or simply keep the frame transparent and add focal points in the wall or window behind it.
d) Sheets as canvas
don’t hesitate to spend some money on linens and sheets. Clean and monochromatic linen can change the overall appearance of the room. If your mind is too creative use sheets with beautiful patterns in it.
2. Color and themes
Setting a fusion between the color and theme of the room helps to increase the style of the bedroom. You can easily define the theme of the room by using lighting and wall paint. All the light including the bed lamps needs to be soft luminous to avoid excessive vibrancy in the room. After all the ultimate intention of the bedroom is a tight sleep so every decorative in it must come to that line. A theme based on privacy and personalization is what you can aim for.
3. The fifth wall
Never forget the ceiling of your bedroom. Because this fifth wall is the very thing you will notice when you lie in your bed. Rather than painting casual white in ceiling think about a soft neutral color that will benefit your sleep. If you have a high ceiling you can try a dropped beam ceiling with white paint. For beams, you can use wooden or steel material as per your taste. To keep the flow of the room paint the ceiling with a color that resembles the overall texture of the bedroom.
4. Furniture and accessories
Furniture and accessories are essential in the bedroom but at a minimal rate. If you have space in the bedroom try decorative makeup mirror and set some resting points in the corner. Low floor beds and sofas fit well with the bedroom. And in the case of accessories, it is better to reduce electronic equipment inside the bedroom as it may add noise. You can go for texture rug and wall mounted stands rather than television and big wardrobes.
5. Keep it simple
Whatever you wish to do in the bedroom keep it simple. Try to keep distance between wall and accessories of the bedroom. Preserving space for free movement is the key to the success of any bedroom decor. Likewise, too much of pattern and color won’t fit in the bedroom atmosphere. The mood of the room must be relaxing and a visual flow must be maintained inside the room. When you keep thing organized your bedroom is naturally decorated as a perfect space for refreshment.

GST rate cuts in the real estate sector

The real estate sector is cheering the GST rate cut announced recently by the GST Council of India.  The 33rd GST Council meeting on Sunday, 24th February 2019, lowered the GST rate on under construction properties from 12% to 5% and for affordable housing, from 8% to 1%. The reform is expected to impact sales amongst the neutral players waiting to decide on investing in properties. According to the Confederation of Real Estate Developers Association of India (CREDAI), many potential home and flat buyers are encouraged to reach out to the developers. The rates will come into force from first April 2019. It is brought into force by notification in the Official Gazette.

The GST rate cut will provide the much-needed relief to the real estate sector. People and buyers who are currently not able to decide due to the price and tax elements will be inclined to make new decisions as the new GST rates are now conducive and more affordable. The key decisions made by the council are as follows.

Change in the definition of ‘Affordable Housing’

The definition of “affordable housing” under the GST law has undergone a change. The earlier definition is as follows:

“Affordable Housing” is defined as a housing project using at least 50% of the Floor Area Ratio (FAR)/Floor Space Index (FSI) for dwelling units with carpet area 1 of not more than 60 square meters.”

The new definition consists of two requirements to classify housing as affordable. Affordable housing in the metro cities, namely Delhi NCR region, Mumbai MMR region, Kolkata, Chennai, Hyderabad, and Bengaluru, will include properties with a carpet area up to 60 square meters and cost up to Rs 45,00,000. For non-metro cities, properties with a carpet area of 90 square meters and cost up to Rs 45,00,000 will fall under the affordable housing segment.

The withdrawal of Input Tax Credit

The revised GST rates will withdraw the earlier benefit of the input tax credit. Thus, the reduction of the GST rate will directly benefit home buyers. This will make the tax applicability and real estate transactions more transparent.

Exemption on TDR, JDA, Lease, and FSI

The GST council meeting has also decided that an intermediate tax on Transferable Development Rights, Joint Development Agreements, long-term lease (premium) and Floor Space Index (FSI) shall be exempt only for such residential properties on which GST is applicable. The exemption will facilitate better cash flows in such transactions.

On-going Projects

With regard to those projects/properties where construction work has already begun, transition rules and guidelines will be drafted by the tax authorities. This will provide clarity on applicability of GST on such projects/properties.

The change in the GST rates will boost the demand for real estate due to the recent slow-down in the sector. This move should not only drive sales but also promote the developers to undertake affordable housing projects. These changes also seek to make the tax structure more transparent, the tax compliance easier and less cumbersome for developers.