Portal:Home improvement

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The Home improvement Portal

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Home improvement is the process of renovating or making additions to one's home. Often, a professional handyman is hired to perform the improvements but, typically, most improvements are done on an amateur DIY basis by the homeowner.

A homeowner can hire a general contractor to oversee a home improvement project that involves multiple trades. A general contractor acts as project manager, providing access to the site, removing debris, coordinating work schedules, and performing some aspects of the work. Sometimes homeowners bypass the general contractor, and hire tradesmen themselves, including plumbers, electricians and roofers. Another strategy is to "do it yourself" (DIY). Several major retailers, such as Home Depot and Lowe's, specialize in selling materials and tools for DIY home improvement. These stores even host classes to educate customers how to do the work themselves.

Bob Vila is a well-known author and television host in the home improvement field. Also, the sitcom Home Improvement uses the home improvement theme for comedic purposes.

Selected article

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Water gardens, also known as aquatic gardens, backyard ponds and garden ponds, have become popular in recent years. Usually referring to a man-made feature, these gardens typically combine a pool with aquatic plants and often ornamental fish. Fixed items such as rocks, fountains, statuary, waterfalls and watercourses can be combined with the pool to add visual interest and integration with the local landscape and environment.

Often the reason for having a pond in your garden is to keep fish, often koi, though many people keep goldfish. Both are hardy, colorful fish which require no special heating, provided you live in an area which does not have extremes of temperature that would affect the fish. If fish are kept, pumps and filtration devices usually need to be added in order to keep enough oxygen in the water to support them. In winter, a small heater may need to be used in cold climates to keep the water from freezing solid.

Homes

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The Lou Henry and Herbert Hoover House, located on the campus of Stanford University in Palo Alto, California, USA, is a large, rambling house, resembling "blocks piled up." It was designed by Lou Henry Hoover, wife of Herbert Hoover, 31st President of the United States. After several consultations the Hoovers convinced Arthur B. Clark, a Stanford art professor who practiced freelance architecture during the summer, to be their architect. Clark agreed on the condition that Mrs. Hoover design the house and that Clark would serve in an advisory capacity.

The problem of size was solved by the hillside site with the house disappearing into the slope of San Juan Hill and hence appearing much smaller. The irregularly shaped house was built on a reinforced concrete slab foundation and rises two stories in the front and three stories in the rear. Resembling early International style homes, Mrs. Hoover's designs were modeled after North African Algerian homes. Elements of Mission Revival Style architecture can also be found in its design.

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Credit: commons:User:Bergsten
A pipecutter.

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