Blogs

How To Prevent A Rat Infestation

Living with a rat infestation is very stressful. The best thing to do is prevent a situation like this arising in the first place. Rats are different to mice and need access to water all day long. They are also known for eating absolutely anything! So, if you make it impossible for them to reach shelter, food and water, this is a good way to prevent them entering any part of the house or garden.

Below I am going to list the top things you can do to prevent a rat infestation.

  1. Make sure everywhere is tidy; all around the house and garden. The less clutter there is, the less places there are to hide.
  2. Keep any food in containers with tight lids; any readily available food will attract rats.
  3. If you have outdoor rubbish bags in bins, make sure they are securely fitted so that rats can’t feed from the contents.
  4. If you already have signs that there are rats, use peppermint oil in the house – it smells nice and it is said to be good at getting rid of rats and mice. Peppermint has a strong odour and mice and rats have a very sensitive sense of smell.
  5. Clear any pet food when not in use.
  6. Fill any holes in walls, roofs and eaves.
  7. Rats have been seen before swimming in drains and even into toilets, so keep the lid down!
  8. Fix metal grates to air bricks, vents and drains so they’re covered.
  9. Seal any holes around pipework with wire wool or professional sealant.
  10. Place traps in any areas that may be potential trouble spots.

Black and brown rats:

Rats will take any opportunity they can get to enter your home; black rats are good climbers and will try to enter your loft. Brown rats can also climb, but they prefer to build burrows, mainly near solid structures such as sheds, garages and walls. Brown rats are also known for swimming, so will often be in the sewers or drain system. Any damaged pipework with gaps or holes will make it easier for them to access.

Where they enter:

Young rats are smaller and so can squeeze through smaller gaps, for example under doorways, so make sure to cover any gaps at the bottom of doors. They will attempt to enlarge any gap, no matter how small.

 

Gaps In walls or doors – any holes or opening at the bottom of a wall or door should be filled with stainless steel wire wool or concrete.

Roofs – Rats can climb in to any loft space through gaps and broken eaves, so repair any roof damage that may be present.

Drains and pipes – rats have been known to swim in damaged sewer pipes and then get around u-bends into toilets, so always try to keep toilet seat lids closed. Regularly check for any damage to pipes and ensure any damage is fixed straight away.

10 Cool Gadgets You Need In Your Kitchen

his article includes all the latest cool gadgets that you need in your kitchen. Not just do these kitchen gadgets make the kitchen look cool they will also make your life a whole lot easier, whether you’re cooking dinner or making a fruit smoothie you have all the help you need. These can make great gifts for someone who enjoys being in the kitchen, maybe you have a friend who is a talented chef or a fruit lover, there’s something for everyone. What’s great about these products as well is that they’re all available to buy on amazon.com.

1: This fish shape gadget separates the yolk and white of an egg in seconds. All you have to do is crack the egg into a bowl and use the fish to suction up the yolk, this is probably the easiest way to do it, and a plus is the colourful fish is a lot cooler than any other egg device. £7.48

2: This yellow banana slicer will cut your banana in seconds, and it creates perfect slices so great for anyone who likes things to be neat and perfect. It’s so easy and even great for the children as it isn’t sharp or dangerous as compared to a knife. £0.72

3: Rotato press is an automatic and adjustable device that not just peels your potatoes but also any other medium sized fruit or vegetable, because who enjoys peeling potatoes for an hour? £120.00

4: Do you struggle getting a neat, perfect cake slice? This cake slicer cuts the perfect slice every time without making a mess. £30.00

5: This multipurpose chopping block makes preparing the veg a whole lot easier, no mess, no extra chopping boards. This chopping board has extra compartments for you to place your cut vegetable peelings, or even wash your fruit or veg right next to the sink.  £10.00

6: If you’re a fan of Star Wars you’re going to love this Darth Vader inspired toaster. It would also make a great gift for a friend. The coolest thing about this toaster is that it has a heating element that toasts the Star Wars logo into the side of the bread. £60

7: These pizza scissors make cutting pizza a fun job, no mess, no crumbs just neat cut pizza. £8.99

8: A unicorn sprinkles shaker? Unicorn and sprinkles, a cool duo, right? This is great for the kids when baking cakes in the kitchen. £8.14

9: This skillet has five different slots, this means you can cook five different things at the same time and they won’t touch. This means your whole meal can be cooked in one pan with no mess. This can come in handy for families with allergies as this stops different foods from touching. For example, one-person in your family has a nut allergy and another person is celiac and can’t eat anything including gluten, this pan gives you the option to cook 6 of the same foods but cooked separately which would stop cross contamination. £41.69

How we help

Don’t forget here at Smart-Sure we offer Kitchen appliance insurance! We use trusted engineers in many locations, meaning when you need help you are closer than you think to a helping hand.

Why not contact us here or call us on 03333 449 669 if you would like to find out more, our customer service team will be happy to help with any questions or queries.

Home Emergency – Everything You Need To Know

Everything You Need To Know About Home Emergency Insurance

What is Home Emergency Insurance?

Home emergency insurance is designed to cover you if you experience an emergency in your home that needs fixing as quick as possible. Things such as burst pipes, water leaks and pest infestations are what’s covered with home emergency insurance.

What is the difference between Home Insurance and Home Emergency?

Home insurance will ocver any money spent due to a fire, flood or theft but that is all it will cover and nothing more, for example it wont fix your boiler if it breaks down.

Some home insurance policies come with emergency cover included, however most dont include home emergency so you will have to buy it as a standalone

product. Buying Home emegergency insurance alone instead of joining it on to your home insurance may benefit you as you’re able to specify your cover to match your needs.

If you’re worried about an emergency occurring in your home such as faulty heating/ loose locks/doors and any other disasters that require urgent attention, then home emergency may be something to look in to. Home emergency will be there to relieve any stress due to an emergency. If you need help immediately you will be able to call a number that was assigned to you when you bought the policy and your insurer will send one of their trusted engineers out to your home.

How much does Home Emergency cost?

Having home emergency cover will prevent any panic when something goes wrong, but different policies will range in prices and levels of protection, so it’s important to pick the right one for you and make sure you’re getting the right deal. Policies can range from £35 up to £500 annually, which is quite expensive considering you never know how many times you’re going to be in an emergency. The cost will depend on what cover you’re getting and what type of assistance you want. It’s important not to go for the cheapest just because it’s cheap, because that policy may not cover what’s most important to you.

What does Home ​Emergency Insurance cover?

Emergency cover will usually protect things such as:

  • Failure of electricity – You will be covered for complete loss of electricity within your home due to an issue within your property, as opposed to problems before the electricity enters your home.
  • Emergency plumbing/drainage – If there is a problem with the water supply, a leak or any other fault with the plumbing and drainage system then cover means a plumber will be sent out to attempt fixing the problem.
  • Problems with your heating/boiler – If you are left with no hot water or central heating due to system failure your insurer will send out a tradesperson to your address to fix the issue, some insurers will give you a fixed amount towards to cost of a new boiler if yours is not repairable.
  • Pest infestations – If any pests set up home in your home then a pest controller will be sent to remove them as quickly as possible.
  • Problems with locks/windows/doors – If your home is left unsafe because of broken doors/windows and locks then a tradesperson will visit your house to make sure your home is secure.

Insurers vary, and some may even cover additional things which is why it’s good to look around before buying.

Things to do before you buy:

  • Check the company’s reviews – Before you buy, check out the company, what else do they sell? Have people bought from them before? Are people saying good things about them? It’s important to look at reviews so you know the quality of the provider and if you can trust them.
  • Read through the policy documents/terms and conditions – The provider should always include a document stating the policy restrictions, which for example could include how old your boiler can be for them to cover you. It is important to look at his document, so you know exactly what you’re getting.
  • Check your getting the right price – Make sure to look around at different prices and different cover so you have a choice and buy one that suits your needs, at a good price. There’s no point buying a policy because you think it includes more just because its more expensive, if you look around you may find a cheaper policy that has more benefits suited to you.

Home Emergency at Sma​​​​​​​rt Cover

Home Emergency Cover is designed to get an engineer to attend your emergency as soon as possible. We cover your home for multiple emergencies – whether your central heating decides to pack up on a cold winter’s night, or a serious water leak threatens to cause water damage to your home. We are here to get it fixed.

Roofing

Damage to roof or home following bad weather conditions, falling tree’s etc.

Locks and Doors

Damage or failure of door, locks and windows.

Heating System

Your Heating system will be fixed in no-time

Pests

Wasps, rats, mice, ants and more.

Boiler Breakdown

We will assist you and pay for the call out, labour and parts.

Lost Keys

The loss or theft of the only available keys if you can’t replace them.

Electrical Emergencies

Restore the electricity system following an emergency or complete failure.

Plumbing Emergencies

Burst pipes & leaks. Domestic water supply, failure, blockage, drains etc.

Home Emergency Cover
Instant Benefits at Smart Cover

  • 24hr claims line.
  • Unlimited number of claims.
  • Unlimited number of call outs.
  • UK-wide audited and monitored contractor network.
  • Fast emergency response.

How we help

Don’t forget here at Smart Cover we offer Home emergency insurance.

Contact us via our website or call us on 03333 449 559 if you would like to find out more, our customer service team will be happy to help with any questions or queries.

10 Apps You Need To Download To Your Smartphone

We all know that feeling when you download a new app and you end up using it everyday. With smartphone app stores offering a choice of millions of apps, theres bound to be a bunch you’ve never seen. I have put together 10 apps that im sure you will love! These apps will get you discounts, access to the best movies, guides to cooking your favourite dishes and more!

1: POCKET

Pocket is an app previously known as Read It Later and it lets you save all articles and anything you have read on the internet. If you’re someone who enjoys reading and often finds yourself leaving articles because you don’t have time to read them at that exact time, then you need to download pocket on your smartphone immediately. Pocket enables you to save articles that you have seen while on the internet, for example on the web or social media and lets you read it later. Something that people seem to love about the app is that it reformats the article for you to be able to read easier on a mobile device. The app is free to download but does include in-app purchases.

2: MyFitnessPal

My fitness pal is a calorie counter and exercise tracker app that aims to give you the support to lose weight. You can enter in your weight target and how fast you want to reach your goal and it will give you a daily calorie intake number that you should aim for. The app lets you type or scan in any food that you have eaten and will provide you with all information including how many calories the food has. The app also tracks how many steps you have walked and roughly how many calories your exercise has burned. The app is free to download, and most features are free to use, you can pay an in-app purchase to unlock more features.

3: Spotify

With music being so popular and now so easy to access, Spotify is one of the most popular apps to download for streaming and listening to music without Wi-Fi. You can download any song you want as most songs go straight on to Spotify after they are released, once you have downloaded a song you are able to listen to that song even if your up high on a plane with no service or Wi-Fi. You can download playlists that Spotify have already made, or you can create your own playlists and add as many songs into them as you like. The app is free to download but costs £9.99 a month for Spotify premium, which gives you unlimited, ad-free access to the 30 million and plus songs that Spotify offers, all available offline.  If you’re a student, you get a deal of £4.99 month for Spotify premium.

4: Slice

If you’re addicted to online shopping, then slice is the app for you. Slice automatically detects your order from your email and tracks every package for you, it notifies you when they are delivered and warns you if your delivery has been recalled. One special feature on slice that online shoppers will love is that it watches out for your purchases and if they have dropped in price. The app is completely free!

5: Duolingo

Looking to learn a new language? Duolingo offers bite-sized lessons for people who want to learn a new language, it starts with simple vocabulary and eventually builds up the difficulty. Duolingo may also come in useful for people who have already started learning a language, or maybe they know one quite well but just want to touch up. The app unlocks additional information the more you use the app, so the more you practise the more opportunity your giving yourself to learn. The app currently offers Danish, Dutch, French, German, Irish, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish, and Swedish. The app is free to download.

6: Netflix

If you haven’t heard of Netflix then where have you been? If you haven’t already then, it’s a must have download on your smartphone. Netflix has a remarkable amount of films and series, including Netflix’ own content including original comedies, dramas and series that often become the most talked about, making Netflix an in demand online app. Having Netflix as an online app on your smartphone comes in handy as you can now download selected movies or series and watch them offline at your own freedom. Netflix offers a one-month free trial but then retails from £5.99 a month.

7: Kitchen stories

There are many cooking and kitchen apps on the app store, but kitchen stories is one that will benefit anyone who enjoys cooking but also anyone who wants to learn. It includes features such as video guides and step by step photo instructions. You can custom your own cookbooks and save your favourite recipes and articles, the app really does cater for all as it is available in 12 different languages! All of that included and the app is completely free of charge!

8: Ticketmaster

If you’re somebody who attends concerts, festivals, or someone who enjoys events then Ticketmaster may come in very handy for you.  Ticketmaster is an app where you can buy tickets to different events around the world, if you are looking for a specific event you will find it here. The app also allows you to sell or transfer tickets. The app is free to download.

9: Groupon

The free Groupon app is perfect for anyone who loves a good deal, which is everyone right? Groupon offers deals on things such as spa days out to restaurants to a pair of slippers. Groupon can save you up to 70% off the normal price so its an app worth downloading.

10: WAM (World around me)

WAM is an app for finding out what attractions are around you. The app uses your phones camera to locate restaurants, museums, parks, cinemas and other places of interest near you. The app will be able to show you the name of the place, a review rating and the distance it takes you to get there. The app has the same concept as google maps but won’t offer you any more, however the app is slightly simpler to use. WAM is free to download but if you want the pro version there is an in-app purchase.

How we help

Don’t forget here at Smart Cover we offer cover on all smartphones! So, if you ever have a problem with yours you can trust us to resolve the issue and have you back in control in no time. You are just one phone call away from a helping hand when you need one.

Contact us via our website or call us on 03333 449 559 if you would like to find out more, our customer service team will be happy to help with any questions or queries.

6 Tech Gadgets That Will Make Your Life Easier

With all the tech gadgets now available to us, were becoming what used to be only imaginary. Anything is possible now that you can talk to your gadgets, order your weekly shop by pressing a button and even connecting your whole home to your Wi-Fi. As good as all the new technology is, you may be surprised how there are plenty of other gadgets that would too make your life easier. I have put together 6 gadgets that you may want to know about!

Amazon Echo

Amazon Echo is a speaker you control with your voice, it connects to Alexa, the famous voice service that can make calls, set alarms, answer questions, play music, manage shopping lists and check your calendar. The Echo can also control lights, locks, switches, thermostats and tv’s.

As we all know there are many different Amazon products like this, so what’s the difference with the Amazon Echo? The Amazon Echo is best for people who want the most Alexa features for a good price. The Amazon Echo retails for £89.99.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/

Amazon Dash

Amazon Dash is a Wi-Fi connected button that can order your favourite products straight to your door, just by pressing a button. Each dash button is paired with a product of your choice, could be coffee, washing up liquid or even shampoo? When your low of that product you press the button, meaning you will never run out!

The button is managed through the Amazon app on your smartphone and works anywhere if you are connected to Wi-Fi. A notification is sent to your smartphone every time you place an order. Amazon Dash retails for £4.99 per button.

 https://www.amazon.co.uk/

Philips Hue Starter Kit

The Philips Hue System can make your life a whole lot easier, they are smart lightbulbs that can be controlled from your phone, for example you were in bed watching a movie, no need to get out of bed just turn the lights off from your phone instead. You can turn lights on or off, but you can also dim them and set them to turn on/off at certain times of the day. A huge benefit also is that you can control your Philips hue lights by connecting with your Amazon echo dot or Amazon tap and use your voice recognition. A starter pack starts from £59.99.

 https://www.amazon.co.uk/

Amir 3-in-1 Camera Lens Kit

The Amir 3-in-1 Camera Lens Kit is a budget friendly way of taking better photos on your smartphone, the kit includes three different lenses that let you take macro, fisheye and wide-angle photos.

You clip the chosen lens to your smartphone’s lens and it’s as simple as that, your photo quality will be a whole lot better. The Macro lens is used for photographing small subjects at close distances, fisheye lens shows a distorted, spherical view and wide-angle lens is exactly what it says, a wider view. The camera lens fits on iPhone 8/7/7 plus/6/6s plus/ LG, HTC, Huawei and Samsungs and retails for £11.01.

 https://www.amazon.co.uk/

How we help 

Don’t forget here at Smart Cover we can help you with gadget insurance that will protect your gadgets against theft, cracked screens and more. 

Contact us via our website or call us on 03333 449 559 if you would like to find out more, our customer service team will be happy to help with any questions or queries.

How To Organise Your Fridge Correctly

Do you tend to stack your fridge up in an orderly fashion, or do you put everything in there as quickly as you can with no system or order, just wherever anything fits?

The way you stack your fridge can have a big impact on the way your fridge works, how long the food in the fridge lasts and most importantly the energy bill costs. These three factors are very important, meaning the way you stack your fridge should be more thought through than you think. Also, if you consider having an order in place it makes it significantly easier to find certain foods and you’re less likely to forget about foods and their expiry date.

All fridges have warmer and colder sections, which may sound stupid, but actually can come in handy if you know how to make use of it, this is because different types of food actually do better at different temperatures.

Below I am going to go through the different types of food and the best place for them to be kept in the fridge and why.

Meat and Fish

Meat and fish should be stored around zero degrees as this will keep them in good condition for longer. Your fridge’s main compartment isn’t actually this cold and so if you have a chiller then your meat or fish will be best kept there as this is designed for colder temperatures.

If you don’t have a chiller then try to put your meat or fish in the coldest part of your fridge, if you don’t know the coldest part of your fridge you can use a thermometer to check. Generally, it’s the area at the back, this is because when the fridge door is opened there is no room temperature getting to this part of the fridge.

Butter and cheese

The dairy compartment in your fridge is slightly warmer than the rest of your fridge so storing your dairy foods such as butter and cheese in this compartment can be a good idea. This is because when you use your dairy products such as butter, it won’t be so cold and hard, butter will be easier to spread, and cheeses will be easier to slice. This does unfortunately mean though that they wont last as long, so if you’re not using the dairy foods straight away then keeping them anywhere else in the fridge will be fine.

Condiments and drinks

Condiments and sauces tend to be stronger and have more flavour meaning they don’t need to be kept at a specific temperature. They are however used quite often and so it makes it convenient if condiments are placed in the fridge door or at the front of the top shelf. Do the same with drinks as its likely you will be reaching for these quite regularly too.

Eggs

If you’re fridge has the compartment with egg holders in and you use this compartment, then you may want to carry on reading. Eggs should actually be kept in their carton, this is because the carton slows moisture loss and stops them absorbing food odours. Also, if you keep them in the carton then you will never forget the use-by date.

Fruit and vegetables

The enclosed drawer at the bottom of the fridge, also known as the crisper is where most fresh fruit and vegetables should be stored, this is because this part of the fridge isn’t as dry as the rest and so should keep the food fresh for longer. Also, something you may not know, tomatoes do NOT belong in the fridge, if you keep them in a fruit bowl out of the fridge they will be bursting with flavour.

Milk

Do you keep your milk in the door of the fridge? Most people do, its convenient and easy to get to and you know there’s not going to be any leaks or spills. However, as the door shelves are warmer than the rest of the fridge it may not actually be the best idea to keep your milk there, milk should be stored at or below 4°C. So, if you want your milk to last longer then keeping it in the main compartment of the fridge may be better.

Bread

The fridge is there to keep food fresher for longer but when it comes to bread this isn’t the case. When bread goes hard and stale it is because of the starch from the wheat that it’s made from forming into crystals, this happens faster in colder temperatures which is why bread is better stored at room temperature.

Frozen foods

To protect from freezer burn, which is where food dries out due to exposure of very cold air, make sure to wrap all food that goes in the freezer. Although it is safe to eat food that has been freezer burned you probably wont want to as it tends not to taste so good. Wrap your food tightly in cling film or even in a container before freezing, food such as frozen peas are sealed already but make sure once opened they are sealed properly if going back in the freezer. 

Even though freezing food will make it last longer, for example if you didn’t eat it by the end date, it will still not last forever. Red meats can only be in the freezer for up to 12 months, apart from mince that should be used within 4 months. Seafood will only last between two and six months, but this depends on the type of fish.

 

Hot foods

When you have cooked hot food, or you have leftovers you may think putting it straight in the fridge is okay but actually its quite a bad idea. Putting hot foods into the fridge can interfere with the temperature of the fridge quite quickly, meaning other foods in the fridge will be affected. So, its better if you let the food cool down until room temperature before putting it in the fridge.

How we help

Don’t forget here at Smart-Sure we offer Kitchen appliance insurance including fridge and freezer cover! We use trusted engineers in many locations, meaning when you need help you are closer than you think to a helping hand.

Contact us via our website or call us on 03333 449 669 if you would like to find out more, our customer service team will be happy to help with any questions or queries.

How To Clean Your Oven

Many people will agree that the worst part of cleaning the kitchen is probably scrubbing all the dirt off the oven, but it must be done, and when it is you can see a big difference.

Many people say you should clean your oven once a month, some say every 3 months, some say twice a year, it’s just a matter of opinion and depends on the person and oven itself. We all know as with most things though, the longer you leave it the harder it will be to get it back into good condition.

Here I’m going to give you the best tips for keeping your oven clean without it being too difficult and time consuming.

If your oven is dirty, but not too bad this method will work very well for you, but if you have a lot of grease you may need to use a stronger method.

Steamed Water Method

  • Use a large oven proof container and fill it up with water.
  • Place the container into your oven on the lowest rack.
  • Turn the oven onto the highest setting and ‘bake’ for 20 – 30 minutes.
  • Allow the oven to cool (without opening the door).
  • Then using a damp cloth, wipe the oven down.
  • The steam will loosen any grime which will wipe away easily with a wet cloth!

If you don’t clean your oven very often and it really needs a deep clean, then the next method is the one for you.

Bicarbonate of Soda Method

  1. Heat your oven and allow to cool down slightly.
  2. When the oven is warm, add water to some bicarbonate of soda (in a cup) to make a thin paste.
  3. Apply the paste sparingly to the walls of your oven.
  4. spray vinegar on to the bicarbonate of soda on the oven walls. They should react, cleaning the oven walls.
  5. Let the mixture sit for around an hour.
  6. Lastly take a damp cloth and gently wipe the mixture off.
  7. The bicarbonate of soda will break down the grease and dirt and make it easy to remove!

Tips for making the job easier:

1: When you are cooking place a large baking dish below whatever you are cooking, the baking dish will catch any oils or overflows, the dish can be cleaned easily in a dishwasher afterwards, making cleaning the oven an easier job.

2: If you want to give your oven racks a good clean then pop them into the dishwasher on the hottest setting, the heat will clean any grime. You may need to do this twice if the racks are in a very dirty state.

3: Clean any spills or dirt when they are fresh, don’t leave them there for weeks before cleaning the oven as this will make your job a lot harder. If dirt is cleaned immediately it can usually come off easily with water.

4: Cover food while its cooking to prevent splashes of oil/dirt.

5: If your food bubbles over while cooking in your oven then sprinkle some salt over it while its still a liquid, if you leave the dirt to cool down it will become solid and harder to clean. Salt will remove any odours and make it easier to wipe up the dirt using a cloth.

6: To make the job easier for you it’s all about preparation. The night before you clean the oven, fill a bowl up with water and lemon juice and warm it in your oven, leaving it to steam overnight. This will ease the dirt, making it easier to scrape off those tough Stains, therefore making your job a lot easier.

How we help

Don’t forget here at Smart Cover we offer cover on all kitchen appliances, including cooker and oven! So, if you ever have a problem with any of your kithcen appliances you can trust us to send out one of our trusted engineers, we have them spotted in many locations, meaning you are close to a helping hand if you need one.

Contact us via our website or call us on 03333 449 559 if you would like to find out more, our customer service team will be happy to help with any questions or queries.

Black Friday 2017

What do you think of when you hear the words Black Friday?  I imagine a dark day where people are having fights in department stores and getting trampled underfoot.

However, I am sure other people who have bought bargains in the past may not see it like this!  Also Black Friday has extended to online shopping too so there is no physical scramble, perhaps ordering on the internet may be a little bit slower than usual.

Black Friday is traditionally the following Friday after Thanksgiving Day in the United States and it is generally thought that the day was called ‘black Friday’ back in the 60’s where, in accounting terms, black ink meant in credit and red meant in debit but actually it is said to have come from the police force in Philadelphia when they were tired of the smog that was created when all the shoppers came to town.  However, the smog story did not sound as inviting as the accounting version so it is that version which is now the accepted norm.

Black Friday is one of the biggest shopping days in Britain – last year, 2016, just under £5.75 billion was spent on the day!

In the UK, Currys and Argos, Amazon and Tesco are offering some of their deals before Black Friday.

Amazon are starting their deals on 17th November. They are also creating a pop-up shop at 13 Soho Square from 12.30 pm to 7.30 pm on Black Friday for keen bargain hunters to queue up. Curry’s have launched a Why Wait? Campaign before Black Friday.  Amazon was the first retailer to bring Black Friday to Britain and then Asda, owned by the American company Wal-mart, followed the Amazon launch in 2013.

It is a good idea to decide exactly what you want before looking at the bargains online or in-store because you may get carried away with what you consider to be a real bargain rather than what you really need or want.

Also it may be wise to register with retailers and also follow them on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and any other social media. You will then be alerted to all the retailer’s discounts and also not have to take time registering on the day and missing out on certain bargains. Game, Marks and Spencer, John Lewis and Debenhams will also have great bargains.  Some of the retailers also have Apps that you can register to. Happy shopping.

World Heart Day

​The Day – 29th September, was founded in the year 2000 as the World Heart Day to raise awareness about the leading cause of deaths globally – heart disease. According to the World Heart Federation, Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of death and disability in the world, killing 17.5 million people a year. That’s a third of deaths on the planet and half of all non-communicable, disease-related deaths.

How do I know if my heart is healthy?

Knowing your heart age is the best way to know how healthy your heart is. What is Heart Age?  Heart age simply tells you how many years (in the future) an individual can expect to live with a healthy heart (without any stroke/ attack). Having a high heart age increases the risk of serious health issues including dementia, heart attack, stroke, chronic kidney disease, and diabetes.

New analysis from Public Health England (PHE) 1 in 10 men aged 50 taking its Heart Age Test have a heart age at least 10 years older than they are, heightening their risk of a potentially fatal heart attack or stroke.

​​Fighting ​heart disease

​ If we look closely, heart diseases are non-communicable and are lifestyle diseases. Little changes to our daily habits can reduce the number of, and premature deaths from, CVD and help people to live longer, better, heart-healthy lives. Small lifestyle changes, like eating and drinking well, quitting smoking, regular exercise, etc. can make huge differences and make a healthier body and mind.

​Gauging heart disease

Often heart diseases don’t give you a warning! Currently, in England, 5.6 million people have high blood pressure, and they don’t even know about it! High blood pressure is often symptomless. Every month, 7,400 people die from heart disease or stroke. A quarter of deaths are of people under 75, and most of these can be prevented.

​Looking after the body

Choosing proper nutrition – Eating healthily is the most crucial weapon for fighting cardiovascular diseases. Avoiding oily food, junk food and adding more vegetables with an equal quantity of protein and carbohydrates can keep our heart healthy.

Remain active – Due to our busy schedules, we may not be able to find time to exercise regularly. Chose the next best alternative – stay active. Instead of sitting entire day on the office chair, take walks while getting water (instead of keeping a filled bottle), go and talk to colleagues (and discuss work). Take short walks while traveling, avoid lifts and take the staircase. These easy changes can help a lot in reducing CVDs.

Aim for a healthy weight – Excessive weight is bad, but being too skinny is equally injurious. Always aim for a healthy weight according to your age, size and body type.

Managing diabetes, quitting smoking, reducing alcohol intake, lowering high blood pressure and cholesterol are also important to maintain a healthy heart.

Heart disease can happen to any individual these days. Whether you are in the 20s, 30, 40s or 50s, maintaining a healthy balanced life is very important as heart disease pre-warn you! #BeSmart while making your life choices to lead a healthy and happy life.