Michael Nash Design, Build & Homes

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Summer is the perfect time to plan for Fall

They’re the last things we want to think about in the summer but this is the best time to start looking ahead to fall and winter. This is especially true when remodeling is in your plans.

Planning for a fall or winter remodeling is important for many reasons, not the least of which is scheduling. Remodelers can find themselves with pretty full calendars as people book their projects. If you wait till the last minute, you may find yourself waiting even longer for a time when there is an opening in those full schedules.

Now is the time to ensure you book a time best for you.

Summer is also a perfect time to let your imagination wander and consider the many possibilities remodeling offers, as well as an opportunity to explore costs and budgets and determine what is possible for you.

It’s a time to consult with experts, like those at Michael Nash Design, Build & Homes. You can get ideas, estimates and nail down a time for your remodeling project.

This is also the season for visiting. People are social and no season lends itself more to being social than summer does. People drop by to see us and we drop by on friends and family.

Visits to the homes of friends offers a wonderful opportunity to gather ideas as we see other homes and what people may have done to enhance them. They may have redone a kitchen or bathroom, added an extension or any of a number of enhancements.

Seeing a complete project in someone’s home, and seeing how it is used and what it adds, brings a reality to what is otherwise just an idea. We can also consider how we might do it, what changes we would make and also ask questions of the people in the home we are visiting about how they feel about their project now that it’s complete. Is there anything they might have done differently? What has the project added to their lives and to their home’s value?

In other words, it’s a great way to gather ideas, see some real world examples of projects and think about how we might do them.

Summer is a time to let the imagination run but it is also a time to prepare for a project for fall or winter. Don’t let the opportunity pass you by!

Remodeling tip – make insulation part of your project

We generally don’t see insulation once installed, but it’s a big part of many remodeling projects. It doesn’t add to the visual appeal of a home but it adds a great deal of value to it. Insulation is one of the big keys when it comes to energy efficiency.

Keep in mind that insulation doesn’t just protect against heat loss in the winter. In the summer months, it helps keep cool air inside and the heat outside.

So when we embark on a project and insulation is a part of it, what should we consider?

One of the first things to consider is the insulation’s rating, or R-value. This value can get pretty complicated but as a simple, general rule think of it this way: the higher the R-value, the greater its ability to insulate.

You might be inclined to get the highest R-value you can. After all, the higher the better, right?

That’s true but only to a point. Costs will be involved and two factors play into how great the insulation properties need to be. Geography is one of them. If you live in a cooler, northern climate you will likely want higher insulation properties than you would find necessary in a warmer climate, such as in southern states.

Where the insulation is going in the house is also a determining factor. An attic or cathedral ceiling will require greater insulation properties than other areas of the house, such as the basement.

When taking on a remodeling project don’t neglect the insulation aspect where it is applicable. If you’re redoing the basement, make sure insulation is part of it. Some projects are simply about getting insulation in place, and the reason is simple.

A well insulated home means lower costs in both summer and winter. It adds an environmental quality to your home by increasing its energy efficiency – an important factor should you ever put your home on the market.

And it’s important for your comfort and your wallet.

Tips and considerations for choosing flooring

The importance of the floor to the impression visitors have your home can’t be underestimated. If you’re selling, the floor can be key to making that sale.

When considering what kind of flooring to put in, many factors are involved. The types of flooring are many, such as:

  • Hardwood
  • Bamboo
  • Carpeting
  • Vinyl
  • Ceramic tile
  • Stone
  • Laminates
As you can probably tell, some flooring may be better suited for certain rooms. So one of the first things to consider is what room or rooms is the flooring going into. There are many more things to take into account, however.

If you simply want to make a good impression, such as when you are selling your home, you can’t go wrong with hardwood. Most people love to see hardwood.

But another key factor is how you use your home. We’re not all selling homes; we’re living in them. As much as we may like hardwood, we need to consider how our home is used.

For example, if you have a dog or dogs you may want to hold off on putting in flooring such as hardwood because there is a potential those animals may damage it. Similarly, small children may damage it and, more importantly, other flooring options may be better suited from a safety perspective. Hardwood or a laminate may hold the potential of being slippery. Carpeting may be safer for people with children.

Carpeting is also good as a protector of hardwood and as an additional layer of insulation. In the case of animals or children, laying down carpeting can add protection and safety. It can also be a great enhancement to the look of a room.

Other things to consider include:

  • Will the floors be used a lot, such as with large families or frequent get togethers?
  • Are there rooms below that may require the flooring to have soundproofing?
  • Maintenance – does it require a lot or a little cleaning?
  • Will health issues such as asthma be a factor? Some flooring products may work better than others.
  • Cost – will the material and installation fit your budget?
  • Is a subfloor required or, if one exists, does it need repairs first?

As you can see, quite a few things can come into play when making flooring decisions. If it seems a bit overwhelming, don’t worry. Consultants like those at Michael Nash Design, Build & Homes can help you with all aspects from suggestions that fit your requirements to recommendations that work within your budget to estimates on costs.

Your home’s floor is important for many reasons and our consultants know it. That’s why they take care to ensure you get a floor that works for you and catches a visitor’s eye.