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The Modern-Day Thoreau – How to Work from Your Secluded Home

Posted by: on Monday, January 6th, 2014
Categories: Movers' Guide

Maybe you’re the creative type and are looking for some inspiration outside the box. Maybe you’re in the corporate rat race and need some time to recharge. Or maybe you’re retiring and want to get away from all the hustle and bustle. Regardless of the reason, sometimes you just need time for yourself. For most, that means a vacation. But for the adventurous, there are other options.

Henry David Thoreau notoriously secluded himself in the woods for a couple of years in order to concentrate on his writing and truly experience living. While that was quite the drastic step, even for the time, it ultimately gave him what he needed to be a better person and a better writer.

Though jobs have become much more dependent on technology today, with all the innovation out there, there’s little reason why you too can’t maintain a lifestyle, and a job, in seclusion. The best part is, you don’t have to be completely disconnected from society.

Is it a drastic change? For some, yes. But for those willing to take the plunge, here are some things you’ll need to get you started with the modern-day Thoreau approach:

Satellite Internet

If you’re working in seclusion, chances are you still need to stay connected online for emails, remote network access, researching on the web… you name it. But if you’re remote enough, you may not have traditional cable or DSL Internet access, as those are often restricted to major metropolitan areas.

However, you can still get Internet from a satellite Internet provider, such as HughesNet. All you need is a clear view of the southern sky. If the military and disaster relief organizations can use satellite Internet in their remote locations, then you probably can, too.

TV & Antenna

Most TV shows today are for entertainment. But believe it or not, there’s still some useful information transmitted over the airwaves—particularly useful if you’re out on your own.

For instance, you may want to know what’s going on in the nearby town or you may want to catch the local weather forecast. And yes, you may want to take a break from your concentration to watch a game everyone once in a while.

TV signals have gotten stronger over the years, and most today actually transmit in high-definition so you don’t have to sacrifice picture quality. All you need is a TV, an inexpensive TV antenna, and a signal booster, and if your TV is older, you may need a digital converter as well. More expensive antennas can pick up signals more than 50 miles away. Regardless, you’ll have to find the right placement for optimal signal, particularly if you’re way out in the boonies.

Windmill/Solar Panels & Rechargeable Batteries

Live and work far enough away and you may not have normal electricity access either. If this is the case, you can run small home appliances and lights with green power generators, such as windmills and solar panels.

They don’t come cheap and definitely require so know-how to set up properly, but they can still provide plenty of power for your location. Attach them to some rechargeable home batteries, and you can even run your appliances for a limited time when you don’t have sun or wind to count on.

Generator

It’s also a good idea to have a surefire contingency plan should you not get the juice you need from your eco-power generators or battery supply—especially in emergencies. That’s where your standard portable gas generator comes in handy. Keep the generator outside far enough away from your house and you don’t have to worry about the noise interrupting your Monday morning conference call.

Satellite Phone

Live too far out there and you probably won’t get a reliable cellular phone signal either. That’s OK, because you have options to stay connected via phone.

Some satellite Internet providers offer Voice Over IP (VoIP) in addition to their Internet service. VoIP uses the Internet line as a dual phone line. And you can still use them both at the same time.

There are also plenty of standalone, portable satellite phones. But these often have much more expensive per-minute rates, and probably would cost an arm and a leg if you had to use them for regular work calls.

The Thoreau approach certainly isn’t for everyone. But if you want an adventurous way to work remotely, it’s more possible now than ever before with these innovations.

Modernizing Your Rural Home – 3 Simple Upgrades

Posted by: on Monday, January 6th, 2014
Categories: Movers' Guide

Just because you live a little farther away from civilization doesn’t mean you have to forego modern amenities and innovations for more fulfilling, comfortable living.

If you’re still living in the Stone Age, consider these easy updates to bring you into the 21st century.

Alternative Power

Alternative means for power aren’t limited to just scientists, wealthy survivalists, and eco-hobbyists any more. Today, there are many inexpensive means – including solar and wind power – which can help you not only look cool, but also save you a ton of money in the long term (and increase your home’s value).

A quick search online will give you plenty of options to choose from, depending on your electric needs.  If you plan on installing solar panels or a wind turbine, you’ll also need a little electrical experience and some elbow grease. But there are plenty of DIY tutorials for first-time installers.

Connect your alternative power generators to a battery-storage system, and you’ll have plenty of reserve power should you lose normal electric power due to a storm or other emergency issue.

HughesNet Satellite Internet

Live far enough away from a major metropolitan area and you probably assume your only Internet options are dial-up or maybe DSL, if you’re lucky. Thankfully, that’s no longer the case. Satellite Internet has entered the landscape, and more and more rural residents are using it for high-speed Internet access.

Satellite Internet works in a similar way as satellite TV. You have a dish on your home that receives a signal from a satellite in space. When you go to a website, you transmit a signal to the satellite in orbit, which then in turn sends the signal to a ground station. Then the ground station finds your site and transmits the signal back down to you through the same process. All that happens in a fraction of a second!

The best part? All you need is a clear view of the southern sky to pick up a signal – making this a readily available solution for almost every household.

Home Wireless Network

Once you have a reliable Internet solution implemented, you can then take advantage of easy and convenient home networking solutions.

For instance, you can set up a home Wi-Fi network using a router. This allows you to wirelessly connect everything from computers to mobile devices to the Internet, giving you greater mobility wherever you are within range. Having a home wireless network also allows you to stream content from one device to another. For example, you could stream your music from your computer to your Internet-ready TV. No wires. No discs. No hassle.

If you really want to go crazy, you can even integrate your wireless network with things like smart-refrigerators, which will let you keep track of your food inventory and stream various media.

Try one or all of these simple modernization solutions in your rural home and you’ll quickly find that updating your tech can be unintimidating as well as easy and affordable – providing you with a more enjoyable home living experience.

 

How to Stay Connected at your Summer Home

Posted by: on Monday, November 25th, 2013
Categories: Movers' Guide

If your packing list for vacation includes various tech devices, you’re not alone. More people are staying connected on vacation with Wi-Fi and mobile broadband, and few even consider leaving for vacation without their smartphone.

Technology is an important part of vacationing, even out in rural areas. With Internet technology like HughesNet satellite Internet, you can get connected just about anywhere. From a cabin in the woods to a beachside porch, satellite Internet is available to keep you connected to everything you want online.

Here are a few things you might want on vacation to keep connected to friends and family back home:

Satellite Internet

If you want to be connected to your plugged-in world while on vacation, you will definitely need a reliable Internet connection. Count on satellite Internet to be available where you vacation (with a clear view of the southern sky) and get connected.

Satellite Internet is the best choice for rural vacation homes because it is available anywhere, even where DSL and cable are not. Use the Internet to keep up with work, stay in the know with your social life, or just share your vacation photos with people back home.

Wireless Router

A wireless router is essential to making the most out of your high-speed Internet connection. If you’re on vacation and still want all the convenience of a wireless connection, a wireless router is a necessity.

Wireless routers come in a variety of signal strengths, so choose carefully based on your vacation home’s needs. For example, if you want to use a Wi-Fi signal all the way out on your dock, you might want a router that spans a larger distance.

Wireless Devices

The best thing to pair with your wireless router? A great wireless device. Everyone has their favorite, but here are some popular options for Internet-loving vacationers:

Laptop—The go-to option for most work-heavy Internet activity, laptops can handle downloads of large documents and have the most capacity for saving files.

Tablet—A tablet in the brand of your choice is a high-tech touch version of a computer. Tablets typically use apps to function as smoothly as a laptop.

MP3 Players—Download music, TV shows, music videos, and more on your MP3 player with a wireless Internet connection. The most common brand is Apple’s iPod.

Workout trackers—If you’re an active vacationer and still want to track your workouts while you’re away from home, get a wireless workout tracker. These can vary from apps on your smartphone to wearable wireless devices that track your activity.

Digital Camera—Bring a digital camera along on your trip to capture quality images of your experiences and memories. Many digital cameras now connect to Wi-Fi, which allows you to upload your photos while you’re still on vacation.

Smartphone—If you choose just one wireless device for your trip away from home, chances are it’s probably your smartphone. Use it to surf the web, send emails and texts, or make phone calls.

It’s a good idea to invest in a durable case for any of these devices if you’re outdoors, and make sure you pack all the chargers you need to use your wireless devices.

Moving to a New State – Five Things to Consider

Posted by: on Monday, November 25th, 2013
Categories: Movers' Guide

Whether it’s for a job change, to be closer to family, or simply for new beginnings, moving to a new state is an exciting time. But it can also be a big undertaking. There are a lot of moving parts (no pun intended) in the process, and there may be some facets to your new residency you didn’t even think of or know about.

Here are a few things to consider before and during the big move.

Moving Companies

Whether you want to do the physical moving yourself or would rather hire someone, it’s important to know what you’re getting into beforehand.

When it comes to moving companies, the old adage “you get what you pay for” couldn’t be any more appropriate. Just because they’re cheap doesn’t mean everything will arrive at its destination in one piece. Do you really want to be stuck in a new home without your couch, TV, or bed? Make sure the company you hire has an insurance policy, and make sure you read all the fine print before you sign your belongings away.

It’s also a good idea to check moving company reviews online. A quick Google search will give you an instant idea of a company’s reputation and quality of service. And sites like unpakt.com let you quickly and easily compare multiple movers at the same time, including reviews and rates.

Your Vehicle

Vehicle laws vary from state to state, meaning when you move you’re going to have to go through the often painful process of registering your car in another state. This means you have to not only get a new driver’s license and license plates, but also potentially pay taxes on your vehicle. Depending on the state’s vehicle emissions laws, you may even have to get your car inspected before it can be registered.  Check the website for the Department of Motor Vehicles in your new state for all the information, requirements, and forms you may need before you move.

You must also update your vehicle’s insurance policy to reflect your new address. Because some insurance companies do not offer policies in some states, and it’s illegal to drive without insurance, you may need to find another auto insurance provider.

Tax Deductions

Many folks don’t know that the IRS will actually let you deduct some moving expenses – such as packing and shipping, household goods, and travel expenses – if you’re moving due to a change in your job or your job’s location. That stuff can add up to a lot of money! Of course, there are some stipulations.

First, your new workplace must be at least 50 miles farther from your old home than your old job location was from your old home. Second, you must work full-time for at least 39 weeks during the first 12 months immediately following your move. Meet these criteria and you may have yourself a sizable deduction.

Review the IRS’s policy and get access to the appropriate paperwork from the official IRS website.

Utilities & Home Services

One of the most time-consuming aspects of moving is getting your utilities and home services in order.

To make the process easier for you, there are several online websites that allow you to connect to multiple services at once. These sites act as a sort of middle man, hooking you up with everything from electricity and gas to cable and Internet.

It’s important to note that you may have more or fewer options than your previous residence. For instance, some states allow you to choose from several electric providers competing in a geographic area. Also, if you’re moving to a more rural area, you may not have cable or certain Internet providers available to you, as they often only serve major metropolitan area. In such instances, satellite Internet may be your best choice. If you’re in the market, HughesNet is a trusted satellite Internet provider with some of the fastest speeds out there.

Social Life

After you have finally gotten all of the moving taken care of and you’ve gotten plenty of relaxation, you’re probably going to want to do something fun. But what do you do if you don’t know anyone in the area to enjoy an activity with?

Fortunately, it’s easy with online social tools like Meetup.com. Meetup.com allows you to search geographically for things to do, and it’s the perfect platform for making friends in a new area. And if you have particular tastes, don’t worry about not finding people with similar interests. There’s a meetup group for just about everything – from volleyball and kayaking to poetry and sewing.

 

Consider these five areas and you’ll have the most seamless, convenient move you’ve ever experienced before. Good luck!

Transitioning from the City to the Country—How to Stay Connected

Posted by: on Monday, November 25th, 2013
Categories: Movers' Guide

Moving from a metropolitan area to the countryside isn’t always an easy transition. Although the land may be beautiful and the lifestyle may be simpler, there are some drawbacks to that simplicity. For example, you may not be able to pick up a quick carryout dinner when you don’t feel like cooking. Or you may not have a ton of options for shopping.

However, if you stay connected with services like Internet and a home phone, you can find new ways to adapt to your new lifestyle while still being able to chat with friends and family about the transition.

Follow these few steps to make your new country life relaxing, simple, and connected to the rest of the world:

Install Internet service

First things first: it’s time to upload photos of your new home and beautiful, big backyard.  Just hop on Facebook and—wait, no Facebook? If you’re used to readily available technology to keep you connected, you can now easily get connected in no time with the use of satellite technology for your rural home.

In places where DSL and cable providers can’t offer service, look to satellite Internet providers to keep you connected like you were in the city. Even though you may not live in close proximity to a shopping mall, you can certainly shop online with your satellite Internet service. HughesNet satellite Internet offers flexible plans for movers, which can also be paired with other home services.

Update your friends and family

Stay connected with all your family and friends by informing them of your new address, phone number, and where you might be employed. Not only are these great things to pass on for staying in their social loop, but it creates your own sense of community to enjoy. Staying current with friends and family back home will keep you from feeling isolated when you first make the big move from the city to the country.

Learn about your new home

Literally staying connected with your electricity may be an issue if you’re relatively new to the rural home scene. Electrical outages could happen and you might want to learn about the frequency of severe weather, the length of prior outrages, and how common it is to lose power for whatever reason.  Be prepared for these losses of connectivity and learn how to fix or maintain your home’s basic systems before an emergency occurs.

 

Cool Technologies for your Rural Home

Posted by: on Monday, November 25th, 2013
Categories: Movers' Guide

Just because you live in a rural or older home doesn’t mean you can’t get the same high-tech features of a metropolitan home. Moving to the countryside may not be an easy transition, but with so many high-tech home advancements, you won’t ever have to feel like you’re missing out. There are many ways to bring your rural home up to speed.

Upgrade your lifestyle in a rural environment and check out these cool new home technologies:

Wireless Internet access

Perhaps the most important first step to upgrade your home’s technology is to install a wireless Internet connection. This allows multiple computers and devices to use the same network at once. Plus, you don’t get tied down to one room of your home when you connect to the web.

If you live in a rural area, choose satellite Internet to be paired with a wireless router for your high-speed Internet access. Rural Internet is available from satellite Internet providers for rural homes—all the satellite dish needs to connect is a clear view of the southern sky. HughesNet offers great packages and promotions with flexible plans to match your high-tech home’s needs.

Wireless Internet devices

Take advantage of the wireless satellite Internet connection in your home with any great wireless Internet device. Keep in mind that each wireless Internet device will have a different impact on your data allowance each month.  Monitor your usage and enjoy these great devices in your rural home:

Smart TVs

One of the most awesome ways to surf the web is on your TV.  With built-in Wi-Fi, Smart TVs let you play games from your sofa, use your favorite apps, or play video clips from the web.

Laptops, Tablets, E-Readers

The essential three—laptops, tablets, and e-readers—keep you connected to all your favorite content whenever and wherever you want (as long as Wi-Fi is present). With new versions and updated systems of these almost every year, it’s easy to keep up with the most current style of wireless technology.

Smart Refrigerator

If a touch-screen refrigerator sounds more awesome than Sci-Fi to you, you’re in luck.  Many new refrigerators now come with built-in wireless capabilities.  Look up recipes, leave notes for family members, or post to your twitter feed—all from your refrigerator.

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