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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Gunston Hall is an 18th-century Georgian mansion near the Potomac River in Mason Neck, Virginia, United States of America. The house was the home of the United States Founding Father George Mason. It was located at the center of a 5500 acre (22 km²) plantation. The construction period of Gunston Hall was between 1755 and 1759.

The design was mostly that of William Buckland, a carpenter/joiner and indentured servant from England. Both he and William Bernard Sears, another indentured servant, are believed to have created the ornate woodwork and interior carving. Gunston's interior design combines elements of rococo, chinoiserie, and Gothic styles, an unusual contrast to the tendency for simple decoration in Virginia at this time. Although chinoiserie was popular in Britain, Gunston Hall is the only house known to have had this decoration in colonial America. In 1792, Thomas Jefferson attended George Mason at his death bed at Gunston Hall. After Mason's death later that year, the house continued to be used as a residence for many years.

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