Cleveland House Contractors and Homes for Rent; Your Home Mechanics and Property Managers
  • Welcome to the Reilly Painting and Contracting Blog

    Welcome to Reilly Painting and Contracting, "The Home Mechanics," and Reilly Properties. We are your Cleveland home contractors who specialize in major home design projects and remodels, and minor home repairs. We also provide house rentals throughout Cleveland, Ohio.

  • Contact Us





  • Socialize

    Find us on Facebook.

    Watch us on YouTube.

    Follow us on Twitter.

    See us on Pinterest.

    Subscribe to our RSS feed.

  • Points of Interest

  • Topics

  • Testimonial

    "I finally got the bathroom of my dreams. JT, Marco and Mike are to be commended for their great work. My husband and I were impressed by the quality of their work. They were professional in conduct and neat. As for Dave, he is our guy. We have the utmost trust in what he says because he is honest."

    Lois R.
    Shaker Heights

  • Apple Is Making a Big Announcement Tomorrow


    Apple is announcing some exciting stuff tomorrow, and certainly you’ve at least heard it mentioned in the last few weeks. As one of the most cutting edge tech companies, this announcement is important. So what can we all expect tomorrow when they do their big reveal? Two very likely products.

    Apple’s biggest rival is Samsung. With Samsung’s smart watch already on the market for quite some time, of course the iWatch is an important step in the competition. The “Internet of Things” is a rapidly growing facet of technology. This means your watch will connect to your phone and you’ll have many of the same functions right there on your wrist. Like all of their new products to be announced, we don’t know much. We know it will be smart, you’ll have a couple different options as far as style goes, and it will track your health. Wearable health trackers are big right now, and why not have one planted right inside of your Apple device?

    The iPhone 6 is to be announced as well, and because of their competition with Samsung, different sizes will be available. Suddenly big cell phones are popular, so besides the typical size, expect a 5.5 inch. It’s almost a tablet, but it’s also a phone. Prices and memory sizes are expected to stay the same.

    An iPad Air 2 is anticipated by some, but others think it’s an unlikely announcement. Let us know what you think after the live event tomorrow. If you’re having any problems setting up your technology in Cleveland, give Reilly Painting & Contracting, The Home Mechanics a call today. We’ll help you get everything up and running for your 21st century home.

    Filed under: Fun Stuff, Gadgets & Technology
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

    How to Add Some More Curb Appeal to Your Home


    August was National Curb Appeal month. Now with the prices of homes slowly rising, curb appeal is more important than ever. Curb appeal is the first impression people get when they see your property, and first impressions are key. If someone comes to look at your home and sees dead grass, an unhinged screen door, and missing shingles, they’ve already decided not to buy it. We’re going to help you decide which updates are most important before putting your house on the market.

    If the exterior of your house hasn’t recently been scraped and painted, it’s a good idea to go ahead and get that done. Opt for a lighter, more neutral color if it isn’t already. Most potential buyers don’t want to have to do all the work themselves. The value of your property will go up and it will become more attractive to those searching for a new home. To add a little more appeal, use an accent color for the shutters or trim and paint the front door a bold color.

    Another simple and eye-catching improvement is landscaping. If you already have a garden, make sure it’s as full as possible. If you don’t have a garden, or don’t have the space for one, shop for plants that are already in containers and organize them neatly in your entryway. You can also add some outdoor lighting for a chic, modern look.

    The entryway is important. It’s the area in which you can tell people that you have a welcoming home. Use earth tones to show warmth. The stairs, pathway, and door should be visible, not hidden by overgrown plants. If the railings on your stairs are dirty and rusty, either replace them or refurbish them. The pathway from the sidewalk to the front door should be clean, clear, and sturdy.

    Overall, the home your trying to sell should be displayed like the home you’re trying to buy: a dream house. Even if you’re not trying to sell it, don’t you want to feel confident about the impression your property is making? If you need help with selling or marketing your house in Cleveland, we can do it all, from exterior painting and landscaping, to masonry and roofing. Give Reilly Painting & Contracting, The Home Mechanics a call today to schedule an estimate.


    Filed under: Gardening & Landscaping, Home Mechanic Tips, Painting & Remodeling, Selling Your House
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

    What I Wish I Knew Before I Went To College


    The summer after I graduated from high school was the best time of my life. It was just me and my friends, with lots of time for fun and no time for responsibility. There are two types of people: those who are excited about starting college, and those who are completely dreading it. I was one of the latter. No one I knew from my hometown was going to the same school as me, and I had only reluctantly filled out college applications in the first place. The first week of college was brutal for me because I had never been alone in my life. But I hung in there and it ended up being, like they say, the best four years of my life.

    College is the time for you to grow up, become an adult, and get to know yourself better. I had to learn a lot of lessons the hard way – through mistakes. So maybe I can help a few people by telling you some things I wish I had known before going to college.

    1. It’s okay to be yourself. I know it’s cliche, but seriously, even if you’re a shy, introverted, nervous wreck like me, you will be okay. The great thing about college is that there is such a variety of people on campus. You will meet people just like you, and people who are the opposite of you, and you might be friends with both. If you’re a homebody who doesn’t like to party, you will find friends that want to stay in with you to watch movies on Saturday nights. It might take a little while to find the right friends for you, but they are out there, I promise.

    2. It might be different when you visit home. Since all of my friends stayed at home to go to school, it was easier for them to stay connected with each other than with me. The first time I went home over break, it was shocking to me how alienated I felt from them when we all hung out. They’d had experiences together, while I had experiences far away and alone. Don’t get me wrong, I was still so happy to see them. My advice is to be honest with them. Let them know things feel different, because they probably have no idea.

    3. You will spend all of your money. Any of the money you got from your high school graduation will be gone – soon. This is okay. If you can prevent it from happening, that would be amazing. But like I said above, these are all learning experiences. And this will not be the last time you blow all your money. My advice would be to get a job. Campus jobs are always great because you don’t have to work a lot of hours, but the extra money will make you less stressed out.

    4. You might not know what to do with your life. I went to college undecided, which means I didn’t have a major picked out yet. I chose English because I had been writing for a really long time and people thought I was good at it. If you decide on a major like English, everyone you meet will ask, “So what can you do with that?” Eventually you will hate this question and everyone that asks it. The fact is, you might not know what you want to do for a living for a long, long time, so it’s best to have a major you love. And if you do know exactly what job to reach for after you graduate, kudos to you.

    5. The person of your dreams might not be on your campus. I know it’s not 1955 anymore, but a lot of people still go to college intending to find the person they’ll spend the rest of their life with. It could happen, it really could, and that would be phenomenal. But it also probably won’t. Have fun and don’t get bogged down by drama.

    6. College is a breeze for some people. You might find yourself having to study a lot more than your friends. Or you might find yourself with more free time than your friends. Either way, it’s not because you’re smarter, or dumber, than them. As an English major with an aptitude for reading and writing, my major wasn’t difficult. But if you have engineering or biology major friends, expect to see less of them.

    7. You will be a different person by the time you graduate. If you start college as a shy and awkward person, there is a strong chance you’ll be less of one on graduation day. You’ll realize that everyone is too involved in their own lives to worry about how weird you are or about that zit on your nose. This will make you more confident. Also expect a lot of your views on the world to change. Whether we like it or not, before college our views come mostly from our parents. Through classes and lectures, and meeting new people, the world will look a little different in four years.

    Just remember to enjoy your time in college. There will never be another time in your life that is as free and fun. Meet people, have experiences, and go to class. Have a great year!

    Filed under: Fun Stuff, Health, Food & Fitness, Home Mechanic Tips
    Tags: , , , , , , , ,

    How Do Deal With Those Empty Nest Feelings


    Your kids are officially out of the house and on their own. It’s just you, or you and your spouse, now. You’re an empty nester. For some, this is a dramatic and unsettling change. But for others, it’s a time they’ve been waiting for. If you’re one of the former, that’s okay. We have some helpful tips to guide you through this time.

    You love your children, of course, but you spent two decades putting them first. This is the time to focus more on yourself and your relationship, if you have one, with your significant other. Surprisingly, this may be more challenging than you had anticipated. Having a child means less alone time, which can sometimes put a damper on the romance. Stepping out of the routine and getting the spark back might just click for some, and more difficult for others.

    One easy thing you can do together is a date night. It doesn’t have to be anything extravagant or pricey – just as long as you’re spending time together with conversation and without smart phones. Dinner and drinks is always a fun way to loosen up a bit and laugh together. If you don’t drink, dinner and a movie is always a great choice. Keep it simple, but keep it intimate.

    Something exciting you can do – by yourself, with some friends, or with your significant other – is travel. Without having to worry about your kids back home, you’ll be able to relax more easily. Traveling by yourself can be a bit scary for some, but self growth is a lifelong process. It’s important that you’re comfortable being alone, and even more important that you’re able to focus on yourself now that you have more time to. Traveling with friends can also be rejuvenating. Not only will it be relaxing, but it will be thrilling and make you feel younger.

    If you’ve been looking at your son or daughter’s bedroom longingly, imagining a yoga studio, a library, or an office, now is the time to do it. Yes, your kid will most likely be a bit offended at first. But remember, it is your space to feel at home in. Reilly Painting and Contracting, your Home Mechanics are here to help you renovate that bedroom into your dream room, so give us a call today!

    Filed under: Home Mechanic Tips, Painting & Remodeling
    Tags: , , , , ,

    The Big Names in Home Automation


    In the last blog post we talked about home automation gadgets that aren’t as well known. But today we’re talking about home automation from household names. Right now, no one I know is turning their lights on and off from their smart phones, or getting alerts on their tablets when they left their TV on. But it’s the big companies like Apple, Samsung, and Google that are going to pave the way. The smart home trend is going to explode in just a few years, according to SiliconAngle.

    Samsung’s Smart Home line launches next April. What makes them so innovative is that they deal with pretty much all household items. That means instead of having different platforms for different gear, everything in your house can be connected together by buying only Samsung products.

    Because Apple doesn’t provide us with many different types of gadgets, they are approaching home automation at a different angle. The goal of HomeKit is to make  many items in your home – such as Honeywell, Philips, or Haier – sync up with your iPhone or iPad. Unlike Samsung, you won’t have a monopoly of technology in your home. Instead you have more variety, and more options.

    Google recently bought Nest, a smart home item we’re really fond of. They’ll be utilizing third party products as well, allowing everything from your car to your washing machine to connect, via the Nest.

    It’s very likely that one of these systems will be in your house in the next six years. Which one will you choose? And remember, Reilly Painting & Contracting, your Home Mechanics are one call away from installing your smart home devices. We can help you with all of your home automation needs.

    Filed under: Fun Stuff, Gadgets & Technology
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

    The Home Automation Trend Is On the Rise


    Smart home technology is on the rise. To some it may still seem like a thing of the future – a hypothetical possibility made for The Jetsons. Now that smart phones are a staple for most of us, the next step is, naturally, to connect them to everything else that is important to us. And as our lives become more fast paced, we need our technology to keep up with us. Here are some of the home automation gadgets we are looking forward to.

    1. Chai Energy. Launching in about 2 months is Chai Energy. This technology is truly the definition of “smart home.” If you ever wished your house could communicate with you, well, soon it can. It tells you if your appliances are working differently than usual, alerts you if an appliance is on while you aren’t home, and most importantly it helps you to save money. Watch the video here to see Chai’s amazing features.

    2. Novi Security. A simple, inexpensive, and reliable security system will be on its way to homes in 2015. Novi gives you more peace of mind and less frustration than other systems. Because it connects to your smart phone, you have more control over how Novi deals with possible threats in the home. If Novi spots something out of the ordinary it will take photos and send them to your phone. From there you can decide how to respond. Visit their website to see more.

    3. Plum. With this system you can control the lights in your home from anywhere with your smart phone. Not only is it really handy (you realize you left the kitchen light on an your already in bed), but it’s cost effective and safety oriented. You can monitor your electricity usage, which is great for budgeting. You can also turn all the lights on in your house if you hear a break-in, or you could even make it look like you’re home when you’re on vacation. It’s super easy to use and will make a great addition to all homes. Check it out here.

    4. Sentri. This device gives you a much deeper look into your home. Not only does it track temperature, but it shows you the humidity as well as the air quality. It also alerts you of any irregularities in your home, such as security issues or temperature changes you didn’t authorize. You can even control other smart devices from Sentri. See more here.

    5. Nest Protect. We’ve always been huge fans of Nest. The Nest Protect is a smoke and carbon monoxide detector. The other day I burnt some toast and the smoke alarm went off, so I took it off the ceiling and turned it off. That is extremely dangerous, but so many people are guilty of this. If you had Nest in your home, the next time you burnt the toast, the device would give you a Heads-Up so that you can deal with the situation before an alarm goes off. That’s just one way the Nest is providing innovation to smart homes. Read about their many features on their website.

    Reilly Painting and Contracting, your Home Mechanics are smart home enthusiasts. If you are looking to set up some of these new gadgets but don’t have the time, give us a call. We’ll get you started with a smarter, safer home.

    Filed under: Fun Stuff, Gadgets & Technology, Health, Food & Fitness, Home Mechanic Tips, Security: Home and Community
    Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

    The Best Senior Care in North America Begins Here in Cleveland, Ohio


    Getting older can be a bit scary. Maybe you don’t want to burden your loved ones, or you might not want to live in one of those homes that get such a bad reputation for being kind of miserable. If you or a loved one is getting to an age where you need a little help, Home Care Assistance would like to help make the transition less frightening and more comfortable. Home Care Assistance, located in Solon, Ohio, is a distinguished in-home senior care provider. The company has been featured on ABC, NBC, and USAToday for their outstanding devotion to the happiness and health of senior citizens.

    What are they doing differently? Home Care Assistance isn’t focused on just getting a senior through his or her day. These caregivers want seniors to have full and dignified lives. Certainly the caregivers prepare meals and run errands, but they also enjoy helping the seniors to socialize, helping to keep their bodies and minds active, and encouraging them to pursue their hobbies. Caregivers are trained in two specialties: the Balanced Care Method, and the Cognitive Therapeutics Method. Both are designed to provide seniors with healthy, well-rounded lives, rather than simply allowing for survival.

    Scott Michaels, owner of Home Care Assistance, knows first hand how trying it may be to care for someone each and every day without pause. Scott Michaels and the rest of the team are here to ensure that your loved one gets the best possible care, leaving you with peace of mind and time to focus on your own wellbeing. While the caregivers are taking care of your senior loved one, the Home Mechanics can make sure all your tech is in check. One of our many services is to provide our customers with a 21st Century Home, so give us a call today!


    Filed under: Health, Food & Fitness, Support Local
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

    Why Seniors Should Be Embracing Technology


    These days, millennials are often made fun of for their excessive use of technology. It’s true – they might be overdoing it. Attention spans are shortening, instant gratification is a must, and they have no work ethic. Well, that’s what a lot of people are saying about us anyway. And a lot of the blame is put on technology and social media. But what you might not know is that this technology can also have some really good effects, especially on seniors.

    As we age, our health can slowly fade. The following are some helpful technology that you or your loved one should embrace. These tools can help your mind and body stay healthy and active, while letting you be more independent.

    Skype. Skype is such an important tool these days. While most younger people stay connected with various tools, like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and more, relationships can be harder to nurture for seniors. Whether your family is right down the street or states away, communication is easy with Skype. Watch your new grandson take his first steps, or talk to your daughter about her promotion. Depression is quite common in seniors, so keeping important relationships intact can help diminish some of those feelings.

    Computer games. Another way to fight off symptoms of depression is through computer games. Impairment in executive functions, which is the term for things like working memory, reasoning, and organization, corresponds directly with depression in seniors. While playing computer games, the executive functions are practiced and developed. Practicing these functions is linked to the recovery of depression. Next time you and your kids are visiting your mother or father, let the kids bring their video games to play with grandma and grandpa.

    GPS. If you or your loved one is concerned about getting lost, a GPS device is an easy solution. The Revolutionary Tracker is an easy to wear option. It allows your senior to stay independent while you can still keep an eye on them. You can check their location and even listen in if you’re worried. The tracker lets them communicate to you as well. If your senior is fearful of losing their autonomy, a GPS may be the perfect solution.

    If you or a loved one is tech savvy and enjoys some of these tools already, then that’s great! But for those individuals hesitant to try new technology, keep in mind that these are fun and easy ways to stay in touch and stay happy. And if you ever need assistance setting up your new tech gear, Reilly Painting and Contracting, your Home Mechanics, are always here to help.



    Filed under: Fun Stuff, Gadgets & Technology, Health, Food & Fitness, Home Mechanic Tips
    Tags: , , , , , , , ,

    What You Need to Know About Storm Safety


    Not everyone prepares for the bad things that might happen. But the truth is, it’s important to do so. It’s thunderstorm season for us, and we also get hit with a lot of the outlying weather from hurricanes this time of year. Because of some of the storms we’ve had in Cleveland these past couple of weekends, we want to make sure you and your family are ready for whatever storm might be on its way.
    An emergency kit is necessary for every home. You never know when you’ll need it, so it’s best to put one together sooner rather than later. According to the Red Cross, this is what should be in your kit:
    1. Water, one gallon per person, per day
    2. Food, non-perishable, easy to prepare
    3. Flashlight
    4. Battery-powered or hand-cranked radio
    5. Extra batteries
    6. First aid kit
    7. Medications and medical items, 7-day supply
    8. Multi-purpose tool
    9. Sanitation and personal hygiene items
    10. Copies of personal documents
    11. Cell phone with chargers
    12. Family and emergency contact information
    13. Extra cash
    This kit is fairly simple to put together – you only need to set aside time to do it. Keep it somewhere with easy access.

    If you have a smart phone, apps can be very helpful when it comes to safety. Read the following for our favorite weather and safety apps.
    RadarScope is a thorough radar app. The radar tracks weather in the United States, Puerto Rico, and Guam, and refreshes every 6-8 minutes. You can do as little as watch out for storm warnings, or as much as finding the exact location the eye of a hurricane will fall. This app can be as basic or as powerful as you need it to be.
    If you ever find yourself in a dangerous situation, the Guardly app can be lifesaving. By simply launching the app, your location will be sent to the authorities and you’ll be given direct two-way communication to send them more information. “It takes 8 taps to dial 911 on an iPhone (Home, Swipe, Phone, Keypad, 9, 1, 1, Send). It only takes 3 taps to launch Guardly (Home, Swipe, Guardly).”

    Even if you think, it won’t happen to me, it is still better to prepare than to be caught off guard. We urge you to think ahead to ensure the safety of you and your family.

    Filed under: Gadgets & Technology, Health, Food & Fitness, Home Mechanic Tips
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

    Is Your Home Prepared for This Stormy Weather?


    It’s thunderstorm season, and that’s already been proven here in Cleveland. It seems like every weekend there’s a torrential downpour. The storms aren’t over yet, so we’d like to give you some helpful tips on how to prepare your home for this type of weather. Preparedness means having things ready before the storm hits. Although it’s midway through thunderstorm season, it’s still a good idea to read ahead in order to see what you can do to better protect your home from any damage.

    The right time to sit down with your insurance adjuster is before the storm hits. It’s best to know what your insurance covers before it’s too late. A lot of the houses in Cleveland are pretty old and can suffer at least a bit of flooding. But flooding isn’t covered on most insurance policies, so that’s something you’ll want to double check.

    Three really helpful items that will help secure your home are roof clips, garage door braces, and window shutters. Although we don’t live in an area prone to tornadoes, the changing weather patterns mean more unpredictable weather. Our philosophy at Reilly Painting & Contracting is, better safe than sorry. The clips, braces, and shutters all help to prevent your roof, garage door, and windows, respectively, from blowing away or being damaged.

    Make sure your trees are trimmed back to avoid any damage the limbs might cause to your home. According to U.S. News & World Report:

    If you’re unsure about a tree’s health, consider hiring an arborist to check it out and possibly remove it (expect to pay at least a few hundred dollars). But you may be able to determine on your own if it’s healthy or not. Look for bare branches at the top of the tree, which might be a sign your tree is in poor shape. Also, take a look near the base. Are roots sprawled out at one side of the tree? That could be a sign your tree will eventually fall over.

    If you need help with any preventative home methods, be sure to give your Home Mechanics a call today. We want you to stay safe this thunderstorm season.


    Filed under: Basement, Home Mechanic Tips, Roofing
    Tags: , , , , , , ,