At Home in Berks August 2017 - 17

Here are some other ideas for extending the usability of
your outdoor living space:
Enhance your lighting. The sun sets sooner on your outdoor living space in the fall, but that shouldn't limit the hours
you can use your deck or patio. Adding low-voltage or solar
outdoor lighting fixtures lets you party or relax well after dark.
Using one or both of these types of lighting you can: light
deck railings and stairs, define the patio perimeter, illuminate
the edges of paths and walkways or draw attention to a planter
or tree. Other fixtures can light up dining tables and grill
surfaces.
Using a low-voltage fixture that clips onto a safe, 12-volt
cable connected to a transformer that plugs into a GFCI-protected 120-volt electrical outlet, you even can have lights
underwater in your swimming pool. A timer or light-sensitive
control automatically turns lights on and off.
Solar outdoor lighting fixtures don't need cables and
transformers. They simply turn themselves on automatically
after dark. Each stand-alone fixture stakes into the ground or
secures to a deck or exterior surface. You'll save energy, as a
sunlight-charged battery powers the bulb. The downside to
solar fixtures is a dimmer glow than low-voltage fixtures, and
fewer lighting hours - many solar fixtures run out of stored
energy after 4-5 hours on the job. Cloudy days also reduce
power.
Warm up with a patio heater. While a patio heater is no
substitute for a cozy fireplace or fire pit, it can extend the
time that you spend outdoors. You've probably experienced
patio heaters at a restaurant or other outdoor gathering spot.
They've been used on the West Coast for years and are becoming increasingly popular in our area. A patio heater can boost
the warmth of your outdoor living area by as much as 15 to
25 degrees in the fall or spring, meaning you can stay outside
almost until winter arrives and get back out as soon as the last
snow has melted. You'll find three basic models:

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The first is a freestanding unit that resembles a large floor
lamp. You can place them anywhere that accommodates their
7 to 8-foot height. Some models include wheels for mobility.
A tabletop patio heater rests on a table, bench, or garden
wall. These compact units typically produce less heat than
the tall, freestanding models, but they may be more versatile
because they're easy to move around.
Another option is a ceiling or wall mounted patio heater,
which frees up floor and table space. These heaters typically
emit heat via a halogen lamp. Prices on patio heaters vary
greatly, depending on size, the amount of heat they produce
and other factors. Some are powered by electricity or natural
gas, while others operate with a propane tank. Make your
selection based on how much outdoor living area you want
to heat, how often you think you'll use the heater, and other
factors that might apply.

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* APR = Annual Percentage Rate. Credit union membership required with a $25 minimum deposit.
Promotion valid on the 15/15 Adjustable Rate Mortgage (ARM) product only. New purchase or
refinance of non-Visions debt. One- to four-family, owner-occupied, primary residence only. Maximum
mortgage dollar amount funded is based on region. Estimated savings of closing costs, which varies by
geographic market and property, would be at least $3,370, including, but not limited to, the following
costs: appraisal, flood determination, application fee, credit report, lender attorney fees, recording fee,
title insurance, and mortgage tax. Borrowers are responsible for initial escrow setup, interim interest,
owner's title insurance, tax service fee, borrower's attorney fees, survey, and private mortgage
insurance, if applicable. Monthly payment would be $470.43 on a $100,000 mortgage at 3.875% APR
with a 30-year term. Payment example does not include amounts for taxes and insurance premiums.
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VISIONS FEDERAL

AUGUST 2017 AT HOME IN BERKs

ISSUE: 1706
ORG/PUB: At Home in Berks

17


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of At Home in Berks August 2017

At Home in Berks August 2017 - 1
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