Never Make These Mistakes When Building a New Home

Building a home is one of the most significant projects you can take on. Getting to pick out every detail of your dream home is exciting, but be sure to remain cautious and knowledgeable throughout the process. This week, we’re talking about the mistakes people make when building a new home and how to avoid them. 

Don’t Set Unrealistic Expectations 

It’s easy to get caught up in the big picture when designing a custom home. While you may find yourself over the moon at the thought of certain home features, be reserved that they might not be possible with your budget, building code requirements, and other structural issues. Don’t anticipate that your build will be done in the set schedule, as delays are expected due to issues such as structural inadequacies, material shortages, and bad weather conditions. Budget your time realistically to avoid setting yourself up for disappointment. 

Hire The Right Builder

Renovating your home is a big deal, and you and your home contractor must be on the same page for the most seamless possible process. That being said, picking the perfect contractor that understands you can seem like a challenging and scary task. It is essential that your home contractor know your needs and vision and actualize these items within your budget. Asking the right questions about your potential home renovation before signing any contract with them will make your home renovation process exciting and pleasant rather than stressful. Our helpful guide will safeguard you and your home from fraudulent contractors and a home makeover disaster.

Don’t Move Too Fast 

The last mistake you want to make is jumping into the process of building a new home and committing too early. Instead, do your research by visiting home improvement stores, attending home shows, and searching around online to get a clear picture of what you want. You should be able to provide your contractor with plenty of photos and ideas of elements you want to include in your new home. 

Stay Organized

A new build introduces a lot to keep track of. Be meticulous in your tracking of important paperwork, timeline, pricing, and all communication about the project. 

Hope For The Best, Plan For The Worst

While everyone envisions their dream home coming together perfectly, there are errors that will occur during the process. Learn how to accept and adapt to issues, especially during the construction process. It is also well worth it to periodically visit your new build site to get ahead of issues or mistakes that arise. 

Conclusion

There are many careful considerations you should make before committing to building a new home, but the process doesn’t always have to be stressful. Have more questions about new projects? Contact us today!

What Makes a Great Builder?

When it comes to renovating your home, you need to become accustomed to making good decisions. Of course, your first and most important decision is who you’re going to build with. The number of builders out there is overwhelming, so this week, we’re talking about all of the qualities that make a great builder.

Longevity

You must choose a builder with longevity that has been building homes for many years. Having a great deal of experience enables a builder to understand a lot of the critical elements in the design of a home and avoid mistakes. 

Collaborative Skills

Any builder you work with should be able to enthusiastically listen to your needs and adapt to them seamlessly. A home renovation is your process, and a great builder should be able to hear out your ideas and collaborate with you effectively.

Knowledgeable

Great builders are constantly learning new tricks of the trade. Construction professionals need to be internalizing important information relevant to building codes, material costs, and top options on the market for every project. 

Strong Community Ties

A strong connection to the community is a solid marker of a great, reputable builder. Builders should value forging lasting relationships with clients that will depend on them for years to come, especially in a business that is based on reputation. Positive reviews from people close to you signify that you’ve found a builder that you can trust. 

Conclusion

We strive to ensure high-quality and sustainable outcomes for future buyers and tenants and their surrounding communities here at the Horton Group. Have more questions about what makes a great builder? Contact us today!

What Renovations Give the Highest Value?

Introduction

Even though sellers are at an advantage in the current real estate market, it’s still wise for homeowners to do everything they can to increase the value of their homes. Whether you are just trying to make your home a happier place to live or seriously considering selling, many easy renovations will significantly increase the value of your home. This week, we’re outlining the easiest upgrades to produce the highest return on investment. 

Minor Kitchen Upgrades 

Minor kitchen upgrades can refresh the look of a home without costing too much. For example, installing granite countertops and cabinets could completely transform the look and feel of your kitchen. Updating appliances with modern technology will also make a huge difference. 

Hardwood Floors

Hardwood floors are among the most favored renovations and a sought-after feature by homebuyers. Fronting the money to install new floors will bring your home into the 21st century while significantly increasing its value. 

Fresh Paint

Painting is one of the most transformative renovations a homeowner can do without breaking the bank. Light-colored neutrals and earth tones are the most widely appealing color schemes. If you’re looking to get a home sold, definitely get rid of any bold colored paint jobs, such as a child’s old room. A new paint job can do wonders for areas that need brightening up.

Improved Lighting 

Brightening up a home can make it feel cozier and inviting. While you don’t need to go out and buy some fancy chandeliers, investing in some new lighting fixtures that match the style of your home will increase its value. Better lighting is also a great way to make a room look and feel bigger. 

Conclusion

Before you go out and spend too much money on trying to make your home as modern and valuable as possible, it’s essential to educate yourself on which renovations truly make a difference. Curious about increasing the value of your home? Contact us today! 

Benefits of Adding a Breakfast Nook

Intro 

Breakfast nooks are a fun use of space in any kitchen and have remained extremely popular since their peak in the 1930s. A practical breakfast nook can refresh a kitchen and create an intimate space for family time or entertaining while saving big on space. Often, breakfast nooks get a bad rap for being too cramped. This week, we’ve outlined a few benefits of adding a breakfast nook to your kitchen. 

Comfortable and Versatile 

Breakfast nooks are much more comfortable than a traditional kitchen table. Small and self-contained, they make every meal feel a little more intimate. Adding a breakfast nook will bring a more casual feeling to your home. Whether you’re enjoying a family dinner, doing work, or having a drink with a friend, a breakfast nook certainly doesn’t have to be limited to its name. 

They Add Charm & Style to a Home 

Usually, breakfast nooks are conveniently placed closed to bay windows or other natural light sources. Natural light has the power to make any space seem inviting, and this is especially true for breakfast nooks. Breakfast nooks are great for adding charm to your home and making the area a little more quaint. If you already have specific design elements in your home, a breakfast nook can be designed to match the pre-existing decor style of your home. Breakfast nooks can be created to reflect modern, minimalist, or traditional looks. 

Great for Entertaining 

Another benefit of installing a breakfast nook is its ability to serve as a space for entertaining. The different elements of design you choose to incorporate will allow you to create a place that feels open and intimate at the same time. It’s not always necessary to have a formal dining room to entertain guests, and many people make the mistake of writing off breakfast nooks for entertaining because they are “too cramped.” When you work with the right designer, it will 

be easy to create a space that feels as open and inviting as any other entertainment area in your home. 

Conclusion 

The kitchen, for many, is the focal point of a home. Adding a breakfast nook can make the space all that more useful. In addition, a breakfast nook provides a great space to entertain without sacrificing comfort or capability. Are you considering taking on a kitchen remodeling project? Contact us today!

Kitchen Remodel Myths Debunked

Kitchen remodeling can be a daunting task, and common myths about the renovation process can make planning and execution even harder. However, spending time renovating your kitchen can refresh the feel of your entire home. This week, we’re debunking a few of the most common myths about remodeling a kitchen.

Myth #1: Kitchen Remodeling is a DIY Job

Unless you have experience as a contractor yourself, doing a kitchen renovation on your own will be complicated and messy. While many people think a kitchen renovation is pretty straightforward, they are likely not prepared to DIY when managing electric work or staying in accordance with codes. Many things can go wrong without a team of professionals who know what they’re doing, so avoid trying to DIY a major kitchen renovation.

Myth #2: Interior Designer = Kitchen Designer

An interior designer is concerned with the aesthetic of the space as a whole, while a kitchen designer’s primary focus is the usability and functionality of the kitchen space. While kitchen designers incorporate interior design elements, that’s not their main focus. If you’re looking to completely reimagine your kitchen space while prioritizing its functionality, look into finding a kitchen designer who can also appreciate interior design. 

Myth #3: The Kitchen Triangle

The kitchen triangle is a layout that organizes a kitchen’s three primary workspaces (the sink, refrigerator, and stove) into a triangle to optimize efficiency when cooking. While the triangle is a practical layout for appliances, it may not be the best choice for your specific project. As the number of appliances we use in our daily life increases, many designers have begun to stray from the traditional triangle design and opt for different work zones. Some kitchen work zones include separate cooking, cleaning, serving, and eating areas. 

Myth #4: Kitchen Islands are a Must

Kitchen islands have skyrocketed in popularity in the last decade, but they might not work for every space. Including an island in your new kitchen can often take up extra space and provide less storage than cabinets. When deciding if a kitchen island is right for you, consider the amount of prep space you’ll need for cooking and how much clutter you can deal with. 

Conclusion

Getting started with renovations can be overwhelming. Have questions about remodeling? Our team is here to help. Contact us today!

4 Things You Can Do With an Old Garden Shed

Do you find yourself strapped for space in your home? Do you want to find a better use for your old garden shed that doesn’t get much use? Many people opt to transform their sheds into extensions of their homes to accommodate jobs and hobbies. This week, we’re talking about all of the potential spaces you can create from your old garden shed. 

A Peaceful Office Space

Are you working from home but feeling constantly distracted? Transform your old shed into a peaceful workspace. You can make sure to incorporate lots of natural light, office essentials, and personal touches to create a dynamic space where you can maximize productivity. 

A Functional Workshop

Have an interest in recreational shop work or side hustle in Carpentry? Create a workspace that incorporates plenty of electrical outlets, storage for power tools, and shelving for materials. 

A Fun Playroom

Want to provide a fun space for your kids to play without dealing with the constant hassle of picking up toys and games from all over the house? Outsource playtime to an area designated for all things fun. 

A Functional Home Gym

Want to focus on fitness but don’t have the space for a traditional home gym? Make 2022 the year you prioritize health by utilizing your old shed as a home gym. It could be as simple as a few yoga mats or as involved as a treadmill and weight machines. 

Conclusion

There are various ways you can transform your old garden shed into a great space. Have questions about new renovation projects? Contact us today!

4 Easy Ways to Make Your Construction Project Eco-Friendly

The construction industry has been known to negatively impact the environment with different types of pollution. For example, construction can often cause improper waste disposal, air pollution, paper waste, and an overall increased carbon footprint. However, there are ways to reduce the environmental impact of construction projects, and this week we’ve outlined four ways to make your construction project more environmentally friendly. 

Buy Sustainable Materials

If you’re looking to approach your construction project through a more eco-friendly lens, begin by using sustainable building materials. For example, instead of using concrete, which is notorious for releasing tons of greenhouse gases, explore the idea of using a concrete alternative. In recent years, engineers have identified alternatives to concrete, such as timbercrete, ferrock, rammed earth, or recycled plastic. 

Prioritize Natural Light & Energy 

A more obvious way to scale back on energy use is to simply use less of it. For example, you can save energy during your actual project by having work done early in the day when there is more natural light and by opening doors and windows to cool the space down rather than relying on your air conditioning system. In terms of planning, you can incorporate energy-efficient windows, solar panels, and more natural light into the design of your new project to maximize sustainability.

Reuse & Recycle Any Waste Generated

Garbage, unused materials, and old rubble are massive byproducts of construction. Many contractors will dispose of this material at a designated landfill site. Instead, you could reuse or recycle material such as plastics, wood, glass, masonry, and lumber for future projects, which will benefit the environment while saving you money. As the world finds sustainable alternatives, there are increased recycling options for construction-related materials. 

Go Digital

Digitizing constructions plans is a small yet effective step to help the environment. By eliminating paper waste and using computer software to draw up plans, budgets, and invoices for projects, you reduce the risk of losing important documents and subtly help reduce deforestation. 

Conclusion

Construction projects have historically been a significant contributor to pollution, but there are simple ways to help reduce waste and become more eco-friendly. Have questions about how to make your next project more eco-friendly? Contact us today!

Basement Renovation Tips

Basement renovation is a great home improvement project. Not only does it increase the value of your home, but it provides your family with more space for living and storage. As with any renovation, the most crucial stage is planning. This week, we’ve outlined some simple tips to help you get started. 

Envision How You Want to Use the Space

The first thing you need to consider when you start planning is how you want to utilize the extra space. For example, you may be looking to create a home gym, game room, or guest bedroom. What kind of space you’re looking to create will affect the rest of the planning and cost of the renovation. 

Draft a Detailed Floor Plan

Create a floor plan and use it to figure out how your finished basement will fit together. Once your plan is in place, check the foundation walls and floor for excess moisture. Any cracks will need to be repaired, and professional assistance may be required at this stage. Be sure to examine the structure for supporting posts, low ceilings, and floors below the sewer line. These can pose challenges, and you might want to consult a contractor for a thorough inspection.

Consider your electrical and plumbing needs.

Always make sure you hire a certified electrician for any electrical work and consult a building inspector on any required permits or considerations. Now’s a good time to decide what type of insulation you’ll be using, whether it be spray foam or sheets. Again, make sure to consult a professional to ensure you get the proper insulation for your needs.

Choosing Drywall

Next, choose your drywall. Moisture-resistant drywall is an excellent option as basement areas are prone to moisture. You also need to decide what kind of flooring you’d like and repair any cracks in your subfloor before installing anything new. You might also want to consider waterproofing your concrete. 

Calculate Costs & Budget Accordingly

Start by considering all the prices for installations and additions such as vents, windows, drywall, floors, and lights. Save your decorating and furniture expenses for last. The final step is deciding what you can do yourself and what requires the contractor’s expertise.

The Horton Group is always here to help with the trickier parts of any project, so don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions about building!

Should You Move or Renovate?

Trying to decide between moving and remodeling is not an easy task. Both options come with their fair share of financial stressors and headaches. This week, we’ve outlined some questions to ask yourself when making this big decision. 

What Do I Need in Terms of Space?

Renovating can only do so much to accommodate a growing family. Consider your need for more space when deciding between moving and adding a house. Will the additions you have in mind add value to your home? How long will you need to accommodate a growing family? If you’re just starting a family, you’re looking at a long-term need for extra space, and moving may be a better investment. Consider talking to both a contractor and a real estate agent to calculate the costs of each option.

How Will Your Commute Change?

Choosing to relocate may affect your commute, for the better or worse. A shorter commute will add more time in the day for exercise, family time, and fun and will generally increase your quality of life. Be very wary of relocating to a home that could significantly increase the time you spend getting to and from work each day. Is your current home close to work and ideal for your schedule? That could signify that you should stay where you are and renovate. 

What Can You Afford?

You should sit down with an accountant and determine which option makes the most financial sense. For example, moving is a clear choice if you’re looking to downsize. However, if you have the stability to put money into your house and increase its value, renovating is makes a lot of sense. 

Are the Local Schools Good?

Another aspect of location is your proximity to schools. If your children are in an excellent school system where they are safe, happy, and challenged, it may be best to renovate your current home. Unfortunately, a good school system is not always easy to come by. If your current neighborhood is dangerous and lacks access to a good school system, you should consider moving to a location with better educational opportunities for your children. 

How Hard Will it be to Leave Your Current Home?

There is always a level of emotional attachment to a home. 

If you live in a family home passed down through generations or even your first home, you may find it difficult to move. Renovating is a great way to keep the home you love while adjusting to your current needs. If you find yourself tired of your existing home and constantly browsing Zillow, it may be a sign that you’re ready to move on.

Conclusion

Choosing whether to move or remodel is a complicated decision that requires a lot of thought. Weighing out all of your options and seeking the opinion of professionals will make it easier. Consider talking to both a contractor and a real estate agent to calculate the costs of each option. Have questions about remodeling? Contact us today!

The Best Roofing Options For 2022

The roof is one of the most important features of a home. It maintains the structure, keeps the house warm, and offers protection from the elements. When a home goes on the market, the status of its roof is a big talking point. Years ago, there were very few options for materials to use for a new roof job. Today, there are countless types of roofing materials to choose from. We’ve outlined some of the most popular options to consider when you need to replace your roof. 

Metal Roofing

Metal roofing is an excellent option for those looking for a durable choice. Lasting about 60 years, metal roofing can come in shingles, vertical panels, and metal shakes. Metal roofing is very stable when protecting your home from the elements. Depending on the style you choose, metal roofing is an affordable option but may eventually begin to show its age and impact the look of your home.

Solar Tiles

A solar tile roof is an excellent option if you’re looking to increase your home’s energy efficiency, another big selling point when it comes to selling a home. Solar tiles absorb solar energy and help convert it into power. This option is perfect for homes in locations that get a lot of sun but are fragile and cost much more than the typical solar panel installation.

Slate Roofing

Slate roofing is long-lasting and resistant to different types of mold and fungus. This option is very aesthetically pleasing, but be wary of its weight, which not all homes will be able to support. Slate roofing is also difficult to repair and more expensive than other roofing options. 

Asphalt Shingles

Asphalt shingles are a popular option across America because they are affordable, easily installed, and easily repaired. Unfortunately, these shingles can last about 30 years but are not very durable past that. 

Clay Roofing

Clay roofing is one of the most durable options on the market. It’s known to withstand damage from high winds, tornadoes, and hurricanes. It’s specially molded and works well in warm climates, and you won’t find yourself having to maintain them often since they don’t absorb moisture easily. The main drawback to clay tiles is the high cost, which is worth it to some homeowners since the material can last 50+ years.

Green Roofing

Green roofs are an excellent option for those willing to maintain them. They are covered in plants and helpful in home insulation, improving air quality, and reducing water runoff. Essentially a garden, this option requires lots of maintenance to care for the plants, extra structural support, and water filtration. Green roofs are great for the environment and stylish but have an estimated lifespan of about 40 years.  

Conclusion

The options available when choosing a roof can be overwhelming. Your home, budget, and climate are all important factors to consider when you decide to replace your roof. Have questions about your next roof replacement? Contact us today; we’d be happy to help!

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