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Can I Apply For a Mortgage Online?


With everything else in life that can be completed online from paying bills to reading the news, is it possible to obtain a mortgage without going to a bank? Absolutely. And it might be more common than you think. Besides requesting pre-qualification or pre-approval, you also can apply for a new mortgage or refinance an existing mortgage online.

There are several full-service online mortgage lenders. The two most popular companies are Lending Tree that serves as a third-party broker who will provide several offers from various lenders after completing a short questionnaire & Quicken Loans. Quicken is probably the largest online mortgage lender & has made obtaining an online mortgage seem instantaneous with their “Rocket Mortgage” advertisements.

Unlike credit card applications, even those for some of the best credit cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred (this Chase Sapphire Preferred review explains why it’s one of the best), you won’t be getting an answer in a matter of minutes. Despite the perception from these advertisements, it cannot be obtained in the blink of an eye, regardless of whether you apply for a mortgage from a traditional or online lender.

Who Can Apply For A Mortgage Online?

Anybody can apply for a mortgage online whether you want a 30-year fixed, 15-year ARM, or a VA mortgage. One advantage of applying with an online lender is they are more likely to lend to people with lower credit scores due to looser underwriting standards.

The standards are still stricter than the pre-2007 housing crisis standards and the mortgage will have a higher interest rate. Traditional banks and credit unions are more likely to only consider applicants with a credit score above 700.

It’s important to note that even for those wanting to apply for a mortgage with a local lender, the application process can be started on the internet but the final stage will need to be completed in person.

The application process is virtually identical among all lenders due to federal regulations for obtaining a mortgage. The same general information is required by all prospective lenders including past two years income and tax return information, year to date income and recent pay stubs, and proof of assets with information from banks & investment statements.

Your credit report & credit score will also need to be pulled, to earn pre-approval from a lender.

Differences Between Online & Traditional Mortgage Lenders

Choosing between an online or local lender depends on what you desire most from a lender. Do you desire the convenience of completing the entire process from your kitchen table or having access to a local agent if & when any assistance is needed? Each homebuyer has different needs, so it might not hurt to consider some of the following items when choosing a mortgage lender.

Due to federal regulations, certain processes like hiring an appraiser won’t differ much. Lenders can no longer hire a “preferred appraiser” that might show bias towards a particular lending institution.

Choosing an online lender can be more difficult because you can only judge off the appearance of the site and online reviews. With a local lender, especially if you apply through your own bank or one recommended by a realtor, you may already feel like you have already established a banking relationship that an online bank cannot.

Quality of Customer Service

Online lenders are often criticized for having lower quality customer service as you can only receive help through online chat or calling a 1-800 number and not guaranteed to talk to the same person each time. Going through a local lender gives you access to a specific loan officer assigned to your application who you can contact for any questions or needing assistance if any additional documentation is needed. Buying a home can be stressful, and having a dedicated loan officer, can make the financing process easier.

It’s a good idea to investigate the customer service availability of online lenders & local lenders. It can be important during the initial application process if you need assistance with certain application questions, but as the deal is in the final stages, you will want a lender who is available during those critical stages to prevent any last-minute roadblocks. For example, you might live in Austin (side note: check out the best car insurance rates Austin) on Central Standard Time but your lender operates in San Francisco on Western Standard Time.

Because of the time difference & being thousands of miles away, there could possibly be schedule conflicts and postage delays for vital documents.


Nearly every mortgage lender will allow you to start the application process online to receive pre-approval or apply for a full mortgage, even your local bank or credit union. As the application process progresses with a traditional bank or credit union, you will be required to visit their local branch as necessary to complete the various steps of the mortgage process. Depending on your work schedule, the local lender might close before you can arrive or you need to take time off from work.

With online lenders, most paperwork is digitally delivered for you to complete. The process could be delayed if additional documentation is required & you need to mail it to their offices.

Most online lenders make it easy to submit information regarding your employment history and your bank/investment assets as they can electronically pull the necessary information with your permission. Quicken Loans, for example, can access banking information from up to 95% of the nation’s financial institutions, eliminating the delays required to mail & verify documentation.

Interest Rates

Theoretically, online lenders offer lower rates because they have less overhead expenses than brick-and-mortar lenders. This isn’t always true, so it pays to shop around before committing to a lender. As mentioned earlier, certain online lenders are more likely to lend to applicants with credit scores lower than 700 due to less stringent underwriting policies than traditional lenders. Of course, mortgages for those with lower credit score will carry a higher interest rate.

Using services like Lending Tree or Bankrate will help you easily locate an online lender with the most competitive interest rates for your housing needs.

Closing Costs

Closing costs can be the largest cost variable when choosing a lender. They vary widely state to state and lender to lender, so most lenders will not provide an estimate to the casual shopper. Federal law requires all lenders to provide a reasonable estimate of closing costs.   In order to receive this estimate, most institutes will require enough information to essentially become pre-approved in order to provide a reasonable estimate.

Due to competitive interest rates, closing costs are the area where banks can earn extra income without the borrower realizing a good deal isn’t so good after all.

There are a couple of different fees to look into, to ensure you received an accurate closing cost estimate:

  • 3rd Party Fees
    • Fees charged by the lender but paid to other agencies hired by the lender during the application process. Most fees are very consistent among lenders.
      • These fees can include any of the following: appraisal fee, credit report fee, closing fee, survey fee, tax service fee, title insurance fee, mailing fees, and flood certification fees.
    • Taxes & Other Unavoidables
      • Expenses in this category should be the same regardless of the lender.
        • Examples include state & local taxes and recording fees.
      • Lender Fees
        • These are fees charged by the individual lender and will vary the most.
          • Fees can include costs for: discount points, document prep fees, and loan processing fees.
        • Required Advances
          • Some lenders require certain fees to be prepaid to close the mortgage.
            • One example is paying the first year of homeowner’s insurance in full.

That is a pretty thorough list of what to look for when you receive the closing cost estimate. Take the time to look at your estimate and ask any questions. A credible lender who wants your business should be more than happy to answer your questions. It’s better to have a firm estimate in the beginning than to be surprised at the end of the process when finalizing the sale might be at risk.

An accurate estimate will also help you determine how much you can afford for the initial mortgage payment and what lending terms to pursue.

Advantages Of Applying For An Online Mortgage

  • Can apply in as little as 20 minutes from anywhere with an internet connection, if you have all the necessary documentation.
  • Most documents are delivered electronically and do not need to visit a local branch.
  • Online brokers can offer lower rates & closing costs than traditional banks.

Disadvantages Of Applying For An Online Mortgage

  • Do not have the option of in-person assistance from a loan officer if assistance is needed.
  • Fees & closing costs might not always be as transparent as traditional banks.

Let’s get back to the original question. Can I apply for a mortgage online? Yes, and it might be easier and cheaper than you think. It’s not as quick as some commercials might suggest, but it can be easier than having to visit a local branch to complete the process. Online mortgages are not ideal for every situation, but the convenience of online banking and competitive interest rates make them an option worth considering for any homebuyer.

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How Do Home Equity Loans Work?

Do you want to remodel or add-on to your house but do not have enough cash in the bank to cover the expenses? The money might already be sitting in your house. By using the equity value of your house, a home equity loan (also known as a second mortgage) can fund these projects. Additionally, you can usually get a lower interest rate with a home equity loan than other types of personal loans.

Home Equity Loans vs Home Equity Lines of Credit

Home equity loans shouldn’t be confused with Home Equity Line of Credit (HELOC). A home equity loan is a loan with a fixed interest rate and fixed term length that allows a homeowner to borrow the value of their home minus the amount still owed. For example, if a house is valued at $200,000 and $125,000 has been paid so far, the homeowner can borrow up to $125,000.

If the house is paid in full, they can borrow up to the total assessed value of the home (in most instances).  Similar to other loans, the borrower will pay back the borrowed principal plus interest accrued.

A home equity line of credit, often called a HELOC, allows the homeowner to borrow the amount of their equity over a more flexible period of time. The homeowner can borrow as much (or little) as they need. A HELOC is a secured revolving line of credit, similar to credit cards, with a variable interest rate. This is more ideal for a person with recurring expenses and an uncertain timeframe of when their project expenses will finish.

Both a home equity loan and HELOC can both be used to remodel, renovate, or add-on to your house, consolidate debt, or pay for other major purchases. However, a home equity loan is a modern equivalent to “betting the farm.” If you default on the loan, the lender can repossess your house to recoup the losses. Missing payments on a home equity loan is a more direct path to “losing the farm” than other types of loans.

Which Is Better?

Choosing between home equity loans and HELOCs can be a somewhat difficult choice. There are just as many options for a “second mortgage” as there was for the original mortgage loan.

Home Equity Loan

Here are the advantages of a Home Equity Loan:

  • Fixed Interest Rate
  • Ideal for a single expense where all money borrowed will be withdrawn within a short timeframe
  • Fixed loan terms such as a 15-year or 30-year term

Home equity loans are best for those that know the exact amount they will be borrowing. It is great if you want to secure an interest and monthly payment, similar to a home mortgage loan.


For those that plan on having an ongoing project (like building a weekend home) and will need to borrow a different amount of money each month, a HELOC might be the better option. Here some of the advantages of a HELOC:

  • Better if you will make several “draws” without a defined timeline
  • Minimum monthly payment is normally only on the interest accrued for the month on amount that has been withdrawn already
  • Repayment terms up to 15 years in many instances, but can vary widely bank to bank
  • Ideal for those that need to borrow for multiple reasons

Differences Between a Home Equity Loan and a HELOC

The primary difference between a home equity loan and a HELOC is the type of interest rate. Traditional home equity loans have fixed rates (adjustable rates are also available). HELOCs are variable. While this might not be a big deal, it can make a huge difference if interest rates rise significantly. Each bank charges a different interest rate – the common trend is to charge the Prime Rate plus several percentage points.

Regardless of which loan is more conducive for your situation, either is better than most credit card and personal loans. Those will usually charge significantly higher interest rates.

How To Apply For A Home Equity Loan

Applying for a home equity loan is very similar to the application process for a mortgage. You can begin the process online with a local or national bank, but will probably have to complete some paperwork in person to close the deal.

Here is a step-by-step guide on what to expect during the application process:

1. Choose between a home equity loan or HELOC

Decide which is best for your situation. If you know the total amount you want to borrow and can start repaying immediately, a home equity loan is better. Otherwise, choose a HELOC if you will withdraw over the course of several months or years and are unsure of the final amount you want to borrow.

With either financing option, research the repayment terms as they can differ widely between banks. You don’t want to borrow money but be unable pay it back on time because of a short repayment window.

2. Bring Your Paperwork

Similar to a home mortgage loan, you will need to provide personal financial information. This will likely consist of your most recent tax returns, proof of income and employment, total net worth, and proof of homeowner’s insurance. Most banks are not going to lend to somebody if it doesn’t look like they can make the monthly payments on the home equity loan.

3. Prepare For A Property Appraisal

Depending on several factors including the amount you want to borrow, any previous relationship with the lender, or how recently your house was previously appraised, the bank will most likely hire an appraiser to provide the current market value of your house and property. You will most likely have to pay the appraisal fee which will be several hundred dollars, but this appraisal helps the bank determine how much money they will lend you. As market values constantly fluctuate, you may have more equity than you previously realized!

Factors that will help influence the current market value include the following:

  • Age and physical condition of the house
  • Location and neighborhood
  • Number of bedrooms and bathrooms in the house
  • Total square footage of the house
  • Total acreage of the lot
  • Additional amenities such as a swimming pool, premium countertops, or professional landscaping

The appraiser will most likely take pictures of the house and might even do a walk-through for a more in-depth appraisal. The appraiser will also compare your house to similar houses that have recently been appraised. This ensures that their appraisal is consistent with the current market value.

4. Get Approved!

If you are pleased with the appraisal results and terms of the loan, you can start borrowing money. To spend the money, you might be issued a separate checking account and debit card. This will allow you to pay for expenses directly from the home equity loan or HELOC. Just remember that you will have to pay a monthly payment of some amount. Remember to keep some money aside to avoid any financial pitfalls.  Similar to any loan, the more you borrow the higher your monthly payment.


A home equity loan or HELOC might be the most affordable financing option for most homeowners that need to borrow a sizable amount of money. While paying with cash that has been diligently saved is always the best way to pay for large expenses, because you do not owe anybody a monthly interest payment, it’s not always achievable. When used responsibly, homeowners can borrow money at a “discount”. They will also still improve the value of their house or consolidate their debt at a lower interest rate.

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The Best Office Chair Without Breaking the Bank

Runners replace their shoes every six months due to the wear and tear on their shoes that results in back pain. Yet, office workers sit in their same chairs for years without replacing them. Office chairs should be changed out about every five years to keep the best padding and support which will help avoid back pain and other health issues associated with extensive sitting time. I have spent countless hours in office chairs typing up projects, and know all too well the effects of a poorly designed office chair.

The best office chair options tend to be the most expensive. Every part of the chair is adjustable and they can be comfortable for hours on end. While these office chairs are wonderful, not everyone can afford to pay out a thousand dollars every time they need to replace their office chair.

Instead, there are some very budget-friendly best office chairs that still offer the support needed, without breaking the bank. With these budget-friendly office chairs, you will be able to afford to replace your chair regularly so you always have top-notch support and padding that only the best office chair can provide.

Best Office Chair Winner: [amazon_textlink asin=’B01LXXM5EK’ text=’Furmax Office Chair Leather Desk Gaming Chair’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’4592cf20-ce98-11e8-b914-935ae2d8cadb’]

The best office chair also happens to be one of the most budget-friendly office chairs. What I mean by budget-friendly is not that it is a cheap chair, but rather you receive the best quality at the most affordable price. This combination of quality and cost makes the [amazon_textlink asin=’B01LXXM5EK’ text=’Furmax Office Chair Leather Desk Gaming Chair’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’4592cf20-ce98-11e8-b914-935ae2d8cadb’] a great option for those that want both support and a more affordable option.


The Furmax Office Chair Leather Desk Gaming Chair offers all-around support for your back and your neck. The back of the chair is shaped just as a racing chair is shaped in order to curve to the natural and healthy alignment of your spine. It uses a combination of lumbar support and a backrest in order to provide the best support for hours of work. The sides of the chair wrap around the small of your back in order to help stabilize you and keep you in the proper posture.

As you can see above, this is a high-back chair. The backrest measures 20.47 inches by 28.34 inches. The top of the chair features a neck rest to help hold your head in proper alignment. The entire chair can hold a person up to 280 pounds. The seat of the chair supports your weight and evenly distributes it in order to help promote healthy blood flow. The front of the chair is a waterfall design that will not cut off your circulation after hours of sitting.


What makes or breaks the best office chair is its ability to adjust to your specifications. Chairs can be as unique as clothing. If you cannot buy one that fits your size, you will be very uncomfortable.

The main adjustment of any chair is its ability to change height. This will keep taller people from having their knees uncomfortably high and shorter people from having their legs dangle. Adjusting to your height will play a major role in good posture.

Not only will it help you rest your feet comfortably flat on the floor, but you will also be able to adjust to the height of your desk so that you do not need to hunch over or strain upwards. Trust me, I’ve had a number of pains and strains from poorly crafted workstations. 

This chair has a pneumatic height adjustment range of 15.75 inches by 19.69 inches. The chair also has swivel wheels around the bottom of the chair. This allows the chair to be moved from one area to the next easily, as well as making it simple to slide closer to the desk for better posture. The wheels have 360-degree swivel ability.

In addition to the height and wheels, the chair can also recline. On the side of the chair is a lever. This lever either locks or unlocks the chair. When the chair is unlocked, you can lean back, or you can leave it unlocked and rock in the chair. The chair will only lock when it is in the full upright position.

Other Features

The [amazon_textlink asin=’B01LXXM5EK’ text=’Furmax Office Chair Leather Desk Gaming Chair’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’4592cf20-ce98-11e8-b914-935ae2d8cadb’] comes in five different color options. These colors range from bright blue and vivid red to black and white. This allows you to match your office chair to the room you are using it in.

For your comfort, the chair is padded. It has a leather bucket seat and back along with padded armrests. In order to help prevent you from overheating, the chair also has mesh material in the center of your back and down to the bottom of the chair. There are also two holes placed around your shoulder blades that allow for additional breathability. The combination of the mesh along with the leather allows you to have both comfort and breathability all in one package, which is not very common among other similar office chairs.

Things to Consider

The armrests do not adjust for this chair. This is perhaps its greatest fault, as arm positions are as varying as leg lengths. The armrests are also the most limiting feature when it comes to the size of those who sit in the chair. Larger people will find the armrests may dig in their thighs. 


[amazon_link asins=’B01LXXM5EK’ template=’Custom’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ text=” link_id=’9c3acc2f-ce98-11e8-a9db-8d098ee4a2c2′]

Best Office Chair Runner-Up: [amazon_textlink asin=’B004ZVHKJE’ text=’BestOffice Ergonomic PU Leather High Back’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’bd104133-ce98-11e8-87a0-bd16121098a5′]

The [amazon_textlink asin=’B004ZVHKJE’ text=’BestOffice Ergonomic PU Leather High Back’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’bd104133-ce98-11e8-87a0-bd16121098a5′] is just a little more expensive than the Furmax, but has some great additional features and adjustment options.

It does not quite have the same measure of support as the Furmax, so it is just a runner-up as the best office chair. It is still a great office chair that will allow you to sit comfortably for hours without leaving with aches and pains.


The BestOffice Ergonomic PU Leather High Back is very padded for added comfort. It feels more like a recliner than an office chair. It measures 28 inches in the back with a 20-inch wide seat. The back of the chair starts at 25.5 inches at the lower back and ends at 20 inches near the head. The seat of the chair is a waterfall design that will allow you to sit without your thighs being pinched.

You can sink back into this comfortable chair. The back of the chair contours to the natural healthy shape of your spine to provide both lumbar support and a backrest. The lower back arches in while the top supports your head. The back also wraps around the side of your spine in order to help hold you in place for better support.


The entire chair is 44 inches tall with an adjustable base that can raise it to 47 inches tall. It is also on a set of wheels that allows you to move easily from place to place, as well as move closer to the desk for the best posture.

A lever on the side allows you to adjust the tilt. You can push the lever out to allow you to recline with the chair. The chair can then either recline back or be used as a rocker. You can also push it in to keep the chair locked in place when you need more stability while you work. A knob on the bottom of the chair allows you to adjust the tension of the tilt.

Other Features

The [amazon_textlink asin=’B004ZVHKJE’ text=’BestOffice Ergonomic PU Leather High Back’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’bd104133-ce98-11e8-87a0-bd16121098a5′] is even more padded than the Furmax chair. While there is plenty of padding, it also has a slight stiffness so that it offers some support. There are two metal armrests that are also padded. These armrests are not or adjustable.

This best office chair option does not come in all the vibrant colors of the Furmax. It does however come in either black, brown, or white.

Things to Consider

While this chair has good padding initially, some consumers found that the padding flattens out after extensive use. Those who plan to use the office chair for their regular office job, not just a few hours in their home office, may want to invest in either a more expensive chair or try the Furmax. Those who will not be using this office chair forty or more hours a week will find that it holds its shape and remains comfortable for a long time.

Best Office Chair Honorable Mention: [amazon_textlink asin=’B00KUPS3JU’ text=’Flash Furniture Mid-Back Black Mesh Swivel’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’fb152e03-ce98-11e8-8896-5fd57792ea45′]

For those who would like a little less material and more breathability, the [amazon_textlink asin=’B00KUPS3JU’ text=’Flash Furniture Mid-Back Black Mesh Swivel’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’fb152e03-ce98-11e8-8896-5fd57792ea45′] is a great option to consider. It is one of the best office chair options without breaking the bank, and definitely the best when it comes to more simplistic chairs.

It does not have as much support as the heavier duty best office chair options previously mentioned, so it may not be ideal for those who sit for hours. But, it is one of the smallest, so it may be easier to fit in a home office.


The [amazon_textlink asin=’B00KUPS3JU’ text=’Flash Furniture Mid-Back Black Mesh Swivel’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’fb152e03-ce98-11e8-8896-5fd57792ea45′] is quite a bit lighter in design than the previous chairs. It is not padded and contoured to your every shape. While it does not have a backrest, it still offers lumbar support. The small of your back is reinforced with a plastic backing that will help hold you in a healthy posture even when you are reclining.

The sides of the chair also wrap around the small of your back in order to help hold you in place. The seat of the chair is contoured to promote an even distribution of weight as well as to help support your seating position. The front of the seat is curved downward in a waterfall design to avoid cutting off the blood flow during extended sitting periods.


This best office chair option offers the same adjustability options as the other chair options. There is a lever for releasing the back of the chair, allowing you to recline or rock. When you do not want to recline, you can lock the back in place with the tilt lock. A knob on the bottom of the chair adjusts the tilt tension.

This chair has one added item that can be adjusted. These are the armrests. The armrests do not adjust in height. They can, however, flip up and down. This can allow you more maneuverability for those with more active jobs. Otherwise, you can drop the armrests down to allow your arms to rest while you work.

Other Features

One of the greatest features of this chair is the mesh backing of the chair. It does not quite have the support afforded by the other chairs. It does, however, offer the ability to sit in the chair without hot leather wrapped all about your back. This makes the chair great in both the summer and the winter time.

Things to Consider

The [amazon_textlink asin=’B00KUPS3JU’ text=’Flash Furniture Mid-Back Black Mesh Swivel’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’fb152e03-ce98-11e8-8896-5fd57792ea45′] does not have as much padding as some of the other chairs, which may not be as comfortable for longer periods of time. This is mainly due to the additional support afforded by padded backrests that contour with the small of your back. The positive side of the less padding is that it is much lighter for the summer time.

The padding is not the only area that this chair is not as comprehensive within its support. It is also shorter than the other best office chair options. The back will support your mid and lower back, but there is very little support for your shoulder area and neck.

Best Office Chair Honorable Mention: [amazon_textlink asin=’B006IY89ZA’ text=’Modway Articulate Ergonomic Mesh Office Chair’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’429a333e-ce99-11e8-be8b-0506d40e6563′]

Modway also offers a lighter office chair option with their [amazon_textlink asin=’B006IY89ZA’ text=’Modway Articulate Ergonomic Mesh Office Chair’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’429a333e-ce99-11e8-be8b-0506d40e6563′]. What makes their chair worth mentioning is the additional adjustment options available with their model.


The [amazon_textlink asin=’B006IY89ZA’ text=’Modway Articulate Ergonomic Mesh Office Chair’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’429a333e-ce99-11e8-be8b-0506d40e6563′] has a very similar support system as the Flash Furniture model. While the back of the chair is mesh, there is lumbar support to help hold your back in place to promote proper posture. There is no backrest or headrest, as this chair is very limited with the amount of padding it has.

The seating area is also supported. It has more padding than the back. The padding is designed in order to help support your sitting posture while evenly distributing your weight. The seat padding is 6 inches thick so that, even after extensive use, you will not feel the gears and plastic underneath.


The adjustability of this chair is one of its greatest assets. There are three levers on the side of the chair for adjusting it to the precise height and incline needed for your body type. In addition to the levers, there are also wheels on the chair to allow you to move about your office space easier.

The first lever is for adjusting the seat height. It can be adjusted from 27.5” to 32” tall. The second lever is for adjusting the seat tilt. The last lever is for adjusting the back tilt. The back of the chair has an additional knob for adjusting the tilt tension. The last adjustable parts of the chair are its armrests. The armrests can move up and down for height adjustment, but cannot be removed completely.

Other Features

The [amazon_textlink asin=’B006IY89ZA’ text=’Modway Articulate Ergonomic Mesh Office Chair’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’429a333e-ce99-11e8-be8b-0506d40e6563′] is another mesh seat office chair. This means that the back of the seat is made nearly entirely of mesh. This allows for your back to breathe when sitting in it for long periods of time.

This best office chair option is also available in many bright colors. There are seven vivid color options available that can match each office design and personality.

Things to Consider

While there are plenty of levers for adjustability, the additional levers also mean an increased risk of a malfunction. Proper seating, as well as careful use of the levers, can help prolong the life of your best office chair.

Proper Sitting Posture

When you spend over 40 hours a week in an office chair, you will want to make sure you are maintaining the best posture to help promote the proper blood flow and avoid dangerous muscle strain. Here are a few tips for properly sitting in your office chair so that you can leave the office without unnecessary aches and pains.

When adjusting the height of the chair, be sure it is at a height that allows your feet to be planted firmly on the floor. If your feet do not touch the floor, or your knees stick too far upwards, then your chair needs to be adjusted. A sign of your knees sticking too far upwards is if your thighs are not in line with your hips.

Your chair seat should allow you to sit far enough forward so that there is a space between the chair and the back of your legs, while also being able to use the back support. The taller the back of your chair is, the more support it will offer. Ideally, the back of your office chair should at least come above your mid-back.

If you have a backrest, it should fall right at your lower back or your mid back. For the best posture, your lower back should be at a slight arch. This helps keep your back straight and avoids the hunched over posture that results in so many back problems. In addition to hunching over, you can also use a chair with armrests to avoid the strain that your arms can cause on your shoulders.

Frequently Asked Questions

What type of office chair should I get?

There are many types of office chairs available that it can be slightly overwhelming deciding which ones is the best office chair for you. Just keep in mind the healthy posture discussed earlier, then look for an office chair that helps you best achieve this posture. The cheaper a chair is, the less support it tends to offer.

One thing to keep in mind is to make sure it is an office chair. There are many chairs that are designed for other purposes. They do not offer the height needed for a desk or the back support needed for long hours of work. If you are looking for a chair to use for other activities other than at the office, you can consider some of Rhonda Alamour’s suggestions for reading chairs.

Another factor in choosing an office chair would be what you plan on using the chair for. Those who type on computers will want a chair with more support for their arms, while a secretary or someone who moves around often will rather have no armrests inhibiting their movements.

Second, also consider the temperature of the office. If your office is kept at a cool temperature regularly, you can probably opt for a more padded chair. Those who sweat often in an environment with lots of action may want to consider a mesh back chair for the extra breathability.

When should I get a new office chair?

A general rule of thumb you should consider replacing the office chair regularly, about every five years. This is not a rule that is set in stone, and if you do not use your chair regularly, you could probably go longer. If you use your chair for over forty hours a week, you may want to consider replacing it more often.

One main sign of an old chair would be worn out padding. When the padding wears out, you will begin to feel the plastic knobs and support beams of the chair beneath and in the back. You will also not receive the support necessary from the backrest and other parts of the chair.

Your body will let you know you need a new chair before your eyes do. Even if your chair looks in great condition, it does not mean it is in great condition. Listen to your body more than what your eyes see. If you find yourself leaving the chair feeling very sore and are sitting properly, that means that the chair is no longer supporting you the way it should. Consider one of these best office chair options for your health.

Are there any additional support items I should get with my office chair?

The best office chair can have some great support options, but it is not always the most adjustable method of support. For support devices to actually do their job, you need to be able to adjusted them to your precise measurements. For this to happen, some people find it easier to buy additional support items themselves.

Lumbar Support

This is a huge issue with lumbar support. Our backs tend to be the first part of us that will ache when sitting for a long period of time. While a good desk chair should have the needed lumbar support, the support does not always function as it should or does not land where it should.

You can purchase lumbar support pillows separately. You will then have the ability to attach them at the precise height you need them for the best lumbar support. With this method, as the lumbar support padding begins to wear down, you only need to replace the accessory instead of the entire chair.

Height Adjustment

Sometimes adjusting to the right height is easier said than done. This is especially true for those who are shorter. You may find yourself having to decide between having your feet firmly planted on the ground, and being able to type with your arms resting comfortably on the desk. To help with this issue, you can purchase a stool to keep under your feet in order to raise the chair to the level it needs to be for reaching your desk comfortably.

Neck Support

For those who work long hours, you can wear neck braces and neck pillows at intervals throughout your work day to help cut back on the strain in your neck. There is a reason travelers wear neck braces when on trains, and it is not just for sleeping. There is no rule saying office workers cannot also utilize neck support pillows.


Floor mats can serve a double purpose. First, they can make it much easier for your chair to move across any surface. Carpet fibers can get caught in the wheels of your office chair, but a floor mat creates a hard surface for the wheels to glide easily over.

The second purpose is to protect your flooring. Plastic wheels can be very damaging to the hardwood floor, especially when rolled in a repeated motion for hours each day. A floor mat can help preserve those pristine wooden floors.

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Best Outdoor Fire Pit for Your Backyard: An In-Depth Comparison

outdoor fire pit

There’s something pleasant about cozying up around an outdoor fire pit on a chilly night. Enjoying the warmth in solitude or with family and loved ones is almost magical. An outdoor fire pit can certainly tie an outdoor space together and brighten up the backyard for all types of gatherings. After visiting with several friends and family members who have fire pits, I decided to buy my own. I spent months researching and experimenting with theirs so I could come up with the best find.

Narrowing your search

Not all outdoor fire pits are created equal, and depending on what you need, you may find yourself swamped in options. Rest assured, because we’ve done the digging for you and dissected a few great options here for you to assist in helping you decide which fire pit is best for you. Today’s outdoor fire pit options are vast, utilizing great materials, and taking into consideration both design and function, to bring you the best outdoor fire pit for your outdoor space. Check out these great options below and see if you can find what you’re looking for.

The Winner – [amazon_textlink asin=’B00AZNK9D0′ text=’The Sunnydaze 42 Inch Large Fire Pit’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’2b7e936b-c9b1-11e8-9609-0ddbe87ae9f2′]

[amazon_textlink asin=’B00AZNK9D0′ text=’The Sunnydaze 42 inch Large Fire Pit’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’3209889a-c9b1-11e8-900f-ef3c5942d120′] is my choice for the top fire pit It comes with a removable dome-shaped spark screen and a fun cosmic design on the side walls. When lit, the design will illuminate shapes on the area surrounding the fire pit for a nice little extra ambiance.

The removable dome spark screen helps you enjoy the fire safely, preventing embers from popping out or flying away, which is especially helpful when you have pets or children. There are built-in grate strips to hold logs in the fire bowl in place. [amazon_textlink asin=’B00AZNK9D0′ text=’The Sunnydaze 42 Inch Large Fire Pit’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’398f58cb-c9b1-11e8-85bd-3b0842b87f91′] comes with a convenient firewood poker/lifting tool to help move the spark screen on and off the pit and move the logs around with ease.

Size and Uses

The Sunnydaze 42 Inch Large Fire Pit stands 23-inches tall. The fire bowl inside is 10-inches tall. The diameter including the outer support ring and spark screen is 42-inches, while the fire bowl is 34-inches in diameter. The three legs in a tripod design provide great stability and measure 5-inches in height.

Weighing in at only 36 pounds, [amazon_textlink asin=’B00AZNK9D0′ text=’the Sunnydaze 42 Inch Large Fire Pit’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’495965bf-c9b1-11e8-b751-bfece206c67b’] can easily be moved from one space to another, provided it is not in use when doing so.

This model is constructed from .75mm thick steel with a high-temperature paint in a rustic patina. It provides a heat resistant finish and makes it a very durable outdoor fire pit. This is a freestanding unit that’s totally easy to assemble, with only a few pieces needing to be connected straight out of the box.

The star and moon cutouts are lined with mesh and serve as the perfect venting holes for your fire. This ensures a consistent and clean burn as it allows oxygen to circulate through the pit. Plus, it makes for a cool design.

outdoor fire pit


  • Durable .75mm thick steel construction and very lightweight
  • A rustic patina high-temperature paint for a heat resistant finish combining design and safety
  • Cosmic pattern moon and star cutouts with mesh to vent your fire for a consistent burn
  • Measures at 42 inches in diameter with the bar and 23 inches tall
  • Inside fire bowl is 10 inches tall and is 36 inches in diameter
  • Legs are 5 inches in height and in a triangle support structure
  • Freestanding and portable, weighing only 36 pounds
  • Comes with mesh spark screen in a sleek dome shape for safety from flying embers
  • This is a wood burning outdoor fire pit
  • Comes with convenient firewood poker to move logs and screen easily
  • Features a one year manufacturer’s warranty

Flaws But Not Deal Breakers

Some users have reported that the metal construction is thinner than they expected and therefore not as durable as they believe to be advertised. Others have noted that there are no holes in the bottom of this model. So if there is rainy or inclement weather of any kind, there is no way for the unit to drain on its own. You will have to do so manually by dumping it out, which can be quite messy.

A few have noted it begins to rust after just a few uses, so the paint on the unit may not be sealed with any type of rust-resistant agent. The life of this product may not allow for too many uses over a longer period of time. However, I’ve used it a number of times and found it to be fine.

A cover will protect your purchase and allow for longer usage. I keep mine covered as do most of my friends and family who have fire pits. It is a small investment that cares for your fire pit.

Final Thoughts on The Best Fire Pit

I really like the pattern on the outside of the Sunnydaze 42-inch large fire pit. I think it’s the perfect blend of fun and sleek. The cosmic design illuminated by the flames behind it will be a real visual treat. The spark screen is reassuring because fly away embers can be quite a nuisance. Plus, fire safety should be a priority for everyone.

The included firewood poker is convenient. It’s nice not to worry about having to make that separate purchase. I think it’s a really great portable size for a freestanding outdoor fire pit, not too small but still really easy to move.

I love the wood burning models specifically and think they lend a special something, an ambiance you can’t achieve with a gas or propane model. As I mentioned, purchasing a cover will go a long way in the care for this fire pit. If properly cared for, I think this is a great value for the price. I have no complaints.

[amazon_link asins=’B00AZNK9D0′ template=’Custom’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ text=” link_id=’6cb00814-c9b1-11e8-9397-0556fe9572a9′]

The Runner-Up – [amazon_textlink asin=’B00LG0TJQE’ text=’Landmann USA Bromley Fire Pit’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’843e7464-c9b1-11e8-a606-e360bda8e898′]

outdoor fire pit

[amazon_textlink asin=’B00LG0TJQE’ text=’The Landmann USA Bromley Fire Pit’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’9aa1cfcb-c9b1-11e8-86c9-e39ab742c5cf’] is a really budget friendly outdoor fire pit that features a diamond pattern cutout on the side walls creating a lovely mood, with light cascading from all sides. The decorative leg design in an arched four poster configuration with an added support ring provides functional style and stability to this model. The dome-shaped spark screen is sleek and simple, with a sturdy handle on top for use when the fire isn’t going.

Its classic black paint job makes it perfect for casual and contemporary settings. [amazon_textlink asin=’B00LG0TJQE’ text=’The Landmann USA Bromley Fire Pit’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’a6d373f0-c9b1-11e8-8a04-7bbb87e303a9′] has a beautiful overall design sure to provide any outdoor space a warm and inviting glow.

Size and Uses

[amazon_textlink asin=’B00LG0TJQE’ text=’The Landmann USA Bromley Fire Pit’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’acf65857-c9b1-11e8-a095-5b8779a3cafc’] is 25.8 inches in diameter and stands 19.9 inches high. It is a compact fire pit that will fit into smaller outdoor spaces perfectly. The Landmann is extremely portable, weighing only 12.7 pounds when empty. This makes it very easy to move from one space to another if you needed to, or for cleaning and maintenance purposes.

The fire bowl inside is 24 inches wide and 7.5 inches deep with room for plenty of logs. With the screen in place on top, it measures 15 inches from the bottom of the fire bowl to the center top of the dome spark screen. This freestanding model has a great overall sleek and quaint design, perfect for any outdoor entertainment space. This is a great size outdoor fire pit for the price, giving it immense value.

outdoor fire pit


  • A diamond pattern cutout on the side walls with mesh for supple venting of the flames
  • Decorative arched four poster legs with added support ring for stability
  • Dome-shaped spark screen to prevent flying embers
  • Handle on top of the dome-shaped spark screen for convenience
  • Firewood poker included with this model
  • Measures at 25.8 inches in diameter and 19.9 inches tall
  • Weighs only 12.7 pounds so it is very light and portable when empty
  • Fire bowl inside is 24 inches in diameter and 7.5 inches deep
  • This is a wood burning outdoor fire pit
  • Freestanding design makes it easy to clean and care for
  • When the dome spark screen is in use, it is 15 inches from the bottom of the fire bowl to the top of the dome
  • Manufacturer’s warranty is available upon request from the manufacturer

Flaws But Not Deal Breakers

There is no bottom venting in [amazon_textlink asin=’B00LG0TJQE’ text=’the Landmann USA Bromley Fire Pit’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’c569a756-c9b1-11e8-afab-23730e8606b6′] so it will fill up in rainy conditions. Customers have reported problems with it rusting quickly, and some noted some construction issues. Others stated it was very thin and felt less sturdy than expected.

As with my top choice, buying a cover for this fire pit will surely protect it. Additionally, keeping it clean and in storage is easy, thanks to how light it is. Finally, the protective cover is again a nice feature as it will protect your yard and your guests.

Final Thoughts on the Runner-Up

I think [amazon_textlink asin=’B00LG0TJQE’ text=’the Landmann USA Bromley Fire Pit’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’ce534d38-c9b1-11e8-a311-a18dd8ccc3bf’] is a great option if you’re looking for an outdoor fire pit on a tight budget. It would be perfect for a smaller, quaint outdoor space and has all the same features of a larger model. The dome-shaped spark screen and firewood poker are convenient and functional with your safety in mind.

I don’t like that it doesn’t have venting in the bottom for inclement weather to drain. However, my friend has this model and says it’s easy to clean though. Still, I would recommend getting a cover for this one or storing it under a covered space of some sort to prevent this. This may also help with the rusting concerns reported.

Although some rust is probably expected with a steel item, I would hope this would prolong its life. I really love the diamond pattern cutouts on the side walls. I think they’re very sleek looking and you wouldn’t have to worry about the pattern clashing with most decorative choices.

The Honorable Mention – [amazon_textlink asin=’B01CGZH2F2′ text=’Best Choice Products Hex Shaped Fire Pit’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’d8f9e4a2-c9b1-11e8-bbc1-5bbe878ff592′]

[amazon_textlink asin=’B01CGZH2F2′ text=’The Best Choice Products Hex Shaped Fire Pit’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’e028933f-c9b1-11e8-8857-413bf7c9203a’] is a gorgeous hexagon shaped outdoor fire pit, featuring a beautiful distressed bronze finish over sturdy steel construction. The side walls are an ornate rustic lattice pattern for visibility through the entire body of the fire pit which leads to plenty of venting for your flames.

This model comes with a fire retardant mesh dome spark screen to help prevent ash and embers from flying away. The solid bottom flares out in a hexagon pattern with a delicate design that wraps all the way around, giving the Best Choice products Hex Shaped Fire Pit a very stable base and unique design.

Size and Uses

This outdoor fire pit measures at 24 inches by 24 inches from flat side to flat side. It is 25 inches tall with a deep base capable of holding a large amount of firewood. This model weighs only 15.75 pounds, making it very lightweight and portable for easy transferring from one space to another when not in operation. The durable steel construction on the side walls also features mesh to keep everything contained and safe in your outdoor space.

outdoor fire pit


  • Durable steel construction with fire retardant finish
  • Measures at 24 inches by 24 inches from flat side to flat side and is 25 inches tall
  • Weighs only 15.75 pounds for a lightweight, portable design
  • Unique hexagon shape with full wrap around hexagon shaped base
  • Dome hexagon shaped spark screen made of fire retardant mesh
  • Features beautiful distressed brushed oil bronze finish
  • Rustic lattice design on side walls for plenty of venting and stunning visual display
  • The base is 18.5 inches in diameter and 7.5 inches high
  • The fire bowl is 24 inches in diameter and 8.5 inches deep for plenty of log space
  • No noted available manufacturer’s warranty
  • Firewood poker not included

Flaws But Not Deal Breakers

Some users have reported rusting after very few uses and some paint chipping. The spark screen, after a few uses, can begin to rust. Other users have reported that the construction does not safely support the fire and has melted. However, this may be due to the size of the fire they attempted to have. I do know a few people who have this particular model and they have not had any problems with it. But, I do not see a warranty offered, which is concerning.

Final Thoughts on My Honorable Mention

I really love the shape of this fire pit. The hexagon structure is just so unique when compared to the waves of round outdoor fire pits you see on the market. The lattice design is really beautiful. It is top to bottom so it allows for venting with a wonderful side display of the fire.

I really love the deep fire bowl for more logs but I’m concerned that a bigger fire would not be supported by this model (my friends keep their fires quite small because of their children). I think the fire should be kept smaller for safety reasons.

This model doesn’t come with a cover either. I would recommend purchasing one separately to keep it protected from weather and the elements. I was also disappointed this one didn’t come with a firewood poker included and would need to be purchased separately. It would have been a convenient addition.

In Summary

Finding the right outdoor fire pit for your outdoor living space can be a great idea for cool nights and weekend gatherings. You could benefit greatly from a versatile pit that allows for a great mood setter or to roast marshmallows over the flames. In keeping safety in mind, I would recommend always getting a model that features a mesh spark screen to prevent flying embers.

A freestanding model like these would allow you to move the fire pit with ease if you were ever refiguring or redecorating, plus it makes it easier to clean. These lightweight options would make dumping out ashes and rubble very easy.

Always make sure you have an appropriate amount of space to accommodate a fire pit and that it will not be too close to surrounding furniture, wood, or anything that may catch fire. Make sure there is plenty of walking space surrounding the unit. I would even recommend measuring your available space so you know what you need before you start shopping.

If you keep these things in mind, you can find a great outdoor fire pit to top off any occasion. You and your family can enjoy this wonderful addition for many nights to come.

How to Find the Right Outdoor Fire Pit

There are several things to consider when thinking about purchasing the perfect outdoor fire pit to fit your needs. For instance, consider:

  • What size do I need?
  • Do I need to fill a larger or smaller space?
  • What shape do I want?
  • Freestanding or built in?
  • Do I want wood burning or gas propane?
  • How much do I want to pay for it?

These might just be a few of the questions you begin to ask yourself. While the wide variety can certainly make it a difficult choice for you, it also means you’re sure to find exactly what you want.

Wrapping Up

If you’re looking to upgrade your outdoor space, a fire pit is a great place to start. Be sure to check out our articles on patio furniture, outdoor speakers, even kegerators! I also did an article about electric fireplaces. Combine all of these items and you’ll be the most popular house on the block.

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Comfort in the Cold: The Best Electric Fireplace for Your Home

electric fireplace

electric fireplace

An electric fireplace can be a great addition to any room, making it cozier and even saving you some money on your energy bill. Warm up your sitting room, dining room, or even your bedroom with a practical and beautiful electric fireplace that delights the senses. I personally have mine (that I’ve spent hours researching) in my bedroom. From touch to sight, an electric fireplace can improve any room décor and add practical use by providing a heating source.

If you’re in the market for an electric fireplace, there are a lot of things to consider. Do you want it wall mounted or portable? What size does your electric fireplace need to be? Are you installing it yourself? What’s your budget? It’s necessary for a buyer to consider all these things and more when shopping for the right electric fireplace for their home.

Below you will find some of the best electric fireplaces on the market today. With a wide range of shapes and sizes, features and functions, and the latest technology and price points, you’re sure to find exactly what you need to complete any room in your home to enhance your experience.

The Winner – [amazon_textlink asin=’B01M0AGJIQ’ text=’The Duraflame DFI-5010-01 Infrared Quartz Fireplace Stove with 3D Flame Effect’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’5d508d49-c67a-11e8-b88d-4942b4fdd579′]

duraflame electric fireplace

[amazon_textlink asin=’B01M0AGJIQ’ text=’The Duraflame DFI-5010-01 Infrared Quartz Fireplace Stove with 3D Flame Effect’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’65016558-c67a-11e8-a9a9-09404c8e80cc’] is a 5,200 BTU electric fireplace heater that provides supplemental heat to up to a 1,000 square foot zone. The black fireplace stove appearance provides a cozy and quaint look, perfect for any small or large space. The Duraflame features patent-pending 3D technology with realistic flames dancing on the back and logs.

It includes five adjustable colors, brightness, and speed settings allowing you to experience a realistic wood burning fireplace without the mess of a real one. The natural humidity in the air is maintained by the infrared quartz heat. This means you get comfortable heat that will not dry out the room’s air.

Infrared technology provides instant heat to the space and warms you quickly. This model features overheat protection that will automatically shut off the unit to prevent overheating, reducing potentially dangerous scenarios.

Realism and Functionality

[amazon_textlink asin=’B01M0AGJIQ’ text=’The Duraflame DFI-5010-01 Infrared Quartz Fireplace Stove with 3D Flame Effect’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’6d08c097-c67a-11e8-bbef-8701184a9940′] operates at 120 volts and 12.5 amps. Plus, it features a patent pending Safer Plug which monitors the temperature of the plug with a built-in thermometer. If the plug temperature reaches unsafe levels, the plug will shut off preventing the possibility of overheating and a potentially dangerous fire.

Zone heating (where you only focus on heating up the area of your home you’re currently using) with this model can help reduce your energy bill by allowing you to turn your home thermostat down for a significant amount of time. This makes it a much greener option for your household and reduces your carbon footprint.

Weighing in at under 30 pounds, you can easily move it room to room for full zone heating effects. The Duraflame DFI-5010-01 Infrared Quartz Fireplace Stove with 3D Flame Effect comes with a multi-functional remote control that allows you to control the power, temperature, flame intensity, and even the time. The temperature controls allow you to adjust the heat setting from 62 degrees to 82 degrees in two-degree increments.

The flame intensity is a five-level setting from 1 to 5, allowing for lower ember-like flames or bigger, blazing flames. The timer lets you set anywhere from half an hour to nine hours. This freestanding electric fireplace has a beautifully beveled door and offers side viewing through the glass.

electric fireplace


To recap, the [amazon_textlink asin=’B01M0AGJIQ’ text=’Duraflame DFI-5010-01 Infrared Quartz Fireplace Stove with 3D Flame Effect’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’7529989d-c67a-11e8-a93b-c7b79130dcff’] features:

  • 5,200 BTUs providing heat to up to 1,000 square feet
  • Patent pending 3D technology for realistic flame display on the back and logs
  • 120 volts
  • 5 amps
  • 24 inches tall by almost 24 inches wide by nearly 13 inches deep
  • Freestanding oven style weighs less than 30 pounds for portable zone heating
  • Remote control with four functions including power, temperature, flame intensity and a timer
  • The heating element is 62 to 82 degrees and can be adjusted in 2-degree increments
  • Flame height can be 1 to 5 to set any mood
  • The time can be set in half increments from 30 minutes to nine hours
  • Eco-friendly and emits no harmful byproducts
  • Beveled glass door
  • Side viewing available
  • Built-in thermometer prevents overheating
  • Infrared technology provides humidity control, so the air doesn’t dry out
  • Five adjustable flame colors for realistic flame display
  • Speed setting allows you to adjust how much or little “flame flicker” you want
  • A patent-pending Safer Plug with a built-in thermometer prevents the plug from overheating and causing any potential fires
  • Help reduce your energy bill by providing a green solution in zone heating
  • Safe for use around children and pets
  • 1-year limited warranty

It comes with user manual and a 6′ long power cord. No venting or gas lines are required. This best electric fireplace is also CSA safety certified.

Flaws, But Not Dealbreakers

While this electric fireplace is my top pick, there are a few issues. Users have reported that this model is a bit loud and can be distracting. Additionally, the top of the unit can also get very hot. The LED screen that reads out the temperature is hidden behind the door, making it difficult to manage. When using the remote, there’s no way to tell exactly what you’re setting.

Final Thoughts on The Duraflame DFI-5010-01 Infrared Quartz Fireplace Stove with 3D Flame Effect

[amazon_textlink asin=’B01M0AGJIQ’ text=’The Duraflame DFI-5010-01 Infrared Quartz Fireplace Stove with 3D Flame Effect’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’7c78c818-c67a-11e8-b4fe-710b4e38eca4′] is a great portable electric fireplace. It’s 3D flames and side viewing makes it a great fit for almost any room, allowing for a gathering nearly all the way around the unit. Its green energy zone heating is a great added bonus to its wonderful design and features.

Additionally, the stove design is quaint and makes a wonderful cheery statement in any room. This wouldn’t be the best model if you’re not planning on moving it or wanted it to be a more permanent piece in the designated room.


[amazon_link asins=’B01M0AGJIQ’ template=’Custom’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ text=” link_id=’281a83e6-c744-11e8-9005-813eeb7c7076′]

The Runner-Up – [amazon_textlink asin=’B00R73DYJW’ text=’The PuraFlame 30″ Western Electric Fireplace Insert with Remote Control, 750/1500W’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’88da2f27-c67a-11e8-953f-7f7c591c1caa’]

electric fireplace

[amazon_textlink asin=’B00R73DYJW’ text=’The PuraFlame 30″ Western Electric Fireplace Insert with Remote Control, 750/1500W’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’8f652444-c67a-11e8-b3a9-6bd35c6f0283′] is a beautiful and realistic firebox using energy saving backlit LEDs to give the appearance of natural-looking flames. Additionally, it comes with three different effects.

This 30-inch by 24-inch heater can be inserted into a fireplace cut out with ease, weighing in at less than 50 pounds. Plus, the multi-functional remote control gives you the added convenience of adjusting settings at your fingertips.

With two heat modes, 750 watts low and 1500 high, 60Hz, and 120 volts AC, this model can warm up a 400 square foot area with ease. The PuraFlame 30″ Western Electric Fireplace Insert with Remote Control, 750/1500W features overheat protection that will shut the unit off if it detects any overheating. This convenient and safe feature is to prevent potential damage or danger.

Realism and Functionality

[amazon_textlink asin=’B00R73DYJW’ text=’The PuraFlame 30″ Western Electric Fireplace Insert with Remote Control, 750/1500W’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’974e9727-c67a-11e8-8635-1b1b4fcef340′] has a flame feature that can be used with or without heat. If you want to set a cozy, inviting, warm or even romantic tone, you can use the flames without the heat if you don’t need the heating function. This sleek, black model is a wonderful addition to any fireplace box, instead of a traditional fireplace, which creates a mess and requires a lot of cleaning and maintenance.

This model is not mobile like the Duraflame DFI-5010-01 Infrared Quartz Fireplace Stove. Keep that in mind when deciding what to purchase. Note that [amazon_textlink asin=’B00R73DYJW’ text=’the PuraFlame 30″ Western Electric Fireplace Insert with Remote Control, 750/1500W’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’a25243e8-c67a-11e8-a89a-3fdb01d68c0b’] is a more permanent electric fireplace solution for your needs.


  • Almost 32 inches wide by almost 25 inches tall by just shy of 9 inches deep
  • Electric fireplace insert will be placed into an existing fireplace front or need to be in-wall mounted
  • Two heating settings: 750 watts on low and 1500 watts on high
  • 120 volts AC
  • Heats up to a 400 square foot area with ease
  • Three side brick wall design
  • No gas or oil needed, no smoke damage
  • Multi-functional remote control for convenient use with one button cell battery
  • Weighs less than 50 pounds for easy installation by yourself
  • Sleek black metal frame design will supplement any room décor
  • Use the flame feature with or without heat to set the mood of a room without warming
  • Three different flame effects with energy-saving LED backlighting technology for a realistic flame look
  • Heat function ranges from 60 degrees to 84 degrees
  • Front fix design
  • One year limited warranty
  • Features a fan style heater
  • Comes with 1.8-meter power cord
  • Comes in a 23-inches, 26-inches, or 33-inches style as well

This runner-up best electric heater includes a user’s manual.

Flaws, But Not Dealbreakers

As beautiful as this electric fireplace is, there are a few issues consumers have noted. Users have reported that the heat settings only being high and low are too basic. They’ve mentioned it would be nicer to have a more accurate temperature readout. They would prefer a longer heat vent as the shorter one stunts air flow. However, this is not a problem for a number of users.

Final Thoughts on The PuraFlame 30″ Western Electric Fireplace Insert with Remote Control, 750/1500W

[amazon_textlink asin=’B00R73DYJW’ text=’The PuraFlame 30″ Western Electric Fireplace Insert with Remote Control, 750/1500W’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’b4ac9959-c67a-11e8-8d5a-ade1ce504ad4′] is a great recessed model, that is not too large, and would accommodate many existing traditional fireplace openings. To have the feel of a traditional fireplace but the added convenience of the multi-functional remote control really is the best of both worlds. Its sleek design would pair well in any setting and fit any number of fireplaces designs.

This makes a more permanent statement in the room, but wouldn’t necessarily steal focus or be an overwhelming addition. The PuraFlame 30″ Western Electric Fireplace Insert with Remote Control, 750/1500W is the perfect modern fit for a modest statement. This model isn’t portable. However, it is easy to install and uninstall if you did choose to move it at some point.

The Honorable Mention – [amazon_textlink asin=’B00H3RI32U’ text=’The Touchstone 80004 Sideline Electric Fireplace’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’d6511e1b-c67a-11e8-9ed9-0dccdd032af5′]
electric fireplace

This luxurious 50-inch-wide electric fireplace is designed for a recessed in-wall installation. [amazon_textlink asin=’B00H3RI32U’ text=’The Touchstone 80004 Sideline Electric Fireplace’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’defef248-c67a-11e8-bd35-07d117745c47′] will bring a contemporary and clean style to any room. It has a modern design and black frame for a sleek look to upgrade any room. It’s easy to follow instructions make it a breeze for homeowners to install it on their own.

Note that it weighs less than 60 pounds. With two heat settings, high and low, it’s perfect for any climate and will accommodate any cold season weather. The front located blowers make it practical and functional. You are not just getting a showpiece with this model.

Realism and Functionality

The realistic flame display comes with three color changing options for a realistic flame providing the comfort of a traditional fireplace. Blue, orange, or a combination orange-blue flames can be selected. Additionally, 5 intensity settings from a low ember to a large blaze can be selected.

Have the power to change and adjust your flame and heat setting with a remote control in your hand. A built-in timer allows you to set it anywhere from thirty minutes to seven and a half hours long for a relaxing environment.

Faux fire logs and glass crystal are included to bring this unit to life in two different but amazing ways. For a more unique and luxurious look, use the glass crystals. For a more traditional look, use the faux logs. Behind its smooth exterior, this unit is operating on 1,500 watts with 120 volts allowing it to cover a 400 square foot zone. With dual modes, you can enjoy this model with or without heat, setting the mood for any occasion.

Like the PuraFlame 30″ Western Electric Fireplace Insert with Remote Control, the [amazon_textlink asin=’B00H3RI32U’ text=’Touchstone 80004 Sideline Electric Fireplace’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’e81c792c-c67a-11e8-9271-5faa50cdb9a0′] is intended for permanent installation. Therefore, it will not have the convenience of being portable like the Duraflame DFI-5010-01 Infrared Quartz Fireplace Stove.

At 50 inches wide, this is definitely a statement piece, bringing sophistication and luxury to the room. Plus, this bold centerpiece will be an amazing focal point sure to draw people in. If you are mounting this fireplace below a flat screen television, it is recommended to keep at least 12 inches between them due to the heating functions.

Touchstone 80004 Sideline Electric Fireplace


  • Contemporary black frame and glass front design for sleek décor
  • Resin logs and glass crystal included for two different available looks
  • Designed for recessed in-wall installation with a mounting kit
  • Weighs less than 60 pounds for easy homeowner installation
  • Model is 50 inches wide by 21.5 inches tall by 5.5 inches deep
  • Flame display has three color options – orange, blue, or orange-blue flames for realistic flame display
  • LED flames are life-like and energy saving
  • Can be plugged in or hardwired into your in-wall mounting area
  • Five flame intensity settings from low ember to blaze to set the desired tone
  • 1,500 watts
  • 120 volts
  • Heats up to a 400 square foot area with ease
  • Timer settings from half an hour to 7.5 hours of time for hands-free use
  • Dual modes allow for using the flame feature with or without heat
  • Multi-functional remote control
  • Dual high or low heat setting
  • Blowers on the front of the model for practical use
  • Several other sizes available including 36-inches, 40-inches, 45-inches, 60-inches, 72-inches, and 100-inches

This honorable mention includes a user’s manual.

Flaws, But Not Dealbreakers

This particular electric fireplace has many features. However, some users have reported that despite its large size, this model does not give off as much heat as they expected. Additionally, some wished for a brighter, more realistic flame. Other users have reported that it’s noisier than they expected.

Final Thoughts on The Touchstone 80004 Sideline Electric Fireplace

[amazon_textlink asin=’B00H3RI32U’ text=’The Touchstone 80004 Sideline Electric Fireplace’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’fc5be2ab-c67a-11e8-989c-65e2c949276f’] is nothing short of grand. At 50 inches wide, this in-wall mounted unit will make a bold statement in any room. Plus, it would make a great centerpiece in any large room.

Given its size, it would not be recommended for a smaller room or space, as it may not fit comfortably. It’s stylish black and glass front is a beautiful, contemporary piece sure to bring a sense of refined taste to its owner. Although it’s easy to install and uninstall, it may not be practical to move or relocate this one to a different room since it needs a recessed mount cutout in the desired wall.

electric fireplace

Summary of the Best Electric Fireplace For You

Whether your goal is to find a portable zone heating electric fireplace, a small traditional looking fireplace, or a large captivating statement piece, there are many beautiful and functional options out there for you to choose from. A warm and welcoming centerpiece can easily be added to any room with the addition of an electric fireplace. The added bonus of no mess or maintenance, when compared to a traditional fireplace, makes an electric fireplace the smarter choice.

Enjoy a crackling fire without the safety hazards a wood burning fireplace presents. Everyone who uses an electric fireplace praises the features of a real fireplace and not having an enormous electric bill. Enjoy a wonderful evening, complete with the warmth of your new, clean, and alternative electric fireplace.

The realistic flames crackling and dancing will likely leave you in a relaxed feeling. Also, this addition will bring you many toasty nights or romantic evenings.

It also isn’t a bad idea to stock up on other comfort staples in your home. Click here to shop for an electric tea kettle and coffee makers. If you need to shop for some super comfortable reading chairs to pull up next to your new electric fireplace, click here.

The choice is abundantly clear. A sleek, energy-saving electric fireplace is a smart and beautiful choice to add to your home. However, only a top ranking, state of the art model will do. Make a choice with great beauty and value for your money.

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The Best Air Purifiers to Combat Allergens

Best Air Purifiers

Best Air Purifiers

Did you know that the air inside our home is about 5 times as polluted as the air outside? That’s because pollutants are constantly circulating. Unless you open your windows daily, that air isn’t going anywhere and is possibly getting worse by the second (especially if you smoke, have pets, use wood-burning fireplaces, or clean with harsh chemicals). I have suffered from allergies for several years now and have spent hours researching the best air purifiers. Just like dehumidifiers help you zap excess moisture from the air in your home, the best air purifiers help you breathe easier by removing pollutants from your air.

Air purifiers remove pollutants from the air such as mold spores, dust mites, bacteria, animal dander, viruses, and VOCs. If you suffer from allergies or asthma, you need to remove these unhealthy particles from the air you breathe.

The first step to combating these pollutants is regularly cleaning your home. However, if you’re doing this already and your symptoms only seem to be getting worse, then it’s time for an air purifier. To help you pick the one that’s perfect for you, we’ve compiled a list of the best air purifiers that you can buy today.

Best Air Purifiers Top Pick: [amazon_textlink asin=’B00BWYO53G’ text=’Honeywell True HPA300′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’452c7d8b-c596-11e8-96b1-1b80321e0619′]

Best Air Purifiers

Rated the #1 brand recommended by 9 out of 10 allergists, it’s no surprise that the [amazon_textlink asin=’B00BWYO53G’ text=’Honeywell True HPA300′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’4d7bdfbf-c596-11e8-af31-ed7419fb83d4′] is the best air purifier for residential use. From it’s convenient features to its high quality, read below why it’s a favorite among many, including yours truly.


The Honeywell comes with a certified HEPA filter and an activated carbon pre-filter. They work together to cleanse rooms up to 465 square feet. HEPA filters are used to capture allergens such as bacteria, dust, pollen, and pet dander, which are all greater than 0.3 microns.

However, HEPA filter can’t effectively catch particles less than 0.3 microns such as odors, viruses, smoke, and other gaseous matter that pollute your home. That’s why this model paired a HEPA filter with an activated carbon pre-filter because the carbon filter can neutralize pollutants that small.

Filtration Levels

The [amazon_textlink asin=’B00BWYO53G’ text=’Honeywell’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’58183e43-c596-11e8-9458-6dd0b17c6c1e’] comes with four filtration levels. They’re Germ, General Clean, Allergens, and Turbo. Each filtration level corresponds with a fan speed that goes from low, moderate, high, and turbo, respectively.

You’ll use the Germ setting when you’re trying to capture germs, typically around cold and flu season. The General Clean setting is for everyday use when you’re not trying to remove something specific from the air.

The Allergens setting is when you’re trying to remove allergens from in the air (and the setting people who suffer from allergies would use). The Turbo setting will remove odors and clean the air faster than any of the other settings. It’s also the setting you should use when you first get your air purifier.

Design of this Best Air Purifiers Option

The [amazon_textlink asin=’B00BWYO53G’ text=’Honeywell’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’60186dfd-c596-11e8-8669-855401adf7d5′] is a black, portable 21-pound unit that has a 9.2 x 20 x 22.2 inches dimensional space. You won’t have to worry about it taking up much space or looking like a sore thumb in your home. It also comes with two inverted side handles for easier carrying.


The control panels you can find on the [amazon_textlink asin=’B00BWYO53G’ text=’Honeywell’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’649e1cc1-c596-11e8-ad26-4f445e10b062′] are the filtration levels, timer, check filter, and dimmer light. As mentioned above, the filtration levels correspond with what you’re trying to eliminate from the air. On Germ setting, you almost can’t hear it and on Turbo, it sounds like a white noise machine. If you’re using it in the bedroom, it probably can lull you to sleep.

Since the unit runs continuously, you’ll have to use the timer if you want it to stop after a while. The timer has increments of 2, 4, and 8 hours.

There’s a check filter LED light for both the HEPA filter and the carbon one. When either of these light up, then you’ll know that it’s time to replace them. Continuing to use these filters when the light is on can result in your asthma and allergies getting worse. That’s because the unit won’t be able to remove those particles and anything coming from it will be dirty, recycled air.

If you’re using the unit in your bedroom then you’ll appreciate the dimmer feature. It allows you to adjust the light to your desired dimness of low, high, and off.


The [amazon_textlink asin=’B00BWYO53G’ text=’Honeywell’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’6a0aa956-c596-11e8-aa8f-7b43aa429d51′] is a high quality build air purifier that’s energy efficient. It filters and circulates your air 5 times per hour, which is roughly every 15 minutes. Also, the control panel is remarkably durable.

It’s Energy Star and AHAM verified. You don’t have to worry about it raising your utility bill astronomically high. It’s CADR ratings for pollen, dust, and smoke are 320 and 300, respectively. A CADR rating is a clean air delivery rate. The higher the number, the more air it filters per minute.


Like any filter you’ve had in your home, both the HEPA and carbon filters need to be changed to ensure that it’s performing at its maximum potential. The three HEPA filters need to be changed annually and the carbon filter needs to be changed every 3 months.

Although this seems like an added expense, it’s relatively inexpensive since replacing the filters is something you only have to worry about a few times a year.


The [amazon_textlink asin=’B00BWYO53G’ text=’Honeywell’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’704757da-c596-11e8-9890-0f57d462f437′] comes with a 5-year limited warranty that covers defective material or defects caused by workmanship.

Flaws But Not Dealbreakers of My Best Air Purifiers Winner

This air purifier uses three small HEPA filters. Instead of using one large HEPA filter, it uses three small ones which makes it an inconvenience when changing it. Aside from that, there aren’t many complaints about my pick as one of the best air purifiers I’ve ever had.


[amazon_link asins=’B00BWYO53G’ template=’Custom’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ text=” link_id=’831cb273-c5ad-11e8-b3a9-6bd35c6f0283′]

Best Air Purifiers Runner-Up: [amazon_textlink asin=’B002VXDCHW’ text=’IQAir HealthPro Plus’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’ec3718ec-c596-11e8-85a9-8de7e63e254b’]

Best Air Purifiers

The company motto is “First in air quality.” Many people agree with them which is why the [amazon_textlink asin=’B002VXDCHW’ text=’IQAir HealthPro Plus’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’0080e20e-c597-11e8-be29-6beda79b9874′] is the #1 air purifier for asthma and allergens. For that reason, it is why it came in as a close second on our list of best air purifiers.


The IQAir comes with three filters: preMax, V5-Cell Gas and Odor, and HyperHEPA. They filter in four stages: micro-particle, granular activated carbon adsorption, pelletized chemisorption, and hyperHEPA filter. After the air is drawn in the unit, the micro-particle stage begins. This pre-filter stage captures and eliminates any micro-particles such as pollen, mold spores, and pet dander.

The next stage is the granular activated carbon, which is the V5-Cell Gas and Odor filter removes volatile organic compounds that cause odors and other harmful chemicals. Once all the odor particles are gone, the V5 cell removes any harmful chemicals that the second stage didn’t capture such as formaldehyde. This stage is known as the pelletized chemisorption.

The final stage is when the hyperHEPA filter destroys ultrafine particles such as bacteria, viruses, and combustion particles. After this stage, the air then flows back into the room via the 320 degrees Even Diffuser, so there’s clean air being distributed in all directions.

One of the most notable features of this unit is that it can purifier a room up to 1,125 square feet.


The [amazon_textlink asin=’B002VXDCHW’ text=’IQAir’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’0b7e4c20-c597-11e8-9dc0-e9950e52bd7f’] is a white and light gray portable 35-pound unit. Although it weighs more than the [amazon_textlink asin=’B00BWYO53G’ text=’Honeywell’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’765925a6-c596-11e8-b708-cf3a2cbf1493′], it comes with caster wheels for easy maneuvering. It’s an elegantly designed air purifier that will make a great addition to your home decor. Its dimensional size is 16 x 15 x 28 inches.

It’s also designed to make replacing the filters a simplified process. With its modular tower design, you can snap open any filter you need to change within seconds.

Its fan-in-center design places the fan motor between filters that diminish the sound it produces. The result is white noise to help you sleep that you can adjust with the remote.


Another incredible feature of the IQAir is that it comes with a remote control. You can use it to turn the unit and timer on/off and change the fan speed. Besides the controller, you can also use the control panel for more, detailed options.

It comes with an LCD display, power, arrow, menu, and enter key. Its LED lights are for each filter life, timer, and fan speed. The LCD display is where you’ll find information about the fan speed, filter life in hours, and timer. The menu key will allow you to access more control options such as how many hours and on what days you want the [amazon_textlink asin=’B002VXDCHW’ text=’IQAir’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’17bfcfad-c597-11e8-87ac-8ddc740b9b0d’] to run, in what language you want it to run, what model it’s running, airflow units, and filter life and reset.

It’s also customizable. If you want to run the air purifier only on the weekend, at a 5 fan speed, and for 7 hours, you absolutely can. To make sure that it’s filtering on the right days and at the right time, you can set its clock.


The [amazon_textlink asin=’B002VXDCHW’ text=’IQAir’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’1e334456-c597-11e8-af14-6757a6ffb500′] produces some of the best quality air and still remains energy efficient. On the lowest setting, it consumes 27 watts while at the highest it consumes 215 watts. Plus, it only cost a few pennies a day. With its triple, 3D ultraseal technology, you don’t have to worry about air leakages that release unfiltered air back into your home.


The IQAir three filters have long lifespans. The preMax filter last for 18 months, the V5 filter last for 2 years, and the HyperHEPA last for 4 years. You’ll always know how much time you have left with each filter. Using this information, you’ll be able to buy replacements before you’ll need them.


With the [amazon_textlink asin=’B002VXDCHW’ text=’IQAir’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’27611f93-c597-11e8-844f-29d10c0c134c’], you get a one-year limited warranty when you purchase the product. However, unlike the [amazon_textlink asin=’B00BWYO53G’ text=’Honeywell’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’7eddeef6-c596-11e8-8326-f3168efbba92′], you can register your product on their website for free within 30 days of purchase and get upgraded to their 10-year warranty.

Flaws But Not Dealbreakers

The fan speed doesn’t correlate with a filtration level. Although this unit does have a six fan speeds ranging from low to high, it doesn’t specify what level of pollutants each level gets rid of. It does tell you the airflow cfm, cubic feet per minute. The lowest fan speed produces 40 cfm and the highest produces 300 cfm.

It might not tell you exactly what’s getting filtered out at each fan speed, but you know that the higher the fan speed, the more square footage being cleaned. Also, the higher the speed, the more power that’s being used to cleanse your air of even the most ultrafine particles.

Best Air Purifiers Honorable Mention: [amazon_textlink asin=’B01D8DAYII’ text=’Winix 5500-2′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’ad3380a4-c596-11e8-9c10-73850cae423d’]

Best Air Purifiers

[amazon_textlink asin=’B01D8DAYII’ text=’Winix’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’ba8f7538-c596-11e8-8c6d-09edb09a599d’] is known for their innovative products that focus on giving you the best environment your home can offer. Although it isn’t our top pick, the [amazon_textlink asin=’B01D8DAYII’ text=’Winix 5500-2′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’b5dac659-c596-11e8-8245-a9e8d95cfcf9′] is a portable unit that gets the job done and righfully deserves to be on our best air purifiers list.


The [amazon_textlink asin=’B01D8DAYII’ text=’Winix’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’bf1cec5f-c596-11e8-a045-5da92a8f625f’] comes with a HEPA filter, an Advanced Odor Control carbon filter, and an additional PlasmaWave Technology. The filters clean areas up to 360 square feet. Although the PlasmaWave Technology works like an ionizer, it doesn’t produce any ozone. PlasmaWave Technology works by using water vapors to eliminate pollutants.


The Winix is a black, portable 15-pound air purifier that has a very innovative design. It’s dimensional size is 15 x 8.2 x 23.6 inches.

The noise level is fairly quiet. You almost can’t notice it on low, the medium setting sounds like a computer hard drive, and high is more noticeable, but it can blend into background noise if positioned right.


Similar to the [amazon_textlink asin=’B002VXDCHW’ text=’IQAir’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’2f51bec0-c597-11e8-8ecc-bb0dce99ba0a’], the [amazon_textlink asin=’B01D8DAYII’ text=’Winix’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’35bc33ba-c597-11e8-bc9e-f19aba5b40cd’] comes with a remote control. You can use the remote to power it on, change fan speeds from manual to turbo or vice versa, and use the auto mode.

The control panel gives you the option to switch between modes, change the fan speed, set the timer, change the filter, and enable PlasmaWave. You can set your unit to Auto, Sleep, or Manual. In auto mode, all you need to do is turn it on and let it adjust itself. Once the indoor air quality improves, the fan speed will automatically lower itself. The auto mode relies on the smart sensor feature to determine how good or poor the air quality is.

A notable feature from this unit is that its sleep mode is dedicated to making sure that you’re getting your best sleep without having to turn off the unit. In addition to that, the LED lights also dim when the room is dark. If you prefer to manually adjust your fan speed, then pressing the fan button will disable auto mode.

The timer has intervals of 1 hour, 4 hours, and 8 hours. If you’re wondering what’s the quality of air in your home, then you can use the smart sensor which tells you whether it’s good, fair, or poor. The fan speeds are low, medium, high, and turbo.


The [amazon_textlink asin=’B01D8DAYII’ text=’Winix’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’d006e890-c596-11e8-b6f7-4b6adac65d48′] is Energy Star, AHAM, and ARB certified. Its CADR ratings for dust, pollen, and smoke are 243, 246, 232, respectively.


The pre-filter should be cleaned every two weeks, the washable carbon filter needs to be cleaned every 3 months and replaced after a year, and the true HEPA filter needs to be changed annually.


The [amazon_textlink asin=’B01D8DAYII’ text=’Winix’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’d5e745de-c596-11e8-b751-bfece206c67b’] comes with a two-year limited warranty.

Flaws But Not Dealbreakers

Turbo mode is noisy. Unlike the other modes, you can’t ignore the Winix when turbo mode is on. To combat this, you can use this mode only when you’re not home or when you’re in another room.

Conclusion of the Best Air Purifiers

Each of our top picks does an incredible job when it comes to helping you reduce your asthma and allergies symptoms. However, depending on your individual needs, you might find more value and use out of certain units.

Perhaps you’re looking for an affordable, top-rated air purifier that can eliminate dust, bacteria, and viruses then you need the [amazon_textlink asin=’B00BWYO53G’ text=’Honeywell True HPA300′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’90495074-c596-11e8-b700-25a04787ca9d’].

If you can afford to make a large investment in your air quality which provides added features for your convenience, then you’ll love the [amazon_textlink asin=’B002VXDCHW’ text=’IQAir HealthPro Plus’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’3f7892a8-c597-11e8-a540-93a6976416b4′].

Finally, if you’re looking for something with a more modern design and will definitely help your respiratory problems, then there’s always the [amazon_textlink asin=’B01D8DAYII’ text=’Winix 5500-2′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’e0dd3602-c596-11e8-957b-b7f99fc51629′].

As long as you see an air improvement in your daily life, that’s all that really matters when purchasing the best air purifiers.


Q: I don’t have much square footage. Would it be better for me to purchase a small air purifier?

I can understand why you would think that getting an air purifier that doesn’t exceed your needs is the right way to go. And if you can’t afford a larger unit, then a small one WILL execute its purpose. However, if you can afford to splurge on one then you’ll get the most out of one that covers large areas. It’s beneficial for noise and energy levels.

If you were to purchase a small air purifier, you’ll need to run it on high constantly for it to cleanse your air. It’ll produce more noise and it’ll consume more energy than a larger unit. With a large unit, you can run it on low to get the same results the small one would have produced on high. Also, it’ll make less noise and cost you less on your utility bill. Not to mention that large units tend to come with more features that’ll make life convenient for you.

Q: I heard that all air purifiers produce ozone. Is this true?

No, it isn’t but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t some that do. However, all air purifiers listed in this guide don’t produce them. Ozone, a lung irritant, is hazardous to human health. Some household products emit ozone, but people with allergies and asthma are especially sensitive to them.

The types of air purifiers that emit ozone are ones that use ionizer and ozone generating technology. Ionizer technology cleans the air by emitting negative ions which bond with the positively charged dust and bacteria. They then cancel each other out.

On top of being dangerous, it also does a poor job of cleaning an area. An ozone generator does exactly that, it generates ozone. The ozone that’s released into the air is extremely effective at eliminating odor, allergens, dust, and bacteria. It gets the job done, but it’s not worth the risk. In fact, California restricted the use of it.

Q: How will I know the best air purifiers are working?

You’ll notice that the air will feel lighter. If you live in a humid climate, you know how heavy humidity feels. While it’s not quite the same inside, you’ll be able to breathe easier. Even if you can’t quite describe it, you’ll notice a difference.

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Best All-in-One Backyard Playground For the Kids

One of the absolute thrills of childhood is racing from the car to the playgrounds at the park. From slides to monkey bars to swings, there was always so much variety to what you could play with and the exhilaration of being outside and actively using your body. Many kids, my daughter included, throw an absolute tantrum when it’s time to go home. But what if you could bring the playground to the backyard?

My toddler is addicted to being outdoors. But until we bought a backyard playground, she was a bit limited on what activities she could do. I spent hours researching the top playgrounds. Now, she can spend hours and hours burning through energy and having a great time–all from the safety of our home. A word to the wise, a killer backyard playground set will make your house the place to be in the neighborhood. More friends for my kids to play with? That sounds like a win to me!

What You’ll Find in This Review of the Best All-in-One Backyard Playground For Kids

In this post, I will review three incredible backyard playground sets that will guarantee that your kids are having fun. They all contain the essentials for a good day of play with important variations. Before making a decision, be sure to measure your backyard or play space. Many of these backyard playgrounds are fairly large and you need to make sure that not only will the playground fit but that you’re okay with the amount of space that’s left over. Nobody wants their kid’s feet to hit the back door every time they swing!

The most impressive backyard playground covered below is sure to be a neighborhood hit. The Backyard Discovery Skyfort II Swing Set is massive and is designed for both physical play and a healthy imagination. Next, the Swing-N-Slide Outing Play Set condenses many of the staples of a good backyard playground while still providing variety for the kids. Finally, the Flexible Flyer Swing Set is our budget pick. It has a variety of play items without decorative flair or climbing spaces.

Gold Medal Winner: Backyard Discovery Skyfort II All Cedar Wood Swing Set

The Backyard Discovery Skyfort II playground is The Godfather of backyard playgrounds. I highly recommend setting this up while the kids are away and watching their jaws drop to the floor in awe when they find this playground in the backyard. I particularly love this set because there is such a variety of activities for kids to do from the physical to the imaginative.

This is also the only set that includes a little picnic table as a part of the playground. Not all kids enjoy the activeness of monkey bars and slides and therefore will enjoy being able to climb up into the tower or sit with their friends at the table.

What’s Included?

The better question here is: what’s not included? This backyard playground includes everything but the kitchen sink. I honestly haven’t even seen anything this great at our local parks. With the Backyard Discovery Skyfort II Playground your children will be able to play with/on:

  • Clubhouse
  • Wood Roof
  • Lower Deck
  • Crow’s Nest
  • 2 Belt Swings
  • 2 Person Swing Glider
  • 10’ Wave Slide
  • Rock Climbing Wall
  • Sandbox
  • Monkey Bars
  • Picnic Table

Why Kids Will Love This Backyard Playground

This backyard playground set is all about adventure. The multi-dimensional platforms are great for climbing or hiding during games of hide-and-go-seek. If your child loves playing ‘pirate’ then look no further than this set. The Backyard Discovery Skyfort II includes a crow’s nest balcony and lookout telescope. It will truly bring their imagination to life.

My daughter loves to slide and the 10’ wave slide included is perfect for a quick return to the ground. We also do a lot of lunches outside during mild weather. The built-in picnic table is a great space where my children can enjoy fresh air while eating.

When the weather isn’t mild, there are parts of this backyard playground that provide great shade including the tower, picnic table area, and sandbox. The kids are still happy to be able to go outside and I feel better that they’re out of the direct sunlight.

Monkey bars are always a huge hit at the park but rarely found on smaller playgrounds. Kids love being able to swing from bar to bar to test their endurance before leaping to the ground. Essentially, the variety of activities makes this a hit with the kids!

Parent Perspective

As a parent, I understand that outdoor play is an important part of my child’s development. I’m also comfortable admitting that if my daughter exhausts herself playing outside, then bedtime is so much easier. The Backyard Discovery Skyfort II Playground will allow your children to express themselves creatively, build physical stamina, and have a whole lot of fun in the process.

If you have multiple children, this playground set is also great because many kids can play on it at one time. There are two regular swings and the glider. This means four children can be swinging at the same time (and nobody is whining about it being their turn). At the same time, kids can be playing on monkey bars, in the sandbox, and so on.

Additionally, this backyard playground set is really beautiful. If you’re going to invest in something that’s going to take up a significant amount of space in your yard, church, community center, etc. it’s vital that it be aesthetically pleasing. The cedar wood is gorgeous and professionally crafted. Green is used as an accent color for the slide, handles, gliders, and a few other parts that all look great against the wood.


Of course, kids are rowdy on the playground. It’s important that whichever playground you purchase has taken necessary safety precautions to keep everyone safe. Many features have been included to enhance the safety of this backyard playground:

  • Grab handles are installed above the rock climbing wall. This allows children to have a firm handhold when pulling themselves onto the playset. They can also use these metal bars to stay balanced as they climb the rocks.
  • The monkey bars and ladder which lead up to the first rung are secured. So while children are playing they will not flex or roll but rather remain sturdy.
  • This playground set is made up of 100% cedar. Because of this, it will not easily develop cracks and weaknesses the way that other types of wood are prone to do. The cedar used for this playground is also rot resistant.
  • The swing beam is made from steel clam-shell brackets. This ensures that the swing stays in place while children are playing. There is also a special powder coating used on the metal parts to protect them from the elements.
  • The hardware included with this set is called Safe-T-Fuse. The nuts lock once in place and resist loosening over time. There are also no harsh edges to prevent children from snagging their clothes on the hardware.
  • The Backyard Discovery Skyfort II Playground meets international ASTM standards for safety.

Dimensions and Details

Before purchasing this backyard playground, be sure to have a full understanding of what you’re in for by measuring your play space and comparing it to the dimensions of this product. The overall dimensions are 21’ 11” x 16’ 8 ½” with a height of 12’.

However, it’s recommended to create a safe play zone on the outside perimeter of the backyard playground in order to prevent children from becoming hurt. This perimeter should start at 6’ from the playset and span 33’ 11” x 28’ 8 ½”. Essentially, take into account the entire area you will need for children to safely play on the backyard playground, not only the dimensions of the product.


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Silver Runner-Up: Swing-N-Slide Outing Play Set

If your family is looking for a smaller set that still packs in a lot of fun, the Swing-N-Slide Outing Play Set may be just right for you. This playground has more of a square-like shape than the Backyard Discovery Skyfort yet still includes a slide, trapeze bar, rock climbing wall, small tower, sandbox, and accessories. Your kids and their friends will be able to run and play to their heart’s desire.

What’s Included?

The Swing-N-Slide Playground contains enough equipment for many children to be playing together at the same time. Hurray! In addition to a super cool fort with flags, a steering wheel, and a telescope, this set includes:

  • Heavy Duty Vinyl Canopy Covering
  • 2 Swings
  • Trapeze Bar with Rings
  • Alpine Wave Slide
  • Entry Ladder
  • Rock Wall w/Climbing Rope
  • Sandbox

Why Kids Will Love This Backyard Playground

Similar to the Backyard Discovery Playground, the Swing-N-Slide has a variety of activities for kids to do. Do your children love to build sandcastles and return to the house with locks full of sand? No problem. Or perhaps they’re ready to hang off of anything and everything that they can reach? With the trapeze bar and rock wall, they can do just that.

Space for imagination is also built into this playground. Kids can play with the steering wheel and pretend to be the captain of a wayward ship. They also have a built-in telescope to watch out for an impending enemy attack. And in the end, they can rest easy once reaching the sandbox beach. What fun!

Parent Perspective

I really appreciate that this backyard playground has most of the variety of the previous set while taking up less space. It also includes a large heavy duty canopy to protect kids from direct sunlight. This provides me peace of mind during hot summer days when I worry about my kids getting overheated. I can’t always convince them to come inside but at least I know that they can find some refuge (while supplying plenty of cold water).

I do miss that this set doesn’t have the picnic table like the Backyard Discovery Playground, but it’s honestly no big deal to purchase a kid-sized picnic table to add to the backyard. One benefit that this set has over the previous one is that the swings are spaced out further.


There are several important safety features which have been worked into this playground. These include:

  • Made of Cedar to resist rotting and decay.
  • The swing set chains are covered with UV protected plastic which keeps the chains cool and prevents cute little fingers from getting pinched.
  • Meets international ASTM safety standards.
  • Safety handles are installed above the ladder to give kids something to hold onto for balance and to pull themselves up to the platform.

Dimensions and Details

The dimensions of this backyard playground are 13’ 6” W x 10’ 6” H x 13’ D. This is a bit smaller than the Backyard Discovery Skyfort playset which is great if you are more limited on space. However, as before, do make sure that you’re leaving enough extra space on the perimeter for your children to be able to play safely. You should also keep in mind that any low hanging trees may need to be trimmed if you think that they might interfere with the height of the playground. Additionally, the play deck is about 4’ high and is made up by a 4’ x 4’ platform.


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Budget Pick: Flexible Flyer Fun Fantastic II Swing Set

The Flexible Flyer playground definitely doesn’t have all of the bells and whistles of the Backyard Discovery and Swing-N-Slide sets. But, it is still a great option for families with a tighter budget. Kids will have a great time with their friends playing on the see-saw, air glider, swings and more!

What’s Included?

Just like the other sets, adult assembly is required for this set. However, it’s likely to be much easier since everything is in one linear piece and there are no high platforms. Nine kids are able to play on this playground at the same time on the following awesome features:

  • 6’ Green Wave Slide
  • 2 Regular Swings
  • 1 Shoe Loop Swing
  • 2 Person Air Glider
  • Trapeze
  • 2 Person See-Saw

Why Kids Will Love This Backyard Playground

This backyard playground is great for kids for a number of reasons. It includes all of the most important and classic playground features such as the see-saw and swings with additional cool features like the air glider. Since everyone is playing close together, it’s easy for kids to talk, sing, and babble with one another while zooming around.

There are also two different 2-person activities (the see-saw and air glider) which is great for siblings or friends. The Flexible Flyer playground, unlike the Swing-N-Slide and Backyard Discovery, has a really awesome swing that kids stand in the footholds while swinging. This is a ton of fun and pretty unique!  

Parent Perspective

While the lack of a sandbox and climbing platform may be a bummer for kids, it could be a boon to parents. No sandbox means no combing sand out of my daughter’s hair during bath time which, thanks to the sandbox at daycare, is a daily occurrence at my house. Those of you with children who prefer to jump rather than use stairs or a climbing wall may also find relief in the fact that there is no tall platform for them to practice that skill.

I also like that since this backyard playground isn’t made out of wood, you don’t have to worry about restaining every so often or kids getting splinters. As long as you do some general maintenance, this inclusive set should last you a long time.


We’ve already covered that this set is inherently safer due to the lack of platform. However, there are some additional important safety features that are worth noting:

  • The frame uses powder coat paint which contributes to the strength and durability of the overall set.
  • All of the parts are UV protected and less likely to fade.
  • The chains for the swings and other features are vinyl covered to prevent discomfort and pinching.

Dimensions and Details

The Flexible Flyer playground is made in the USA. While it lacks in height, it makes up for it in length. Overall, it is much smaller than the other two playgrounds. Be sure to measure your space and to leave a safe perimeter for kids to play. The overall dimensions are roughly 18’L x 11’W x 6’H.


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Buying a backyard playground may be one of the best gifts you can give your kids. Not only will they have a blast playing, but just having the playground in the backyard will encourage them to spend more time outside doing a physical activity than they might usually. Whether you go with the Backyard Discovery, Swing-N-Slide, or Flexible Flyer playground, you won’t regret this decision. Make it a family affair by firing up the grill and enjoying a beautiful afternoon with the kids. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q: What age is this product suitable for?

The recommended age for each of the backyard playgrounds in as following:

Q: What is the weight limit for this set?

Q: What is the shipping weight for this set?

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Can I Sell My House For Sale By Owner?

Are you looking to sell your own house in order to keep more of the profit? While it is rather uncommon, only 8% of homes sold in 2017 were “for sale by owner,” without a realtor. For Sale By Owner (FSBO) normally isn’t easier than enlisting an agent, but enough people do it every year to show that it can be done successfully.


For Sale By Owner vs Using A Realtor

There are differing opinions on whether it is better to list your house FSBO (For Sale By Owner) or to use a real estate agent.  With any decision in life, there are tradeoffs with either option.

Reasons To Sell For Sale By Owner

  • Pay No or Little Commission

    • By listing with a realtor, the seller typically pays 6% of the selling price which is split between the buying and selling agents and brokers. Ideally, an FSBO home will be purchased without the assistance of a buying agent.  But, this isn’t always the case & the buying agent will be looking for a cut.
    • Here is an FSBO calculator, to compare how much more money you can make by selling your house yourself.
  • Easier To Advertise With  The Internet

    • The internet has made it easier for DIYers to sell just about anything, including houses. Not only can owners list their houses on FSBO internet websites, but also on major sites like Trulia and Zillow can be helpful. You will have to pay a listing fee at most sites, but it can still be cheaper in the long run than hiring an agent. Of course, you can always advertise for free on Craigslist or the old-fashioned route with the classic “For Sale By Owner” sign in the front yard.
  • A Great Option For House-Flippers

    • Sellers that might make a living or a respectable side income from buying fixer-uppers and selling for a profit might be natural fits for FSBO. It helps to increase the profit of each house. Having a background in real estate can help make the negotiation and closing process easier than inexperienced FSBO sellers.
  • Already Have A Buyer Lined Up

    • Statistics show that FSBO homes tend to sell quicker than agency-listed homes on average because the seller already has a buyer in mind. If that is the case, forgo the “middle man” and save some money.

Reasons Not To Sell For Sale By Owner

  • Homes Sold By an Agent Typically Sell For More Money

    • It’s often said that real estate agents and brokers can more accurately price a house and can negotiate a higher price because of their experience. After all, negotiating with buyers and sellers on a daily basis is their profession.
    • According to the 2017 annual report from the National Association of Realtors, the typical FSBO home sold for $190,000 while the average realtor-listed home sold for $250,000.
      • Note that statistic is a huge difference and needs to be taken with a grain of salt. The average FSBO probably won’t sell at a 16% discount to avoid realtor fees. Home prices vary from region to region and owners of high-end homes most likely will not go through the process of selling their own home. The tradeoff of the additional work required for a sale by owner house isn’t worth the potential lost income or time by having to advertise, show, and close the sale.
  • FSBO Is Hard Work

    • Selling your own house is a lot of work and can be time-consuming. You are the person needing to advertise, answer all the phone calls from prospective buyers, need to be present to show the house, and also complete most of the paperwork when the house sells. This is everything a real estate agent handles, allowing the seller to continue their normal daily activities as much as possible.
  • Paperwork Can Be Confusing

    • Potentially the hardest part of any home sale, for buyers and sellers, is understanding and completing all the paperwork involved with a home sale. The paperwork and mortgage application process can be stressful. This is true even if real estate agents assist both parties. For people who work with it on a daily basis, it is just another day at the office. Some states also require all home sales to be completed by a real estate attorney. Even if there aren’t any agents involved in the sale, sellers may have to pay a fee if they live in a state with this requirement.

For Sale By Owner Statistics

Here are a couple statistics gathered in the 2017 annual report from the National Association of Realtors regarding the average profile of a for sale by owner seller.

  • The median age of FSBO sellers was 55 years of age.
  • The average FSBO house was only listed for two weeks before selling.
  • 68% of FSBO sellers reported they were satisfied with the selling process.

For reasons listed above, certain people have more concrete reasons to sell their house without an agent.  They have prior experience with selling a house, already have a buyer lined up, or are looking for a quick sale without giving any equity to a selling or buying agent. The report doesn’t provide the reasons why FSBO sellers were happy with the process. A 68% satisfaction rating means that almost 3/4 would consider listing their next house for sale by owner again.

How To Sell A House By Owner

There are certain actions a FSBO seller needs to take that a real estate agent normally takes care of when they list a house.

Here is a quick checklist to help you prepare for a sale:

Make The House Immaculate

The first item of business, agent or no agent, is to make your house look like something from the “Parade of Homes.” Have a trusted friend or family member do a walkthrough to identify any potential spots that might need upgraded or repaired. The house will also need to be neat and clean. This isn’t the 2005 or 2006 housing boom when houses were selling at record pace. A dirty house means disinterested buyers and potentially lower prices.

Take Quality Photos

Agents and brokers might hire a professional to take quality photographs to help make the house look more inviting to potential buyers. Take pictures of every room with plenty of light and show special features of your home. Research tutorials to help with this process.

Price Competitively and List on MLS

Accurately pricing your house might be difficult and you might have to ask a realtor to help with this part of the process. You will need to find the market value and compare the recent sales prices of similar homes.

Once the house has a price, list it on MLS (Multiple Listing Service). It is the go-to listing platform for realtors and potential buyers. You should also consider listing on the local Craigslist board,, and place physical signs in your yard and in high-traffic areas nearby. A flat-fee listing on the MLS currently goes for $299.00.

Research The Paperwork Process

You never know how soon your house will sell. You should be familiar with the paperwork process that comes with selling your house. As you show the house to potential buyers, they may ask you questions. You can seek advice from a real estate agent or attorney, if unfamiliar with the process. Or you can always hire an expert to complete this part of the sale. You should still save plenty of money, even if you have to hire somebody.


For Sale By Owner is a possibility if you do not mind working a little harder to make the sale. It is similar to deciding to sell a used vehicle or accept the trade-in value of a car.

With a car trade-in, you know you will get the reduced sale price but it is less hassle. There are more opportunities to earn money by selling a car yourself, but it also requires more work and time. Selling a house is more complex than selling a car in several aspects, but the concept is similar. If you are willing to sell your own car, then selling your own house might not be such a daunting task.

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Top Reading Chairs To Comfort Every Bookworm

There is one comfort which is nearly as important to a bookworm as their book collection and that is their reading chair. A reading chair is a special place that perfectly provides solitude and solace for a reader, no matter what text they hold in their hands. As an avid reader myself, I take this matter very seriously and have spent hours and hours researching the best reading chairs available online. 

If GoodReads is the eHarmony for books, then this post is its equal for luxury reading chairs. There are many factors to consider when picking out a reading chair. Do you prefer to read while hugging your knees? Or would you rather stretch out your legs? Do you read primarily inside or outside? Do you want your reading chair to be modern or make you feel like you’ve been transported in time?

You really can’t go wrong with any of my three favorite reading chairs. The indoor/outdoor Island Gale Swing Chair will transport you to paradise while your mind wanders wherever it may. Meanwhile, the more traditional Stone & Beam Leila Tufted Chair can easily match the existing living room and bedroom decor while providing an extra-wide sitting space. Finally, the Antonina Chaise Lounge is a throwback to a finer time when owning a large library spoke volumes about your moral character.

The Best Reading Chair Winner: Island Gale Luxury Wicker Swing Chair with Stand and Cushion

Quick Summary

The Island Gale Swing Chair is the Pride and Prejudice of reading chairs–beautiful, romantic, and surprising in all the right places. The swing is technically made for two, but also a great option for one person to spread out and get comfy while they read. If you easily fall asleep while reading, you might also consider this as the perfect choice for a napping chair.

Favorite Features

One of the most unique features of the Island Gale Swing Chair is that it can be used indoors or outdoors (unlike the Stone & Beam Armchair and Antonina Chaise Lounge that I will expand on later in this article). The chair is made of all-weather wicker. The cushion is made of outdoor fabric that can be easily wiped down or washed if you happen to be one of those people who spills drinks while reading. I’m personally one of those people and I can tell you from experience that this chair is easy to clean.

This product is all-inclusive. You don’t have to purchase a separate cushion or stand because everything will be included upon delivery. Even better, there is no assembly involved. Just hang up the swing on the stand and you’re ready to go!

Speaking of the cushion, the one included with the Island Gale Swing Chair is massive. You can sit up straight and let your feet dangle. Alternatively, you can stretch out across the cushion. Both the cushion itself and the design of the chair keep your legs and back supported no matter which position you sit in.

Finally, I have to mention the swinging sensation! This is another creative feature that sets the Island Gale Swing Chair apart from the others. The swing is like a breeze, gentle enough to be relaxing but not intense enough to be distracting. I love swinging while reading. It feels as if my physical body is imitating the wandering of my mind.

Note that if you’re adamant about having an outdoor reading space but this piece doesn’t speak to you, check out my post on the Best Patio Furniture Sets. Every time I say “entertaining,” simply replace it with “getting lost in a page-turning novel”.


The design of the Island Gale Swing Chair is stunning and practical. Although it is a fairly large piece, it’s apparent that thought has gone into each and every part of its creation and design. Most importantly, the chair itself is super sturdy. I can’t even count the number of times I have climbed on top of a hammock only to have it flip over on me.

You certainly don’t have to worry about dropping your book or falling out of this chair. It has two arms on the stand and a large round base to keep the chair balanced and safe. Children may also use it, although supervision is always recommended. 

Wicker is the primary material used to create this beautiful reading chair. It’s handcrafted and handwoven. I love knowing that a craftsman worked on my furniture. It makes the piece so much more personal and special than something that has been cranked out by a machine. Whether it be outdoor greenery or a soothing wall color, the tessellated wicker gives a sneak peek to what’s behind the chair. When I’m not sitting in this reading chair, it feels like a piece of art.

The bottom of the egg-shaped design is flat the way a regular armchair would be. It goes a long way to ensuring overall comfort when sitting or laying down on the chair. As mentioned, the cushion is fairly large.

Things To Consider

However, if you’re particularly tall, it may not support but a small portion of your back. If the feeling of wicker on your back bothers you, you might want to add another pillow. But more than likely you won’t even notice it. The cushion comes in two different colors: charcoal and latte.

Both colors delicately complement the brown wicker while not distracting from the environment. However, the limited colors may not be optimal for some people. 


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The Best Reading Chair Runner-Up: Stone & Beam Leila Tufted Chair

Quick Summary

This Stone & Beam Leila Tufted Chair is the perfect reading chair for any living space. It has an extra-wide seat which is perfect for scrunching up your legs without feeling like a sardine. Its vintage look will add an essence of elegance and prestige to any room without looking out of place.

I especially recommend this chair for curling up to read Kevin Kwan’s Crazy Rich Asians (a freshly downloaded version counts). The opulence described in the novel fits right in with this beautifully classic reading chair.

Favorite Features

The best part of the Stone & Beam Leila Tufted Chair is its width. Unlike standard armchairs, the seat is 44 inches wide, giving you a ton of room to get comfortable. I’m a pillow person and would definitely recommend adding a cute accent pillow to further support my back while in this reading chair. I especially prefer quote pillows since reading is the theme here. An added pillow, even if not used when sitting in the chair, would add to the reading chair’s overall statement in any living space.

Next, consider the chair’s arms. They are absolutely made to rest your arms (or swing your legs over if you’re feeling youthful). The tufted pattern circles all the way around which adds support and maintains the overall style. No matter how you scrunch up, swing your legs, or sit, this reading chair is a comfortable beauty that you do not want to overlook.  

While this chair definitely isn’t made to go outdoors, it would look great in a sunroom or a screen-protected patio. I can only imagine how wonderful a gentle summer breeze would add to the ambiance of your reading time. Add an ottoman, a small side table for your favorite drink, and extra books or even a collection of Sudoku to complete the chill vibe.


This reading chair has been designed thoughtfully to make it easy to set up and clean. The only installation required is to screw in the four solid wood feet. The espresso color works well with and compliments the many different fabric color options: Hunter Green, Latte, Linen, Pewter, Sandstone, and Smoky Teal.

Even better, you can purchase a matching ottoman if you prefer to put your feet up! If you’re worried about whether the color will match your space, you do have the option of ordering swatch samples before committing to the purchase. This option guarantees that you select the perfect color for your space.

The seat cushion for this reading chair is reversible (which is incredibly helpful when my rambunctious toddler feels it’s necessary to deconstruct our furniture). I don’t have to worry about whether it’s up or down. I also appreciate that the fabric is pulled tight. This not only adds to the simple style of the chair but also makes it easy to clean. Just use a damp cloth or vacuum and you can easily clean up any small drink spills or smashed Goldfish.

Overall, the antique style of this tufted reading chair speaks to my heart. It’s a chair that I would expect to find in Sherlock Holmes’ library. Simply, it feels natural to curl up in it with a classic novel or adventure thriller. If I were to give a reading chair as a gift, this would definitely be the option that I choose. Unlike the Island Gale Swing Chair and Antonina Chaise Lounge, the Stone & Beam Armchair is more narrow and therefore more likely to work in any space without taking up too much room.


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The Best Reading Chair Honorable Mention: GDF Studio Antonina Plush Tufted Chaise Lounge

Quick Summary

This stunning chaise lounge is perfect for dramatically tossing yourself upon it to wait for the stereotypical question, “And how does that make you feel?” while reading Sigmund Freud’s The Interpretation of Dreams. Jokes aside, this Antonina Chaise Lounge makes a perfect reading chair and conversation piece for any living room or bedroom.

This chair is perfect for stretching out your legs to read but also adds extra support on your back and side in case you prefer to sit. The tufted design and wooden legs are a blast into your favorite classic novel.

Favorite Features

Many chaise lounges do not have an armrest. The Antonina Chaise Lounge does, making it one of my favorite features of this reading chair. It makes the lounge a much more versatile piece because you don’t have to lay down to feel supported. Sometimes I’m in the mood to read cross-legged. With this reading chair, I can scoot back and use the armrest or I can even sit in the other direction and use the armrest for back support.

I also love that this reading chair comes in a variety of fabric and wood colors. The options include Blue Grey Fabric, Brown Leather, Dark Charcoal Fabric, Ivory Leather, and Medium Beige Fabric. I particularly love the Blue Grey Fabric with natural wood legs. The color is simply unique and not what you would usually find for a chaise lounge chair.

However, if you really want to achieve a traditional style in a home office for example, then the Brown Leather is truly a winner. The two leather options are likely to be easier to clean as well if that is something you are concerned about.

Finally, the length of this chair is perfect for a reading chair. If you’re looking for a sleeper sofa, this is probably not the right choice for you. Unless you’re a child or super short, prepare to have your legs dangle off of the end. Many times a chaise lounge can be bulky and take up too much space. I find the size of this reading chair to be reasonable. Plus, it can be worked into the design of many different types of rooms.


Similar to the Stone & Beam Armchair, the Antonina Chaise Lounge uses a tufted design that is pulled tight. You should be able to easily clean light spills in the same manner with a vacuum or damp cloth. It also requires only minimal assembly that should take no longer than 15-30 minutes. You won’t need special tools or equipment either. Hurray!

The design of the Antonina Chaise Lounge will elevate the look of any room. It’s royal, present, and simply stylish. I think this would look great in a home office, the living room, or even your bedroom. In a bedroom you could literally roll out of bed, pull the bed covers over to the chaise lounge, and crack open the book you fell asleep reading. 

This is one of those chairs that will have your house guests begging to know where you bought it from. The ridges on the wooden feet are, beautiful, delicate, and unique. They have been painted to match the fabric or leather of the chaise lounge. I would personally add a small throw and an accent pillow to the reading chair in order to complete the look. However, the piece is well put together and a statement of itself. It could certainly stand on its own.

[amazon_link asins=’B071H6MSFQ’ template=’Custom’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ text=” link_id=’d2135fe3-a489-11e8-a08a-9d72c1c0181c’]

And They Lived Happily Ever After…

…getting lost in a book while sitting on their beautiful new reading chair! Whether you choose the Island Gale Swing Chair, the Stone & Beam Armchair, or the Antonina Chaise Lounge prepare to have a dreamy reading experience. All three of these beautifully crafted reading chairs are designed to be functional, comfortable, and add elegance to any room.

If you’re looking for an all-out experience, consider choosing my top pick, the Island Gale Swing Chair, which can be used indoors or outdoors. It’s not only comfortable but has plenty of space to stretch out while swinging through the pages.

If you’re looking for something more simple or even a gift, you may want to choose the Stone & Beam Armchair. While offering larger seat space, this reading chair is more compact than the other two options and more likely to fit in any living space.

Finally, the Antonina Chaise Lounge is perfect for a relaxed and ultra-traditional reading space.

No matter your choice, I hope you find comfort and happiness in any of these three incredible options.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What are the dimensions of each reading chair?

Island Gale Swing Chair

  • Chair Basket Dimensions
    • 58.27″ wide (basket seat, side to side)
    • 48.81″ tall (basket top to bottom)
    • 27.56″ deep (basket front to back)
  • Overall Dimensions
    • 58.27” wide
    • 78.2” tall
    • 47.2” deep

Stone & Beam Armchair

  • Chair Dimensions
    • 44” wide
    • 31” tall
    • 36” deep

Antonina Chaise Lounge

  • Lounge Dimensions
    • 30” wide
    • 32.5” tall
    • 65.5” deep

Q: Is there a weight limit on the Island Gale Swing Chair?

Yes, there is a weight limit of 528 lbs. This reading chair should comfortably be able to fit 2 adults.

Q: Do you need to assemble the chairs?

The Island Gale Swing Chair, the Stone & Beam Armchair, and the Antonina Chaise Lounge only require minimal assembly. You do not need to have any special tools or equipment. You should be done in less than 30 minutes.

Q: Are these chairs only for reading?

Absolutely not! You can use all three of these beautiful chairs to entertain, watch movies, or anything else you might do in your living space. They are also fairly easy to clean. What’s great about all three of these options is how you can dress them up or down with accent pillows and throws.

However, if you choose to keep things minimal, all three of these chairs are beautiful and stylish enough to make a statement of their own. 

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Surround Yourself with the Best Surround Sound Systems

What Are the Best Surround Sound Systems?

Shopping around for a better way to immerse yourself in the sounds of music, movies, TV, or other media? Then you’ll need the best surround sound systems to choose from. I recently decided to upgrade my entertainment area and spent countless hours researching and listening to different setups. As a musician and artist, I know how important sound quality is. You’ll need the latest technology and features that you may not even know existed, along with the elegant designs that are just some of the great qualities found in the best surround sound systems.

The first important tip for any buyer to know is that the cheap versions of the best surround sound systems just won’t cut it. The quality of every single part and piece that is used in the construction of the speakers, box, magnets, cones, and everything else is essential for the best sound possible. The cheap models just don’t have what it takes to be something that will make you happy after you purchase it.

If you want to know that the system you buy will last a long time, hold its value if you decide to sell it and upgrade, and keep the quality of its sound throughout the years, you’ll need trusted brands that use the latest features and technology to further enhance the sound.

It’s also important to note that the best surround sound systems on this list are for indoor home theaters and living rooms. If you want to check out outdoor speaker systems, check out this article.

What Are Features Common in the Best Surround Sound Systems?

First, you’ll want all the latest features in connectivity. It’ll be pointless if your system can’t connect to Wi-Fi and have Bluetooth connectivity so you can play music streaming apps right from your phone, tablet, or computer. Going wireless with every piece of tech that you buy is always going to be a good thing.

However, it’s important to note that any device that is wired is going to have a better connection. Latency issues disappear, along with connection quality that can reduce sound quality in this context. Several years ago, when Bluetooth technology was first introduced to the surround sound system market, the reservations people had about the new features were very understandable. The quality of the sound wasn’t nearly as good as a wired system.

When Bluetooth speakers were introduced, the same issue occurred where the sound quality was driven down because they weren’t wired. Now, those issues are completely resolved by using small coding and programs inside the computer of the device to allow for maximum enhancement of the sound quality. The senders and receivers are much better equipped to produce sound just as if they were wired in.


The price point has to be right as well. There are some serious systems out there that can go past $15,000. There aren’t very many people that would pay more for one of the best surround sound systems for their needs than they would a car. The most bought surround sound systems are the cheaper ones, of course, because people want to save money.

But, the quality isn’t near what you want it to be in the cheaper models. You want something that won’t drain your bank account but has the quality and features of the super expensive models. They do exist, and you’ll get three explained right here for you.

The Winner- [amazon_textlink asin=’B01KZHOW3I’ text=’Bose Lifestyle 650′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’1c1e8b02-7d96-11e8-9098-b558618883f7′]

Bose Lifestyle 650 best surround sound systems

This wouldn’t be much of a list of the best surround sound systems without Bose being on it. When one thinks of the best quality of sound, Bose is the first name that pops up. There is a reason that trend exists.

Bose has been at the forefront of leading the industry in innovative technology for many years. This particular surround sound system model is no different. You get all the features of a new system, plus the outstanding performance of a Bose system. Every detail is intricately engineered in these products.

Nothing is overlooked, and everything is enhanced.

This 5.1 channel surround sound system combines elegance, superior craftsmanship, unmatched sound quality, and features that are hard to find in most other surround sound systems.

[amazon_textlink asin=’B01KZHOW3I’ text=’Bose Lifestyle 650′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’29096d22-7d96-11e8-95be-ff4ba44fa27a’] Craftsmanship

Bose outdid even themselves when making- what I consider- the best surround sound systems on the market. The receiver, speakers, and the Acoustimass wireless bass speaker module are all carefully crafted from brushed aluminum. Bose is also mostly known for how small they make their products that produce a bigger sound than their traditionally designed counterparts. This surround sound system uses smaller speakers, but the technology behind them creates a sound much bigger and a better quality than anyone would imagine.

Bose uses what they have trademarked, “OmniJewel” speaker technology. This is two opposing drivers, or speakers facing each other to create an omnidirectional sound that also reduces undesirable sound interference like static, distortion, reverb, etc. They have mastered the art of the speaker, and have carefully housed it in a modern, but elegant box that looks great in any home.

[amazon_textlink asin=’B01KZHOW3I’ text=’Bose Lifestyle 650′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’34fd45ac-7d96-11e8-8703-db7c665a4f77′] Sound Quality

Bose Lifestyle 650 best surround sound systems

The sound quality of this system is off the charts. It is better than one would expect even from a more expensive system like this one. The dual opposing driver speaker technology is the most modern design and the quality of the sound is just amazing.

The bass speaker that comes in this package is called the “Acoustimass Bass Module”. This means its construction allows it to provide a much deeper, richer bass and clear tones that the competitors just can’t touch.

The overall goal for the system was to provide a 360-degree sound so the user can completely immerse themselves in the experience. This is achieved by the omnidirectional technology that is exclusive to Bose products. During the initial setup process, which the system guides the user through, it will give you the best possible place to put the speakers to get the best sound.

But, if you were even to put them all around the same area, you would still get a ‘surround’ sound, because the speakers produce sound in all directions, except for the backside, while they are against the wall.


This model of surround sound system features “Unify”, which is an exclusive setup guide that is super easy to use. Its all on the screen, so the user simply follows the prompts. Within the guide, another technology, ADAPTiQ, which is an audio calibration tool that finesses the sound down to the finest detail. It considers room size, shape, where the speakers are, speaker levels, sound levels, and many other settings and features.

The ‘bass module’ and speakers that are for the back of the room, usually away from the console, TV, cable box, etc. are wireless so you don’t have to run 30ft cords across your room. The quality of the sound is not affected one bit. All the speakers have the same quality about them regardless if they are wireless or not.

[amazon_textlink asin=’B01KZHOW3I’ text=’Bose Lifestyle 650′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’3e99bfc0-7d96-11e8-861a-9ba9413f3473′] Features

  • Wi-Fi connectivity
  • Bluetooth technology
  • “Unify” technology to add more wireless speakers
  • Easy on-screen setup guide
  • Universal remote with hundreds of settings and buttons along with LED screen at the top
  • Comes with wall mounts for OmniJewel wall speakers

What’s in the Box?

The Lifestyle 650 model comes with OmniJewel speakers with a true 360-degree sound output. The unit comes with:

  • 4 omnidirectional wall speakers
  • 21″ soundbar center speaker
  • Wireless “Acoustimass” bass module with “QuietPort” technology
  • Alexa-enabled system module with 6 HDMI inputs and all-around connectivity
  • Universal remote
  • Speaker cables
  • Headset for ADAPTiQ
  • HDMI cable
  • IR emitter
  • Batteries for universal remote
  • Power supplies
  • Owner’s manual
  • Setup hardware and instructions

[amazon_textlink asin=’B01KZHOW3I’ text=’Bose Lifestyle 650′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’496e1e8a-7d96-11e8-acb3-277eccb32757′] Connectivity

Bose Lifestyle 650 best surround sound systems Amazon Alexa

Connect any device you have to this surround sound system, and it will support it. Here are the ports you can find on the back of the system console:

  • 6 HDMI ports
  • 2 coax connections
  • 2 optical connections
  • L/R audio out
  • Connections port for Bass Module
  • IR repeater connection
  • Ethernet port
  • USB port
  • Data port

On the front of the main system console, you can find:

  • Headphone jack

[amazon_textlink asin=’B01KZHOW3I’ text=’Bose Lifestyle 650′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’51cbd7fd-7d96-11e8-8194-87825309829c’] Picture Quality

This surround sound system is made for other devices to pass through it, which will enhance both the picture and the sound on any device. This model enhances the picture quality using 4K passthrough connectivity technology. Simply, it’s quite incredible.

Dimensions and Weight

  • Omnidirectional wall speakers- 1.84″ x 5.77″ x 1.84″ @ .78 lbs.
  • Main System Console- 15.98″ x 2.56″ x 10.16″ @ 8.8 lbs.
  • Center Channel Speaker- 21.34″ x 1.9″ x 1.84″ @2.66 lbs.
  • Rear Speaker Wireless Receiver- 6.54″ x 1.6″ x 3.07″ @ 9.8 oz.
  • “Acoustimass” Bass Speaker- 11.61″ x 12.8″ x 11.61″ @ 30lbs.

Flaws, But Not Dealbreakers

Some folks have complained pretty fiercely about the setup, and how terrible it is to do. Most don’t have a problem. Just remember that this is a larger system that requires careful settings’ manipulation and setup, running cords, plugging everything in safely, installing wall mounts, etc.

It is reported that the entire process takes about two hours to do. That isn’t bad considering everything the system has.

Final Thoughts

The [amazon_textlink asin=’B0765D98L4′ text=’Bose Lifestyle 650 surround sound system’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’5ccb16db-7d96-11e8-a0ea-4ff7feea4dd2′] is a beast. It is a magnificent and elegant system of equipment that will enhance every part of your home entertainment lifestyle. The sound quality is unbelievable.

The wireless connectivity is super convenient, and it doesn’t take away from the quality of the sound. The extra features and settings that are exclusive to Bose put this system over the top of its competitors.

Plus, the fact that you can buy single wireless Bose speakers and add to the system is amazing. You can put speakers in every room of your house, and use the settings to map it. You can then tell Alexa to continue playing your music in the bathroom, or anywhere else. The technology is futuristic, and it will connect to any newer device out there, no matter what it is.

The system is the easiest thing I have used. It does everything for you. The setup is completely guided, the settings go through and tell you what exactly it changes, and you can mess with levels and all kinds of other settings. Simply plug it in, connect some wires, and fire it up. Everything connects seamlessly, and you’ll be ready to go in no time. The price is high, but it is well worth the money because it has everything the best surround sound systems should have.


[amazon_link asins=’B01KZHOW3I’ template=’Custom’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ text=” link_id=’08b6c7e9-8077-11e8-be15-a7e894b654e9′]

The Runner-Up- [amazon_textlink asin=’B00V9Z2XA0′ text=’Yamaha YHT-5920UBL’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’6f5ad4ab-7d96-11e8-a801-1571a0d49c2e’]

Yamaha YHT-5920UBL best surround sound systems

Yamaha has been making the most incredible instruments and some of the best surround sound systems for decades. So needless to say, one of their models makes the list of best surround sound systems for good reason. This particular surround sound system model has all the goodies, features, connectivity, and settings that make it one of the best on the market.

[amazon_textlink asin=’B00V9Z2XA0′ text=’Yamaha YHT-5920UBL’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’761abbc3-7d96-11e8-9041-2b55681e396e’] Craftsmanship

Yamaha products are known to their resiliency and robust design. This company makes concert speakers that stack up to the ceiling on a stage. This little system will be able to take some damage and still keep pumping out great sound. The boxes are made from a very hard plastic material.

Simply put, it’ll last as long as you’ll take care of it. The materials Yamaha uses to make every single piece of their products. They come from the best sources and are designed and made by the most brilliant people in the industry. Yamaha products are also known to last the longest because of their precise and firm quality control standards.

[amazon_textlink asin=’B00V9Z2XA0′ text=’Yamaha YHT-5920UBL’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’7f27c829-7d96-11e8-b805-3d6589dcfe7b’] Sound Quality

Yamaha YHT-5920UBL best surround sound systems

The sound is driven by a powerful 100w subwoofer, 4 wall mount speakers, and a center speaker. Yamaha has done such a fantastic job of combining new sound enhancing technologies into their products. For example, Yamaha’s digital piano is considered the best in the world because of their innovative sound enhancement software.

The same kind of innovation and technology is used in all their digital products, including this model, one of the best surround sound systems on the market.

[amazon_textlink asin=’B00V9Z2XA0′ text=’Yamaha YHT-5920UBL’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’872ade63-7d96-11e8-b9df-e3249dfeb89f’] Features

  • Wi-Fi connectivity
  • Bluetooth connectivity SBC / AAC
  • Wireless Direct connectivity
  • Compressed music enhancer technology
  • Compatible with DSD 2.8MHz, WAV, AIFF 192 kHz, 5.6 MHz, FLAC, Apple Lossless 96 kHz, and 24-bit playback
  • 4K UHD passthrough technology
  • HDCP 2.2 support
  • “MusicCast”- added wireless speaker capability
  • YPAO- automatic wireless sound optimization setup
  • Compatible with Spotify, AirPlay, and Pandora
  • A/V controller app
  • Works with Alexa
  • 3D video signal support
  • CEC compatible- unit turns on and off with your TV or projector
  • DSP settings and parameter adjustment software
  • Gapless playback
  • “Virtual Cinema DSP & Front”- These are 2 speaker setup selections that use virtual sound technology to make it sound like there are two speakers behind where the person is sitting when there isn’t. This is a virtual setup when running speakers to the back of the room just aren’t possible. In these setups, all of the physical speakers are at the front, by the TV or projector in these two setup options
  • Extra bass setting
  • “Cinema DSP 3D”- enhances the quality of audio by decoding HD audio on 3D formatting
  • “Virtual Presence Speaker”- this enhancement provides true 3D sound from the regular speakers. No actual presence speakers are required for this setting
  • Subwoofer Trim settings for enhanced sound imaging
  • Adaptive Range Control
  • Built-in FM/AM tuner and antenna

What’s in the Box?

  • Main console A/V receiver
  • 4 wall mount speakers, front, and rear
  • Center speaker
  • 100w subwoofer w/ 6 1/2″ cone
  • Power cables
  • Instruction manual
  • Warranty information
  • Universal remote

[amazon_textlink asin=’B00V9Z2XA0′ text=’Yamaha YHT-5920UBL’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’9032452c-7d96-11e8-ba3a-75e52bb45520′] Connectivity

Yamaha YHT-5920UBL best surround sound systems

This unit has all the ports one would need to hook up a serious entertainment system. At the back of the receiver, you’ll find:

  • 6 HDMI in ports
  • HDMI Out port
  • Ethernet port
  • Coax connection
  • Optical connections
  • Multiple wired speaker ports
  • L/R audio out connections
  • A/V connections

At the front of the unit, you will find:

  • Headphone jack
  • USB 2.0 / 3.0 port
  • Auxiliary port
  • YPAO microphone input

[amazon_textlink asin=’B00V9Z2XA0′ text=’Yamaha YHT-5920UBL’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’98830593-7d96-11e8-a52a-d30483cf5f33′] Picture Quality

This model is capable of 3D and 4K passthrough and enhances the picture of regular HD. The picture is astounding. This product will put out the best picture that is possible, but it will all depend on the capabilities of your TV or projector. Check out this article if you want to learn more about the best projectors on the market.

Dimensions and Weight

  • Front Speakers- 4 3/8″ x 6 7/8″ x 4 5/8″ @1.3 lbs.
  • Center Speaker- 10 7/8″ x 4 3/8″ x 4 5/8″ @ 1.61 lbs.
  • Surround Speakers- 4 3/8″ x 6 7/8″ x 4 5/8″ @ 1.3 lbs.
  • Subwoofer- 11 3/8″ x 11 1/2″ x 12 7/8″ @ 17.6 lbs.
  • Main System Receiver- 17-1/8” x 8-3/4” x 12-7/8” (with antenna) @ 17.9 lbs.

Flaws, But Not Dealbreakers

The system just doesn’t have many flaws. Yamaha took their time in perfecting most of the components and technology associated with this product. However, there are just a few things that irked some people.

The wires for the front speakers and subwoofer isn’t a very good quality wire. It still works just fine the way it is, but if you want the best connection and sound, it would be best to buy a high-end 16g speaker wire to replace the factory wire.

Some people are upset about the speaker quality. Personally, I believe that to be really splitting hairs, because the sound quality is amazing. Some people have some media that isn’t the best quality and then blame it on the speakers. If you play a 4K movie through this system with quality HDMI cables and have the setting right, you’ll be blown away at the sound this surround sound system makes.

Another complaint, which I actually found a bit of merit in, is that the speakers do not have the best highs. If you want the highs to come through, you must fiddle with the levels and other settings and it ends up taking away from the mid-levels and low levels. Again, this is splitting hairs, and it would take an experienced ear to even notice the difference. To the average user, the highs are completely fine.

Final Thoughts

It was tough to decide whether or not to put the [amazon_textlink asin=’B00V9Z2XA0′ text=’Yamaha YHT-5920UBL MusicCast’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’ae7994ac-7d96-11e8-ad44-d9b614b15abf’] in the first place position or not because of all the amazing features and enhancement capabilities that they put into it. The extra goodies they put into the unit aren’t empty promises either. They enhance the sound to a ridiculous level of professional quality that other brands just cannot come close to.

The options available for the user for connectivity, settings, features, and fine-tuning every single aspect of how the system works is amazing. Even though this surround sound system can be very complicated, which is great for the experienced user, the unit is still incredibly easy to use for the average user. Once the system is set up, just a couple of buttons on your phone, tablet, computer, or the remote will get you to where you want to be, listening to music, watching a movie, streaming music, or video, or casting the screen of your device onto your TV.

The price of this system is the best part of this whole deal. You’ll pay much more for a quality TV or projector, which is great because you’ll save a ton of money getting one of the best surround sound systems money can buy. Plus, you don’t have to stop at just the setup that comes in the box. You can purchase additional wireless speakers and disburse them throughout your home theater or other rooms in your home at your leisure.

The extra speakers are very affordable too. All in all, you are getting the best quality surround sound system for a fraction of the price of some of the other models that do the exact same thing.

The Honorable Mention- [amazon_textlink asin=’B073VLKMPW’ text=’Onkyo HT-S9800THX 7.1′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’bee5878e-7d96-11e8-ac7c-7518d4097eef’]

Onkyo HT-S9800THX 7.1 best surround sound systems

While this system is the Honorable Mention, don’t be fooled. It is a sound powerhouse that will shake and rattle your entire house if you want it to. There aren’t any surround sound systems that can be put up against this one for the price.

When thinking about how speakers and systems like these work, we want to know about how much power they have in each channel, and how much power you need for your application. Sound physics is a very complicated matter, but to make it easy for everyone, let’s just say that more power is a good thing.

Small speakers need to work harder to produce the decibels and sound quality that people want out of their surround sound systems. It does not have to work very hard at all to give you some serious sound that is excellent throughout the entire range. At 210w per channel @ 6ohms and 100w per channel @ 8ohms, you’ll be able to rattle the devil’s cage at maximum volume.

[amazon_textlink asin=’B073VLKMPW’ text=’Onkyo HT-S9800THX 7.1′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’c7d324df-7d96-11e8-b696-f7b3bae3ce43′] Craftsmanship

This system is made of a high-quality plastic with MDF speaker enclosures. The makers use quality materials to make the inner workings of the unit, like the computer, video, and audio boards, etc. The connections are solidly built and sturdy against the backing of the main system receiver.

Most other surround sound systems are made from the same material, more or less. There’s really nothing special about this system besides to note that it is sturdy enough to justify the price tag.

[amazon_textlink asin=’B073VLKMPW’ text=’Onkyo HT-S9800THX 7.1′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’d0f6c629-7d96-11e8-91f3-d51a6b6287fd’] Sound Quality

Onkyo HT-S9800THX 7.1 best surround sound systems

Onkyo has been a leading sound company that produces some of the best surround sound systems. They like to show off that experience in their products. They only use the best, proven technologies, materials, and people to build their products. I could go on for days about the little details and enhancements at different frequencies and so forth.

Just listening to the system puts a smile on your face, especially if you’re an audiophile. You know that when you play your favorite album on Spotify or another music app, you’re getting some of the best quality sounds, and you also know that it turns up to 11.

[amazon_textlink asin=’B073VLKMPW’ text=’Onkyo HT-S9800THX 7.1′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’d6c7e0f5-7d96-11e8-a0a8-37d6dccea6fd’] Features

  • Amplification of Dynamic Audio
  • Circuitry- Non-phase-shift
  • “VLSC” filtering technology
  • 2.2 Dolby Atmos playback support
  • Up-mix Dolby Surround capability
  • “DTS:X” and “DTS Neural:X” technology
  • Chromecast built-in
  • DTS Play-Fi
  • Supports all music apps
  • THX certified sound quality
  • Supports HLG, Dolby Vision, HDR10, 4K/60Hz, BT.2020, and HDCP 2.2
  • “Powered Zone 2” allows for additional speakers and other wireless audio sources to be integrated into the system seamlessly
  • Onkyo Controller- an app that allows the user to control every part of the system, including streaming services and controls the audio and playback using “FlareConnect”
  • “FlareConnect”- a built-in feature that allows the user to mirror different kinds of audio to other compatible devices and speakers
  • 7.1 channels
  • 1595w total system power
  • Multiple DSP modes
  • AccuEQ- advanced equalizer settings that allow the user to fine-tune sound throughout the entire range
  • Advanced music optimizer
  • Bass boost
  • Wi-Fi and Bluetooth technologies
  • Front, Center, and Surround Speakers- 2-way acoustic suspension construction
  • Subwoofer- 12″ acoustic suspension, front firing
  • 2-year manufacturer warranty
  • 3D pass-through capability

What’s in the Box?

  • Onkyo main system receiver
  • 2 front speakers
  • Center speaker
  • 4 surround speakers
  • Subwoofer
  • Power cables
  • Speaker wires
  • Various cables
  • Instructions
  • Universal remote
  • Warranty information

[amazon_textlink asin=’B073VLKMPW’ text=’Onkyo HT-S9800THX 7.1′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’e15aca14-7d96-11e8-9937-c1cc438ede12′] Connectivity

Onkyo HT-S9800THX 7.1 best surround sound systems

This system will support anything you want to connect to it, either wirelessly or wired in. On the back of the receiver, you’ll find:

  • 7 HDMI in 2 HDMI Out
  • 2 Component video ports
  • USB port
  • 2 Composite ports
  • 2 Optical connections
  • Coax connection
  • 6 audio I/O
  • Zone 2- Line-out
  • Ethernet port
  • Tuner audio I/O
  • 6 audio in- TV, CD, stream box, game, cable/satellite, BD/DVD
  • Subwoofer Pre-out
  • 2 video in- cable/satellite, stream box
  • AM/FM connections

[amazon_textlink asin=’B073VLKMPW’ text=’Onkyo HT-S9800THX 7.1′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’e9a151bd-7d96-11e8-aa67-a3bc07ee3aea’] Picture Quality

This system features a 4K passthrough and is 3D compatible, so it will enhance the picture quality of any media. As long as the quality of the media and the cables are good then the picture will be of the best quality money can buy.

Dimensions and Weight

  • Front Speakers- 6 1/4″ x 17 1/16″ x 7 13/16″ @ 11.7 lbs.
  • Center Speaker- 17 1/16″ x 6 1/4″ x 7 13/16″ @ 11.7 lbs.
  • Surround Speakers- 7 7/8″ x 10 13/16″ x 6 5/8″ @ 7.7 lbs.
  • Subwoofer- 14 15/16″ x 17 1/2″ x 16 7/8″ @ 34.2 lbs.
  • Receiver- 17 1/8″ x 6 13/16″ x 14 7/8″ @ 22 lbs.

Flaws, But Not Dealbreakers

There have been some reported issues with quality control when people order this surround sound system online. But their customer service is super helpful, and they always make it right no matter what. Although, it can be quite annoying to a customer when a product arrives damaged, broken, and doesn’t work correctly.

Final Thoughts

The [amazon_textlink asin=’B073VLKMPW’ text=’Onkyo HT-S9800THX’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’010b9542-7d97-11e8-a138-8134020a8df1′][amazon_textlink asin=’B073VLKMPW’ text=’Onkyo HT-S9800THX’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’walletpath-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=”] surround sound system has enough power to rattle all your decorations off your wall but still has the advanced technology to produce a crisp, clear, and rich sound at every single frequency. You certainly feel the lows in your chest when you turn it up, the mid-levels keep everything nice and smooth, and the high levels are crisp and not overpowering.

The combination is a wonderful sound that gives you the real experience of being in a movie theater. Personally, it is better than going to the movies, because you get to control everything. Plus, the sound is better in a smaller environment. The power of this system is just amazing.

Overall Thoughts on the Best Surround Sound System

The best surround sound systems are great for any home or even at the office or elsewhere. You can use them for a number of applications. Versatility wasn’t a quality of the best surround sound systems just a few years ago. Now you can connect anything to them and still have the best quality sounds. This is due to them being produced through brilliant sound innovation, futuristic technology, and scientific perfection of tried and true desirable speaker qualities.

The price is what usually puts people into a certain category when they shop for a product like a surround sound system. The best thing to do is not settle for a smaller, cheaper model, even if that system is from a name brand. While those types of systems are the most popular, they are also the most disappointing. People show it through reviews and comments all throughout the internet.

Do yourself a favor and budget for a quality surround sound system so you don’t have to worry about it breaking down, not being compatible with what you have, or not being able to produce quality sound and picture from your devices. You cannot go wrong with the three best surround sound systems above, but there are many more out there that may fit your needs better. Your pick of one of the best surround sound systems is the one that you love the most.