My 5 Reasons You Should Own a Home
5. Fixed Monthly Payment One of the biggest concerns for most renters, is the possibility of an increase in rent. A fixed mortgage payment is fixed through the life of loan. You'll never have to worry about an increase in mortgage payments.
4. It's Yours You can have the kitchen and baths that you want. You can knock down walls and open things up if you like. You'll feel better about your own place if you own it than if you rent. You can paint everything lime green if you want. It's yours! Owning your own home gives you and your family happiness, privacy, stability and security!
3. At some point, the market will clear Home prices and rates are still well below average compared to several years ago. Prices on multi-families in some cases have already shown some increase in value. As of today, April 5, 2012 you can get an interest rate as low as 3.625% or lower without having to buy it down. The dream of owning a home is very close and in reach, but I'm not sure for how long.
2. You'll Save on Taxes Please make sure you consult your local tax advisor because laws tend to change, but as of now you can deduct the mortgage interest from your taxes as well as your real estate taxes. You'll also get a tax break on capitol gains if any and when you sell. With all the tax breaks, you end up owning for less than if you were to rent.
1. Instants Savings/ Positive Investment Over the years while renting, what have you gotten back in return? Some of you may have gotten back the interest paid on your security deposit, which only amounts to a few dollars. As an owner you can build equity into a home by just paying the mortgage. It's like putting money into a savings account or retirement over the years. Paying your mortgage while the home appreciates in a good market, you can hit the jackpot! Real estate can prove to be the quickest way to save money.
By: Jane Hoback
Published: January 14, 2011
Deep clean your house and you’ll brighten rooms and help maintain your home’s value.
De-bug the light fixtures
See that bug burial ground within your overhead fixtures? Turn off the lights and carefully remove fixture covers, dump out flies and wash with hot soapy water. While you’re up there, dust bulbs. Dry everything thoroughly before replacing the cover.
Vacuum heat vents and registers
Dirt and dust build up in heat vents and along register blades. Vents also are great receptacles for coins and missing buttons. Unscrew vent covers from walls or pluck them from floors, remove foreign objects, and vacuum inside the vent. Clean grates with a damp cloth and screw back tightly.
To deep clean brass door hinges, handles, and cabinet knobs, thoroughly wipe with a damp microfiber cloth, then polish with Wright’s or Weiman brass cleaner ($4). Dish soap shines up glass or stainless steel knobs. Use a Q-tip to detail the ornamental filigree on knobs and handles.
Replace grungy switch plates
Any amateur can wipe a few fingerprints off cover plates that hide light switches, electric outlets, phone jacks, and cable outlets. But only deep cleaners happily remove plates to vacuum and swipe the gunk behind. (OK, we’re a little OCD when it comes to dirt!) Make sure cover plates are straight when you replace them. And pitch plates that are beyond the help of even deep cleaning. New ones cost less than $2 each.
Neaten weather stripping
Peeling, drooping weather stripping on doors and windows makes rooms look old. If the strip still has some life, nail or glue it back. If it’s hopeless, cut out and replace sections, or just pull the whole thing off and start new. A 10-ft. roll of foam weather stripping costs $8; 16-ft. vinyl costs about $15.
Replace stove drip pans
Some drip pans are beyond the scrub brush. Replacing them costs about $3 each andinstantly freshens your stove.
By: Jeanne Huber
Published: April 8, 2010
Many sensory clues give you early warning of home maintenance problems—if you can decode the symptoms.
1. Peeling exterior paint
Cause: Moisture is probably getting underneath the paint, perhaps from a leaking gutter overhead or from a steamy bathroom on the other side of the wall.
Cure: If you catch the problem right away, you might just need to address the moisture issue and then scrape off the loose paint, prime bare spots, and repaint that wall, for a total of a few hundred to a couple thousand dollars. Delay too long and the siding might rot. Patching and repainting the whole house might cost $10,000.
To prevent a chronically steamy bathroom, consider installing a new ventilation fan with a humidity-sensing switch that automatically exhausts moisture-laden air. Cost is about $250.
2. Flickering lights
Cause: If only a single bulb flickers, it might be loose in its socket or in need of replacement. If lights always dim when the refrigerator or other appliance turns on, the circuit might be overloaded. If groups of lights flicker, connections at the electrical panel or elsewhere might be loose, causing power to arc—or jump—over the gaps. Arcing is a serious problem; it starts fires.
Cure: Anyone can tighten a bulb. Handy homeowners can shut off circuits and tighten loose connections within switch boxes. If you’re not comfortable doing that, or if you suspect an overloaded circuit or loose connection at the panel box, call in a licensed electrician. You’ll pay $150 to $250 for a new circuit, and $500 to $700 for a new electrical panel--way less than what you’d spend to recover from a fire.
3. Rustling in a wall
Cause: Sure, termites usually signal their presence by building pencil-thick mud tubes up from the ground or by swarming from pinholes in floors or walls. But did you know it’s also possible to detect them by sound? Tap on a wall and then press an ear against it. See if you hear rustling that matches recordings of Formosan or other termites. A sound like crinkling cellophane could mean carpenter ants.
Cure: Call a pest-control professional. Cost is $65 to $100 for an inspection.
4. Loud knocking
Cause: If the knocking occurs when you turn off water, you have “water hammer,” caused when fast-moving water comes to a sudden stop and there is no air chamber (a short, specially designed piece of pipe) to cushion the shock wave. If knocking occurs when your furnace switches on or off, metal ducts are expanding or contracting as temperature changes.
Cure: If water pipes are the issue and there is an air chamber near the faucet, it may be filled with water and needs to be drained. You might be able to do this yourself. If you’re not confident of tackling that or if there is no chamber, call a plumber ($65 an hour) to add one. Those snapping ducts? Just get used to them.
5. A toilet tank that refills all on its own
Cause: Worn interior parts may be causing water to trickle through the toilet constantly, causing the water level in the tank to lower and eventually triggering the refill mechanism. A leaky toilet potentially wastes 1,500 gallons a month.
Cure: Untangle or loosen the chain—it may be too tight and preventing the flapper from seating fully, letting water leak out the flush valve. Or, try bending the tube connected to the float ball. If those don’t work, replace the valve and flapper inside the toilet tank (under $25 if you do it yourself, and a little more if you upgrade to a water-saving dual-flush valve).
6. Creaks and groans
Cause: All houses creak and groan a little as parts expand and contract with temperature fluctuations and with changes in levels of humidity.
Cure: None--it's normal for house to make a few snaps and pops. But don't ignore really loud groans when there's been an unusual amount of snow or rain, especially if your house has a flat roof. There may be an excessive or even dangerous amount of weight on your roof. If you suspect that may be the case, be prudent: Get everyone out of the house and call in a professional to check the roof.
7. Musty odors
Cause: Mildew, a fungus, is growing because indoor air is humid enough to allow condensation to form on cold surfaces. Basements are favorite haunts for mildew.
Cure: Keep surfaces dry by one or more strategies: increase air movement with a $20 fan, keep relative humidity below 50% in summer or 40% in winter with a $175 dehumidifier, or make surfaces warmer by adding insulation.
8. Rotten-egg smell when you run water
Cause: Bacteria that produce hydrogen sulfide gas (the scientific name for “rotten egg smell”) are in your plumbing, or there is a problem with your water heater. Fill a glass with hot water, step away from the sink, and take a whiff; if you detect no sulfur smell, they’re in the drain.
Cure: Disinfect the drain by pouring in a $1 bottle of 3% hydrogen peroxide solution, sold at drug stores. A sulfur smell in only hot water points to the water heater as the problem; call a plumber to disinfect the system or replace the tank’s magnesium anode. If hot and cold water both smell, call your water supplier (or health department if you have a well).
9. Strange-tasting tap water
Cause: Mineral content of drinking water varies, so taste does too. But if the water tastes metallic, iron or copper may be leaching from pipes. If you taste chlorine, your water supplier may have overdosed on disinfectant, or a correct level could be interacting with organic material within your plumbing system.
Cure: If chlorine seems high at all taps, or if you taste metals, call your water supplier or have your well water tested. If only one tap has water with high chlorine or if the taste goes away after you run water for a few minutes, flush your system or call a plumber.
An under-the-counter water purifier with a top-quality activated carbon filter will remove heavy metals, bacteria, and other contaminants. In addition, it removes odors and bad tastes. Expect to pay $150 to $200 for a purifier with a replaceable cartridge.
10. Sour milk
Cause: With today’s hyper-pasteurized dairy products, milk doesn’t sour easily. So if it or other refrigerated food spoils unusually fast, the temperature in your refrigerator could be too high.
Cure: Get an $8 refrigerator thermometer and adjust the control so on each shelf stays below 40 degrees. If you can’t achieve this, consider buying a new Energy Star-rated refrigerator. Fridges are pricey, $450 to $2,000 or more, but you’ll save energy as well as food and might qualify for rebates.
11. Trembling floors
Cause: If items on tables and shelve jiggle and shimmy when you walk past, or if your floor feels like it gives under your weight, the floor joists might not be sturdy enough or past remodeling might have removed a support wall.
Cure: Have a structural engineer or experienced contractor see whether you can add more joists, bolster existing ones with an additional layer of plywood subflooring, or add a post to support the floor better. You’ll pay up to $500 for a structural engineer to evaluate your problem.
12. Mysterious breezes
Cause: If a ground-floor room seems drafty, air may be seeping in along the foundation or through an improperly sealed window or door. A drafty attic can make things worse, as warm air currents will rise naturally and exit through any gaps in the attic, pulling colder air in through lower-level cracks.
Cure: Starting in the attic and working your way down, seal all gaps.
Published: March 5, 2013
When it comes to weeds in your garden, an hour of prevention is better than a season of yanking.
But if you prevent weed seeds from germinating, your garden will be weed-free. Here are some surefire ways to keep weeds from growing in the first place.
Shhh! Don’t Disturb the Soil
Weed seeds “sleep” in your soil all the time, just waiting for sunshine to enable them to germinate. Left underground, many weed seeds remain dormant for years. So the less you disturb the soil, the more likely weed seeds will remain asleep.
Avoid high-powered tillers, and go easy on the hand cultivating. Sow your flower and vegetable seeds above the ground in mounds of compost, shredded leaves, or even in bags of topsoil. Better yet, plant seedlings and starts.
Smother Weed Seeds
Another way to keep seeds asleep is to cover your soil with sun-blocking organic or synthetic mulches.
Organic mulches — hardwood mulch, newspaper, cardboard, straw -- degrade in a few months and improve soil structure and add nutrients. Synthetic mulches — landscaping paper, plastic — can last several seasons, but won’t help rebuild soil when they eventually degrade.
Heed these mulching tips:
- Wet the ground before you lay down layers of paper, which will prevent the paper from blowing away while you work.
- Scout yard sales for old carpet and wallpaper, efficient sun blocks that prevent weeds.
- Spread mulch 2 to 4 inches deep to suppress weeds and retain moisture.
- Always pick straw, not hay, to prevent weeds. Hay usually contains hayseeds, which will sprout where you’re trying to keep weeds out.
Learn more about mulching with our handy garden mulch guide.
Wage a Chemical Attack
Pre-emergent herbicides prevent weed seeds from germinating, but don’t kill existing plants and grasses.
The exact timing for applying a pre-emergent herbicide is hard to pinpoint because you must spread the herbicide before seeds germinate, which happens underground at different times.
Conventional gardening wisdom says spread pre-emergent herbicides when the daffodils pop or the forsythia wilts. But advance planning is the best way to determine when to spread. Log the date when you see the first weeds in your garden, then subtract three weeks to arrive at the date you should spread the pre-emergent herbicide next spring.
Grow Up Close and Personal
The closer together you plant your flowers and vegetables, the less space weed seeds will have to grow.
If you double-dig — loosen (don’t pulverize) soil at least 2 feet down — you can plant cheek-by-jowl, because plant roots can grow down, not out, to find water and nourishment. If you plant intensively in a diamond-shaped pattern — rather than rows -- you’ll avoid barren spots where weeds will grow.
To keep weeds out of lawns, make sure your grass is lush and healthy so weeds have no room to grow. Reseed bald patches; fertilize if a soil test determines nutrient deficiencies;aerate in the fall.
By: G. M. Filisko
Published: October 15, 2010
Don’t let pet odors derail your home sale.
Air your house out. While you’re cleaning, throw open all the windows in your home to allow fresh air to circulate and sweep out unpleasant scents.
Once your house is free of pet odors, do what you can to keep the smells from returning. Crate your dog when you're out or keep it outdoors. Limit the cat to one floor or room, if possible. Remove or replace pet bedding.
Scrub thoroughly. Scrub bare floors and walls soiled by pets with vinegar, wood floor cleaner, or an odor-neutralizing product, which you can purchase at a pet supply store for $10 to $25. Try a 1:9 bleach-to-water solution on surfaces it won’t damage, like cement floors or walls.
Got a stubborn pet odors covering a large area? You may have to spend several hundred dollars to hire a service that specializes in hard-to-clean stains.
Wash your drapes and upholstery. Pet odors seep into fabrics. Launder, steam clean, or dry clean all your fabric window coverings. Steam clean upholstered furniture. Either buy a steam cleaner designed to remove pet hair for around $200 and do the job yourself, or pay a pro. You'll spend about $40 for an upholstered chair, $100 for a sofa, and $7 for each dining room chair if a pro does your cleaning.
Clean your carpets. Shampoo your carpets and rugs, or have professionals do the job for $25 to $50 per room, depending on their size and the level of filth embedded in them. The cleaner will try to sell you deodorizing treatments. You'll know if you need to spend the extra money on those after the carpet dries and you have a friend perform a sniff test.
If deodorizing doesn't remove the pet odor from your home, the carpets and padding will have to go. Once you tear them out, scrub the subfloor with vinegar or an odor-removing product, and install new padding and carpeting. Unless the smell is in the subfloor, in which case that goes next.
Paint, replace, or seal walls. When heavy-duty cleaners haven’t eradicated smells in drywall, plaster, or woodwork, add a fresh coat of paint or stain, or replace the drywall or wood altogether. On brick and cement, apply a sealant appropriate for the surface for $25 to $100. That may smother and seal in the odor, keeping it from reemerging.
Place potpourri or scented candles in strategic locations. Put a bow on your deep clean with potpourri and scented candles. Don’t go overboard and turn off buyers sensitive to perfumes. Simply place a bowl of mild potpourri in your foyer to create a warm first impression, and add other mild scents to the kitchen and bathrooms.
Control ongoing urine smells. If your dog uses indoor pee pads, put down a new pad each time the dog goes. Throw them away outside in a trash can with a tight lid. Remove even clean pads from view before each showing.
Replace kitty litter daily, rather than scooping used litter clumps, and sweep up around the litter box. Hide the litter box before each showing.
Relocate pets. If your dog or cat has a best friend it can stay with while you're selling your home (and you can stand to be separated from your pet), consider sending your pet on a temporary vacation. If pets have to stay, remove them from the house for showings and put away their dishes, towels, and toys.
G.M. Filisko is an attorney and award-winning writer whose former mutt Marley no doubt created a wet-dog aroma in her condo that still remains. A regular contributor to many national publications including Bankrate.com, REALTOR® Magazine, and the American Bar Association Journal, she specializes in real estate, business, personal finance, and legal topics.
By: G. M. Filisko
Published: December 31, 2012
Which tax benefits do home owners miss? Will you get audited if you take the home office deduction? Find out the answers to these questions and more before Tax Day.
There are a lot of home ownership tax benefits — if you don’t forget to take them. To make sure you get your due, HouseLogic asked tax expert Abe Schneier, a senior technical manager with the American Institute of CPAs, for tax-filing tips.
HouseLogic: What’s the most common home-related tax deduction or credit claimed by home owners?
Abe Schneier: The mortgage interest deduction, [which the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® estimates amounts to about $3,000 in tax savings for the average itemizing home owner] and [the deduction for] real property taxes.
HL: Which tax provision do home owners often overlook?
AS: You can deduct mortgage insurance premiums [or PMI] if you were required to get PMI as a condition of receiving financing on your home. Some people will overlook that, although it’s typically disclosed on the 1099 that you receive from the bank, along with all the deductible information you need.
HL note: The PMI deduction has been extended through 2013 and is retroactive for 2012.
[Another area of tax-filing confusion is] whether you’ve correctly treated any points you paid if you refinanced. In a new home purchase, the points can be deducted [in the tax year you paid them]. But typically in a refinancing, you have to amortize and deduct any points you paid over the life of the mortgage, and people tend to forget that after a couple of years.
HL: What’s the No. 1 mistake home owners make when filing their taxes?
AS: Because you receive a statement from the bank with details [such as] how much mortgage interest you paid over the year, and how much the bank pays on your behalf in real estate taxes, the number of mistakes has dropped.
But if you’re in a state where you pay the real estate taxes on your own — the bank doesn’t handle it for you — [people] make mistakes because sometimes real estate tax bills include other items besides pure real estate taxes. It could be trash collection fees; it could be snow removal fees that the state or county is assessing on the real estate tax bill. Since the items are included in the same bill, home owners sometimes deduct [those fees] regardless of whether the items are actually taxes.
HL: What’s the single most important piece of advice for people filing their taxes as a first-time home owner?
AS: You have to take a look at your closing statement from when you bought the house. It’s commonly called the HUD-1 form and you receive it at the closing. Occasionally, there are fees such as prepaid taxes or interest at closing that can be deductible.
HL: What tax advice do you have for someone who’s owned their home for 10 or 20 years?
AS: If you’ve been a longtime home owner and you’ve been through refinancings, you have to be careful about how much interest you’ve deducted, especially if you have ahome equity loan or equity line. A lot of people who’ve refinanced have sizable equity lines. The maximum outstanding home equity debt that’s deductible is $100,000; the maximum deductible amount of interest paid on mortgage debt is $1 million.
HL: What home improvement-related records should home owners keep?
AS: Absolutely keep your receipts for couple of reasons:
1. You want to make sure — if there are any warranties attached to the work that was done — that you maintain those records and you have something to go back to the person who did the work in case something doesn’t function properly.
2. If you’ve added value to the home — you’ve added a deck, you’ve added a room, you’ve added something new to house — you’ll need to know what the gain is on thatcapital improvement when you sell the house.
HL note: Tax rules let you add capital improvement expenses to the cost basis of your home, and a higher cost basis lowers the total profit or capital gain you’re required to pay taxes on. Of course, most home owners are exempted from taxes on the first $500,000 in profit for joint filers ($250,000 for single filers). So it doesn't apply to too many people.
HL: How do I tell the difference between a capital improvement and a repair?
AS: Typically a repair is [done] to allow an item, like a home furnace or air conditioner, to continue. But if you were to replace the heating unit, that’s not a repair.
HL: Does taking any home-related tax benefits, such as the home office deduction, make a taxpayer more likely to be audited?
AS: Only if numbers look out of the ordinary — for instance, if one year you were writing off $20,000 in mortgage interest debt and the next year you’re writing off $100,000 in mortgage interest. Taking the home office deduction in and of itself doesn’t usually generate an audit. However, if you claim nominal income and significantly higher expenses in an effort to create artificial losses, the IRS will see that there’s something else going on there.
HL: Once filing season is over, when should home owners start thinking about next year's taxes?
AS: Well, hopefully, when you visit your CPA to give information about or pick up [this year's] tax return, your CPA has spoken with you about your plans for [next year]:
- If any major improvements are scheduled
- If you’re planning on moving
- How to organize any expenditures for fixing up the home before sale
If you’re planning to do any of those things, talk with your CPA so that you’re prepared with documentation and so that the [tax pro] can help minimize your tax situation.
Author: Mary Boone
If your teen is still sleeping in a room decorated with princesses or puppy dogs, it may be time to redecorate.
The best teen bedrooms are those that are comfortable, reflect the personalities of their occupants and have enough storage to keep clutter under control. Sound impossible? Not if you actually allow your teen some input and follow these five simple tips.
Don’t clash over color
Hot pink walls may not be your “thing,” but if that’s your teen’s desire — why not? Remind yourself, this is your child’s room, not yours. And paint is relatively inexpensive. When your teen’s psychedelic or goth or punk phase ends in a year or so, you can simply repaint. If you simply can’t bend on wall color, allow your teen to go crazy with bedding or curtains.
Make it personal
Head to your local craft store and pick up some canvases and acrylic paints and let your teen create art work that defines his or her specific interests. Or, if your teen has lots of photos of friends, help figure out a way to display them — in frames, hanging from a picture wire or mobile, under a desk mat or on a bulletin board. However you choose to display them, make certain it’s simple to add or subtract photos — the tumultuous teen years, after all, are famous for their fragile friendships.
Teens have lots of things, probably because they are stuck in that awkward place between being a kid and being a grown-up. This means they need places for stuffed animals, trophies, games, photos, books, clothes, sports equipment, electronics and so much more. Walk through your teen’s room and figure out what doesn’t have a designated storage space — or maybe it doesn’t have enough space. Offer to help your teen sort through items. Perhaps some could go into scrapbooks or attic storage. Once you know exactly what you need to store in the bedroom, start planning — together — how you’re going to store it. If new furniture is in the budget, consider a bed with built-in drawers underneath. In a small room, a loft bed will provide space below for a desk or dresser. Similarly, shelves or hanging cabinets can help clear up several square feet of floor space.
If you have a teenager, there’s a good chance his or her dirty laundry is prominently displayed on the floor, on the bed, over the back of a chair, on the desk. No guarantees on this one, but if you make getting laundry into the hamper as simple as possible, it may increase the odds of a cleaner space. Move the laundry basket from the back of the closet to a corner of the bedroom. Buy a giant laundry bag and have your teen help you use fabric paints to create a graphic design on it — appropriate labels might be “Stinky” or “Foul.” Or, invest in a hamper that’s designed to look like a basketball net and hoop. The idea of sinking 3-pointers with dirty socks may actually help keep them off the bedroom floor.
A teenager needs a place to study, listen to music or hang out with a friend. Even the tiniest bedroom should be able to accommodate floor pillows or a comfy chair and, perhaps, a small table for snacks. If space is super tight, you may need to pile on the pillows to transform the bed into a casual sofa. Depending upon house rules, you may want to include video games, a TV or computer to keep your teen and his or her guests entertained.
By: Courntey Craig
How deep do you go when cleaning for holiday guests? There are some who take it to the extreme — but you can have a clean home without going overboard.
If you think wiping down countertops and fluffing a few pillows in advance of the guest onslaught will land you on Santa’s “nice” list this holiday season, check that list twice. The extreme cleaners (telephone buttons! vacuum brushes! remote controls!) featured in thisNew York Times article may make you feel like a slacker.
But you can bring your home to sparkling guest-readiness without going overboard. A few tips from the "Times" will keep your home merry, bright, and clean:
- Scrub your entryway. Wipe down your front door, give the doormat a good shake, and make sure dust and dirt haven’t collected on floors and furniture legs. These are the first things guests will see when they arrive, so keeping them clean will guarantee a good first impression.
- Focus on the kitchen. People tend to gather around the food during the holidays, so make sure your kitchen looks and smells nice. Don’t forget to dust the light fixtures and flush sink drains with boiling water.
- Whatever you do, don’t neglect the look. Don’t just wipe surfaces; break out the stiff-bristled brush and scouring powder to really scrub things clean.
- Sniff out bad smells. If you clean your home and something still doesn’t smell quite right, brew some coffee. The aroma will cover it up.
HouseLogic also has a few cost-conscious cleaning tips to get your home holiday ready:
- Give your garbage disposal some love, considering how much it will “consume” this season. To cut down on odors, chop up a whole lemon — rind and all — and let the disposal gobble it up. Throw in ice cubes to sharpen the blades.
- How about one soap for everything? If you’ve got a bottle of castile soap ($10 for a 16-oz. bottle), you’re ready for anything. It can be laundry detergent, mopping solution, and shampoo, just to name a few.
- Make sure you can see the guests coming. Keep windows clean and streak-free on the cheap with an easy mixture of vinegar and water in a spray bottle. Wipe down windows with a reusable microfiber cloth.
- With all your holiday cooking, stovetops and ovens are bound to get dirty. Baking soda and water make a simple scouring solution that can scrub off that baked-on gunk.
- To save money, make your own bathroom cleaning products. For example, to unclog a drain for pennies, pour half a cup of baking soda followed by half a cup of vinegar down the drain. Cover the drain for at least 30 minutes, then flush it with boiling water.
By: Lisa Kaplan Gordon
Published: September 20, 2012
Here’s a way to make heat when the sun shines to warm up your garage or shed.
Garages and sheds are bears to heat, unless you spend a lot of money extending yourHVAC system. So we’re so glad to have stumbled upon a post from The Good Human that shows how to turn an old window frame and a case of soda cans into free solar heat.
Basically, you sandwich aluminum cans (painted black) between the window glass and some insulation. Drill holes in the frame and cans and place in a sunny place. Air is sucked into the frame, heated by the sun in the cans, and blown out the top as warm air rises. You can direct the heat into a small space like a garage or shed with dryer venting attached to a window shim.
Voila! So long as the sun shines, you’ve got heat.
I plan to dumpster surf for an old window and give it a try.