Welcome to The Alternative Museum (TAM)
The Alternative Museum was originally founded in 1975 as the Alternative Center for International Arts Inc. TAM served the public with more than 375 exhibitions and over 500 concerts and panel discussions as it provided a new paradigm for contemporary arts institutions. Projects focused on the pressing social and political issues of our times.

The TAM mantra was, "Behind the issues and ahead of the times."

We hope you enjoy your visit.

An Introduction.
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Selected past TAM initiatives...

Luiz Azaceta, Dennis Adams, Enrique Chagoya, Adrian Piper
Visit our Exhibition Archives and Catalog Section
We are in the process of updating our Archives to include exhibition catalogs from TAM's past

George Azar, Donna De Cesare, Carol Guzy , Yannis Kontos , David Dare Parker , Lucian Perkins
The Human Condition [After Effects]
An international photography exhibition created by The Alternative Museum for The Nathan Cummings Foundation)

GH Hovagimyan
Love Songs From My Computer
Love Songs From My Computer comes from Hovagimyan's involvement with text based conceptual art. Although he's not a trained musician he likes to work with musical ideas.
Diane Ludin
Viral Portraits
"Viral Portraits are a series of Internet based montages combining key components of diseases sequenced for databanks of the future; Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, Hodgkin’s, and HIV:AIDS."
Mark Napier
"My goal with this work is to create a tactile and reactive "world" in which a single click results in an infinite variety of generated designs."
M. River & T. Whid Art Associates
Five Small Videos About Interruption And Disappearing
These Five Small Videos are MTAA's update of the form and themes of this earlier video work.
Ricardo Dominguez
FadeFoward is a series of photographs and text from different Zapatistas events and actions during the last 3 years.


How Interior and Exterior Painting are Done

The painting process is quite simple, but it is a tedious for a lot of people with no experience because of the scale of the job. Most expert painting services company follow a straightforward and tested process when it comes to exterior and interior painting, with only a few differences in techniques and the products used.

When hiring an HDB painting contractor for your apartment, you have to be familiar with the following processes.

Interior Painting
Condo painting can take some time especially with interior house painting if the family decides to stay. But this should not be problem because the painting can be done room by room. Talk to a painting service company in Singapore that offers professional labor for interior coating and arrange a schedule that will not interrupt with family routine and affairs. They will be more than willing to help you in your residential painting needs.

• An assessment of the interior is done to determine how much work is needed and when it can be finished. You can discuss the type of paint and which paint colours will work best to achieve the effect you desire. The cost of paint will depend on the scale of the job. Do not go for cheap house painting that is not willing to discuss with you the process.
• First, the furniture and other removable fixtures are removed in the work area. Drop cloths may be placed over the furniture or some surfaces are covered with plastic to protect from drippings. If you have a lot of items with limited space, you can discuss renting a warehouse with the foreman.
• Next, the walls and ceilings are patched, sanded, and caulked of there are holes or damages. These will ensure that the paint will adhere to the wall and will stay there for years. An expert carpenter can also replace or repair loose of defective walls if needed. The process will also remove bad paint jobs done in the past because of poor patching. Caulking will ensure that the wall will have a finished look especially on the trims, baseboards, windows, and doors.
• Then, any water or smoke damages in sealed with a special sealer. The painting services crew will start with the trimming, baseboards, window trims, liners, and door jambs in that order. Painting apartments with more details can take more time because the crew will have to wait for the paint to dry in between coats.
• Once the decorative parts are done, the primer is applied on the ceiling and wall if the new color is different from the old. Finally, the paint is applied, first on the ceilings, trim work, then on the walls. More than one coat is applied to ensure the best effect.
• When the job is done, the painting services crew will clean up the equipment and return the room to its original state. A final inspection of the lead foreman is also done to ensure quality.

Exterior Painting
A good painting contractor will explain to you the hdb painting process and give you a definite timetable until its completion. Generally, the preparation phase takes the most time when it comes to commercial painting service to make sure that the paint will stay for years. With that, talk to your partner as you would most likely want to seek an experienced painter for our housing development flat in Singapore together.

• When you hire a painter, the foreman will need to inspect the place to determine how much work needs to be done especially with the prepping phase. It is better to hire a crew that specializes in condo painting
• The first step is to power wash the exterior to remove mildew and dirt. It can take hours just washing off the dirt in a high-rise residential complex in Singapore.
• Next, the wall is masked off to protect windows, gutters, and other hardware that cannot be removed.
• The loose leftover paint is them scraped off to make sure that the new paint adheres to the wall. This can take some time even for the best painter.

• Caulking is important when it comes to protecting doors, windows, and trims. It is also an opportunity to make repairs in loose or damaged parts of the wall. A residential paint contractor often includes an experienced carpenter in their crew for such instances.
• Before they paint the wall, a primer is applied to the bare areas to ensure maximum paint adhesion.
• Next, the paint is trimmed for maximum coverage. The best HDB painting service company will often apply two quotes to ensure that the paint will last for years.
• Then, exterior doors or entryways are smooth-painted. Accent and fixtures are also painted to ensure a finished look.
• When the job is done, the equipment are removed and the crew will clean up any mess made. A final inspection will ensure that there are no issues that have been overlooked. This is usually done by the crew foreman.

6 Common CCTV Camera Installation Mistakes and How to Fix Them

Whether you’re on the lookout for a simple office camera or a state-of-the-art IP CCTV system for your business or your home,investing in a CCTV camera here in Singapore is always a good idea. There are a lot of benefits in using a closed-circuit television system, or a CCTV. You have the ability to monitor your family or your employees. You can even keep an eye on your children, pets, or inventory remotely, if you have remote viewing setup.

To achieve further security for your Singapore office, a lot of businesses also opt to have a secured doorway admission control unit installed. A biometric door access system along with a CCTV system, gives your office a better and tighter security. A person’s identity must first be confirmed and authorized before granting entry to unlock the door.

However, there are many mistakes that people tend to make when installing a security camera. This can be a huge problem, as security cameras are responsible for your safety. To make sure that your camera is reliable and effective, make sure that you don’t make these mistakes when installing your CCTV camera.

  1. Picking the wrong location

Picking the right place to install your CCTV camera can be tricky.People often think that surveying the area and picking the right angle is enough. However, there are many other things that you should consider when picking a location. For one thing, people often forget that sunlight can shine directly on a camera’s lens, rendering the footage useless because of a flare.

This is something that you should avoid under all circumstances, to get reliable and effective footage. You should also consider other sources of light, such as a backlight that can cause glares, as well as other reflective surfaces. You should also consider checking if your camera is blocked by other objects, such as trees.

  • Not considering the surface

CCTV cameras are often lightweight, as most Singapore manufacturers opt for lighter and smaller compartments, for efficiency and aesthetic reasons.They can come with many benefits; smaller security cameras are less likely to be detected, and less likely to clash with aroom’s aesthetic. Furthermore, their convenient sizes also don’t necessarily affect the high definition coverage when viewed in your Singapore office’s closed-circuit surveillance monitor.

This is the reason why itis important to secure cameras to the surfaces they are attached to. There are many ways for you to secure your camera, especially when the surfaces aren’t made from ideal materials, like cement or brick. Make sure to use screws and rods, and test to see if your camera is secure in its position.

  • Not considering the power source

When you’re installing a camera, whether it be an IP camera or an analog camera, make sure that the network is connected to a reliable power source. To do this, you can either connect it directly to an outlet or a battery. There are also some models wherein the cameras themselves can be fitted with batteries. This can be a good option, as they are less susceptible to damage and lost footage when there is a power outage.

  • Using an inadequate number of cameras

When purchasing a CCTV kit, you are often fitted with about four or five cameras. However, unless you only have a small space, this is most likely not enough. Thankfully, most IP CCTV systems nowadays keep scalability in mind, making it easy for you to add another IP camera should you need to.

If you only want a limited view of your property, you could stick to about four cameras and simply put a security camera in areas that are most susceptible to breaches, like the driveway and backdoor. However, if you’re trying to secure an expensive inventory, such as a safe in your workplace, it would be best to invest in enough cameras that would cover the entire area.

  • Leaving your system unsecure

Because your CCTV system is your defense against intruders and criminals, it’s not surprising that many people are concerned about the security of the network itself. After all, we have all seen hackers on TV who can easily access a person’s feed, and spy on the employees or their families. However, this scenario is greatly exaggerated and is something that can rarely happen. After all, there are many things you can do to keep your system secure and safe from hackers and other dangers.

The simplest thing you can do to avoid being hacked is making sure that your network is password protected. If you’re using an analog camera,your feed will be more secure and resilient to damage, however, you will need to secure your recorded footage to make sure that it doesn’t get stolen or destroyed. If you’re using an IP camera, yourconnection will be running over an IP connection, which will be susceptible to outside access, such as hacking. However, protecting your feed can be as easy as password protecting your network, as you would with any internet connection.

As with any password,make sure to keep it a secret. Also make sure that your password isn’t something simple and easy-to-guess, and never share it with strangers.

Aside from installing passwords for your CCTV network in Singapore, you may also have a gate intercommunication to office phone system in your office. Having an intercom system with phone and door access integration can truly improve the safety and security of your business.

  • Not setting up alerts

Alerts can be one of the important and helpful parts of your system, yet people still forget to set them up. While CCTV systems can monitor footage and deter criminals, it would still be on its own when a burglar does end up breaking into your house or place of business. Most systems nowadays can notify you if the system is tripped, by detecting if there is any motion on screen.

With this feature, you and your family or employees will be warned beforehand so that you can take the necessary actions to minimize harm and damage. Some systems even have a feature that allows you to stay updated remotely, so that you are informed of any breaches no matter where you are in Singapore.

4 Common Painting Service Misconceptions

Updating the look of your home in Singapore can be very expensive. It’s hard to buy furniture on the cheap, and decorations can be hard to come by on a budget. Unsurprisingly, a lot of people choose to repaint their homes as an update. Repainting can be a very cheap way to update the look of your home. You don’t have to shell out hundreds of dollars for new furniture or decorations. But while home painting is definitely more beneficial than other ways of updating your home, there are still many things that you would need to consider to avoid making expensive and time-consuming mistakes.

One of the ways of avoiding painting mistakes is to be aware of the misconceptions behind them. While condo painting can be economical and much easier than decorating and buying new furniture, it can also be fraught with many chances to make mistakes. Condo painting isn’t as easy as simply laying a new coat of paint on a surface. Here are some of the common misconceptions that homeowners need to be aware of when hiring a painting contractor.

1. You should only stick to one style
This common misconception, that you should only stick to one style of painting, results in drab walls and boring interiors. While it is true that less is more, sticking to one style more often results to design that can send your guests to sleep. Every room should be harmonious with each other—but that doesn’t mean you should stick to one palette and one style in every room of your house. Don’t be afraid to change it up! After all, every room has a different role in your house and serves a different purpose; the style and colors of the room should reflect this.

For example, bedrooms could have deep, dark colors, to create a soothing, relaxing effect. Rooms for teenagers are good with bright colors, as they can brighten up small rooms and help stimulate young minds. Choose paint colors appropriately: offices are best with neutral, muted colors, like beige or eggshell white. If you’re hiring painting professionals for multiple rooms, don’t be afraid to experiment; good painting services might give you the best interior for your homes in Singapore.

2. You don’t need to be picky about your paint
Even before the painting process properly begins, many homeowners already make the mistake of choosing the wrong type of paint. Some people think that you don’t have to hire a professional for an HDB painting service, as long as they have an expensive can of paint. On the other hand, some people think that even the worst paint brand will still get them good, high-quality results in their HDB painting service, as long as it is used by the best painter. However, both of these people are wrong. The quality of a painting job will rely on both the expertise of the painting contractor, as well as the materials they use.

Many people also fail to understand the differences in the types of paint available on the market. While it’s always a good idea to go with more expensive and reputable brands while buying a can of paint, many brands offer specialized formulas. For example, exterior surfaces are better off painted with paint that is specially formulated to withstand the effects of direct sunlight, which is especially important for here in sunny Singapore. There are also paint brands that offer water-proof paints, as well as paints that don’t give off that head-ache inducing new-paint smell. While these special types of paint can cost a bit more than the other normal types, it can help you save time and effort. If you don’t frequent hardware stores, you may not be familiar with these formulas. However, you could always ask your painting contractor for recommendations.

3. You don’t need preparations when painting
This misconception cannot be any farther from the truth. People tend to think that you could simply paint on a surface and be done with it. However, preparing a surface for painting can mean the difference between a good and bad paint job. Preparing the surface properly can help you your painting contractor have a good flow during the painting process and make sure that the outcome is the best it can be.

Most painting services include a little bit of preparation work. This often includes simple fixes such as scraping off excess paint and removing protruding nails and electric plates. This also often includes covering surfaces such as floors and countertops, as well as moving heavy furniture out of the way to make space for painting materials and supplies. However, preparations may vary from one contractor to the next. To avoid miscommunication, always clarify the preparation work that is included in the painting service.

4. You don’t need to hire professionals
Many people opt to think of condo painting as something that they could do by themselves. While doing your own painting services may seem easy on the outside, there are many techniques that you need to learn in order to create the best coat of paint for your HDB or condo. For example, the best painter will know how to avoid feathering from your paint, can easily and efficiently create a smooth and even layer of paint, and even understand how artificial lighting can change the shade of a paint color.

There are many advantages too if you hire the help of a painting contractor, such as ask for paint recommendations and how best to achieve a certain look. Many people are often adamant about hiring a painting contractor as they don’t want to spend money. However, with the knowledge and expertise of the best painter, chances are you’ll get more mileage from your dollar.

A Guide for Foreign Investors in Ho Chi Minh City

The rapid developments in one of the biggest cities in Vietnam has attracted a lot of foreign investors and opened new project launches in Ho Cho Minh City. With all the scramble to get the best real estate investment such as businesses and property for sale, where should you start as a foreign investor in Vietnam?

Here is an overview of real estate investment laws and requirements in Ho Chi Minh City.

Foreign Investors

In 2014, Vietnam revised its property laws and regulations to accommodate and encourage more foreign investment in the country. For example, if you are a foreigner who wants to buy a new property for sale in district 2, you should have the following requirements:

If you are a Vietnamese living overseas, you are required a passport stamped with mark from the immigration department and documents that validate your Vietnamese background.

For foreigners planning to invest in Vietnam properties, you are required to have a passport with a stamp from immigration department. Unless you own a business, buying of real estate apartments from new project launches in Saigon will no longer require work permit, residency documents, and other paperwork. However, you are restricted to own that property for only up to 50 years. If you wish to extend your ownership for another 50 years, you will have to apply for extension before your ownership ends. Any real estate foreign investor is subject to the same rights and laws that the local investors enjoy and follow.

Foreign organizations can own residential properties in Ho Chi Minh City, if it is used for residential purposes and the ownership is only covered in the period stated in the certificates. Organizations are not allowed to have their properties leased out. Remember also that a foreign investor or group cannot own more than 30% of the residential parties in a ward.

However, if the type of property you wish to buy in Vietnam is already sold out, try to inquire about vin homes resale at central park in Ho Cho Minh City for resold units. While the developer may have ran out of available condos, you may be able to find properties for sale from the resale market and buy it directly from the investor, instead. But before agreeing on the contract and releasing any amount of money, make sure to ask and research about the necessary requirements for the transfer of ownership.

Some of the taxes imposed in Vietnam are as follows: corporate income tax, value added tax, personal income tax, foreign contractor tax, special sales tax, import and export duties, natural resources tax, property tax, and environmental protection tax. Since there are no local or provincial taxes in Vietnam, you must remember that these are all national taxes that are carried out by local administrative offices.

Property tax is in the form of a land rental or land use fee. If you wish to own a real estate in district 4 or any other districts in Ho Chi Minh City, you should apply to the land management authority. The tax will vary on the location and type of infrastructure where the property is located. Since 2012, all those who own apartments and houses must pay a lang tax based on the square meter. These can be between .03% to .15%.

There are three forms of tax incentives in Vietnam that are given to companies, such as the exemption or reduction of land rent and levy; exemption or reduction of import tax on goods that are imported as fixed assets; and the lower rate of corporate income tax for a specific period or throughout the duration of a project. There are also incentives for those who wish to invest in projects and developments in disadvantaged regions, incentives for industries that are being prioritized to improve education, technology, and healthcare, as well as incentives for those who wish to invest in economic zones.

Taxation and Tax Incentives

Land for Foreign Investment

The law allows for ownership and the right to use land if the individual or party has an LUR certificate. In the revised 2014 Land Law, both local and foreign investors are given equal opportunities in Vietnam for housing projects, whether it is for residence or leasing or selling. Foreign investors can also pay either through short-term or long-term plans.

Foreign groups or enterprises, however, are not allowed to have LUR, but this can be acquired through leasing land from allowed lessors or if the party receives a capital contribution in the form of LUR from a Vietnamese party. This is common in joint venture companies that often have new project launches in the cities.

The same Land Law also covers provisions for the limit of the LUR lease contract, which is 50 years, the LUR transfer, and LUR mortgage. The lease terms are determined by the term of the project investment; however, this can be extended if permitted. Owners can also mortgage part or all of their assets and LUR at any approved credit institution in the country.

Get Your Partner to Propose With These Subtle Signs

You and your boyfriend have been in the relationship for quite a long time, and you think that it’s time to take your relationship to the next level.

However, nobody wants to pressure her guy to propose. If you think he’s ready and you are on the same page, you might want to give him a bit of encouragement to finally pop the question. If you feel like he wants to surprise you, do your homework so it would be successful for the both of you.

Here are some tips to nudge him to propose to you—and help him get the engagement ring you want—without appearing aggressive or too pushy.

1. Use the Social Media
We often use social media to show off amazing photos and inform everyone about special events. So, why not use it to your advantage to encourage your man to take the next step?

Facebook and Pinterest are great platforms to start. You can ‘like’ or ‘follow’ pages of jewellers in Singapore and ‘share’ photos of the rings you like. You can also collect images and ‘pin’ wedding ring and wedding decor ideas in Pinterest for him to see. Once he notices your preferences, searching for the perfect proposal ring won’t be as intimidating and knowing that you’re into it as he is will give him the motivation he needs.

2. Go Window Shopping
Find a way to steer your beau past a jewellery store in Singapore when you’re out. If you’ll be watching a movie, make sure to spare some time afterwards for a little window shopping.

Men need to be mentally and emotionally prepared to purchase a ring and pop the question, so by simply getting him feel comfortable with the idea of going to a jewellery store should encourage him to do the proposal. You don’t even have to look at wedding rings. Just take a look at different diamond cuts and sizes in, say, pairs of earrings or necklace pendants. Try on different jewelries that you find appealing, so he’ll have clues of your jewellery taste and style.

Also, try your best to subtly point out the elements for the bespoke bridal rings from Singapore that you prefer, such as you like platinum more than gold, modern than traditional style, or coloured gemstones than diamond. Talk to a salesperson to let him see how approachable these people are if and when he needs help. Who knows, maybe tomorrow he’ll come back and look for the same salesperson to help him out with purchasing the perfect engagement ring for you.

3. Let Him See What It’s Like
Do you have a friend who just got married? Arrange a double date or a lovely dinner with them. Let this be an opportunity to know more about the proposal and the wedding. Casually talk about how her husband proposed to her, how they chose the wedding venue and where they had their honeymoon.

When successfully done in a casual manner, perhaps over a couple of drinks or at a weekend getaway at the beach, listening and knowing how a happy couple naturally and gradually decided to get married should have your guy to thinking about the same things, too. Notice your friend’s engagement ring and wedding ring, and comment about it. If he’s already thinking about it, he will pay attention.

4. Plan for a Weekend Getaway
Most guys who plan to propose feel pressured, because they think they need to do it in an amazingly romantic way. If you’re planning for a weekend getaway at a meaningful place or somewhere you have always dreamt of visiting together, it’s possible that he will consider the getaway the perfect time to propose.

This will help reduce the pressure for him to plan for an over-the-top romantic proposal. There is nothing much you need to do, but just casually suggest for a weekend trip. If a wedding proposal is already on his plans, he should see this as a great opportunity and take charge of the rest.

More Tips to Get the Ring You Want

• Plant Hints
Although you have planned for your ring, you still want to be surprised. That means you will have to leave hints. You can leave a jewellery catalogue on his coffee table at home or ‘accidentally’ leave one of your rings in his place, so he can conveniently take your ring size. Now, your guy already knew your size without even talking about it.

• Call a Friend
If you have already had marriage talks with your partner, then it’s time to seek a bit of help from your best friend. Let your friend know what you like to help him out with ring shopping. Most men still want a surprised proposal, even if they have already discussed about getting married. So, just let him do the shopping, but he’ll be more confident if he knows he’s shopping for the right ring.

• Purchase After the Proposal
If you’re both down to it, you can purchase the ring together after his proposal. If he opens up about this, instead of planning for a surprised proposal, don’t get dismayed. He just wants to make sure that the proposal ring will be something you would truly like and would love to wear for the rest of your life.

Your man may do everything to make you happy, but they can’t read your mind. Sometimes, men need a little pushing and guidance in order for them to step up for something bigger and better—like marriage.

Clothes Care: Iron or Steam?

Before taking your clothes and linens to the nearest commercial laundry services shop in Singapore, make sure to be clear with your clothes care instructions. Laundry services provide machine washing and dry cleaning services, as well as ironing and steaming services. Just make sure to provide clear instructions to ensure perfect condition of your clothes and linens.

Choosing Between Ironing and Steaming
If you’re trying to iron your clothes yourself, it will take some practice. Fortunately, irons have instructions on them for the best temperature setting for specific fabrics, but you should still follow the care labels on the items themselves to avoid damaging the material. All the natural fibers will shrink when exposed to heat, so use the lowest heat setting as much as possible. Ironing is good for uniform laundry and clothing that need creases.

The good news is: most laundry and reliable dry cleaning services in Singapore will already include ironing and folding in the package.

Before ironing your clothes, however, make sure to spray cool water on the surface to smooth out the creases and to iron only on the wrong side to minimize the damage. A steamer on the other hand are ideal for polyester, satin, silk, and jersey fabrics because these are prone to burning and shrinking when they come in contact with heat directly. The steamer will not touch the garment itself, but a jet of steam is released as it is held a few inches away from the clothing. Steamers can be used to smooth out ruffles, sleeves, pleats, delicate fabrics, screen-printed clothes, and expensive suits.

To avoid damaging your items, steam or iron your clothes using the following general rules:

• Iron or steam on the wrong side only.
• When ironing completely dry clothes, spray water lightly, because the moisture will help smooth out the wrinkles.
• Iron or steam when the fabric is still damp. Never dry the items completely before pressing or ironing.
• Iron or steam in a lengthwise direction to avoid stretching the fabric
• Pile fabrics such as corduroy and velvet, and dark fabrics such as acetates, silk, linen, and rayon should be ironed on the wrong side because they have textures.
• Most clothing from dry cleaning shops will not need ironing or pressing unless the natural creases are lost.

• Start with the sleeves and do the collars last when ironing or steaming shirts.
• When ironing or steaming pants, look for the main crease by matching the seams on the legs.
• When ironing or steaming skirts, always start at the top; but for flounced skirts, begin at the bottom by ironing or pressing each flounce first.
• Avoid further heat exposure on items already washed in hot water, even laundry for spa items.
• The spray starch is sometimes used by commercial laundry services if you give them specific instructions for ironing your dress shirt. The starch will create a crisp look to the item, but the laundry service staff will also remind you that using it frequently can cause flaking.

Common Pests Found in Commercial and Industrial Buildings

Pest control management in large and complex sites such as commercial and industrial buildings can be a challenge because of the variety of pests that need to be removed. Unlike homes and apartments where the most complex pest control services involve termite removal, business premises have several different challenges.

Why are pests common?

Unlike houses, buildings have multiple entry points for a variety of pests, and this can be further affected by the number of people in the premises, the possible sources of food for the pests, existing structural problems in the building that have not been addressed, and the delivery and storage of merchandise within the premises. Poor sanitation and hygiene in general can also be a huge factor, especially if the company does not have a proper sanitation and pest control management in place. Failure to observe regular facilities servicing for plumbing, heating and cooling systems, and building maintenance can also exacerbate the pest problem.

What can pest control do?

Pest control management in Singapore will not only help you identify the pests that you are probably not aware are found within the building premises, but they can also offer solutions to address and prevent further pest infestation. Pest control services includes prevention of the contamination of food and water sources, improve sanitation and hygiene levels, identify damages to the structure or machines or furniture in the building, create a pest-proof building to lower risks of illnesses, and to undertake inspection of the premises on a regular basis.

How to keep the area pest-free?

Facilities such as hospitals, schools, hotels, resorts, government offices, food service industries, commercial sites, and industrial buildings are prone to pest infestation because of the number of people within the area. To keep these sites pest-free, regular pest control services in Singapore is a must because sanitation and hygiene also affects the image of the business or office and the health of the employees or tenants. The best pest control firm in Singapore will be able to identify the pests, control or eliminate these pests, and establish ways to keep their number under control.

Let’s look at some of the common pests found in commercial and industrial buildings that you should be aware of.


Cockroaches are the hardiest of the bunch, that is why it is very difficult to get rid of cockroaches in commercial and industrial facilities because of the number of breeding grounds, hiding places, and sources of food. They are highly adaptive that is why they can survive harsh conditions and develop immunity to insecticides such as sprays. They are attracted to moist and dark areas such as leaky pipes, sinks, storage areas, and basements.

There are several types of cockroaches found in most buildings, but you should not just be worried about the pests themselves, but the bacteria and parasites they carry. These can cause allergies and infections among the people who come into contact with food and items that have been contaminated by cockroaches.


Rats and mice can do a great deal of damage in the building especially if the pest infestation is significant. Not only can they cause infections among the people affected by the infestation, but they also carry parasites and bacteria that can be life-threatening. Rats and mice can also damage equipment, create holes in the walls and ceilings, chew through electrical wiring, and damage the furniture. They also leave droppings and urine which can leave a distinct smell in the area.

Pest control management involves identification of the specific species of rodents that infest the building to determine which methods should be used. Sources of food, hiding and breeding places, and repair of damages to the structure are also essential if you want to exterminate rodents. After they terminate pest, proper sanitation and scheduled inspections are also required to avoid another infestation.


Ants are not as destructive as the other pests listed here, but they can be a nuisance especially in food and beverage services. They can thrive even in buildings that are well-maintained, that is why pest control management must be able to identify the species of the ants, the possible sources of food, and to establish a hygienic practice to avoid ant infestation.

They can’t make the people in the area sick, but they can damage the reputation of the business because they are associated with unsanitary practices, so call the nearest pest control management company in Singapore for an inspection.


Termites are the mot destructive of the pests, that is why it’s more difficult to remove termites than to prevent them from infesting the building. Termite removal is a long and complicated process, often with different results, because an assessment of the damage must be taken into consideration.

To remove termites, several factors are considered, such as total area, amount of infestation, the age of the infestation, the layout of the building foundation, location of the buildings, climate, type of termite/s, and the methods applied or used in previous treatments or pest control services. Accurate measurements are important in determining the chemicals that will be used, the renovations required, and the labor cost.

House Flies

House flies are difficult to control and can cause illnesses of the infestation is significant. If you run a food and beverage business in Singapore, you should talk to a pest control services representative to avoid these diseases-causing pests from ruining your reputation.

There are several options to terminate pest besides the use of chemicals, including the use of LED fly killers as a long-term solution.


Mosquitoes are the deadliest insects on the planet not only because they can cause life-threatening illnesses, but they also carry parasites that can affect the individuals they come into contact with. Mosquitoes are common in resorts, hotels, and restaurants especially buildings with open-air areas.

Mosquito removal is also complicated because several factors must be considered, but pest control management can offer several solutions besides the use of sprays if you are hesitant about the health effects. Pest control services will also help you identify and address possible areas that serve as breeding grounds for these pests.

Pricing Tips for Your Locksmith Services

As a locksmith, the prices that you give should always be closely tied with the type of services that you provide. If your potential customers find the prices that you offer quite high, then they’ll simply leave you out and get the services of one of your competitors instead. This is why it’s important that you set the prices for your locksmith services reasonably but competitively. If you’re still having a hard time on adjusting your prices, here are a few tips that you could use to come up with appropriate service pricing so as to maximize your marketability to your customers.

Keep Your Prices Stable

While most customers do realize that there will be occasional prices hikes in any business, changing your services charges too often might work negatively on your business, or worse, send you out of the Singapore locksmith industry. Yes, your longtime clients will understand this and would even be willing to pay the slightly higher price that you set just to get good services, but as a locksmith, it would be better if you’re able to attract a new set of customers.

Gone are the days when customers would turn to phonebooks to look for 24 hours locksmith in Singapore to take care of their emergency locksmithing issues. Today’s potential clients pulls out his smartphone and immediately starts searching Google for some good locksmith recommendations. Which is why it’s important that you 1) have a good website that’s updated regularly and 2) have your services and pricing clearly listed on the site.

While posting your service charges online might allow customers to quickly cross you out of their list in favor to those who charge cheaply, it’s still best that you’re upfront with your pricing. Don’t worry though for there would still be customers who’d be willing to pay your rather high charges just to get good locksmith Singapore services.

Do Some Market Research

It would help if you’d do some market research first before you set your service charges. Research on how much your competitors are charging for a particular service and come up with the average price for it. Also, it would help to know of the other services that they’re providing that isn’t found in your business. If your competitors promises to get to the client’s location a lot faster than you, then look for ways to give you customers the reason to pick your services instead.

If you’ve already set your services charges and has been doing business in the locksmith Singapore industry for quite some time already, then be careful in altering your prices too often. Just as your customers have grown accustomed to the kind of service that you provide, they’d also like to know what they could expect when it comes to your services charges – whether it would change or would just stay the same.

Offer Various Specials

Setting up an online account would help in encouraging your customers to give some feedback to the services that you provided them or to simply interact with you. Create and manage a Facebook or a Twitter page and provide your avid followers some “online-only” deals in exchange for simply retweeting or liking your updates. Aside from that, you can provide them with some useful locksmith tips when you’re not giving out discounts on lock changes or duplicate keys. Follow or like the pages of property management companies and local Singapore realtors in an effort to network your business with them and hopefully drum up your locksmith business further.

Accentuate the special features of your business. Do you provide mobile locksmith services like what http://www.lockmaster.sg/ from Singapore do? Is handling corporate accounts your specialization? Are the services that you’re offering faster and cheaper compared to your competitors? Make sure that the public, especially your potential customers, know all of this.

Lastly, let your customers know what they’ll be getting for the price that they’re paying. If they reason out that they can get similar services at a cheaper price in hardware or department stores, give them more reasons why yours are a lot better. Don’t directly bad-mouth your competitors though, just mention potential problems that they might encounter in the future if they proceed with using these services instead of the one that you’re offering.

Keeping your business hot in the locksmith industry can be challenging given the number of competitors present in the market. Just creatively market your locksmith business and continue offer quality services set in reasonable prices, and your business will surely go a long, long way.

The Best Places to Rent in Ho Chi Minh City Districts

Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam, the city with two names, is becoming one of the fastest-growing cities in Southeast Asia. It’s not surprising given its flourishing metropolitan areas which are also home to export processing zones and industries, large foreign investments, and various sectors such as tourism, seafood, agriculture, mining, and construction. This is why a lot of people find it ideal to rent apartment at HCMC because of the various opportunities the city presents to both tourists and long-term residents.

As of 2003, you can rent apartment in Saigon in 24 districts, although most residents enjoy better amenities in districts 1, 2, and 3 based on reviews.

District 1 or Quan 1
Located in District 1 are most of the offices and public infrastructures of the government. It is also the most expensive district in Ho Chi Minh City to live in because of the commercial centers found in the area. District 1 is the perfect place to settle and look for a Saigon apartment rental deal if you want to immerse in the country’s history and culture. It is considered the city center and is the best place for expatriates and tourists to rent apartment at HCMC because of the variety of choices.

Some of the famous sites you should see are the City Opera House, Central Post Office, Reunification Palace, and the Saigon Notre-Dame Basilica. District 1 is also the best place to look for an apartment for rent in Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam if you wish to enroll your children to the best public schools.

If you want a condominium rental in district 1, you should consider the following as your top choices: Springlight City Condominium Complex, Lamha Residenca Serviced Apartment, Sao Giao Dich Bat Dong San Dat Viet, InterContinental Saigon Residences, Somerset Chancellor Court Ho Chi Minh City, Avalon Apartments, Horizon Tower, Icon 56 Apartment, Toa Nha Ben Thanh Tower, Galaxy 9, PL Central Apartment, HAD Apartment Truong Dinh, Apartment 42 Nguyen Hue, Oakwood Apartments Ho Chi Minh City, Saigon Pavillon, and Sherwood Residence.

District 2 or Quan Thu Thiem
The second district has eleven wards or Phuong in total with a land area of 50 km2, which is prized for its investment opportunities after the Thu Thiem tunnel and bridge were recently completed. The tunnel connects districts 1 and 2, allowing for the fast growth of the area, perfect for families who want to rent apartment in Saigon. In fact, there is an established expatriate community in district 2 which will allow for easier opportunities to look for a rent a house deal or a villa rental if you wish to movie into the city. It also has international schools, restaurants, and shops that sell imported goods.

If you are looking for apartment for rent in district 2, we recommend the following: Thu Thiem Sky Apartment, Condominium R7 Duc Khai, Estella Heights, Riverside Serviced Apartments, Somerset Vista Ho Chi Minh City, and Diamond Island Luxury Residences.

District 3 or Quan 3
District 3 of Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam is divided into 14 phuong with a total land area of 5 km2. What makes the district so attractive to tourists and long-term residents are its French-inspired architecture left over from the colonial period of Vietnam. It is also home to the Xa Loi Pagoda, considered the largest in Ho Chi Minh City as well as the British International School Vietnam.

If you want to rent a house in district 3 or you are looking for an apartment or condominium for the family, we recommend the following villa rental, rent a house services, and apartment for rent in Ho Chi Minh City: Oakwood Apartments Ho Chi Minh City, Saigon Apartments, HAD Apartment Truong Dinh, Poonsa Serviced Apartment, SILA Urban Living, Sherwood Residence, Angela Boutique, Indochine Park Tower, Sherwood Suites, Thien Thao Hotel, Three Oaks 4 Serviced Apartments, Babylon D3, An Phu Plaza, Victory Hotel, and Cityhomes Truong Dinh Services Apartment, Saigon Aparments, Duong Thi Sang House Renting, and Oakwood Apartments Ho Chi Minh City.

Other Districts
You can also look for other apartment for rent in Ho Chi Minh City at http://www.bestrent.vn/property/vinhomes-central-park-apartments-for-rent/ for an NYC-inspired location and luxurious living. The condominium units at Vinhomes speaks comfort and style, perfect for the modern individual.

For other locations, some of the best villa rental, apartments, and rent a house deals are the following: Icon 56 Apartment, Galaxy 9, Apartments Riva Park District 4, Ivy House Serviced Apartment, Chung Cu Khanh Hoi 3, Apartments Gold View, Avalon Apartments, InterContinental Saigon Residences, Merin City Suites, Tan Da Court, Riverside Apartment, Smiley Apartment 2, EverRich Infinity, Ngoc Phuong Nam Apartment, Dracon Riverside City, Him Lam Thap C Cholon, Saigon Mansion Apartment, Lucky Residence Suites, Novaland Lucky Palace, Leman Luxury Apartments, Era Town, Garden Court 2, Green View Apartments, Belleza Apartments, Chung Cu My Phu, ACE Sai Gon Apartment, M-One Nam Sai Gon, Song Hung Hotel and Serviced Apartments, E-home 5, Green valley Apartment PMH, Khu Dan Cu Phu Loi, Topaz Elite Quan 8, Saigon Village, Citi Home, Hado Centrosa Garden, Had Apartment, Rose Apartment, Masteri Thao Dien, Him Lam Thap C Cholon, Thai An Apartment, Vo Dinh Apartment, The Splendor Apartments, Sunny Plaza, Skyler View Serviced Apartment, Grace Residence, Tan Binh Apartment Building, Bluesky Serviced Apartment Airport Plaza, Oriental Plaza, MAC Serviced Apartments, BonBon Residences, Pearl Plaza Apartment, The Manor, Gia Phu Apartment, Hoang Anh Gia Lai Apartments, Imperia An Phu Apartments, and Etown Complex.

The list above includes the best apartment for rent in Ho Chi Minh City districts 4 to 12 and districts Gò Vấp, Tân Phú, Tân Bình, Tân Bình, Bình Thạnh, Bình Tân, Thủ Đức, and Phú Nhuận. Inner districts in Ho Chi Minh City include Hóc Môn, Củ Chi, Nhà Bè, Bình Chánh, and Cần Giờ.

Make sure that when you are looking for a Saigon apartment rental, your budget can afford the contract and you are given the chance to tour or inspect the unit. You can also ask around the neighborhood for feedback about the landlord, rates, and common issues.

Ways to Save Money on Your Aircon

In Singapore where it is generally hot and humid, aircon helps keep houses cool. Here are some ways on how you can save money on your aircon.

Hours of Usage

The simplest way to reduce the need for aircon servicing is to reduce the number of hours you use aircon. During evening or early morning when temperature is moderate, opening the windows to let air into the house is a wise idea. And instead of using aircon, a good alternative is to use ceiling fan. Turning on the ceiling fan while the aircon is running is also a good way to keep the temperature cool and might minimize the need for aircon servicing in Singapore. Using your aircon with a ceiling fan also helps to set your thermostat degrees warmer, causing you to save on your bill over time.

Filter Replacement

Regularly replacing your aircon filter will also minimize the frequency of aircon maintenance. The role of air filter is important as it is the one that attracts dirt, dust, lint, and other substances. After a few months, depending on usage, an aircon filter becomes saturated with these matters that the air conditioning unit tends to malfunction. Consequently, more electricity is required for it to work properly. Therefore, regularly replacing the filter enables your aircon unit to run more efficiently—having less wear, at the same time, keeping energy bills low.

Regular Cleaning

Your aircon unit should be cleaned and protected on a regular basis. You can do this by gently cleaning off the dirt that accumulates on the external part of your unit from time to time. Simply by doing this, your aircon will operate in a proper way with both the fan and cooling system working better. A good tip, you can also put a potted plant or a tall shrub near the condenser to protect it from heat and sun exposure.

Energy Efficiency Ratio

Basically, the older your aircon unit is, the less likely it is operating in an efficient manner and needs more frequent aircon servicing. So if you have money, replacing your old aircon unit actually lets you save hundreds of dollars in the long run.

Surrounding Objects

It is also important to note the objects you place around or near your aircon unit. For example, placing a lamp or any appliance that generates heat beside the aircon can fool the thermostat. As a result, it cannot automatically shut off the aircon. Therefore, you need to keep away heat-generating things from the aircon so the thermostat will not take the temperature of air surrounding it. This is a simple way to minimize the need to call an aircon repair technician in Singapore.

Keep Cool Air

Only cool the sections in your house that are in use, and be sure to close the doors or vents of rooms you are not frequenting. Moreover, it will also be helpful to keep the curtains closed. This will help shun direct sunlight, which can raise the temperature of a room.

Keep It Small

As a matter of fact, you can save more money with aircon maintenance done by professional aircon service company from Singapore like http://www.airconmaster.sg/ when you use a window type unit for every room instead of using a central air system. Smaller aircon units require lesser energy and even investment. As much as possible, opt for the smallest yet efficient aircon system for your house. With this, aircon servicing would be easier and you’ll keep your electric bill low.

The Basic Principles of Plumbing in Multi-Story Buildings

Although there are a lot of similarities when it comes to plumbing works in a detached single-house unit and a multi-story residential complex like most condominiums in Singapore, the latter’s plumbing problems are multiplied by the number of units in the building and the additional facilities that are connected to the plumbing. Because of the complicated problems in the plumbing works, a reliable plumbing system starts not with a scheduled maintenance with a licensed plumber, but with proper fitting and installation from a plumbing contractor in Singapore.

Size of the Plumbing

Commercial and residential complexes will require more pipes, fixtures, water outlets, sinks, and most importantly, the demand for water. Your plumbing services in Singapore will have to address all these problems by determining how to set up the distribution mains/arterial mains or the pipelines, storage reservoir for the pressure and supply in the system, where to place valves to regulate the flow, where to place the booster stations for water pressure (especially in a multi-story structure), and how to lay out effective water delivery to all units.

With the number of people who need regular water supply in such a setting, it is important to set up a system that will ensure that typical plumbing problems are addressed as soon as possible to prevent major repairs and structural damage.

Structural Challenges

A multi-story building is naturally more complex than a single-house unit, which is why gravity can play an important role when it comes to delivery and drainage, two separate subsystems in the plumbing works. The delivery and drainage, however, are separate from the other lines that supply hot water for the water heater and other systems that require plumbing (such as dishwashers) and even garbage disposal systems.

This structural challenge complicates the plumbing problems when it comes to repairing fixtures, drains, and pipes in a multi-story building because other minor problems cannot be easily detected and any damage to one part of the system might also affect the others in the building. Any business or residential complex therefore, needs to have regular plumbing services and a contact with a 24 hours plumber.

Problem Detection

As already mentioned, detecting minor problems in a multi-story building can be a challenge even if regular inspection and maintenance is performed by a reliable plumber in Singapore. Add to that the failure to report of minor leaks and faulty fixtures by irresponsible tenants.

Commercial properties can also present a challenge if it does not get regular servicing from a plumbing contractor because the problem can be invisible for months or even years. However, the consequence of ignoring minor plumbing problems can lead to structural damage which will cost more than if the apartment or the building manager invested in scheduled maintenance with a plumbing services company.

Water Pressure

There are several water pressure-boosting methods that can be used for a multi-story building in Singapore, and each can come with pros and cons. The most common, however, is the risk of backflow and contamination. The plumbing contractor will need approval from authorities in Singapore when installing a water pressure booster method and must determine if a combination of the different methods will work in a building.

The structure is usually divided into different zones for easier and constant distribution of water. If the building requires a replacement of the old supply system, you should contact a plumbing contractor that specializes in commercial or industrial plumbing services because there are problems that individual residential-only plumbers cannot address.

Drainage System Challenges

Not only is the delivery system more complicated, but so is the drainage system. That’s because there should be a planned layout of the vents to prevent siphoning of the water trap seal and the blowing out of the pipes from the pressure. The plumbing contractor will either connect various vent pipes or provide individual vent exits for each unit, but this is doubly challenging if the building has more than ten stories, because these will require vent connections at specific intervals.

The sanitary drainage is usually connected to the public sewer and wastewater exits through gravity, but if not installed properly, this could cause flooding and overloading, a problem common in old buildings that have suffered damage. In some cases, instead of a sewage system, a vacuum drainage system is preferred.

Fixture Calculations

Determining the type and number of fixtures in a multi-story building will require services from a professional plumbing contractor in Singapore like www.superplumbers.sg whose technicians also specialize in commercial and industrial plumbing. This is done by determining the fixture unit that includes the length of time the water is used in all units, the rate of consumption, and the period between use of the fixtures. Why should they do this? The calculation will ensure that all apartments in the building for example will get the same pressure and amount of water they need.

Water Heaters and Dual Supplies

This is common in most hotels and apartment complexes in Singapore where there are two different grades of water, one of which is used for drinking. Separate piping is required for dual supply systems, especially if the building also requires hot water for washing and bathing. The only concern of the plumbing contractor is to ensure that there are no cross connections between these two systems or to make sure that the hot water will not affect the cold-water delivery.

This is why a licensed plumber in Singapore should also be skilled in the installation and maintenance of water heaters. However, a water heater for a single-unit residence is different from that used for commercial and industrial buildings, because the reliable plumber will also have to determine the pressure limits and correct temperature.

Fire protection systems are also part of the plumbing works in a commercial building, because they include water sprinklers which might also be connected to the dual water supply system. Finally, water storage vessels, also a part of the dual system, might also be installed by the plumbing contractor as part of the plumbing works for drinking water supple, reserved water, and other functions.

The Basics and Principles of Freight Forwarding


Freight forwarding services are essential not just to trade in Singapore, but also to international trade. They have the same function as a logistics company, albeit one that acts in a person, corporation, or organization’s behalf in the coordination of different transportation firms in order to ship products all over the world.

Roles and Services

Different kinds of products are imported and exported by a freight forwarder in conjunction with air freight, sea freight, or even by land transportation services in Singapore every day, and depending on the destination that these products are shipped, more than one shipping company may be involved in moving goods.

Because these companies specialize in coordinating shipments and cargo services, any freight forwarding service should be able to cover the following basic roles:

• Quote and secure freight costs – Rates for local freight and international freight vary, and one factor that makes one more expensive than the other is the nature (quantity included) of the product being moved.

• Book cargo with carriers – Bookings with a freight forwarder at Singapore should be made as soon as possible in order to ensure that the cargo is placed in an ideal area in the carrier’s vessel that would expose it to the least amount of damage.

• Prepare the necessary documents for export – Forwarding companies act as liaison to different carriers as well as customs officials in different countries other than Singapore, which requires them to procure the needed documents required by these countries.

• Plan inland routing – Forwarding companies need to be adept when it comes to their logistics services in order to plan the fastest and most efficient inland routes for cargo delivery (and sometimes assembly).

• Insurance – Believe it or not, the carriers themselves actually have limited liability. This is because of the different conditions and situations that could take place during the time the cargo is being transported, either by sea or air, but especially by sea.

Here are some of the more advanced roles that forwarding companies need to be able to cover as well:

Consolidate freight – Also called “assembly service”, where logistics services make large shipments easier to move by breaking them up on land and assembling them once they reach the warehouse to be ready for export.

Indirect carrier – Of course, forwarding companies themselves don’t operate vehicles. This is why they are otherwise known as NVOCCs (non-vehicle operating common carrier), meaning they contract other carrier companies to transport the goods.

Interface with EDI (Electronic Data Interchange) – Forwarding companies need to know where the cargo is headed as well as the carrier’s route, which is why they need to keep track of it in real time via the internet, GPS, and satellite imaging.

Logistics management – With all these roles that forwarding companies have to fulfill, they have the similar function to that of a logistics company, coordinating different services to ensure on-time delivery of the cargo to the destination point.

Freight forwarding is complicated, especially if you’re not familiar with it. If choosing the best from the different freight forwarding services is important for every company in need of a particular product in bulk, a different story could be said for freight forwarding companies. For them, choosing the right shipping company is highly important.

Choosing a shipping company to be your freight forwarder is also important because they are hired with moving the goods as fast, safe, and efficient as possible to ensure that they reach their destination in an undamaged state.


However, there is no guarantee that every shipment arrives safely at the destination point, which is why there is insurance exists to cover or compensate the loss of cargo by air or sea. If the cargo is being transported by sea, the possible reasons for its loss or deterioration upon arrival may include the following:

Water damage – Waves will wash overboard and potentially damage delicate cargo, especially if the carrier encounters stormy seas on route to the destination.

Jettison – In situations where the ship could be compromised, the captain would have to throw cargo overboard in order to keep the vessel afloat.

Fire – Hazardous cargo such as chemicals and fireworks are often only allowed to travel by international waters, which is why carriers store them on the deck.

Sinking –In the event of a ship sinking due to engine failure or bad weather, all cargo would be lost and cannot be salvaged.

Theft and/or piracy – Pirates will always ply international waters in search of loot, and there’s no guarantee that the carrier won’t run into them during the voyage.

Some Things to Remember

These are the things you should be familiar with when opting to have your shipment delivered via sea freight:

Consolidation – Where a particularly large shipment is broken down into several smaller segments and transported to the forwarder’s warehouse where they are then assembled.

LCL (less than container load) – This mode is for when a cargo is consolidated in a warehouse and then shipped along with other cargo.

FCL (full container load) – In this mode, the goods are not broken down into separate shipments.

RORO (roll-on roll-off) – This mode is generally reserved for drivable cargo that is too big for most containers.

Heavy lift/Break-bulk/Project Cargo – Specialized requests for oversized cargo need specific details as well as the starting date in order to be processed and shipped.

The reason why these terms are associated with sea freight rather than air freight is because transporting goods by sea is generally reserved for particularly large quantities of shipments.

When transporting goods by air, all that’s needed is the following:

• The shipper’s full name and address,
• Full address of cargo location,
• Commodity details (i.e., dimensions, weight, name, description), and
• MSDS (for hazardous cargo)


The biggest factor that companies should consider when looking to ship products, whether it’s importing or exporting, is time, which is what a freight forwarder offers. They provide the company with all the documentation needed as well as act on their behalf in coordinating the different transportation services needed to move the cargo.

Factors to Consider in Naming Your Business Venture

As much as we’d like for each brand to be distinct and truly unique, there will always be cases of similar sounding ones. Such was the case of the EtonHouse International Group in Singapore, which won a trademark infringement suit against China’s EtonKids Educational Group in September of 2017. The legal tussle has stretched over two years. The concluding verdict? EtonHouse was granted SGD 163, 680 in statutory damages.

Cases like these are the reason why you should consider your trademark vigilantly. Before you register trademark, you must also be open to the idea that it may be similar with a pre-existing one especially if it’s made up of commonly used words. To save yourself from the trouble of coming up with a new brand name or paying pricey legal fines, deliberate upon your trademark well.

Intellectual Property

Any registered mark/trademark is bound to be protected by intellectual property rights. If your business was first to have the name registered, you can file lawsuit cases against other companies whose names appear or sound similar with yours. Let it be known that a trademark is as good as a brand indicator – therefore no two businesses must have similar brands to avoid confusion.

Having your trademark registered is one foolproof way to protect your brand as well. Consumers would get confused if two businesses possess similar-sounding names even if it is registered with trademark registration Singapore hence it is only fitting to avoid cases like these where you might lose sales and profit.

Key Factors to Consider

1. Strength of the Mark
When it comes to the trademark law, the term mark refers to any business trademark – may it be the name, design, or symbol which is officially affiliated with the business and any of its services. Marks can range from weakest to the strongest: such as generic, descriptive, suggestive, and arbitrary. The more unique and distinct the mark, the more it is protected under the Singapore trademark law.

For example, the term Aspirin is considered a generic mark hence it receives little to almost no protection. It has been popularly used around the globe to refer to various types of pain relief medications.

However, the mark Apple for computers is considerably arbitrary. There is no direct connection between the name and the product, so the mark receives more protection.

2. Commonality of the Mark

In trademark registration, it is also important to consider the commonality of the mark. If your brand name is composed of commonly used words, expect to be possibly subjected to copyright infringement cases more often than going with distinct and unique marks. In short, a trademark is ‘weakened’ if its words are broadly used by other businesses.

In health and wellnesses clinics, you often see the words “health” and “fit” as a part of their business name. Should you wish to go with “Fitspiration” for your gym business, you are likely to be challenged in court. Remember that there are similar trade names across the city-state in all businesses – thus it is encouraged to be as unique with your mark as possible.

3. Actual Confusion / Similarity of Mark

There is an issue to be resolved when people mistake your business for something else, or vice versa. If your gym business “Fitspiration” is something they associate with a store that sells healthy, organic food or protein whey powders – then something must not be right. Perhaps an existing grocery store is named almost similarly (e.g. “Fitness Inspiration”), a matter which might bring trademark registration troubles along the way.

To avoid being in this situation, do your research before you register trademark. Familiarize all the related names of stores and businesses which are similar with your field. Do your best to come up with a mark that truly stands out among the rest.

4. Advertising Media

Before you register TM for your business, consider the advertising and marketing platforms you are to use. If a similar-sounding business promotes on the same platform as yours, people are bound to get confused at some point. Imagine hearing two separate ads on the radio about “Fitspiration” and “Fitness Inspiration” – only to assume either these two business endeavors are related to each other or is the same.

Also, compare the marketing template, publicity materials, website design of similar-sounding businesses with yours. This might just help you win a trademark lawsuit case in the future, should you ever find yourself in one.

5. Can Last Forever

Allot time in deciding about your trademark name because once you get it registered, it can remain with you forever if properly used and documented. Should you go with a trendy phrase for your mark, chances are the trend might die out over time, and thus might render future customers confused. Choose a mark that is classy so you will never worry about it going out of style.

Go with a name you prefer the most so you won’t have any regrets in the long run. Keep in mind that trademark registration can last in perpetuity, so you might as well choose the best brand/mark for yourself. That way, you won’t blame your younger self for coming up with such a childish, naïve name for a brand mark.

Your trademark can take you places – and we mean that in the literal sense as well. Choose a good trademark and take it with you to the path of glory and success. Go with the name you will be proud of representing, even after 10 to 20 years’ time. Also remember that having a good brand reputation can shed some recognition on your business efforts. The more your business grows and flourishes, the more value will be attached to your trademark.

Common Electrical DIY Mistakes You’re Probably Guilty Of

Do-it-yourself instructional manuals and videos a common nowadays and more households are taking the initiative to perform the maintenance and repairs themselves instead of hiring professionals to do the work. However, working with electrical equipment and wiring entails risks that most inexperienced and untrained individuals are not aware of.

These are the common mistakes of DIY electrical works in Singapore that need the intervention of a licensed electrician.

1. Ungrounded Electrical Outlets

Replacing old light bulbs is easier than working on electrical outlets, but this is a common DIY practice at home to save money from hiring a licensed electrician. However, most homeowners are not aware of the concept of grounding, especially with three-prong outlets that are common nowadays. Most homes after all, still use the two-prong outlets. The third prong is supposed to be a grounding outlet that is responsible for catching excess electricity and then grounds it to prevent sparks and fires when the electrical appliance is plugged. You cannot simply replace a two-prong outlet with a three-prong type, because it could potentially cause a fire. Call a licensed electrician in Singapore to replace your outlets.

2. Exposed Wiring and Open Splices

Most homeowners tend to forget to protect the wiring after a repair. A reputable electrician services company in Singapore will make sure that all the electrical wirings after the repair or installation are placed behind the wall, under the floor or above the ceiling, to prevent them from causing accidents. Open splices on the other hand are the result of new wiring connections that have not been done properly. A licensed electrician in Singapore makes sure that new connections are properly covered and protected, because an open splice can cause fires, especially if the connection is made in spaces that are hard to reach.

3. Too Many Extension Cords

Some homeowners substitute the extension cords for extra electrical outlets instead of creating a new connection properly. This can place your family at risk because a tangle of cords and ungrounded outlets can cause fires and accidents. Hiring a good electrician will save you more money for hospital bills and renovation.

4. Use of the Wrong Circuit Breaker

Messing with your home’s electrical works without the proper knowledge and training can lead to disasters. Although not common, there are DIY tutorials that include the installation of a new circuit breaker. Some owners, however, are not aware that it is important to follow the Singapore electric code when installing a new one. There are different types of circuit breakers that will protect the wiring and electrical equipment at home from fires, but each type has a specific requirement.

5. Connections Outside the Electric Box

Some individuals who have made new connections before also tend to forget that they should never connect wires outside an electrical box. This is supposed to protect the wires from the elements that could cause overheating, sparks, and loosen the connection. The electrical box should also be flushed to the wall surface, not recessed behind a wall. Sure, they can ruin the view, but you can make the connections in areas where they cannot be seen on the wall easily. Although electrical boxes can be purchased at shops in Singapore, if you want to ensure the safety of your family, call a licensed electrician to do the job for you.

6. Too Many Wires in the Electrical Box

Maybe you did make sure to install an electrical box, but you do not know how many wires you can place in it. A licensed electrician is trained how to properly install and protect connections, because there are standards in the size and volume of electrical boxes that correspond to the wire sizes and lengths.

7. Short Wires and Reversing Hot and Neutral Wires

An electrician is also trained where to cut wire connections and how to connect them properly. If you have no experience in making wire connections, you should not take chances. Short wires can be difficult to work with and will most likely result in a poor connection that can start a fire. You could get electrocuted if you connect a black hot wire to a neutral terminal. Sure, the devices and lights connected to it will still work, but you will be placing your family in danger by making one simple mistake. Hire a licensed electrician if you need to have your outlets and switches repaired instead of taking chances by trusting on your limited experience.

8. Loose Outlet and Switch Supports

Not only will they make your home look untidy, but they can also cause accidents if the connections loosen and overheat. Make sure that you hire an electrician services company to fix your outlets and switches to avoid such problems.

9. Failure to Include a Clamp on a Cable

A licensed electrician will make sure that your cables are secured in the boxes to avoid loosening or damaging them. Proper installation is a specialty of most electricians, not only because they have guidelines on where to cut the cables and how to staple the clamps, but also because they are aware of the risks of substandard connections.

10. Overloading the Outlets

You should never overload the powerboards and outlets because the circuit can trip. If you are moving into a new apartment and you need more outlets for your appliances, you should consult a licensed electrician in Singapore to do a thorough inspection of the place before any outlets can be installed. The circuit should be able to handle the demands needed from it with the right amperes.

Everything You Need to Know About the CRM System

The CRM system has helped hundreds and thousands of businesses across the globe. To cut things short, it automates data and makes work easier for any personnel in the company. Rather than just viewing CRM as another software, however, it is also advised to acknowledge how the system has incorporated a customer-driven philosophy during the past years.

What is CRM?

CRM, which stands for Customer Relationship Management, is an effective business strategy to reduce operation costs and increase profitability. It is designed to cater to customer satisfaction, advocacy, and loyalty. Effective CRM gathers information from all data sources made available within a company along with appropriate sources from third parties – to provide a holistic view of every customer in real time.

A CRM system allows employees who regularly face customers (such as those working in sales, marketing, or customer support) to make quick yet deliberated decisions on cross-selling, target marketing strategies, and upselling opportunities.

More than just a software

It is easy to generalize cloud CRM merely as another type of software, but with the dawn of advancements in technology, CRM software has evolved into adapting a customer-centric philosophy. This ideology permeates an entire organization if the system is adapted and imposed.

To implement a successful CRM system initiative, three key elements must be followed:

  1. People – The people involved in the organization, from the CEO to the sales management staff, must buy in and support CRM. This involves allotting time to get acquainted with the system, as well as implementing the regulations and following protocol. A cloud CRM system paves way for a centralized database; enabling your employees to get the information they need at the click of a button, such as sales reports from the past years. Getting them acquainted with the system will definitely ease their jobs.
  2. Processes – Your business processes must also be reengineered to boost the CRM system. It is encouraged to brainstorm and think of ways on how the CRM software in Singapore can better serve your customers. Are they beneficial to your company’s main objectives? Are the processes user-friendly for customers who aren’t updated with what’s new in the tech world? These are some considerations you must keep in mind.
  1. Technology – Business firms in Singapore must also select the technology best-designed to drive these improved processes into actuality. Not only should you provide the best data to employees, but you should also ensure these systems are easy enough to operate so users won’t balk. Having the best CRM software isn’t enough. You must have the appropriate hardware and other tech tools to deliver your CRM system to its best potential as well.

These three elements are considered the foundations of an effective customer relationship management system. If one element is disregarded and not given importance, the entire CRM system of your company might end up in shambles.

More strategies to an effective CRM system

Another strategy to study your target customer’s shopping behaviors and needs is to create a strong relationship with them. Remember that good customer relationships are crucial to business success. You might have the best recruits for sales management, but if you don’t maintain an amicable relationship with your customers, then the skills of your talents can only do so much for the company.

Although there’s a lot of technical aspects to a CRM system, it’s considerably unwise to think of CRM in mainly technological terms. As was previously mentioned in this article, the system has now evolved into adapting a customer-centric philosophy. It’s advised to think of CRM as a process that will help combine pieces of vital information about target customers, sales reports, marketing responsiveness and effectiveness, and current market trends instead.

CRM can be considered as a crucial part to help the company attain business success in the long run. The system is designed to enable businesses gain insights on the value and behavior of customers, primarily through using factors such as people, processes, and technology. Gaining these important insights allow any company in Singapore to increase customer service efficiency, add upsell and cross-sell opportunities, improve sales, close rates, and marketing processes, reduce operation costs, and enhance customer targeting and profiling.

Potential challenges

While a CRM system sounds like the holy grail to any businesses, adapting the system is not without challenges and hurdles along the way.

To ensure CRM is effective, a company must convince its personnel that change is good. CRM might take a while to get used to – especially among employees who aren’t well-versed in the tech field – but it can truly benefit the company in the long run. Accordingly, companies must conduct initial briefings and test-runs so as to allow the staff to familiarize themselves with the system.

Next, business practices must also be thoroughly analyzed to decide if there are parts which needs to be modified. This also allows a company to brainstorm about ways on how to best go about it. Accordingly, it also paves way for deciding on which kind of customer information is useful and relevant. The decision-making process is crucial to know how the information will be used.

A team of competent executives must also select the right technology to be used by the company. This allows easy automation of any necessary information that needs to be automated. This selection process depends on the size of your company and how heavy your stored data is, hence it can range from a few weeks processing time to a year.

Some firms make use of web-based/cloud CRM technology which has less monthly maintenance costs per user, but other large firms opt to spend a heap load of budget to install and customize the CRM technology as they deem fit. Considerably, a CRM system is also an investment for your business.


Disclaimer: This list is compiled in no particular order.

Factors to Consider When Opting for a Hosted VoIP System

You might have heard the terms hosted VoIP or hosted PBX from your VoIP service provider in Singapore, but what do these mean and what benefits can your business get from this type of service?

What is a VoIP System and What Does It Do?

VoIP or Voice over Internet Protocol has all the benefits of traditional telephony, but it does more by harnessing the potential of new technology. Its most basic definition is the transmission of voice over a digital network, but a lot of things happen in the process. Using VoIP doesn’t necessarily mean your company will solely be relying on the Internet, but you will be relying on the same protocols that the Internet uses. The protocol in VoIP Singapore refers to the set of rules used to communicate.

The IP or Internet Protocol is the basis of IP networking used in most public, private, corporate, cable, and wireless networks by uniting a company’s various locations into one communications network. Unlike traditional telephony, however, VoIP has more support and features.

One type of VoIP service cannot be used by companies of all sizes in Singapore, that is why some services are designed for the specific needs of a business. For example, some companies are able to host VoIP and PBX within the premises in an arrangement called on-site or on-premises PBX systems; while others prefer to have a hosted PBX system or hire a third-party to provide the hardware and software.

What Does Hosted VoIP Mean?

Hosted VoIP system is just another name for hosted PBX, in which hosted means that the hardware and the PBX are hosted at another location (or off-site location) away from where the service is used, such as in your office premises. The terms could also mean that the business has its own VoIP Singapore system, but hosted PABX is hosted by a VoIP data provider center.

• PBX Phone System

PBX means private branch exchange, or the internal switching of an office’s telephone system made up of different telephone system branches that are linked together. For a medium or large-scale business enterprises that have a lot of phones, it is impractical to get a separate phone line for each one, but a hosted PABX can link all the internal phones. These in turn will be linked to the external world, so that clients, customers, and employees outside the office can make and receive calls from the company. This is why most companies have one or two phone numbers you can connect to.

A PBX phone system has the following roles: create connections by functioning as a switch for different phone users; ensure that the connections are clear by keeping all the resources in proper order; terminate calls correctly if the user has hung up the phone; and to record all the data regarding each call.

• Hosted PBX

Keeping that in mind, hosted PBX or virtual PBX means that all the features of a traditional PBX phone system is included, but the switching is located at another site and only the phones are found in the office premises. A PBX, however, is not similar to a traditional phone, because you can use extensions to make calls within the network.

A hosted PBX in VoIP Singapore has the same benefits as the traditional PBX phone system; specifically, it has the following functions: provide the business with one phone number that individuals will use to contact the company; allow internal calls between different stations in the company; include automated and customizable greetings; use of an automatic call distribution; include different management features; include custom music for callers on hold; record voice messages; and provide automated call answers and menu options for different extensions.

• IP PBX Phone System

An IP PBX telephone system combines the benefits of both the PBX phone system and the power of VoIP technology. IP PBX, therefore, stands for Internet Protocol private branch exchange. It’s an option that companies of any size should seriously consider if they want to have all the benefits of a PBX phone system. For small-scale companies, the extra features can help companies expand their market and make the business look more professional and attractive to clients.

Whether it’s a hosted VoIP system or an on-site VoIP system, an IP PBX telephone system has scalability, better management option, and more enhanced features than other VoIP services for businesses. Some experts consider hosted PABX telephone system as a full PBX system because of the following additional benefits: mobility, voice messaging, conferencing, measurement of important phone data, and supports both IP trunks and IP stations. The last benefit of VoIP Singapore, however, is only possible if your company is using the standard SIP (or session initiation protocol) to signal and control communication sessions.

Like cloud VoIP, which is also another option for small to medium-scale businesses, the IP PBX telephone system will not require the office to buy or upgrade its hardware, because it’s software-based. If you’re looking to improve your services in the future, the IP PBX telephone system is also easier to upgrade than other PBX systems.

What are the Benefits of a Hosted PBX Phone System?

A hosted PBS phone system will allow a company to save more for its information technology solutions, because there is no need to install, upgrade, troubleshoot, and operate the hardware and software needed. Whether it’s cloud VoIP for small businesses or an IP PBX telephone system for larger companies, there is no longer a need to plan and invest on PBX technology that have short replacement cycles as technology advances at a faster rate than ever.

What if you are planning to expand your business in Singapore? No worries there, because both the cloud VoIP and the hosted IP PBX telephone systems are easy to upgrade. You will only be paying for what your company needs at the moment and there will be no problems with blocking as the hosted PBX system grows along with your business.

Choosing a Good Property Management Company

When selling and managing real estate properties, an owner may need to entrust the responsibility to a property management company. However, just like any business, there are ones that provide excellent service and poor service. These companies exist to provide help and spare you the worries of managing your estate. The key to maximizing the benefits of your properties is to use the right Singapore property management provider. Make sure to hire the right one by keeping in mind the following criteria.

1. Ask for recommendations

Your prospect managing agent should be able to provide you with a list of references of their happy clients, as well as previous clients. Require your prospect partner to provide you with two to three recommendations of landlords they have worked and have been working with. You can also ask other real estate owners that you know if they have worked with the condo manager. If the references gave you extraordinary remarks about the service provider, you may want to go on with the process and know their processes better.

2. Notice their style of communication

Interview a couple of property management companies in Singapore and notice how they respond to inquiries. If they get back to you right away, that’s a good sign. If it takes more than a day, a week or a month to address your inquiries, consider moving to your next option. If they come late to your estate maintenance appointments, forget about calling them or showing up the next time around. Take these things as a sign of how they’ll work with you in the future.

3. Check the company’s processes

Ask the managing agent company representative about their tenant approval system, property maintenance process, marketing strategy, and rental collection procedure. If they can’t give you clear answers, the company may have inconsistent services. Bear in mind that the reason you’re hiring a property management agent is to obtain higher quality tenants. If the managing agent has less than ideal standards in qualifying renters, expect to get an equally low services and results.

4. Study the company’s history

A property management company that has been in the business for years knows very well the ins and outs of real estate management. Generally, condo manager companies who have worked with various estate owners and with exceptional reviews from quality clients are an ideal option to manage your assets.

5. Expect to pay a good amount for good services

Of course, professional estate maintenance service comes with a price. Most of the time, the service fees are determined from the rental value of the property, and may vary from a few hundred dollars to as much as one month’s rent. You have to decide whether the price is right and find out whether it’s worth it to you.

Working with a property manager makes everything easier, since all you would have to do is to wait for your tenants’ deposits. Just make sure, though, you understand everything about the agreement and that everything agreed upon is stated in the contract.

Invest in Your Own Beach Villa or Condotel at Kahuna Ho Tram

Kahuna, which is a Hawaiian word for big waves, is the name for one of the biggest projects in Vietnam, Dự án Hồ Tràm or the Bà Rịa-Vũng Tàu Project, more commonly known as Kahuna Ho Tram Resort. Hồ Tràm, a small beach town near Ho Coc beach in the Bà Rịa-Vũng Tàu Province, is just two hours away from Ho Chi Minh City, making it an ideal getaway for those looking for a pristine beachfront, world-class entertainment and services, and quality time with family and friends.

Hồ Tràm Beach
Hồ Tràm is a twin beach to Ho Coc, which is also under development, and is flanked by the Binh Chau Nature Reserve and the River Ray. The 14-kilometer shoreline makes an ideal setting for such a big project as kahuna at ho tram. With the favourable Vietnam climate and the location’s unobstructed view of the pristine sea, the Kahuna Ho Tram project surely found the perfect location for its luxurious offerings.

The area is already popular among local and foreign tourists because it has been developed in recent years, allowing for easier travel and development of infrastructures.

Within five years since the development of small beach resorts in 2010, Hồ Tràm grew rapidly as a premium resort destination. In 2014, it was hailed as a top destination for golf in the southern part of country, and the following year, it hosted the Hồ Tràm Open.

Projects in Hồ Tràm Beach are expected to be completed by 2019.

More Resort Development Unveiled
The Kahuna Ho Tram Strip recently revealed a continuation of its Dự án Hồ Tràm project to include villas and condotels, allowing for property investment and a holiday resort investment for those who are interested. The Kahuna Ho Tram Strip includes 36 double-key villas, 8 beach villa for sale, and 164 condotel units in a twelve-storey tower.

Not only will investors enjoy their own Vung Tao condo in Vietnam or their own villa beside golf course, but they will also be able to invest in condo near world-class facilities, such as the five-star Grand Hotel, the multi-awarded integrated Kahuna Ho Tram Resort, the five-star Beach Club, Gallery Villas residence, and the Bluffs Golf Course designed by the talented golfer and entrepreneur Greg Norman. Kahuna Ho Tram Strip will also see future developments that will bring Vietnam to the forefront of tourism and entertainment in the Asian region alongside Macau and Phuket with a theme park, amphitheater, water park, wellness center, and many more leisure facilities.

Your Home Near the Beach
To invest in condo, pick from any of the following units: a standard one-bedroom unit, a penthouse, and a villa beside the golf course. Lessees can also enjoy benefits and a rental revenue share. Not only will the beach villa for sale enjoy a view of the spectacular beach, but all the condo units have a prime view of the natural forest and the waters surrounding Kahuna Ho Tram. Residents will also enjoy access to a water-lined walkway, relaxation pond, and swimming pools.

The condotel units will evoke the feeling of a luxurious cruise ship tour, each with their own Jacuzzi or private pool. There is a total of 130 standard units, 8 penthouses, 14 corner units, 10 ground floor standard units, and 2 ground floor corner units.

Meanwhile, the double key garden villas or the beach villa for sale include private gardens and pools, all linked by a waterway and pond. Each villa is also designed to function as a two-storey home or as a three-bedroom rental villa.

The single key beachfront villas on the other hand, have direct access to the beach with their own swimming pool in a two-storey home.

Common Pet Grooming Mistakes

Whether your pet has short or long hair, they need a little help from their human friends when it comes to pet grooming.

If you choose to groom your pet at home instead of availing commercial pet grooming, be extra careful because a simple mistake can cause an injury to your beloved pet. The following are the most common mistakes that owners make while grooming their pets.

Shaving Too Close to the Skin

While we aim to be as close to the skin as possible when shaving beards and leg hairs, shaving your pet’s hair is entirely different story. When shaving pet’s hair, make sure not to get too close to your pet’s skin.


If you accidentally cause cuts or razor burns, stop immediately and apply first aid treatment to the affected area. You don’t want to just leave an open wound without treating it, and create an entry way for disease-causing bacteria and germs to enter your pet’s body.

Bathing in Too Cold or Too Hot Water

Many pet owners commit the mistake of bathing their pets in either with too cold or too hot water. If you use either of the two, you are provoking a feeling of hatred to your pet for taking a bath. When bathing, use lukewarm water.

So, how can you make sure that the temperature of the water is easy for your pet? Simply spray or drizzle some water on your arm. If you can withstand the temperature, then it’s safe to use on your pet. However, do keep in mind that your pet’s skin is more sensitive than yours so consider that as well.

Grooming Them Unrestrained

Another pet grooming in Singapore mistakes that owners make is to groom their pets unrestrained. This isn’t recommended unless your pet is well-trained and that you have successfully done pet grooming with just training commands.

When grooming your pet, say bathing them or giving them a trim, at least have them on a leash. If you opt bathing your pet outside, make sure the gate is locked, so it won’t run loose onto the road. But for the best solution, have your pet bathed by a professional pet salon in Singapore. They have the right equipment and training for proper groom pet.

Poor Shampooing

Perhaps, you’ll agree that cats and dogs do not stay while they are being groomed—they like to move their head and roam around a lot. This, paired with carelessness can provoke negative reaction to your pet. The shampoo can get into the eyes of your pet, causing that burning sensation and eye irritation.

While shampooing your cat or dog and it enters their eyes, rinse it with clean water immediately. Afterwards, gently dab your pets face with clean towel. Show them some affection by hugging, petting or cuddling them to make them feel that you didn’t mean to hurt them.

Taking care of your pet shouldn’t be a burden. If you prefer to have your pet groomed by someone else, you can always hire a professional pet groomer or bring your beloved furball to a reputable pet salon in Singapore.