Category Archives: Exterior

Total Transformation with Room Addition

This house underwent a total transformation when adding a new garage and family room!

We enjoy when we can change the appearance of a house and make it more family friendly. The total transformation on this house even threw off some family members who had not visited this house for some time. They drove right past it, even though they had visited many times.

Here is the before:

Over time the house had undergone a number of additions, but this one seemed to tie everything together.

We added a family room in the back of the house. Took over much of the space of the existing garage and then added a new three car garage.

We installed a full foundation under the new space and broke through so that the basement now has “cold storage”. The front porch got a new look along with all of the stone being replaced.

This project took a number of months as it was almost like building a new house.

Take a look at the after pictures.

Check back soon for another article showing the inside additions, like a zero depth shower in the addition’s bathroom.

Would you love a screen porch?

Adding a screen porch brings the outdoors in!

When you downsize, like many seniors do who move to a 55 plus community, you may give up square footage or yard space. Taking advantage of adding on a screen porch or enclosing a patio helps add space to your home and can bring that outdoor feel security from flying and crawling bugs.

One of our customers decided to add an addition on to his 55 plus community home by having us build a screen porch over the concrete patio that was originally built with the house. We did a bit more than just add a a roof and walls.

In the roof of the screen porch were two sky lights to let light into the kitchen area. He didn’t need a three season area, so the windows are just screens. We added electrical into the knee walls to allow light fixtures or any variety of items to be plugged in. On the floor, we laid furring strips and added  cedar boards that were just covered with a clear finish. This allowed for the water to escape when it rained.

The homeowner wanted a ceiling fan to help circulate air. He added some roller shades to block the heat of the summer sun and some outdoor speakers.

All in all, this is a great use of space and only increased the original foot print by the size of the post holes to support the roof.  The homeowner was thrilled with his addition and spends many hours outside reading or talking with friends and neighbors.

If you would like to speak with us about adding some outdoor living space to your home, we have options for you to have a three season space.


screen porch addition before


screen porch addition after

The inside

screen porch inside

Simple Updates Change the Curb Appeal

How can a few simple updates change the curb appeal of your home?

First off, if you cannot afford a major face-lift to your home, making a few simple updates can make a world of difference to the curb appeal of your home.

We have made significant changes to homes with a few of our projects. One added an entire second story, others may only add a wall where a door used to be. Whatever it is, if it will help your home look better as people approach it, your potential value could increase.

One update that we completed stripped the siding and changed the front door for a brand new appearance.

Before new siding After new siding





We removed the existing siding, changed out the front door, and added shutters all the way around the home. Only one other home in the neighborhood had the board and batten look, so we gave the home a unique appearance.

Another home just needed a new front porch rail system. We were in and out in one day!

Before new rail After new rail





Other things that you could do include:

  • Painting your front door
  • Painting the trim around your windows and doors
  • Cleaning up or removing overgrown landscaping
  • Power washing your sidewalk/driveway
  • Replacing windows or doors with broken air seals

Make a few simple changes to the front of your home and your curb appeal will increase favorably! Check out our gallery for other exterior fix ideas.

Remodeling – What is worth it?

A couple of recent articles sparked a thought – Remodeling – what is it worth spending money on for your home?

This article from says that the top five on your list should be:

  1. A new steel entry door
  2. Add a wood deck
  3. Build a bedroom in your attic
  4. Replace your garage door
  5. Update your kitchen

Another article asked, if you were gifted money for a remodel, would you spend it on making your home more energy efficient or on making a room look more current – like a bathroom or kitchen.

One of the things that we have been doing lately is replacing windows on homes that were older or possibly the seals of the windows have broken.  This can help in two ways:

  1. You can help the energy efficiency of your home because the technology of the window has improved in the past 25 years.
  2. You can update the look of your home by adding new interior trim around the newly installed windows.

Another project that could help with the energy efficiency and the appearance of your home is to replace the exterior siding with a more current product.  While we were at it we changed the front door and installed custom built shutters.  Take a look at this recent transformation –



Board and Batten




If you need assistance trying to determine what remodeling costs would it be worth for your home or the best avenue to follow, please give us a call.

Three season option

This home in a 55+ community had a wonderful covered patio area.  But summer bugs and wind and rain could make the patio, while very inviting, not very usable.

We enclosed the area with window units and two doors to make the area usable in all but the coldest weather.

Before Picture – lovely covered patio.

Patio Before






After picture – enclosed space, protected from wind, rain and snow.

Patio After








Just add a small space heater, close down the panels and voila! You have a space to read and entertain that is bug-free, and comfortable 90% of the year.

Patio from inside





Do you have a space that could be easily enclosed so that you could use the space throughout the year?  Let us know if we can help.

Decks can wear out

If not properly treated and sealed decks can wear out.

We demolished this deck and replaced it with new boards and design as well.  Since it was a duplex, both neighbors agreed to completing a similar design.  We used cedar for the material. A bit more expensive than treated, but the product seems to be more durable.  It still requires care annually.See the before and after pics.

DSCF2247 DSCF2253








The neighbors had problems with birds nesting underneath the deck. CD’s spinning on strings, screening, and windchimes did nothing to dissuade the birds from finding a new home, but the new screens and doors did the trick. DSCF2258 IMG_3796







We gave them matching deck sizes that gave them more square footage than they originally had on their upper decks. If they wanted to coffee clatch from their own decks, they wouldn’t have to worry about falling over the edge to speak to each other.

IMG_3722 IMG_4379






With a great walk-out space and no neighbors currently, this is a great way for everyone to enjoy their outdoors time! IMG_4384 IMG_4382

Going up instead of out

This family needed to expand their living space.  They lived in an established city neighborhood.  There was no room to go out because of lot restrictions, but they could go up.

We removed the roof and added the shell of the second story while the family lived in the first floor.  Take a look at the before and after and some of the rooms once completed.

Deck – composite or not

A recent article by Gene and Katie Hamilton from Do It Yourself or Not? prompted this opinion.

First off, composite decking materials are supposed to be “maintenance free”.  Nothing is ever maintenance free, but composite deck material is very close.  Power wash it a couple times a year to remove dirt and residue and it will look wonderful for many years.

Material cost over treated or cedar is to be expected at the high end of the spectrum, but the lack of annual maintenance material cost is well worth the initial expense.

In the DIYORNOT article the authors indicated that you could purchase Trex decking for a 300 square foot

English: This is a picture of New-Tech brand w...
Plastic composite, a type of engineered wood. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

ground level deck and fasteners for $2600, install it yourself and save 29% in labor charges over the $3651 contractor charge. We think the material cost is low compared to a smaller project we have just recently completed.

Several questions you have to ask yourself:

  1. Do you have the right tools?
  2. Do you have the extra time?
  3. Will you pass inspection? (oh – did you get a permit?)
  4. Will you order materials properly? (have enough without ordering too much extra)
  5. Will your sanity be in check when you are complete?

Do it yourself projects are really great if you have skills, patience and understanding.  Sometimes it is best to hire a professional to save you stress and anxiety, and in the long run, often, money.

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