i don't have the means to test PH at home, but my water is pretty alkaline, around 7.9, 8. there really isn't anything new that would raise it. I have sand (not coral), driftwood, one chunk of lava rock, live plants, silk plants, and a ceramic pot/vase. and all those items but sand have been in my other aquarium and i didn't have any water problems.
what else could be off.. well, my mom cultured a random snail population and dumped the little buggers in betta tank. so there were a Lot when i came back. but with regular cleaning i didnt bother to save the ones that latched on decorations and so now i only fave a few.
also, i think my fish might have burned itself on the heater a few times in the past months because she would start zipping suddenly, but she loves being around the heater otherwise. i guess a few times she just got too close to it. haven't seen that happening in the past month or so though.
aaand.. i might be using a little more Prime than i should, but its really hard to measure out the right amount when a tiny cupful is enough for 50 gal. but i really doubt i'm putting more than 5x the amount advised.
other than that.. can't think of anything else at the moment