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How To Make Your Bathroom Safer

The bathroom; it’s typically the smallest room in the home. ironically, it’s also the most dangerous. Drowning, falls, burns, and electrical shock are all dangers your family can come across in the bathroom. There are many ways to make your bathroom safer, some of which are easy and others a little more involved. You should consider the ages of the people living in the home to determine which safety precautions to take. Protecting the children in your home from bathroom dangers is pretty easy and simple. *Don’t let children take a bath without help. *Keep all medications, cosmetics and cleaning supplies out of reach and locked up. *Set your water heater at 120 degrees Fahrenheit, or just below the medium heat setting. Many times, children don’t realize just how hot water can get and can burn their sensitive skin. *And always be sure to unplug appliances after use and store them out of children’s reach. The bathroom can be a dangerous place for elderly or those who are not able to move around easily. There are many things that can be done to make a bathroom more accessible and safer. First, you will want to make sure the floor of the bathroom next to the tub has a non-slip bath mat and that the floor is always kept dry. In the tub itself, you will want to install a grab bar along the wall of the bath. Make sure this is a horizontally placed bar of appropriate length. Angled bars are not suggested, as they can allow your hands to slip in trying to support your body weight and may lead to a fall. The bar should be long enough for use from anywhere in the tub and also be strong enough to support your weight. Other ways to decrease the chance of falls in the tub is by placing a non-slip mat in the bottom of the tub or buying a folding seat to wash from. A single-lever mixing faucet can control temperature and flow of water better than dual controls and a flexible shower arm can help direct water where needed. You can also consider replacing your current tub with a tub that has a walk-through insert or doing a complete tub-to-shower conversion. A tub-to-shower conversion is the removal of the existing tub and installation of a shower base. Acrylic liner systems are best for tub and shower conversions. The acrylic liner systems come with molded, slip resistant bottoms and the ability to place grab bars and accessory trays in any location. To maximize safety you can place a folding seat or seated shower base in the shower. You can modify the system to suit your needs, including color, design and accessories. The acrylic bath and shower liner systems are easy to install so you won’t be without a bathroom for very long. There are no grout lines to clean and will not crack, chip or peel, meaning little to no maintenance. As with any remodeling projects in your home, you want to make sure safeguarding your bathroom is done completely and properly. Be sure that your bathroom contractor has a good reputation, professional certification and great references. About the Author: My family business, New York Sash of Whitesboro, are experts in bathroom remodeling and would love to take care of your family. Visit www.newyorksash.com or call (315) 624-7344 for options and more information. Kathryn Reilly is a Production and Marketing Assistant for the television show CNY’s Open House. Contact her at kreilly@newyorksash.com.

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How To Make Your Bathroom Safer

The bathroom; it’s typically the smallest room in the home. ironically, it’s also the most dangerous. Drowning, falls, burns, and electrical shock are all dangers your family can come across in the bathroom. There are many ways to make your bathroom safer, some of which are easy and others a little more involved. You should consider the ages of the people living in the home to determine which safety precautions to take. Protecting the children in your home from bathroom dangers is pretty easy and simple. *Don’t let children take a bath without help. *Keep all medications, cosmetics and cleaning supplies out of reach and locked up. *Set your water heater at 120 degrees Fahrenheit, or just below the medium heat setting. Many times, children don’t realize just how hot water can get and can burn their sensitive skin. *And always be sure to unplug appliances after use and store them out of children’s reach. The bathroom can be a dangerous place for elderly or those who are not able to move around easily. There are many things that can be done to make a bathroom more accessible and safer. First, you will want to make sure the floor of the bathroom next to the tub has a non-slip bath mat and that the floor is always kept dry. In the tub itself, you will want to install a grab bar along the wall of the bath. Make sure this is a horizontally placed bar of appropriate length. Angled bars are not suggested, as they can allow your hands to slip in trying to support your body weight and may lead to a fall. The bar should be long enough for use from anywhere in the tub and also be strong enough to support your weight. Other ways to decrease the chance of falls in the tub is by placing a non-slip mat in the bottom of the tub or buying a folding seat to wash from. A single-lever mixing faucet can control temperature and flow of water better than dual controls and a flexible shower arm can help direct water where needed. You can also consider replacing your current tub with a tub that has a walk-through insert or doing a complete tub-to-shower conversion. A tub-to-shower conversion is the removal of the existing tub and installation of a shower base. Acrylic liner systems are best for tub and shower conversions. The acrylic liner systems come with molded, slip resistant bottoms and the ability to place grab bars and accessory trays in any location. To maximize safety you can place a folding seat or seated shower base in the shower. You can modify the system to suit your needs, including color, design and accessories. The acrylic bath and shower liner systems are easy to install so you won’t be without a bathroom for very long. There are no grout lines to clean and will not crack, chip or peel, meaning little to no maintenance. As with any remodeling projects in your home, you want to make sure safeguarding your bathroom is done completely and properly. Be sure that your bathroom contractor has a good reputation, professional certification and great references. About the Author: My family business, New York Sash of Whitesboro, are experts in bathroom remodeling and would love to take care of your family. Visit www.newyorksash.com or call (315) 624-7344 for options and more information. Kathryn Reilly is a Production and Marketing Assistant for the television show CNY’s Open House. Contact her at kreilly@newyorksash.com.

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How To Make Your Bathroom Safer

The bathroom; it’s typically the smallest room in the home. ironically, it’s also the most dangerous. Drowning, falls, burns, and electrical shock are all dangers your family can come across in the bathroom. There are many ways to make your bathroom safer, some of which are easy and others a little more involved. You should consider the ages of the people living in the home to determine which safety precautions to take. Protecting the children in your home from bathroom dangers is pretty easy and simple. *Don’t let children take a bath without help. *Keep all medications, cosmetics and cleaning supplies out of reach and locked up. *Set your water heater at 120 degrees Fahrenheit, or just below the medium heat setting. Many times, children don’t realize just how hot water can get and can burn their sensitive skin. *And always be sure to unplug appliances after use and store them out of children’s reach. The bathroom can be a dangerous place for elderly or those who are not able to move around easily. There are many things that can be done to make a bathroom more accessible and safer. First, you will want to make sure the floor of the bathroom next to the tub has a non-slip bath mat and that the floor is always kept dry. In the tub itself, you will want to install a grab bar along the wall of the bath. Make sure this is a horizontally placed bar of appropriate length. Angled bars are not suggested, as they can allow your hands to slip in trying to support your body weight and may lead to a fall. The bar should be long enough for use from anywhere in the tub and also be strong enough to support your weight. Other ways to decrease the chance of falls in the tub is by placing a non-slip mat in the bottom of the tub or buying a folding seat to wash from. A single-lever mixing faucet can control temperature and flow of water better than dual controls and a flexible shower arm can help direct water where needed. You can also consider replacing your current tub with a tub that has a walk-through insert or doing a complete tub-to-shower conversion. A tub-to-shower conversion is the removal of the existing tub and installation of a shower base. Acrylic liner systems are best for tub and shower conversions. The acrylic liner systems come with molded, slip resistant bottoms and the ability to place grab bars and accessory trays in any location. To maximize safety you can place a folding seat or seated shower base in the shower. You can modify the system to suit your needs, including color, design and accessories. The acrylic bath and shower liner systems are easy to install so you won’t be without a bathroom for very long. There are no grout lines to clean and will not crack, chip or peel, meaning little to no maintenance. As with any remodeling projects in your home, you want to make sure safeguarding your bathroom is done completely and properly. Be sure that your bathroom contractor has a good reputation, professional certification and great references. About the Author: My family business, New York Sash of Whitesboro, are experts in bathroom remodeling and would love to take care of your family. Visit www.newyorksash.com or call (315) 624-7344 for options and more information. Kathryn Reilly is a Production and Marketing Assistant for the television show CNY’s Open House. Contact her at kreilly@newyorksash.com.

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How To Make Your Bathroom Safer

The bathroom; it’s typically the smallest room in the home. ironically, it’s also the most dangerous. Drowning, falls, burns, and electrical shock are all dangers your family can come across in the bathroom. There are many ways to make your bathroom safer, some of which are easy and others a little more involved. You should consider the ages of the people living in the home to determine which safety precautions to take. Protecting the children in your home from bathroom dangers is pretty easy and simple. *Don’t let children take a bath without help. *Keep all medications, cosmetics and cleaning supplies out of reach and locked up. *Set your water heater at 120 degrees Fahrenheit, or just below the medium heat setting. Many times, children don’t realize just how hot water can get and can burn their sensitive skin. *And always be sure to unplug appliances after use and store them out of children’s reach. The bathroom can be a dangerous place for elderly or those who are not able to move around easily. There are many things that can be done to make a bathroom more accessible and safer. First, you will want to make sure the floor of the bathroom next to the tub has a non-slip bath mat and that the floor is always kept dry. In the tub itself, you will want to install a grab bar along the wall of the bath. Make sure this is a horizontally placed bar of appropriate length. Angled bars are not suggested, as they can allow your hands to slip in trying to support your body weight and may lead to a fall. The bar should be long enough for use from anywhere in the tub and also be strong enough to support your weight. Other ways to decrease the chance of falls in the tub is by placing a non-slip mat in the bottom of the tub or buying a folding seat to wash from. A single-lever mixing faucet can control temperature and flow of water better than dual controls and a flexible shower arm can help direct water where needed. You can also consider replacing your current tub with a tub that has a walk-through insert or doing a complete tub-to-shower conversion. A tub-to-shower conversion is the removal of the existing tub and installation of a shower base. Acrylic liner systems are best for tub and shower conversions. The acrylic liner systems come with molded, slip resistant bottoms and the ability to place grab bars and accessory trays in any location. To maximize safety you can place a folding seat or seated shower base in the shower. You can modify the system to suit your needs, including color, design and accessories. The acrylic bath and shower liner systems are easy to install so you won’t be without a bathroom for very long. There are no grout lines to clean and will not crack, chip or peel, meaning little to no maintenance. As with any remodeling projects in your home, you want to make sure safeguarding your bathroom is done completely and properly. Be sure that your bathroom contractor has a good reputation, professional certification and great references. About the Author: My family business, New York Sash of Whitesboro, are experts in bathroom remodeling and would love to take care of your family. Visit www.newyorksash.com or call (315) 624-7344 for options and more information. Kathryn Reilly is a Production and Marketing Assistant for the television show CNY’s Open House. Contact her at kreilly@newyorksash.com.

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How To Make Your Bathroom Safer

The bathroom; it’s typically the smallest room in the home. ironically, it’s also the most dangerous. Drowning, falls, burns, and electrical shock are all dangers your family can come across in the bathroom. There are many ways to make your bathroom safer, some of which are easy and others a little more involved. You should consider the ages of the people living in the home to determine which safety precautions to take. Protecting the children in your home from bathroom dangers is pretty easy and simple. *Don’t let children take a bath without help. *Keep all medications, cosmetics and cleaning supplies out of reach and locked up. *Set your water heater at 120 degrees Fahrenheit, or just below the medium heat setting. Many times, children don’t realize just how hot water can get and can burn their sensitive skin. *And always be sure to unplug appliances after use and store them out of children’s reach. The bathroom can be a dangerous place for elderly or those who are not able to move around easily. There are many things that can be done to make a bathroom more accessible and safer. First, you will want to make sure the floor of the bathroom next to the tub has a non-slip bath mat and that the floor is always kept dry. In the tub itself, you will want to install a grab bar along the wall of the bath. Make sure this is a horizontally placed bar of appropriate length. Angled bars are not suggested, as they can allow your hands to slip in trying to support your body weight and may lead to a fall. The bar should be long enough for use from anywhere in the tub and also be strong enough to support your weight. Other ways to decrease the chance of falls in the tub is by placing a non-slip mat in the bottom of the tub or buying a folding seat to wash from. A single-lever mixing faucet can control temperature and flow of water better than dual controls and a flexible shower arm can help direct water where needed. You can also consider replacing your current tub with a tub that has a walk-through insert or doing a complete tub-to-shower conversion. A tub-to-shower conversion is the removal of the existing tub and installation of a shower base. Acrylic liner systems are best for tub and shower conversions. The acrylic liner systems come with molded, slip resistant bottoms and the ability to place grab bars and accessory trays in any location. To maximize safety you can place a folding seat or seated shower base in the shower. You can modify the system to suit your needs, including color, design and accessories. The acrylic bath and shower liner systems are easy to install so you won’t be without a bathroom for very long. There are no grout lines to clean and will not crack, chip or peel, meaning little to no maintenance. As with any remodeling projects in your home, you want to make sure safeguarding your bathroom is done completely and properly. Be sure that your bathroom contractor has a good reputation, professional certification and great references. About the Author: My family business, New York Sash of Whitesboro, are experts in bathroom remodeling and would love to take care of your family. Visit www.newyorksash.com or call (315) 624-7344 for options and more information. Kathryn Reilly is a Production and Marketing Assistant for the television show CNY’s Open House. Contact her at kreilly@newyorksash.com.

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How To Make Your Bathroom Safer

The bathroom; it’s typically the smallest room in the home. ironically, it’s also the most dangerous. Drowning, falls, burns, and electrical shock are all dangers your family can come across in the bathroom. There are many ways to make your bathroom safer, some of which are easy and others a little more involved. You should consider the ages of the people living in the home to determine which safety precautions to take. Protecting the children in your home from bathroom dangers is pretty easy and simple. *Don’t let children take a bath without help. *Keep all medications, cosmetics and cleaning supplies out of reach and locked up. *Set your water heater at 120 degrees Fahrenheit, or just below the medium heat setting. Many times, children don’t realize just how hot water can get and can burn their sensitive skin. *And always be sure to unplug appliances after use and store them out of children’s reach. The bathroom can be a dangerous place for elderly or those who are not able to move around easily. There are many things that can be done to make a bathroom more accessible and safer. First, you will want to make sure the floor of the bathroom next to the tub has a non-slip bath mat and that the floor is always kept dry. In the tub itself, you will want to install a grab bar along the wall of the bath. Make sure this is a horizontally placed bar of appropriate length. Angled bars are not suggested, as they can allow your hands to slip in trying to support your body weight and may lead to a fall. The bar should be long enough for use from anywhere in the tub and also be strong enough to support your weight. Other ways to decrease the chance of falls in the tub is by placing a non-slip mat in the bottom of the tub or buying a folding seat to wash from. A single-lever mixing faucet can control temperature and flow of water better than dual controls and a flexible shower arm can help direct water where needed. You can also consider replacing your current tub with a tub that has a walk-through insert or doing a complete tub-to-shower conversion. A tub-to-shower conversion is the removal of the existing tub and installation of a shower base. Acrylic liner systems are best for tub and shower conversions. The acrylic liner systems come with molded, slip resistant bottoms and the ability to place grab bars and accessory trays in any location. To maximize safety you can place a folding seat or seated shower base in the shower. You can modify the system to suit your needs, including color, design and accessories. The acrylic bath and shower liner systems are easy to install so you won’t be without a bathroom for very long. There are no grout lines to clean and will not crack, chip or peel, meaning little to no maintenance. As with any remodeling projects in your home, you want to make sure safeguarding your bathroom is done completely and properly. Be sure that your bathroom contractor has a good reputation, professional certification and great references. About the Author: My family business, New York Sash of Whitesboro, are experts in bathroom remodeling and would love to take care of your family. Visit www.newyorksash.com or call (315) 624-7344 for options and more information. Kathryn Reilly is a Production and Marketing Assistant for the television show CNY’s Open House. Contact her at kreilly@newyorksash.com.

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How To Make Your Bathroom Safer

The bathroom; it’s typically the smallest room in the home. ironically, it’s also the most dangerous. Drowning, falls, burns, and electrical shock are all dangers your family can come across in the bathroom. There are many ways to make your bathroom safer, some of which are easy and others a little more involved. You should consider the ages of the people living in the home to determine which safety precautions to take. Protecting the children in your home from bathroom dangers is pretty easy and simple. *Don’t let children take a bath without help. *Keep all medications, cosmetics and cleaning supplies out of reach and locked up. *Set your water heater at 120 degrees Fahrenheit, or just below the medium heat setting. Many times, children don’t realize just how hot water can get and can burn their sensitive skin. *And always be sure to unplug appliances after use and store them out of children’s reach. The bathroom can be a dangerous place for elderly or those who are not able to move around easily. There are many things that can be done to make a bathroom more accessible and safer. First, you will want to make sure the floor of the bathroom next to the tub has a non-slip bath mat and that the floor is always kept dry. In the tub itself, you will want to install a grab bar along the wall of the bath. Make sure this is a horizontally placed bar of appropriate length. Angled bars are not suggested, as they can allow your hands to slip in trying to support your body weight and may lead to a fall. The bar should be long enough for use from anywhere in the tub and also be strong enough to support your weight. Other ways to decrease the chance of falls in the tub is by placing a non-slip mat in the bottom of the tub or buying a folding seat to wash from. A single-lever mixing faucet can control temperature and flow of water better than dual controls and a flexible shower arm can help direct water where needed. You can also consider replacing your current tub with a tub that has a walk-through insert or doing a complete tub-to-shower conversion. A tub-to-shower conversion is the removal of the existing tub and installation of a shower base. Acrylic liner systems are best for tub and shower conversions. The acrylic liner systems come with molded, slip resistant bottoms and the ability to place grab bars and accessory trays in any location. To maximize safety you can place a folding seat or seated shower base in the shower. You can modify the system to suit your needs, including color, design and accessories. The acrylic bath and shower liner systems are easy to install so you won’t be without a bathroom for very long. There are no grout lines to clean and will not crack, chip or peel, meaning little to no maintenance. As with any remodeling projects in your home, you want to make sure safeguarding your bathroom is done completely and properly. Be sure that your bathroom contractor has a good reputation, professional certification and great references. About the Author: My family business, New York Sash of Whitesboro, are experts in bathroom remodeling and would love to take care of your family. Visit www.newyorksash.com or call (315) 624-7344 for options and more information. Kathryn Reilly is a Production and Marketing Assistant for the television show CNY’s Open House. Contact her at kreilly@newyorksash.com.

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How To Make Your Bathroom Safer

The bathroom; it’s typically the smallest room in the home. ironically, it’s also the most dangerous. Drowning, falls, burns, and electrical shock are all dangers your family can come across in the bathroom. There are many ways to make your bathroom safer, some of which are easy and others a little more involved. You should consider the ages of the people living in the home to determine which safety precautions to take. Protecting the children in your home from bathroom dangers is pretty easy and simple. *Don’t let children take a bath without help. *Keep all medications, cosmetics and cleaning supplies out of reach and locked up. *Set your water heater at 120 degrees Fahrenheit, or just below the medium heat setting. Many times, children don’t realize just how hot water can get and can burn their sensitive skin. *And always be sure to unplug appliances after use and store them out of children’s reach. The bathroom can be a dangerous place for elderly or those who are not able to move around easily. There are many things that can be done to make a bathroom more accessible and safer. First, you will want to make sure the floor of the bathroom next to the tub has a non-slip bath mat and that the floor is always kept dry. In the tub itself, you will want to install a grab bar along the wall of the bath. Make sure this is a horizontally placed bar of appropriate length. Angled bars are not suggested, as they can allow your hands to slip in trying to support your body weight and may lead to a fall. The bar should be long enough for use from anywhere in the tub and also be strong enough to support your weight. Other ways to decrease the chance of falls in the tub is by placing a non-slip mat in the bottom of the tub or buying a folding seat to wash from. A single-lever mixing faucet can control temperature and flow of water better than dual controls and a flexible shower arm can help direct water where needed. You can also consider replacing your current tub with a tub that has a walk-through insert or doing a complete tub-to-shower conversion. A tub-to-shower conversion is the removal of the existing tub and installation of a shower base. Acrylic liner systems are best for tub and shower conversions. The acrylic liner systems come with molded, slip resistant bottoms and the ability to place grab bars and accessory trays in any location. To maximize safety you can place a folding seat or seated shower base in the shower. You can modify the system to suit your needs, including color, design and accessories. The acrylic bath and shower liner systems are easy to install so you won’t be without a bathroom for very long. There are no grout lines to clean and will not crack, chip or peel, meaning little to no maintenance. As with any remodeling projects in your home, you want to make sure safeguarding your bathroom is done completely and properly. Be sure that your bathroom contractor has a good reputation, professional certification and great references. About the Author: My family business, New York Sash of Whitesboro, are experts in bathroom remodeling and would love to take care of your family. Visit www.newyorksash.com or call (315) 624-7344 for options and more information. Kathryn Reilly is a Production and Marketing Assistant for the television show CNY’s Open House. Contact her at kreilly@newyorksash.com.

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How To Make Your Bathroom Safer

The bathroom; it’s typically the smallest room in the home. ironically, it’s also the most dangerous. Drowning, falls, burns, and electrical shock are all dangers your family can come across in the bathroom. There are many ways to make your bathroom safer, some of which are easy and others a little more involved. You should consider the ages of the people living in the home to determine which safety precautions to take. Protecting the children in your home from bathroom dangers is pretty easy and simple. *Don’t let children take a bath without help. *Keep all medications, cosmetics and cleaning supplies out of reach and locked up. *Set your water heater at 120 degrees Fahrenheit, or just below the medium heat setting. Many times, children don’t realize just how hot water can get and can burn their sensitive skin. *And always be sure to unplug appliances after use and store them out of children’s reach. The bathroom can be a dangerous place for elderly or those who are not able to move around easily. There are many things that can be done to make a bathroom more accessible and safer. First, you will want to make sure the floor of the bathroom next to the tub has a non-slip bath mat and that the floor is always kept dry. In the tub itself, you will want to install a grab bar along the wall of the bath. Make sure this is a horizontally placed bar of appropriate length. Angled bars are not suggested, as they can allow your hands to slip in trying to support your body weight and may lead to a fall. The bar should be long enough for use from anywhere in the tub and also be strong enough to support your weight. Other ways to decrease the chance of falls in the tub is by placing a non-slip mat in the bottom of the tub or buying a folding seat to wash from. A single-lever mixing faucet can control temperature and flow of water better than dual controls and a flexible shower arm can help direct water where needed. You can also consider replacing your current tub with a tub that has a walk-through insert or doing a complete tub-to-shower conversion. A tub-to-shower conversion is the removal of the existing tub and installation of a shower base. Acrylic liner systems are best for tub and shower conversions. The acrylic liner systems come with molded, slip resistant bottoms and the ability to place grab bars and accessory trays in any location. To maximize safety you can place a folding seat or seated shower base in the shower. You can modify the system to suit your needs, including color, design and accessories. The acrylic bath and shower liner systems are easy to install so you won’t be without a bathroom for very long. There are no grout lines to clean and will not crack, chip or peel, meaning little to no maintenance. As with any remodeling projects in your home, you want to make sure safeguarding your bathroom is done completely and properly. Be sure that your bathroom contractor has a good reputation, professional certification and great references. About the Author: My family business, New York Sash of Whitesboro, are experts in bathroom remodeling and would love to take care of your family. Visit www.newyorksash.com or call (315) 624-7344 for options and more information. Kathryn Reilly is a Production and Marketing Assistant for the television show CNY’s Open House. Contact her at kreilly@newyorksash.com.

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5 ways to improve your outdoor space with retaining walls

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(BPT) – When you picture a retaining wall, do you imagine it holding back dirt? That’s the most common use for retaining walls – to address elevation changes and prevent erosion. But concrete segmental retaining wall (SRW) units are multi-purpose landscaping tools with many more uses.Site planners, engineers, landscape architects, designers, developers and builders have long relied on SRWs to manage sloping properties, provide more usable space, or create stadium seating. Homeowners, too, have discovered retaining walls can be used to create functional outdoor features, says Scott Arnold, manager of Villa Landscapes in St. Paul, Minnesota."Because segmental retaining walls are both durable and beautiful, landscapers and homeowners can use them to create outdoor seating, raised patios and other features," says Arnold. "They are the perfect building block to create grill islands, outdoor kitchens and so much more." Most SRWs are easy to install, which is an important consideration for both landscape professionals and do-it-yourselfers, Arnold said. With retaining wall systems, homeowners and landscapers can create freestanding walls, seat walls, columns, stairs, planters and other features without the need for special units.Stunning seatingWhile commercial installers often use SRW units for amphitheater and stadium seating, retaining walls can also be used to create beautiful and durable outdoor seating on a smaller scale, from freestanding walls that double as seating, to two-tiered seat walls. VERSA-LOK SRWs can be used to easily create a curved "couch" seating area that works well as a solution around a patio and fire pit for fall evenings.Ditch the deckRaised patios built with retaining wall units are a low maintenance option to replace aging wooden decks that require continual maintenance. Villa Landscapes designed a raised deck replacement in Minnesota with SRWs from ground level to 42-inches tall to support a paving stone patio. Stairs also built with SRWs connect the patio to the home and yard.The result was a beautiful, spacious and low-maintenance patio with the added advantage of a clear view of the backyard. Willow Creek Paving Stones pavers were used for the patio, surrounded with a contrasting course of river rock that serves as a visual and physical boundary as well as a space for potted plants.Create curb appealWhere the yard meets the driveway, retaining walls can be installed as a barrier to protect the lawn from damage caused by tire tracks, plowing or deicing. A tiered arrangement that addresses a slope in the yard adds space for plants and shrubs. Freestanding walls are often built along property lines on corner lots to prevent unwanted traffic from cutting across the yard.Columns created using retaining wall units can be paired with any style home, from classic to contemporary, to add curb appeal. When the front entryway is freshened up with seat walls and other features, the space functions like an old-fashioned porch for visiting and other outdoor activities.A place for plantsTree rings and planters built with retaining wall units create a tidy solution around hard-to-maintain areas, such as shallow-rooted trees and other problem spots. Planters and tree rings can function as usable space for perennials, annuals, vegetables and herbs. SRWs such as VERSA-LOK can be used to create planter walls up to 4-feet tall without the need for geogrid reinforcement. VERSA-Green, a plantable wall system that mimics a hanging garden, provides a stunning living wall solution. Build a backyardA homeowner in Apple Valley, Minnesota, nicknamed her unmowable back yard "Billy Goat Hill" because there was no yard space and no safe way to access her garden and fire pit at the top. Plus, erosion was a continual problem.Devine Design Landscapes of Rosemount, Minnesota, solved the problem by excavating for a small back yard and creating tiers of retaining walls with offset stairs, patio landings and seat walls. The result was a small, usable backyard space with safe access to the hilltop and ample planting space for perennials."With VERSA-LOK, I could use the same block to build the retaining walls, steps and seat walls," says Paul Devine, owner of Devine Design Landscapes. "The pinned system provides a high ratio of weight per square foot of wall face plus extreme flexibility in design. Back-locking lip walls are not as structurally sound as a pinned system, and hollow blocks do not provide the stability required for large tiered walls." (Sign up for your FREE monthly e-issue of the LifeandHomes Magazine. There is No-cost, No-obligation. Each monthly issue features informational articles, local real estate listings and our exclusive "Ask the Expert" business directory where you can find local resources to answer your how-to questions. Just Click on the FREE Magazine Tab at the top of this page)