Home Improvement Tips for April 2020

April offers the opportunity to return to outdoor living since cold weather is on the way out of town. Prep your space for spring and summer by maintaining the home exterior and beautifying the lawn and garden. Once you do that, turn your attention indoors, especially in the basement to protect against possible spring flooding!  But, most importantly, be sure to take the time to appreciate the season.

  1. Check the Sump Pump

    Heavy rains cause soil to become saturated with water, and that water can leak into your home through window wells or a vulnerable foundation, causing flooding in your basement. A sump pump should be able to mitigate the problem, but only if it’s in good working condition. Now is the time to check yours to make sure that it’s in good working condition.  First, check the sump pump pit for debris and remove anything that doesn’t belong. Then, fill the sump pump with water to test the float and ensure that it starts and stops properly.  Be sure to take a minute to clean the impeller, the small filter on the sump pump as it is possibly the most vital part of the sump pump.  If it was to become clogged, it could cause the sump pump to stop working when you need it the most.
  2. Unclog the Downspouts

    Everyone knows that it’s vital to clean gutters in spring and fall, but all too often homeowners neglect clogged downspouts, which can cause problems when torrential rains hit. After clearing your gutters of leaves and debris, run an auger or hose into the downspouts to clear away blockages. Then, consider installing a leaf strainer over the downspout to prevent future buildup.

  3. Dry Out the Basement
    Basements are extremely vulnerable to leaks and excess moisture due to being below the grade.  That’s why it’s a good idea to run a dehumidifier in the basement, especially if you—or your off-season storage—spend a lot of time down there. The excess moisture can lead to mold growth, warped wood or paper, rust, and peeling paint. A dehumidifier allows you to control the indoor humidity level, and take extra water out of the air.

These are just a few of the tips and tricks you can do to bring exceptional value out of your house for the upcoming season. When the weather finally turns, your house will be miles ahead because you went out and did these top three projects.

The Top Three Home Improvement Projects for Spring 2020

Spring is here, and now is the best time to do some home projects to make your house ready for the coming seasonal changes. Here are three projects you can do to bring more value to your home this spring!

  1. Gut the Gutters

    Before spring showers inundate your house, you’ll want to clear your gutters of all the pine needles, twigs, leaves, and other organic material that accumulated over the long winter months. Give the gutters a thorough cleaning, and while you’re up there, consider installing gutter guards, which are screens or foam inserts that prevent debris from piling up in the first place. That way when the rain comes it will easily be diverted from your roof, and you won’t have to worry about repairing leaks!
  2. Pest Prevention

    By April, you’ll be ready for warmer temperatures—but so will all of the critters that are ready to hatch and find their way into your house. Do a little work up front to prevent pests like termites, ants, and silverfish from making themselves at home. Check for cracks in your siding, examine your roof for rotting or broken shingles, and seal things up tight so that unwanted creatures can’t get in.

  3. Power Wash
    After a hard winter and a wet, windy spring, your home may start to show signs of algae or dirt buildup on the siding, giving it a sloppy, rundown appearance. May is a good month for washing the exterior of your house, as you’ll have plenty of dry, sunny days that are perfect for the task. Just be sure to use the proper pressure so you don’t damage the siding. 

These are just a few of the tips and tricks you can do to bring exceptional value out of your house for the upcoming season. When the weather finally turns, your house will be miles ahead because you went out and did these top three projects.

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.