Abandoned Construction Sites in Gauteng – Why?

Abandoned Building / Construction Sites In Gauteng, Why?

A building is considered abandoned after just thirty days of being left empty. There are many abandoned building projects throughout South Africa, these buildings are not being utilized due to various reasons. An abandoned building is one that is considered to be empty and/or  in disrepair.

There are many setbacks and issues that may occur when building and developing a project that should be taken into consideration before the project even starts, most of the time projects and construction sites are abandoned because of the following reasons :

1.) Financial Problems.
2.) Due To Inexperienced Developers.
3.) Mismanagement And Mistakes.

Abandonment of buildings and construction sites could be a potential problem for South Africa due to the financial constraints within the construction and building industry. Tenders are being awarded to construction companies that are battling and have no funds to continue with the projects and this is yet another reason why construction is not being completed.

Here are a few buildings in Gauteng that have been abandoned and the reasons are as follows:

1.)  Khutsong Clinic – As per the contractor’s Client liaison officer, the Gauteng Department of Infrastructure Development has not paid the contractor and the contractor is experiencing financial difficulties. This project cost has been estimated at R65 Million.

2.) Carlton Hotel – The Carlton Hotel was considered to be one of the most prominent hotels in South Africa, hosting big names such as Nelson Mandela, Whitney Housten and Hillary Clinton. The hotel has been untouched and standing for over 20 years due to a lack of maintenance. The Carlton Hotel has over 600 rooms over 31 floors, and it closed its doors in 1997. Thereafter Transnet bought the once luxury hotel and even though there as been various plans floating around, the hotel still remains empty.

3.) Kempton Park Hospital –  It has been said that Kempton Park Hospital had been closed due to a shortage of patients, however in 2006 there was talk about re-opening the building and to renovate it, thus taking pressure off of Tembisa and Edenvale Hospitals. Construction was supposed to start in March 2013 and was meant to be completed in July 2014,  however contractors never started the work which was estimated have cost R 244 Million.  In 2017 it was reported that R127 million Rand had been set aside to demolish the Hospital.  However to date, Kempton Park Hospital still stands empty.

A large number of buildings are left empty and these buildings are not just little three-story buildings that are implicated, they are skyscrapers and huge 210-roomed hospitals where space has just been wasted. Tenders are being awarded to new development when these older and abandoned buildings and structures should be given preference and utilized before we build more. building    The buildings that stand empty are targets for criminal activities to take place and by standing empty and unused, they drop the value of the surrounding buildings and the area in general. If there is no-one monitoring the buildings or if there is no security in place, then this allows for squatters to move in and take over the building and also allows for pests to run around freely.

Incomplete construction has cost Gauteng over R620 million and it has been reported that the Gauteng Legislature’s Portfolio Committee on infrastructure development will be clamping down on “poor contractors’ workmanship” as there are tenders that have been awarded in 2017 that have not even started for renovating or building projects and this leaves 40 companies implicated. The projects pertain to new clinics, seven new schools and other important renovations that need attention in order to help the citizens of South Africa. Since this money has been paid over to the contractors, it is believed that fraud and corruption have been suspected.

Gauteng has identified a new “low-cost housing” opportunity and is allowing the private sector to turn them into affordable housing, The city is hoping to upgrade 2000 to 4000 informal settlement homes. This is a great way for the government to give back and I am sure this is exciting for the residents that stay in these buildings. Let’s hope this project materializes.

Sources:
Infrastructure News
Traveller24
Informal City
IOL
Business Insider
Flickr
Business Tech
City Lab
Times Live
Research Gate


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The Ultimate Guide to Tendering in 2020

The Ultimate Guide to Tendering in 2020

Tenders in South Africa can be a lucrative source of income for small businesses. They can, however, be challenging to negotiate, especially since so much legislation has changed, and the requirements differ so drastically between organisations and government sectors. Adding to this, some Departments or Municipalities have existing relationships with companies that already perform really well and that have been winning tenders for long periods. Getting your foot in the door means getting the process right from the beginning. This will not only save you time and effort but has the potential to set up those all-important income streams and boost your cash flow.

Let’s cover the groundwork together, so your business is not only equipped for success but set to impress.

Forgive the obvious, but first:

What is a Tender?

A tender is an offer to do work or supply goods at a fixed price. The tender or procurement process is designed to ensure that the work to be done is distributed fairly. In fact, there are procurement policies that are used as a framework on how to make decisions on which tenders or bids to accept. Although the price is a highly competitive factor driving the decision on which tender or bid to accept, it is not the only factor taken into consideration.

When a client entity accepts a tender, it becomes a binding business contract on and for both parties. In layman’s terms, it means that the individual(s) or company that won this business opportunity have to provide the goods or services in the way they agreed to and, at the price they offered it, and the client entity must pay the agreed price at the agreed time.

Make sure that you can meet all the requirements within the specified time and can honour your offer if your bid is successful.

Do not make any misrepresentations or false statements in your bid documentation. Since it is a legal document and therefore enforceable by law.

In the event you don’t secure the tender this time around, the process of writing a tender can help your business by clarifying your business objectives, and evaluate your strengths and weaknesses.

By taking it a step further and asking for feedback on your tender document, you will raise your profile with the prospective client /company and help your business learn more accurately about the client’s needs.

How do you find Tenders?

Most Municipalities and Departments publish tenders in the Government Bulletin, in most newspapers, and on Government websites. Another time saving and cost-effective option instead of searching high and low for tenders is to subscribe to Leads 2 Business, where we search for tenders for you.

We simplify this process by sending you a summary email at the end of each business day of the tenders that are relevant to your business. Thereby saving you the time and money usually spent sifting through papers, online resources and the general running around to find all the necessary information. For more information on subscribing click here.

How to decide on whether to Bid on a Tender?

Preparing construction tenders can help your business secure future work, but it comes with its own price tag. Tendering is time-consuming, consumes valuable resources and costs money.

In the event you don’t land the contract, the money and time spent are lost, so before you are knee-deep in paperwork, you need to weigh up the costs of whether or not a tender is worth bidding for.

 

Here’s a quick scan through:

  • Get a copy of the tender documents and scrutinise them.
  • Establish if you have the necessary technical, skill and experience requirements to satisfy the breadth of the work.
  • Calculate how much will it cost to prepare your bid.
  • Does the scope of work align with your business strategy and the future positioning of your business?
  • How much profit can you make?
  • What will the impact be on your current business, in terms of other jobs, staff teams and your capacity to take in other new business?
  • Do you have sufficient cash flow?
  • Is there a future networking opportunity or advantage to having this job in your portfolio?

How to approach the collection of Tender Documentation?

Pick up the phone and call the contact person, their details will be stated on the tender advertisement/ notice. Get clarity on how the tender document can be collected.

Important to know:

Site inspections are just another way companies / clients distribute information on a construction project. Bear in mind that some site meetings are compulsory and not attending the meeting will immediately disqualify you from tendering.

Armed with the collected tender document and the decision to tender. The next question is:

What should you put in your Tender?

Address the client’s needs and how your team of experts can solve their problems. It is much like a CV, communicating you have the necessary skills, experience, and team to fulfil their requirements.

Include ideas that will proactively address concerns on future maintenance and staffing implications or innovative ways of doing things that might save on resources. If there’s a pre-qualification document, make sure you go through everything in the document and address each aspect.

Value for money is what determines most bids, not just the cost. Can you offer something to the project that can’t be addressed by the client?

Highlight the benefits to their business, your service improvements on offer, the quality, your reliability, your projections on lifetime or future costs, how you can reduce risks and low maintenance, as well as previously satisfied customers.

Cautiously analyse all the costs and pricing factors of the contract. Do not neglect your fixed costs such as wages for staff who could be working on something else.

Contract Management

Showcase that you:

  • have the resources to do the work in a cost-effective way to meet the client’s needs,
  • can meet deadlines and respond flexibly to changing situations,
  • can manage potential financial, commercial, and legal risks that could cause contract failure.

Provide the details of your team, highlight successes with similar projects as well as qualifications and experience to emphasise their strengths.

How to compile your Tender Submission:

Now that you know what to put in your tender document, you can begin to compile your submission.

Every tender has a closing date, which is a very firm deadline after which no tenders will be accepted. There is no exception for late tenders if the closing date has passed, and you have not submitted you will have missed your window of opportunity.

Since bids or tenders are binding legal documents in South Africa, they have to be completed in writing. Tender submissions will have a series of associated forms, which must accompany the tender. The specifics of the forms you will require for your tender will be listed in the tender documentation or be included with the tender or bid documents that you receive. Carefully complete these and get professional advice if you are unsure of anything.

As a general framework, here is a list of the forms that are usually required for national and provincial business tenders in South Africa:

  • The Bid
    This is the document that you agree to be bound by, in the terms and conditions of the tender.
  • Current Tax Clearance Certificate
    Your taxes must be up to date for you to be successful with your tender or bid. This document has an ‘Application for tax clearance certificate’ form attached to it. To obtain a tax clearance certificate you have to complete this form and hand it in at your nearest South African Revenue Services (SARS) office. The original tax clearance certificate that you receive from SARS, will need to be attached to the tender or bid documents. This certificate serves as confirmation that you are not in arrears with your tax payments. You can also submit a Tax Compliance Status PIN. The PIN can also be printed in the form of the TCS result letter from the SARS website. This can be submitted instead of a Tax Clearance Certificate, in some cases. This will be specified in the tender document.
  • Price and motivation
    Which of these documents you complete depends on the subject of the tender and is often amended for the particular tender, so carefully check which one you need to complete. In this form, you motivate your price, by describing the product you will supply or detail the experience of the person who will perform the service(s).
  • Declaration of Interest
    This is the document in which you declare whether or not you have a relationship (friend, family, business leads) with anyone who works for the government. This is so that those people are not involved in awarding the tender in any way, to avoid corruption.
  • Preference certificate
    You must fill in the form for tenders even if you are not claiming any of the preference points.
  • Contract form
    This is the contract that binds the parties should the tender be successful. There are different forms for different contracts.
Other documentation recommendations that may be required:

  • Ensure your business paperwork is all up-to-date:
    • Appropriate business license,
    • Registered bank account,
    • You are physically capable and financially able to complete all work tendered for – with necessary proof (Cvs/ completion certificates);
  • Registered on relevant databases:
    • The most important one at the moment is the Central Supplier Database (CSD), which is the Government Database that all Departments and Municipalities use to check that your documents are in order. (www.csd.gov.za)
    • Some of the Departments or Municipalities still have their own databases, so be sure to check when you have to submit a tender that you are on their database, if necessary.
    • For Quotations (in some cases, up to R1 000 000) you need to be registered on their own databases to be invited to quote on quotations, as these do not get advertised publicly.

Writing your Tender:

Ensure that you match the tender specifications and answer every question.

Much like a CV, create a summary to highlight why it addresses the client’s needs. It may very well be the last thing you write, having gone through the entire scope of the document, but include this overarching summary at the beginning of your tender.

Common Tendering errors and things to Look out for:

  • Always read through the tender documents carefully.
  • Complete the document in full.
  • When you have invested so much time and money to get the documents, go to the meeting and complete the documents, the last thing you want to do is over price. Do a proper cost analysis when calculating your bid prices. Bids calculated too high or too low are considered unresponsive.
  • Prices for labour, materials, and equipment all fluctuate. So charging 300% for something where everyone else would charge 150%, would likely lose your bid.
  • Tender prices and calculations must be correct. Check and TRIPLE-CHECK this! A mistake here could cost your company dearly.
  • The advantage is granted to 100% black-owned companies.
  • There are also advantage granted to Previously Disadvantaged Individuals (PDI) or women-owned companies.
  • If you are an HDI, remember to claim your points. Any points you don’t claim are points lost!
  • Ensure that you complete your tender documents in full and attach all documents that are required. Always provide all of the information requested in the tender application. Do not forget things like your tax clearance certificate and shareholding certificates. Note: out-dated tax clearance certificates are also not permitted.
  • Check your interpretation of the scope of the work. If you are unsure of anything in the tender, be sure to ask. Make enquires about the bid and obtain all the relevant information before completing the tender document.
  • Sign your bid document. It sounds so common sense, but unsigned documents are unresponsive and will, therefore, be disqualified.
  • Deliver the tender into the right box and before the closing time. Remember there are no exceptions. By law, no late bids will be accepted, not even 1 second past the closing time.
  • If samples are requested, sufficient amounts must be supplied to enable the item to be evaluated under the appropriate technical or clinical conditions. Ensure that any requirements related to compliance with SABS specifications are met. Quality services and products will only serve to aid your record of good standing with the department.
Clients will expect you to:

  • State the purpose and origin of the bid.
  • Include a cover letter that responds to the bid invitation, summarises your main message.
  • Have an index that explains how the documents are organised.
  • Explain the benefits and value for money of your bid.
  • Have a summary of your work as a contractor, past experience and credentials for this job.
  • Demonstrate your team’s skills, the experience of similar work and their responsibilities if you win the contract.
  • Explanation of how you plan to carry out the work.
  • Be practical and identify potential problems without promising what’s clearly impossible for you to deliver.
  • Provide details of your pricing and any aftercare arrangements within the price.
  • Manage the details of the projects and their scope.
  • Create a timeline as to how and when the client’s aims will be achieved.
  • Detail when and how goods and services are to be delivered, with a supporting timetable.

Delivering your Tender:

Congratulations, you have made it this far! It is not a small administrative task, but once you have all the forms completed and signed, place your tender in an envelope with the tender number on it (double-check this) and deliver it before the closing time, to the place specified on the tender advertisement.

Respondents are allowed to be present at the delivery point when tenders are opened. In South Africa, most tenders are opened in public, whereby the name of the company is announced with the tender prices and associated costs.

Follow-up on your Tender submission:

After you have submitted your tender, it is a good idea to place a follow-up phone call to the client and query the status of their adjudication process. Your approach should be friendly, helpful and encourage them to please contact you should they need any further clarity. This will only serve to affirm your commitment and eagerness to win this tender.

There is the possibility you may be requested to do a presentation to the client.

It is an incredible opportunity to prove to your client that you have the skills and capacity to deliver the project per your tender response. The client will ask for questions for clarification. Prepare well, know your tender document thoroughly, speak confidently at the presentation and answer questions to the best of your ability.

What happens when the Tender Contract is Awarded?

After the adjudication process (which can take some time), the client will award the project to either:

  • a single company,
  • a consortium of enterprises or joint venture
  • or it may choose to not award the tender.
If you are awarded the tender, you will receive a letter of appointment. It is important that you respond to the client and confirming your appointment and setting up an initial kick-off meeting.

Take charge, be proactive and show your client that you know what you are doing. Follow this through by delivering a quality project on time and within budget.

  .

What if you are Not Awarded?

Bear in mind that when you have submitted a tender and the evaluation stages have passed, all tenderers should be notified, by law, of the intended / suggested successful company. There should also be an appeals / objection period given to those who were unsuccessful. This is where you may object to the intended / suggested company, for whatever reason (e.g. your price was lower than theirs). Take note of how you are instructed to submit your appeal / objection and take special note of the deadline for appeals / objections. Late appeals / objections are not considered.

In the event you are not awarded the project, it is possible to query the reasons as to why you were unsuccessful. This information is helpful for future tenders so that you can learn from any mistakes. However, be realistic and be mindful that you will not win every tender that you respond to.

With all these tips, I sincerely hope that the tendering process will be easier for you and that you may be better prepared for any future endeavours.

Wishing you all the very best!


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About Antonette Claassens

I am a fanatical researcher who takes immense pride in the information I publish and those all-important finer details. When I'm not "researching up a storm", I love the ocean, fab music, and fine dining.

5 Ways to Stay Motivated at Work

So let me paint the picture: you’re into the final weeks of your work year, Christmas posters are going up, the days are getting warmer, your Christmas tree is threatening to make an appearance, and you pretty sure you have caught yourself humming a carol or two already. Now if you are anything like me all this excites you very very much! I LOVE the Holidays!

There’s just one minor problem, there is still 3 or 4 weeks of work to go. So how am I going to stay focused and motivated?

Well, this is what I’m going to try and my 5 tips to you.

  1. Reflect

“So what do you mean Sher?”

What I mean is, surely you had some goals or aspirations coming into this year? Perhaps you reached them? So congratulate yourself! Be proud of the things you achieved this year.

On the other hand, maybe you didn’t reach them? Perhaps you are still an overweight smoker who curses too much and still spends way too much time on social media?

Well, it’s not too late… and that brings me to point number 2.

  1. Make a to-do-list

Decide how many days you still have to accomplish a few of these goals you have left for this year, and maybe make the goal now, just to start these things, no one is expecting you to perform miracles and lose, say 10kgs in 30 days, but maybe just start eating a little healthier, go to the gym or simply just start drinking more water.

Maybe you had planned to spend more time with your kids this year and less time taking quizzes on Facebook to find out what kitchen appliance you are?

Well then, firstly stop doing that immediately! Set out 15 minutes a day and just have a chat with them, read to them or whatever. You know what your kids need, and what they would appreciate, and of course, this could go for a partner, family member or even friend. I promise this one will make you feel way better about yourself like no kitchen appliance ever could.

  1. Take time out

Now, this is important, so listen.

Take your tea time. Take your lunch time. Take a walk. Take a nap.

Listen to your body. We all know this year like all years has been a long one and yet it has gone by so fast. We also know work doesn’t slow down because you have taken a sick day perhaps, or tragedy hit your family, so now you a little behind on a project or deadline? Well, you are no good to yourself if you are tired and miserable. So look after yourself first, then take a deep breath pumpkin, and make that to-do-list I just spoke about!

  1. Get excited!!

If you are anything like me, finishing something gives you a huge sense of accomplishment. So once you have reflected, and made your list of things that need to be done – Get Them Done! And feel the excitement of clearing your list, nearing the end with a clean slate and what next year may bring. This is the end of a decade people! Let that sink in!! Next year is a whole new beginning, and I for one cannot wait to start a new work year (after a ton of sun and a little gin of course), set new goals, break new boundaries and achieve, achieve, achieve!

Now, this next one is not really something you can do for yourself to stay motivated, but rather a little advice to help keep the people around you less motivated to want to kill you in the work place.

  1. Work Consideration

I’m not sure what it is about us humans, but we always seem to think our load is heavier, our hardship is more severe and we are more tired or broke than the next.

Yes, you know what I mean. Well, quit it! We are all tired, we all have daily struggles and most importantly we are all in this together so be kind, smile at each other, complement each other and just be less annoying. Try crunching, slurp, pen click and foot-tapping less at your desks. Keep your eye on the prize.

We are almost there, let’s get stuff done and be awesome doing it!

And on that note, I would like to wish you all a wonderful end of the year and holiday to follow, enjoy the parties, the family, the trips, trees, prezzies and carols and stay safe!

See you next decade!


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About Sherina Shawe

"You have to do everything you can, you have to work your hardest, and if you do, if you stay positive, you have a shot at a silver lining." from: Silver Linings Playbook.

Building Relationships: One Construction Project at a Time

 

More importantly, is that everyone can build strong relationships no matter what industry you’re in or what your title may be. It’s important to build the right relationships with the right people. Strong relationships between general contractors and subcontractors are important for a successful project. These relationships don’t mature overnight, and it takes time and effort from both parties to build a level of trust that evolves into a strong working partnership.

Main contractors
When a client hires a contractor to build or renovate a property, the company is legally responsible for completing all of the required work. Main contractors are thinkers. They work with you through the entire project, from the idea phase to the finished product. By contrast, subcontractors come and go. They specialize in certain areas of the construction process, like large equipment operation, concrete formulation, plumbing, electricity and carpentry. They enter a project to do a particular task and leave when that task is finished.

Subcontractors
If you’re bidding to a general contractor for the first time this is your opportunity to make a strong first impression.
Communicate! Keep in contact with the site supervisor and project manager with updates on your progress and advise them immediately of any issues or potential delays that might impact other subcontractors on the job or the overall project timeline.
Choose the right team for the job. Make sure your workers act and perform their duties safely and professionally. Be organized. Practice good housekeeping and clean up after every workday, picking up tools and equipment and disposing of any construction waste as you go.
Show up to the job site every day with the tools, equipment, materials, and workers you need to get the day’s work done. Subcontractors may be tempted to take on a job that is outside the scope of their capabilities allowing the subcontractors a window of time at either end of the project will ensure all their work will be finished within the project time frame. Preparing for delays will prevent the project from running overtime and therefore going over budget. Following these suggestions will lower the chances for disappointment and maintain a positive relationship between you and your subcontractor. Partnerships between contractors and subcontractors are vital for any business. In fact, this relationship is beneficial to both parties involved.
A subcontractor agreement usually exists between a contractor and a subcontractor. It outlines information similar to the conditions detailed in a contractor agreement. In most instances, the contractor will be responsible for compensating the subcontractor and the subcontractor is required to complete certain tasks for the contractor. Both a contractor and subcontractor work together to complete specified duties for a company or an individual.

Vendor/Suppliers
Main contractors and subcontractors often tend to ignore one thing: supplier relationship management. Effective supplier relationship management increases profitability and drives efficiencies for businesses.
Leads 2 Business has a service called Leads 2 Quotes and Open Quotes. (www.L2B.co.za) Vendor/Suppliers receives RFQ from main /sub-contractors as a preferred vendor via email, submit your RFQ’s (request for quotes) online. Easy access to vendor/suppliers within the area of work. You will be able to view which contractors prefer your business and interact directly with you regarding your service and product offerings.
This is a professional platform to enable anyone to build a solid relationship between Contractors and Suppliers.
As much as company culture is important to your business, it should also manifest in your supplier. Values such as speed, quality, excellence, innovation, and reliability are existent in trustworthy companies and you want to be sure that the same can be said about your own suppliers

Available Cash
You have payments due to subs, employees, vendors, materials suppliers, and equipment renters but you don’t get paid until the project is complete. If you want to have a solid relationship with your subbies, treat them how you would want to be treated, and pay them on time, every time
Nothing will ever run a 100% smoothly in construction at any given time. When there is a bump in the road, fingers start pointing. If you have a positive attitude and are working with subcontractors you trust; it will be easy to establish a good working relationship
Good business relationship management can lead to loyalty, which is important in terms of finding suppliers and subcontractors that can be trusted. This applies to tender bids as well as project delivery. Professionalism should be demonstrated at all times, as well as open and honest communication, efficiency and consideration when dealing with their needs and requirements

There are plenty of tools and online resources out there to help keep you and your business organized

Whether you are a “leader” or a follower, you can build a community of friends, colleagues, associates, allies, partners, and buddies around you. Together, there is no telling what you can do. Building Relationships: One Construction Project at a Time

Sources:
ProjectSmart
GenieBelt


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About Nirasha Rampersad

I started working for Leads to Business June 2017 as Support Assistance in L2Q.

15 Ways to Renovate on a Budget

Everybody wants a beautiful living space, a space in which to unwind and relax and shrug off the stresses of day-to-day life.
Your home should be your sanctuary, your place to escape and just be.

Here are my 15 Ways to Renovate on a Budget.

First and foremost:

1. Establish a Budget and Don’t Budge
It is so easy to get caught up in the beautifying process that one can easily go over what has been budgeted for.

2. Pay Cash
You are wanting to create an environment that allows you to come home, kick off your shoes and relax after a long day, not one that causes you to pull your hair out while you are number-crunching until the wee hours of the morning because of credit card debt. As far as is possible, buy your materials with cash.

3. Check Your Prices
Don’t just go into one store to find all your prices, if you are going into a large store, there is every possibility that you might get caught up in some slick sales talk and wind up going over your budget, go to a few stores, get quotes and compare prices.

4. Clean Up
Before starting a project, clean up. Be ruthless with yourself if necessary. I tend to suffer from sente(mental)ity, there are dozens of keepsakes that we are given by children along the way and they get hung up on the fridge and such, in the pursuit of cleaning up, if it isn’t going to serve a purpose, take a photo of it and then chuck it.

5. Set a Time Limit
Rome wasn’t built in a day, but if there wasn’t a time frame to work within, it would still be under construction. Again, because time is precious, you don’t want to lose precious time with your family.

6. All Hands on Deck
When you take on a renovation project, instead of employing a company to do the work for you, why not get the whole family involved, this creates friendship and most of all, ownership.

7. Recycle, or upcycle.
There are so many good ideas of how to transform “junk” into useful items on Pinterest, so, get pinning!

8. Feature Walls
Instead of painting out a whole area, consider painting a feature wall. The idea behind this is to create the illusion of space, it’s also a great way to allow yourself to have fun and to get creative with colour and also cost-effective when purchasing paints.

9. Consider LED
LED lights need not be BRIGHT, there are different shades to choose from, depending on your needs, a cool white would better suit a kitchen or bathroom, where a warm white would suit lounges and bedrooms, as older globes go, consider changing up and save on your electricity costs and doing your bit for the environment.

10. Consider Skylights
This is a great way to add natural lighting to your home in strategic places and also to cut your daytime electricity costs, work out the pros and cons of adding a skylight and as far as possible try to calculate what you would save in lighting up those areas.

11. Do It Yourself.
If you can build shelves, lay tiles or even paint, then you have already saved some money that can be utilized elsewhere.

12. Add Plants
Well placed plants have a way of lighting up spaces, you would do well to consult with your local garden centre to obtain some advice as to which plants are best suited to which areas, for example, it would not be a good idea to put a cactus in the bathroom.

13. Go Green
There is a lot of focus on the environment and lessening our footprint, If you are updating your bathroom, why not look at going green, Low flow toilets and low flow showerheads will not only help you do your part for the environment, but it will also help you to save money.

14. Work Party
The community my family belongs to believes that it takes a village….not only to raise a child but to do things like this. An old-fashioned work party is a great way to get a large part of the job done and an after-work braai is a great way to connect with one another after the work is done.

15. Have Fun!
You are doing this to give you a space to make amazing memories with your family and friends, don’t lose yourself in the mess, you are making memories as you go, it might be hard work now, but the payoff will be better.


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Solar Cities

In 1839, Alexandre Edmond Becquerel discovered electricity could be generated by sunlight. He claimed that “Shining light on an electrode submerged in a conductive solution would create an electric current.” Solar energy is now utilized and recognized all over the world.

Solar cities would be very beneficial in South Africa due to our current restraints with Eskom and the load shedding each one of us has had to endure on and off for the past 12 years. Solar Energy is free and being a third world County, this would be viable and It would be great not having to depend on Eskom for electricity.  Utilizing Solar panels will save you money and reduce your lights account.

Many South African are currently utilizing solar energy to power the following:

  • Watches
  • Calculators
  • Lighting
  • Water pumps
  • Water heaters

Solar energy hold’s the most potential in South Africa due to the fact that we receive a large amount of radioactive energy. Solar Energy is renewable, meaning we will never run out of sunshine. Wind energy could also be unitized in South Africa, especially around our coastal areas.

Counties that make the most use of Solar power would be:

  • China
  • United States of America
  • Japan
  • Germany
  • India
  • Italy
  • United Kingdom
  • Australia

The initial cost of setting up a solar running house or city is at a high rate, however, the saving, in the long run, is thousands of rand.

Sources:
Feedspot
Google
HomeInsulations


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Safety shouldn’t be Complicated

Safety (noun); the condition of being protected from or unlikely to cause danger, risk, or injury.

Safety really should not be complicated. Sometimes taking all the safety precautions can end with injury and in some extreme cases, even death.

Some examples spring to mind…
20 years or so ago, my school friend was travelling from Durban to Pietermaritzburg with her father, and they had an accident. Emergency personnel could not free her from her safety belt, and she ended up being burnt to death.

In some other cases, some people might still be alive if they had their safety belts on, which would have stopped them getting ejected through the windscreen. Buckle up and maybe carry a knife on you just in case you need to free yourself.

Then there are a couple of cases where timber workers, felling trees, end up with the tree falling in the wrong direction, or maybe they were just standing in the wrong place at the wrong time and got hit by it; instant death. Protective clothing and helmets did not help in these cases, but maybe if they had a better knowledge or were more aware of their position, they might still be alive.

Whilst you may have heard of these safety rules before, some do need repeating:

  • Stay alert and stay alive. The more awake you are, the less likely you will get hurt. I don’t know how many times I have driven on the N3 and seen trucks overturned. Rest when you feel tired. Rather get there alive, than in pieces.
  • Wear the correct clothing. Protective clothing should fit properly. Wear your protective helmet. You never know when an accident may occur. Be prepared.
  • Use the right tools. If you need a spanner, use it. Using incorrect equipment is just asking for trouble.
  • Don’t play pranks. Practical jokes can be dangerous, especially around heavy machinery.
  • Be tidy. This will reduce hazards. Always put your tools away when you are not using them and keep your floors clean and clutter-free. A slip or fall may just end up being a hospital call.
  • Do not take chances or shortcuts. Do it right, and do it safely. Short cuts are probably the biggest killer of all. To save a minute or two, you may lose a life.

If you follow all the safety precautions and still end up getting hurt, get first aid immediately. Neglect of an injury could lead to infection, loss of work time and in some cases, permanent injury.

Remember, your safety is your responsibility. If you are in doubt, contact your supervisor or manager for instruction, guidance, or training.

Safety is not complicated, but it is a choice. Choose wisely.


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About Melanie Miles

One girl who would rather wear boots than high heels...

How to Build Bridges without Building Walls

Building bridges in a metaphoric term means to open up, invite people into your personal space, and create relationships with people outside of your comfort zone. This is never an easy thing to do; as we get older it gets harder to “Build Bridges” and allow people to see a more vulnerable  side of yourself. This is when we “put up walls” so we don’t appear weak to new people: – for example colleagues or clients.

When it comes to a business and the workplace, companies want employees to be able to be open and honest with each other within the Business (Building Bridges) this then creates a positive outlook when it comes to prospective and/or existing clients. With these “bridges built” within a company, it creates an atmosphere for us to be able to go out and impress clients as a collective and not individuals; therefore boosting our power within our prospective network. Empowering businesses and employees to strive for excellence. Every employee can “add a brick to the bridge”  by striving for a positive office environment, as well as when representing the company by portraying a sense of professionalism.

Walls are important when building a solid structure such as an office block or building a new mall, but “Walls” are not good in a working environment. Walls are a metaphor for anything that is creating a negative block; walls contain a build-up of negative energy.  When employees or even management of a company or businesses build walls, it can cause in office fighting and a lack of trust between management and employees.

There is going to be times when walls are going to be built, but it is important to break down those walls and build bridges.

Pope Francis quoted; “Build bridges, and tear down walls.”

 

Sources:
World Economic Forum
The Human Wi-Fi

 


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About Naomi Konigkramer

I have been at Leads to Business for 5 months, I have learned so many new things. I am very happy to be part of the Daily Tenders Department.

World’s Funniest Engineering Fails – Bridges

World’s Funniest Engineering Fails – Bridges

When building of a bridge is conducted it’s a convoluted situation requiring knowledge and proficiency. Various key aspects come into play, such as costs, Engineering limits, and Environmental Impacts, when deciding which construction method to use and bridge type to build. These are all aspects to look at before construction takes place. There are also numerous reasons bridge Engineering could conceivably fail such as Environmental issues (floods, fires, Earthquakes); construction incidents, and most commonly design flaws.

We depend on professionals to seemingly take note of all these aspects.

In the line of history, Engineers have made many mistakes that make us just wonder? “What in the act of engineering are you doing?”

 

A few examples of the world’s funniest Bridge Engineering fails include:
“Just meet me half way…”
Copenhagen’s Kissing bridge.
Located in Denmark, The construction started in 2011 and it was ‘intended’ to open in 2013. The bridge had several errors one of which was being misaligned (Not meeting in the middle) that delayed the construction for just over 2 years. The bridge that did not end up kissing. They had one job, one job…

Another example, is right under our noses, situated in South Africa.

“ To be continued…”
The Foreshore Freeway Bridge in Cape Town also known as the “unfinished bridge”. The construction started in 1977, and due to lack of funding it was never finished. The purpose of a bridge structure is to bear a passage, #justsaying. This unfinished business has somewhat become a tourist attraction in the City of Cape Town. So there is at least one positive aspect to this failure.

As history has proven to us that not every Engineer takes note of precision – but, we surely hope that our future Engineers would take note of these mistakes and hopefully learn from them, as amusing as they may be.


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Why are Bridges Built?

Why are Bridges Built?

I am not much of a Blogger, so let me just “build a bridge” and get over it.

Why do we need or build bridges?
Bridges have been built and used since ancient times, used to carry traffic or humans across an area of obstruction where they are unable to get across.

The benefits of Bridges:
Connecting people, goods and transport
Safety
Reduce traffic and collisions
Easy access (easy passage over obstacles)

The negative impact of Bridges:
Bridges can also be harmful to our environment, can harm trees, cause pollution of our waters, chemicals from vehicles and construction can contaminate the water via precipitation. The construction of bridges can also drastically change the environment and impose serious health issues.

How Bridges have evolved:
From cutting a tree, dragging it into position to serve as a plank, to tying rafts together to form a pontoon, to modern bridges, where you, me and any mode of transport can utilise.

Out with the old and in with the new:

The world’s longest sea crossing: The bridge spans 55km (34 miles) and connects Hong Kong to Macau and the Mainland Chinese City of Zhuhai.

Bridges are beautiful, a masterpiece designed by the hands of architects and art in the eyes of humankind.

Tip of the Day: Build and never burn your bridges

Sources:
Geograph
Flickr
Alamy
Wikipedia
BBC


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About Michelle Ngubo

I have been working at L2B since March 2014 and my current position is Content Researcher - Africa Department and Classy is the best word that describes me.

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