Three Great Winter Home Improvement Tips

When temperatures drop, there’s nothing cozier than curling up inside with hot cocoa. Plus, between the holidays and winter sports, who has the energy or desire to do any home improvement tasks?  Well, give it a second though as the winter month turn out to be a great time to do certain home improvement projects.  Plus, if you’re looking to do a spring or summer home sale then it’s never too early to get started with home sale prep and repairs.

Another reason to consider having a contractor work on your home improvement needs during the winter: according to HomeLight’s Top Agent Insights Survey for Q3 2019, 91% of agents believe builders and contractors are busiest in spring and summer, while less than 8% say these professionals are busiest in the winter. Plus, 67% of top agents say that building materials and labor for home renovations are the cheapest between October and March. All of this adds up to doing certain projects during the “offseason” because they genuinely cost less.

Having said that, it’s always best to know some of the best ways to work on your home with a contractor in the winter.  Below are the top three winter home improvement tasks you can have a contractor do for you:

  1. Seal Up Cracks Around the House

    First, you could work with a contractor to help seal up cracks around the house.  Think of your outer-walls, your windows, doors or vents as an envelope, and this envelope constantly has air seeping in through cracks and failures.  Sealing leaks can help keep energy costs lower, and keep air out.  Sealing leaks alone around windows and doors, through the foundation, and in the attic can reduce this airflow by about 25%.  In addition, with a shift in paradigm going towards having a home with green features, this is a no brainer addition that anyone should consider.
  2. Insulate Your Attic and House

    Second, in connection with the sealing cracks, you could work on insulating your attics, ducts and foundation.  It’s a proven fact that if you live in a cold, winter environment and you don’t have an insulated attic you are almost guaranteed to lose air and heat.  The U.S. Department of Energy recommends air sealing any areas of your home that might need it first before tackling insulation.  But, in doing this, you will make sure that you will have a very warm and welcoming home during the long, cold, winter months.

  3. Replace Your Windows with New Ones

    Finally, you could replace your windows in winter.  Are you sensing a theme for this post?  We are looking to make sure that you save as much money as possible with your heating and energy bills, and replacing your windows is one of the best ways to do that.  Replacing old, faulty windows that have air leaks with newer, energy-saving windows you could see the difference year over year in your energy bills.understand and navigate. We take pride in helping our customers see their basement remodeling projects come to life, and we look forward to always serving our customers by being the best. We separate ourselves from everyone else because every inch matters, and respect is valued!

As with all construction projects, finding the best contractor to help you with these is key. Be sure to give Inch By Inch Construction a call, and see how we can help you create heat in your home this winter.

Great Basement Remodeling Ideas for Your Home

Are you thinking about finally completing your unfinished basement? Typically, the average basement remodel cost can range from $6,500 to $18,500; but, the return on investment can be up to 69%. Having a finished basement is not only great for entertaining guests, but it’s also incredibly profitable for you because it’s a home feature many home buyers want. Plus, with winter right around the corner, now is an excellent time to have this interior project done in your home. Here are some ideas to help get your creative juices flowing!

  1. Double-Up with Living Rooms

    It’s true what’s said: two is better than one. Remodeling a basement is the perfect opportunity to give your home two places where you can relax. Your children can play and watch movies in the basement living room, while adults can interact in the more formal living room upstairs! This is definitely a must add for those that enjoy hosting parties and interacting with people.
  2. Create a Small Apartment

    This is a wonderful idea. In today’s culture, children are graduating college and coming back to live with their parents for a little while. So, taking a basement and turning it into an apartment suite helps create a space to utilize. Go with a kitchenette with updated appliances and an island, a small space to put a couch for lounging, a half wall to create the boundaries of a bedroom, and a bathroom. Even if you children don’t end up staying there, you could rent the space out to earn some extra money. This is one basement remodeling project that becomes profitable almost immediately if you decide to rent out the space!

  3. Create a Gym or a Theater Room

    A basement provides plenty of room to make a workout room tailored to your interests, and this remodeling idea certainly applies. Creating some space to build that sauna you’ve always wanted, or use multiple floor types to divide up workout stations, such as wood floors for yoga and carpet for cool-down stretches. Rubber mats are an affordable and smart basement flooring option. Creating that gym in your basement gives you ample opportunity to get in shape! Or, if you’re more into the leisure than the active, what better feature to include in your basement plans than a home theater? Basements often have little to no windows, making the dark space ideal for that movie theater vibe. You can raise the flooring to add rows of recliners, invest in recessed fixtures with soft lighting you can dim, and swap out large a TV for a projector and screen! Create this in your basement and everyone will want to spend their Friday nights with you at your place relaxing and binge-watching their favorite movies or shows.

  4. Create a Play Room for Your Children and Their Friends

    If you’re a parent of young children, this is a basement remodeling project you simply must consider. Having young children, who are always full of energy, bottled up inside during the cold, winter months is never a key to success. Creating a safe and secure space away from the cold will allow them to run around all they like and let them burn off their energy each and every day, no matter what the weather is like outside! We highly recommend this basement remodeling for any family to help keep the sanity of the parents!

  5. ONE FINAL TIP:

    Always be mindful of rules and regulations in your area. Certain codes could make your remodeling project more challenging if you don’t spend the time and energy to figure out what can and cannot be done. That’s one of the areas that Inch By Inch helps their customers understand and navigate. We take pride in helping our customers see their basement remodeling projects come to life, and we look forward to always serving our customers by being the best. We separate ourselves from everyone else because every inch matters, and respect is valued!

    Inch By Inch Construction can help you with your basement remodeling project. We help take the hassle off of you, and make your basement remodeling project simple and easy. Call to get your free quote today, and get more value out of your house by finishing your basement.

Garage Remodeling Tips

Did you know that you could turn your garage into a new looking room with just a few steps? By working with a knowledgable contractor, you can transform your drafty, dingy, spider-infested into a bright, and comfortable, space. Read below to see some steps on you can accomplish that!

Most rough-framed garages aren’t ready for drywall, so one of the first things you’d want to consider is to add blocking and framing. Many garages may be missing necessary studs at the corners and attachment points for the ceiling drywall, and to go into a garage project without them would be disastrous. The most common areas that are in need of additional framing are inside corners where walls meet, and where the walls meet the ceiling. In addition, you could consider adding the following framing or structural elements:

  • Add blocking between studs for attaching shelving.
  • Nail blocking between ceiling trusses for hanging lights, cord reels or bicycle hooks.
  • Cut a hole and frame an opening for a through-the-wall air-conditioning unit.
  • Add windows or skylights.

A next step is to do a complete electrical rerouting. Your current set up may not be ideal for what you’d like to accomplish in the garage in the future. Most unfinished garages have the bare minimum of outlets and lights, so you’ll want to add a few. It may be necessary to drill holes through studs to help in the process of rerouting wires. Your contractor needs to make sure that the holes need to be directly in the center of the stud. This is also a good time to add outlets, lights and even another 20-amp circuit for power tools.

We’ve mentioned this in other blog posts, but be sure to call the local building inspections department to get a permit before you add or change wiring, and have the wiring inspected before you cover it with drywall or insulation.

Weather stripping your doors and windows has a tremendously positive effect on the garage remodeling project. It helps keep pesky bugs out of your new space! But more importantly, if doors and windows are leaky letting in uncomfortable drafts it can increase heating (or cooling) costs. Be sure to check your garage service door to see if it has good weather stripping and a threshold that seals tightly to the bottom of the door. If the service door is missing a threshold and weather stripping, it could be more efficient for you to replace the door entirely with a new, weather-tight version.

One of the final steps you’d want to do is install drywalling. Drywall is the easiest and most economical covering for your garage ceiling. Once the drywall is in place, you’ll have a brand-new space in which to do work! And whether or not you use it for DIY projects or not is up to you, because you now have a space in which you CAN do those things.

As always, Inch By Inch Construction is here to help you with your garage remodeling project. We help take the hassle off of you, and make your garage remodeling project simple and easy. Call to get your free quote today!

A Brand New Kitchen

We take pride in helping our customer’s visions come to life. And when it comes to doing a kitchen remodeling project, we are sure to take extra special care in making sure that we do everything correct. In this blog, you’ll be able to see what we did to a recent kitchen to help make it pop, and become the central location of the house.

The above gallery shows off the “before” of one of the most recent kitchen remodeling projects we tackled. A nice kitchen island is there; but the colors of the cabinets hide what should be popping in the pictures. You’ll want to stand out with your project, but in a modest way. And that’s something we went out to do with this kitchen remodel.

The first thing you’ll notice with this after picture is that the cabinets are painted a new color. That is true, and the white makes the cabinets pop out in a good way. Replacing the colors of the cabinets bring this kitchen a more modern feel, and feels quite welcoming.

However, the astute eye will notice something else about this picture that’s different from the before. Take a look at the lighting. In the kitchen beforehand, the lights were hanging in a wire basket that wasn’t ideal for the design we were going for with the remodel. So, we switched out those frames and replaced them with a more modern and inviting look. On top of that, LED lighting helps the customer save some money, and brings exceptional value to the kitchen.

And our favorite little addition to this kitchen remodeling project is this right here. A coffee station right in the kitchen is the perfect addition to anyone’s remodeling project. Now, this customer will be easily able to access their favorite drink that powers them through the day early in the morning with style! Creating this coffee station made our crew thirsty for some caffeine, but not because they were tired! No, it’s because they all wanted to have a station like this in their kitchens!

All in all, this was a “simple” kitchen remodeling project; but, it is one that we have taken exceptional pride in accomplishing. Helping customers see their visions come to life is a blessing we don’t take for granted at Inch by Inch Construction. We are excited for the next kitchen remodeling project, and hope that you will consider us to help bring your vision to life!

As always, Inch By Inch Construction is here to help you with your kitchen remodeling project. We help take the hassle off of you, and make your kitchen remodeling project simple and easy. Call to get your free quote today!

The Top Four 2019 Kitchen Remodeling Trends

Do you remember long ago when the kitchen was a hidden fixture in the home, often relegated to the back of the house, far from sight?  It was usually a place to make the meals and wash the dirty dishes.  Zoom forward to 2019 and the kitchen has changed drastically.  Kitchens are often the focal point of the home, the gathering place where everyone comes to start the day or meet after a long one.  The kitchen is often the very center of a home.

To say that kitchens have changed over the decades would be a major understatement.  And planning for your kitchen remodel needs to be a high priority.  The landscape of social dynamics have played a major role in the rise of the modern kitchen, with a much greater focus on the open concept kitchen.  We’ve done some of our own research and here are four of the top kitchen remodeling trends for 2019.

  1. Streamlined Styles – Kitchen designs are becoming more streamlined in their overall aesthetic, designs and alternative materials.  Simplicity and streamlining your kitchen remodel are stress-free environments, which is something everyone wants to come home to every day after work.  Simplicity starts with modern, clean lines.  And when we say streamlined, we are not talking about boring.  Material choice with texture can really help everything pop.  Interesting textures like floor tiles in a natural stone, or a backsplash with sculpted tiles add an extra flare.  At the end of the day, a streamlined style for your kitchen remodel makes everything stress-free for you, and enticing for the whole family to enjoy.
  2. Smart Kitchens – Technology is everywhere, and that also means it’s in the kitchen, and it’s more than just fancy gadgets and gizmos.  Technology can be integrated into almost every facet of your kitchen-from the faucets, to the refrigerator, or even in the lighting.  Even for older kitchens, easy add-ons in the tech realm are motion sensor equipment like the kitchen faucets, which can sense the presence of hands.  You can even purchase and install equipment to allow control of the lights to be performed on your smartphones or tablets.  Whatever need you have, a smart kitchen could help you out long-term.
  3. Storage Cabinetry – We’ve all experienced a lack of quality storage space in our cabinets in the kitchen, which is why this trend is on the rise.  Kitchen cabinets are being installed to fit the needs of the homeowners more and more, and not because of tradition.  One of the main foundations of a functional and streamline kitchen (see: point #1) is the kitchen storage in the cabinets.  Whether it’s appliance “garages” to house small appliances, or roll-out trays and caddies for pots and pans, upgrading your kitchen cabinet storage options will help set your kitchen apart from everyone else’s.
  4. Backsplashes – Backsplashes can be a fun part of the kitchen, and any welcome addition to a remodeling project.  Homeowners are moving to larger slabs of tiles, or tiles with various forms and textures.  Adding a pop of color is a trendy option, and it allows more creativity in your kitchen remodeling.  Plus, with upper cabinets out of the way for a more streamlined kitchen, homeowners can put more colorful backsplash to help set their kitchen apart.  Whatever direction you decide, backsplashes can help make you kitchen the highlight of your home.

Kitchens are vastly becoming the centralized location of a home, and it’s in a homeowner’s best interest to create a welcoming environment.  The steps above are ways that you can start to do that.  And we here at Inch by Inch Construction want to help you every step of the way to make your kitchen remodeling dreams a reality.

As always, Inch By Inch Construction is here to help you with your kitchen remodeling project. We help take the hassle off of you, and make your kitchen remodeling project simple and easy. Call to get your free quote today!

The Symmetry of Doors

One definition of symmetry is a “correct or pleasing proportion of the parts of a thing.” We love symmetry because it is pleasing and we absolutely love working on creating symmetry within our customer’s homes. We had the opportunity recently to totally transform a customer’s home by changing the location of their entry-way door, adding a window, and adding a porch! And we’ve got to say, this might have been one of the most fun projects we’ve every done.

Porch Install

When we began working on this project, we knew it would be a challenging one. But because we never back away from challenges, we pressed on head first. We removed the original door and built in the wall for a new window. The window is placed at the exact position as the original window on the other side of the building, thus creating symmetry! We loved installing that window, and if that was all we did we would have been happy. But, there was more to come!

Porch Board Installing

We continued with the project by putting in the porch. The homeowners wanted more area and space around their house to be covered, in addition to adding the symmetry with the doors, and we were happy to help them create their porch. The porch added to the symmetry of the house, and we were extremely excited to be able to put it all together.

Finished Porch and Door

When we finally finished the installation of the porch and replacement of the door, we stood back and admired what was accomplished. This is by far one of our favorite projects to date. By taking something already established, and building on it to create something fresh and new is a spectacular blessing for us. The porch is a nice touch that will allow the homeowners a comfortable place to sit and admire the beauty of their surroundings.

Helping a homeowner realize their dream is one of the things that motivates us to deliver the best quality possible. We are committed to helping you achieve your dreams however we can. We always look forward to new partnerships, new ideas, and new dreams.

As always, Inch By Inch Construction is here to help you with your door and porch projects. We help take the hassle off of you, and make your door or porch projects simple and easy. Call to get your free quote today!

The Interesting Thing About Window Replacements

It’s early morning, and you’ve woken up to get ready for work.  You’ve poured your coffee – the sweet elixir that helps you make it through the day.  You walk over to your sink, which gives you a beautiful view to look outside and see the magnificent sunrise.  You’re looking out, but you’re not interested in the sunrise.  Instead, something else has caught your eye, and it’s disturbing. . . a cracked window. 

One of the first things anyone notices about a home – and definitely something a homeowner would notice – are the windows.  People tend to hide from doing anything to spruce up their windows and make their house stand.  Some people may just stay away from window replacements because they don’t know the benefits in upgrading their windows.  But, make no mistake about it, doing a window replacement project has many benefits that will make you consider starting a window replacement project.

  • First, replacing your old windows helps build curb appeal.  Older windows on your home may look outdated or unattractive, and changing out the windows with new, replacement windows will help give your home the look for which you are aiming.  On top of that, you’ll be able to look out on the beautiful sunrise and have joy and thankfulness in your heart instead of sadness and bitterness.
  • One more note on the value of window replacements: it truly does make your view so much better.  Your old windows may have become foggy, scratched or dirty over time.  Beginning a window replacement project with new glass can help give you a clearer view of the outside world.  Waking up in the morning and seeing a serene environment is so much better than seeing a cracked window which puts you in a bad mood, and doesn’t improve the look of your home.
  • A window replacement project can help make your home more energy efficient overall.  Window leaks are a huge problem when it comes to keeping a house warm in the winter, or cool in the summer.  Older windows tend to have air leaks and let drafts into the home.  A little air around your windows isn’t uncommon; however, if you start noticing the air leak because of rattling windows then you’ll need to consider a window replacement project. The improved efficiency can help cut costs on heating and cooling bills!

Right now, you may be thinking that you don’t know if you need to do a window replacement project.  Or you may be thinking that you just don’t need to do something because you don’t see the value that can be created by doing a project of this nature.  Below are some points that may prove that you will need to do a window replacement project in the near future.

  • The first reason is style.  Now, we know that not everyone is going to be concerned with style, and won’t necessarily see that as a reason to do a window replacement project.  However, as stated above, it does help curb appeal.  If you’re looking to sell your home any time soon, and you have old or outdated windows, it could be a drawback for potential buyers.  Consider upgrading those windows to something new, and see how people will respond differently to your house.
  • Another reason to consider a window replacement project is because of defects.  As windows age, they become more inclined to have defects.  Defects can be anything from having drafts and air leaks, to water intrusions and condensation, or cracks and rot.  It’s always best to make sure that you protect your home as best as you possibly can, and having defective windows that don’t protect against the elements does not bring quality.  Speaking of protection. . . 
  • Safety and security is a huge factor.  Your windows are an entry and exit to your home, and windows that don’t lock or close correctly are a security risk.  Burglars and intruders look for certain signs from windows to know just how easy it would be to enter into your home.  Cracks or breaks in the glass, corrosion on metal frames, or rot on the window sill weaken the overall strength of the windows.  At the end of the day, your windows need to open and close properly for the safety of you and your loved ones, and doing a window replacement project can help bring a peace of mind and comfort to your life.

A window replacement project is a fantastic investment for your home, and one of the easiest and simplest was to increase curb appeal and value. It may be the hardest decision you make to undertake a window replacement project, but it is one you will feel great about doing.

As always, Inch By Inch Construction is here to help you with your window replacement project. We help take the hassle off of you, and make your window replacement project simple and easy. Call to get your free quote today!

The Three Big Reasons for an Outdoor Deck

Deck additions are one of the most popular trends in home improvement today. Homeowners are expanding their living spaces by building new living spaces outdoors. Featuring everything from a quiet place to read and think, to an amazing outdoor entertainment space with kitchens and dining areas. Whether your ambitions for your outdoor deck addition is simple or more complex, adding a deck addition is a great way to enhance the value of your home while also expanding your living space. In fact, a deck addition can create a larger return on investment than most other home renovation projects. Below are some key points on deck additions, and why your house may need one!

  • Decks work exceptionally well on uneven terrain. Virtually installable on any type of land, a deck isn’t restricted to flat surfaces. Multilevel decks can help create even more space for hosting events and having fun. Speaking of which. . .
  • A Room with a View. A wooden deck addition is extremely easy to customize as it can be painted (or stained) to the color or shade you like most. You can even make the stain color of your deck addition match the exterior design color of your house! On top of that, since a deck can be built off of the ground, you can get a much more beautiful, panoramic view of your backyard.
  • A deck creates party time! For the extroverts (or introverts) of the world, a deck makes hosting parties much more enjoyable. A deck addition is the perfect way to add functional space that allows for more people to freely gather and move around. The openness of a deck addition eliminates claustrophobia associated with crowded rooms, and clean is really simple.

Now, there are some points to remember with a deck addition. As with everything, there are some things to consider before jumping in head first. Below are some things to think about before beginning a deck addition:

  • You may need a permit. As always, you want to make sure that you check with your local authorities and municipalities and see if they have any restrictions or codes you need to follow for you deck addition. Always be sure to get a permit if you are required to have one, and make sure you always follow applicable laws.
  • Decks require more maintenance. Due to the materials used, a deck addition will require a lot of TLC to maintain a pristine look and feel. A deck might need to be pressure washed, stained and sealed every couple of years. Plus, since most decks are made of wood, that opens them up to the elements. Without proper weather treatments, the wood on your deck addition could rot over time, as well as fade. Be sure to keep up with the maintenance of your deck addition to keep it looking great.
  • Be sure to consider the weight amount on the deck. Always be sure to keep these weight measurements in mind when you’re doing a deck addition project. If you want to eventually put a hot tub, or an outdoor kitchen on your deck, be sure that it is built to withstand the weight that will be added to it. Also, consider the amount of guests you plan to entertain on your deck addition.

A deck project can be a wonderful addition to your home, and will increase your homes value. In our opinion, it’s one of the best ways to spruce up your home living, and really stand out.

As always, Inch By Inch Construction is here to help you with your deck addition project. We help take the hassle off of you, and make your deck addition project simple and easy. Call to get your free quote today, and get more value out of your house by having a deck addition.

Basement Remodelling

One of the best ways to increase the livable square footage of your home is to finish out your basement. A finished basement not only increases the livable space, but it can help increase the resale value of your home. Before you start a basement finishing project, be sure to read through these tips to help you get the greatest value possible:

  1. DRY IT UP:

    If your basement is damp, or gets wet easily, that has to be fixed before you start any basement finishing work. There is great news: most water problems should be easily fixed with two different measures. First, you could regrade the soil to slope away from the house and the foundation. The second measure is to repair your gutters or your downspouts. More extreme measures can be taken, such as adding exterior drain tile, installing an interior drain tile that leads to a sump basket attached to a pump, or waterproofing your basement walls. These measures can become time-consuming and costly, but they are part of the most important step to ensure your work finishing your basement isn’t ruined by leaking water.

  2. KNOW THE CODE:

    If only it was simply as easy as doing the work and living with the results then life would be smooth! In all seriousness, check with your local municipality to see if you’ll need to purchase any building permits, or if there are any restrictions to what you can do for your basement finishing project. This is of upmost importance if you are planning on installing plumbing, or having electrical work done in your basement finishing project as they need to be inspected and approved. This may seem like a waste of time, but trust us, you don’t want to be the one to break any rules and have your basement finishing project delayed or cancelled because you didn’t check with the proper agencies before beginning.

    If you are planning on adding a separate bathroom for your basement finishing project, then you might as well check on the current pluming and wiring systems. See what expansions or upgrades you’ll need to do. Remember, check with your local municipality for permits that you’ll need, and have the proper inspections done. Remember – Prior Proper Planning Prevents Poor Performance.

  3. KNOW YOUR SPACE:

    You may think that your basement finishing project will be an easy-todo process, thinking you could just work away. However, you need to know your space and how much you are working with. Height is of particular importance because a number of local regulations on turning a basement into a livable area require the basement to be a certain number of feet tall. These numbers vary so, again, CHECK YOUR LOCAL MUNICIPALITY TO BE SURE!

  4. SEAL CRACKS AROUND PIPES AND WIRES:

    You’ll want to fill larger openings with a flameresistant expanding foam to help protect your basement. Close off any other larger openings by nailing some sheet metal over them, and seal off the edges with caulk. This will help prevent any fire spreading from the basement to the upstair, and will also help you save a lot of energy from leakage and transfers. Plus, doing this will help keep sound transfer at a minimum!

    Another area to consider sealing are the rim joists. Uninsulated rim joists are huge energy drainers on a basement finishing project, and during your project is the best time to seal the rim joists. Check with your municipality on coding to see if there are any particular restrictions on what type of insulation you should use. Once that’s done, be sure to fill in small gaps with caulk, and for the larger holes be sure to use some expanding spray foam.

  5. ONE FINAL TIP:

    The utility room is not for finishing! This is an important key to remember when you are doing a basement finishing project. Keep the space housing HVAC units and water heaters clear and open. You don’t want these to be finished because these spaces have specific codes requirements for framing and spacing. Also, keeping it unfinished allows for an easier access to do inspections and/or repairs. Remember, always check with your municipality and their codes!

    Inch By Inch Construction can help you with your basement finishing project. We help take the hassle off of you, and make your basement finishing project simple and easy. Call to get your free quote today, and get more value out of your house by finishing your basement.