In most situations a sharp nail tip is required but when driving larger nails (8d and higher) into 2×4′s or other wood panels, the force and size of nail can cause the board to split. Quick solution is to turn the nail upside down, place the head on a hard […]
We want to highlight how the construction slowdown is effecting peoples lives especially in what used to be hot markets such as Las Vegas. No other city could match the commercial building frenzy that Las Vegas was able to sustain from the early 90′s until 2007 but now that many […]
Last week we broke down in detail the 4-steps to checking your contractors references. Follow through on these suggestions and have confidence that you’ve done everything you can do to cover yourself, your home and your money. Step 1. Do their Biggest Fans Love Them? Step 2. Are Their Most […]
Step 4 The final reference you always check is your contractors’ license and insurance status. This step could fall anywhere in the sequence, but I save it for last since it is the least likely of the four steps to rule out a contractor. A simple online search through your […]
Step 3 Request three references from long-time material suppliers. Your eventual contractor’s financial solvency is important: if they don’t pay their bills, you get stuck with either a lien on your property or have to pay the bill yourself. Just disputing such a scenario in court costs time and money, […]
Step 2 Ask your potential contractor for references from their last five project owners, in chronological order. This list may or may not include names on the reference list in Step 1. Call the project owners on this list if they were not on the first list. Ask them the […]
We’ve got a short series this week that explores the process of checking contractor references from our newest contributor, Deren Monday, who brings with him more than 10 years in the residential and commercial construction industry and is also a graduate in construction management. Checking References: The Most Critical Step […]
We enjoyed reading this online Q&A with Marianne Cusato who is the author of Value of Design. She was recently listed as number 4 on Builder magazine’s “Power on 50” list of the most influential people in home building. Cusato gives background on the rise of the McMansion and what […]
This timber framing clamp from Bessey Tools is driven into lumber sections and held by spikes at each end.
As much as we abhor McMansions we think this couple has taken living in a small home to the extreme. They formerly lived in a modest 1800 square foot home but recently “downsized” into a 100 square foot home.
The International Code Council has setup a new standard for building homes that are more “resistant” to hurricanes. These homes should withstand winds of up to 150 mph and the codes will apply to homes located in the East and Gulf Coasts, coastal Alaska and the Columbia River Gorge in […]
New home developers are noticing an increase in demand for period architectural details that hearken to a historical style. Homeowners are requesting these homes in reaction to the run of the mill models that tend to look like McMansions.
According to the Wall Street Journal “About 600 Amish contractors or subcontractors work in at least a dozen states, a rapid increase over the past decade”. Homeowners are citing their craftsmanship and techniques used such as timber-frame building (which doesn’t use nails) as well as their timeliness and lower cost.
Lord of the Rings fans may have to look elsewhere to find authentic homes modeled after the Shire found in the J.R.R. Tolkien books. The developer of this unique community, Ron Meyers, is now in financial ruin and he’s placed blame on the current real estate crisis.
By now, you know the drill. Fuel and food and energy costs have skyrocketed. Bikes are hot. SUVs are not. Green is, most definitely, the new black. And as you grow more aware of managing energy and other expenses, don’t discount what is likely your biggest expense—your home. Sure, we […]
The Kitchen Designer has been an avid reader of the New York Time’s blog the Dream House Diary which chronicles a couples experiences while building their dream house on Anna Maria Island in Florida.
Kathy Price-Robinson is the editor of a great blog called Pardon our Dust from the L.A. Times. She recently opened a discussion comparing standard framing techniques (2×4′s 16-inch on center) vs. advanced techniques (2×6′s 24-inch on center) that are generally considered more environmentally friendly. She polled two professional builders who […]
Since hurricane Katrina a new architectural style has emerged in New Orleans that can only be described as Defensive (houses on pillars), Defiant (pristine homes surrounded by devastation), and Do Good (affordable housing built by non-profits) as opposed to Greek Revival, Italianate, and Creole. Many are concerned that the lack […]