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Back right side view of the house

Dreaming of the sun and shine

Being cooped up all day because of dreary weather is no fun. Sadly, we have a little bit of time left before the weather will allow us to enjoy natures bounty again. The cold and chilly weather cannot, however, take away from us our imagination and day dreaming abilities of our home and the luxuries we will be able to enjoy when the sun once again dominates the sky!

While we are barricaded indoors, why don’t we plan out some ideas to implement during the spring and summer? Preparation probably never hurt anyone!

Decks, porches, patios and the like! Outdoor renovations that will make the winter seem like a bad nightmare are just around the corner! Here we will provide some easy and quick tips on some new deck designs and things of the sort!

Let’s start with the patio!

The backyard is often thought of as this wide open space that may or may not include some form of a garden. I think we should expand on this open space! If you don’t already have one incorporated, then we highly recommend adding a location for a patio!

A patio can come in all kinds of formats! The design is only limited by your imagination! If you want a patio that is focused on the “sunshine fun time” feel, then we need to incorporate large amounts of plant life and furniture that can work in sync with those plants! A nice white wood table, maybe with  some form of quartz or granite surface, along with some nicely formed wicker chairs would be a great start! To get the greenery in there, consider having a garden surround the patio area. The garden could line the perimeter of the patio area while staying out from underneath the location. There is also the option of having some form of flat ceiling incorporated in the patio’s structure and you could hang the plants from the ceiling to create an always lovable floating garden!

Want more of a rough patio design? Try the rugged rock pathway leading to a table that has a giant circular rock slab as the surface! Combine the table and pathway with some minimal wooden chairs that have some metal bars and you will be golden…or in this case stone-den!

Moving onto Porches!

Porches are a strong factor in the first visual understanding of a home! They can really add a unique flavor to the homes character, while providing a great location to relax in the breeze of the day.

Porches, just like patios, have a wide array of options to make it unique for every home! Porches and traditional styled elements go together hand in hand. Consider a porch design that struts a large space with multiple seating options, from couches to cushioned chairs. Make sure however, that the furniture featured in your porch is weather-resistant! Wicker chairs here are a great option for the resistance alone, but also because of that traditional feeling and the variety of colors they can be found in or painted to!

When seating in the porch you can add a table to enjoy a nice meal, be it breakfast or dinner. To compliment your meal, a nice citronella candle or two in the form of a torch or the like, will help keep those pesky insects off your menu! Adding some fans for those warmer days will also incorporate another layer of functionality and style!

Last but not the least impressive, decks!

We aren’t talking about the part of a ship, we are talking about that risen section that is outdoor of your home! Decks give great value to a homes landscape appreciation. Decks allow the backyard to be appreciated in a new manner!

whether during a sunset, sunrise or zenith, decks offer some great extra space for social activities to take place in the wide open world!

So how can we break away from the generic wooden deck and have a design that stands out? Well, as for the wood aspect, try a different kind of wood! No one has to have the same type of wood for decks, try asking about different wood variations that will match your home and it’s surroundings! Decks generally have some form of railing for safety, but this is where you can get creative as well! Instead of some wooden poles, consider some glass panes as a fall barrier, this will allow for a stronger appreciation of the scenery while still providing a safety mechanism! If your not too worried about the view, and you don’t care for the glass, maybe try some stone! Ask around for some custom stone railing options!

No matter the location, a deck, patio, or porch can be an immensely great addition to your home and add some great charm and functionality! If you caught this outdoor renovation bug, we conveniently have the skill and knowledge on all things home and renovation, including the outdoor kind!

Give us a call at Xpand today and let’s start mapping out your plans for those home renovations and remodels! When the tame weather approaches you will be ready!

 

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Home remodeling and renovations!

Home owners often run across a dilemma after a few years of inhabiting their home, they want something new, something fresh. We all get that itch, that desire to begin some form of home renovation or home remodel once the charm of our home loses its shine. This is completely natural and can be an exciting opportunity!

I’m certain your first thought will be “how to renovate my home?”  and that question should be embraced rather than something to stress about.

When it comes to renovations, this can be a great way to fill the home with a new purpose. Those kitchen cabinets that have begun to look dated? Gone, and replaced with some chic modern styled cabinets that take up less room and no longer demand attention of the room in a negative manner. Renovations are a cost effective option that can be applied to most any aspect of the home, revitalizing that part and breathing new life into the atmosphere!

While renovations can be a great source of appreciation for the home, and a way to effectively alter the home at an easier price,home remodels have strong competing factors that should be considered.

While more time consuming and financially heavy, remodels can have a greater effect on the home, and also have a higher return percentage if your looking to sell!

We have a few examples of a positive return  on a home thanks to some remodeling investments!

Landscaping

The area around the home can play an integral role in the overall appeal of the home. A home can look amazing inside and out, but of the area around the home is a desolate wasteland, well the home itself becomes less interesting.

What you can do to improve the landscape around the home

  • Add some flowering shrubs for some color and pop to the front lawn and back yard. Capitalize on the natural resources around you!
  • Following up on the previous tip, add some kind of deciduous tree to the property. A nice 15-foot-tall tree will really help grab attention for the home, and because it is a deciduous tree, you get to enjoy an added effect of all the seasons by simply taking note of the trees!
  • A flag stone walkway is a welcome and charming addition. Simple and effective, guests and home owners alike will feel more drawn to the home!
  • Two stone planters, planted near the front steps as nice accents to the home. Make sure they are big enough to catch some attention, 6×2 should be the minimum!

The roof

This suggestion is purely for an enhanced sense of security and to ensure visual appeal that is consistent throughout the home. No one wants a leaky home, much less someone looking to buy one.

Signs of needed roof repair

  • Missing shingles, curled or hiding behind that pesky moss.
  • Residual parts of the shingles are brought through the downspout. This is a clear sign of the age of the shingles, when they fall apart like this from weathering, it is time to replace them.
  • A natural lighting in the attic….coming from cracks in the ceiling and walls.
  • Stains across the ceiling and walls, as proof of worn exterior defenses.
  • An energy bill as tall as high as the 15-foot tree you planted. When your energy bill keeps rising, and you cant figure out why, it’s more than likely because of small cracks and openings through the roof or other areas of the home.

Hardwood floors

Hardwood floors are, simply put, a cherished classic. We in the West are fortunate to have access to such an option! There are places in the world that used to have a scarce wood resource! Wood floors are easy to keep clean and easy to repair. You don’t need to buy all new wood flooring unless there is some SERIOUS issues with your flooring. Simply refinishing the floor will keep the charm intact and have a positive return when selling the place!

Patio/deck

Naturally, now that you have a landscape that is visually appealing and adding an overall interest to the home, it would make sense to have a place to admire it from.  Installing a patio or deck will allow for a greatly enhanced home that adds a very appealing functionality and will allow for an even greater return when or if selling!

Home siding

Adding or replacing damaged siding to your home will have three main functionalities that alone, are worth the time and effort. Siding can come in literally any color you would want, allowing for an unlimited potential for your home. Siding will retract the need to paint! No more falling off your roof! Finally, the most obvious, your home will be protected from the weather and nick and dings!

Some people scoff at the idea of vinyl siding, saying its a thing of the past and should be left there, however what those naysayers don’t realize, is that vinyl siding  has undergone some improvements, like everything else since the technological boom! Vinyl siding is now fade resistant with finishes and has transferable lifetime warranties! Give it a shot, give it a look, don’t be a home siding crook!

 

That’s about it for today’s tips and ideas for houses! If you have any questions or need help with the aforementioned topics, give us a call at Xpand and let us turn that house into a dream home! 

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Types of decks, not to mention maintenance free!

In this entry, we will be going over some of the different forms of decks! This will help you and anyone else, decide on a deck that fits your home and desired aesthetic!

First off, lets start off with the basics! What is a deck? Decks are generally made of wood or a composite wood material, and sometimes vinyl. You can use a variety of species of wood like redwood, cedar, or pressure-treated pine. Decks can be free standing or attached to the home, allowing another level of aesthetic opportunity.

With that out of the way lets get to it!

On a quick note, be mindful of where you place your deck, to ensure it does not become a nuisance in any manner down the road. Ensure the location is seldom used otherwise, and has a beautiful view!

Alright, here we go!

  • Attached deck- An attached deck resembles a patio, but the main difference is the material used to make it (wood) and is slightly raised off the ground. These decks are generally places at the back of an L-shaped home, or U-shaped home (get it, because U shaped how you want your home!

 

  • Island Deck- A detached decking that can be positioned and place anywhere on the property. However it should still have an easily accessed pathway leading to it. Unlike concrete patio’s, this detached deck is able to adapt to almost any surface of terrain.

 

  • The famous wraparound deck- Similar to the old-fashioned wraparound porch, aside from the fact that some parts can vary in size/shape. The decks are also elevated generally, and can be expanded in points so that it represents a porch-like setting.

 

  • A multi-level deck- These decks are generally favored for larger properties or one that changed in elevation. Multilevels are decks on different level, connected by steps or a path. Generally the surrounding terrain dictates if this form of deck is suitable or necessary, but its always an impressive sight to behold!

 

Decks can come in all sorts of shapes and sizes to match your homes desires/needs! Don’t be afraid to get creative and really make something special for your home!

Give us a call today and ask us about our suggestions for your home in terms of deck styles! While your at it, be sure to inquire about our other services!

 

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