Home Addition Guide Final Steps

This post will wrap up our 2016 Home Addition Guide with a highlight of the final two steps. We hope you are enjoying the guide and the opportunity to take a closer look at some of our projects.

Cipriani Remodeling Solutions

Before- home addition in Pitman, NJ by Cipriani Remodeling Solutions

The fifth step in the Home Addition Guide is all about sitting back and letting everything come to life. You have done you’re planning and research. You have hired a great team to assist you with your home addition endeavor. The design and shopping are complete and you are getting excited! So now you are at step five. This step is the actual execution of the project.

Adding an addition can be a whole lot less stressful than you might expect as long as you are fully informed on the execution plans of your project. It’s about understanding how the renovation will be managed day-to-day, what the project’s blueprint entails, what kind of timeline will be implemented, what kind of unexpected delays could arise, and what kind of living environment is anticipated throughout the process. A constant open line of communication is vital to the success of such a large project. Ultimately, communication ensures your home addition is properly planned, budgeted and executed by your experienced professional.

Cipriani Remodeling Solutions

After-home addition in Pitman, NJ, by award winning designer Sue Faramelli

The final step in our Home Addition Guide is about how to wrap up all the details. As your project draws near completion it is important that you are completely satisfied and everything is to your liking. If you see a flaw or have a problem, be sure to speak up before it’s all wrapped up. Also, retain any receipts or warranty information, as well as your hired professionals contact information, just in case something unforeseen comes up in the future. It never hurts to be prepared for the what-ifs. The best part of this last phase is seeing your vision come to life. All the planning and effort have become a reality. All the effort finally pays off as you get to enjoy the added functionality, comfort and convenience of your new space. Something you can relish in for many years to come. You and your family will make many memories in your new space.

Stay tuned in the months to come for more information about the Cipriani Remodeling Solution’s Home Addition Guide and other great renovation resources. We will be introducing other useful home renovation guides throughout the year. For more information, info@ciprianibuidlers.com or visit our Home Addition Guide page. For more details, visit our Houzz profile. To see projects up close, visit this feature project.

Design Tips For a Chef-centered Kitchen

Many homeowners with a passion for cooking desire a kitchen that mirrors those of renowned chefs. To achieve this, various design elements and simple upgrades can be incorporated to create the ideal kitchen that combines ultimate functionality with sophisticated style.

Faucet makeover

Culinary enthusiasts spend a lot of time at the sink. A faucet that simplifies tasks is a necessity and the Brizo Solna Articulating Kitchen Faucet is a culinary-driven innovation offering flexibility and control in the kitchen. Boasting crisp, contemporary lines, the articulating arm can be adjusted to position the two-function spray wand at various heights and angles — extend the arm up or outward to fill large pots or lower into the sink to reduce splash during clean-up. Beyond function, its Scandinavian inspiration brings a streamlined architecture to any kitchen.

Storage space

Just as great recipes call for top-quality ingredients, great kitchens need excellent tools. Maximizing storage is key for those with an impressive collection of kitchen tools and culinary essentials. Avoid overwhelming renovations and make the most of storage options by thinking “outside the cabinet” to fully accommodate needs.

For a crisp, modernized look, arrange pots and pans in a line on the wall with a linear rack. Take organization a step further by incorporating a magnet bar for sharp utensils, ensuring tools are close at hand without getting in the way. Store culinary tools and flatware in expandable drawer dividers to ensure all cabinet space is utilized and the counter remains clutter-free.

Inside garden

Bring the outside in with a miniature herb garden for fresh flavor enhancements when you need them. Spaces in front of a kitchen window with natural light are ideal for an indoor garden.

Various herbs in 3- or 4-inch pots can be grouped together in stylish trays to keep humidity high. For an extra splash of color, add edible flowering plants to the garden, such as lavender, lemongrass and violet. These homegrown herbs can be used as garnishes, to layer flavor into a dish or even in cocktails for at-home entertaining.

Designated task stations

Commercial restaurants work well with cooking stations for seamless preparation and execution. Designate specific areas for every facet of meal preparation to aid in overall organization and evoke the look and feel of a five-star kitchen in your home.

In most top-rated kitchens, food preparation is commonly performed between the sink and refrigerator to ensure all needs are met for retrieving, rinsing and chopping. Added elements like a deep sink and wide counter space make these tasks efficient and restaurant quality.

Transforming the kitchen into a chef-centered space is simple with clean, purposeful upgrades. For additional information on the Solna Articulating Faucet or to learn about other Brizo product offerings, visit www.brizo.com. –(BPT)

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Nate Berkus with Six Common Kitchen Design Dilemmas

Nate Berkus with tips and tricks for solving 6 common kitchen design dilemmas

Kitchen design is an art form, one where function and beauty harmoniously co-exist. Achieving that balance, however, isn’t always easy. When renovating a kitchen, homeowners can find themselves facing challenging design dilemmas. And they are not alone.
“When redesigning or refreshing a kitchen, the goal is to create a space that is hardworking, yet beautiful,” says Nate Berkus, renowned designer and artistic advisor to LG Studio. “Look for items that really represent who you are and your design personality, and you’ll create an area you and your family will love both now and 10 years from now.” Berkus points to six common kitchen design dilemmas and offers suggestions on how homeowners can create a space that is functional, and also beautiful.

1. Space challenges
When you don’t have enough room for the large table your family needs, get creative. Consider building an L-shaped bench around a farm table and adding extra chairs. It’s a clever use of space and will create a cozy nook where your family can gather for meals, or kids can do homework. Plus, the bench can double as storage space so it’s extra hardworking.

2. Last year’s — or last decade’s — cabinets
Cabinets are one of the first things you notice in any kitchen, and they’re also one of the most important in terms of functionality. If your cabinets provide ample space but look dated, Berkus suggests giving them a facelift. “I always appreciate a simple, clean style, but with cabinets I tell my clients they shouldn’t be afraid to mix it up,” he says. Use varying materials and finishes, like a wood or paint color that’s different from the rest of the kitchen. “I recommend sticking with a neutral palette for cabinets, whether you’re installing brand new ones or painting your existing cabinets,” Berkus says. “White, charcoal and gray will always be elegant, and you can’t go wrong with black — it’s absolutely one of my favorites. It makes a dramatic statement and looks fantastic paired with stainless steel appliances.”

3. Small budgets, big taste
When you long for that sleek, built-in look but don’t want to break the bank, counter-depth appliances are a great design choice. They seamlessly integrate with cabinetry no matter what the material, supporting that clean look you ultimately want your kitchen to reflect.
“I’m obsessed with LG Studio’s three-door counter-depth refrigerator,” Berkus says. “The door-in-door feature is one of my favorites.” The refrigerator also features a sophisticated, pro-style, flat-door design inspired by Berkus that gives it a premium look. LG Studio’s slide-in ranges, with designs also inspired by Berkus, are another great option to help homeowners achieve a custom, built-in aesthetic.

4. Unattractive, inefficient lighting
Lighting is one of the most important design elements in any room, and it’s the one thing people often overlook when re-designing their kitchens. “Lighting can instantly change the whole feel of a space,” Berkus says. “I believe it is one of the most important decisions you can make in any room, especially the kitchen, which, let’s be honest, is usually the hardest working room in your home.” To create lighting that is both useful and beautiful, remember to light the room in layers — from above, under cabinets to illuminate work areas and all-around accent lighting to create ambiance. It’s also such an easy way to add a whole lot of personality to your kitchen. Opt for vintage sconces and brass or metallic lighting fixtures. They will instantly up the design ante and make the space feel decidedly layered and interesting.

Nate Berkus5. Counter space confusion
Figuring out how much counter space you’ll need is always tricky. Start by considering all the ways you’ll be using your counters. You’ll need food prep areas, of course, but will you also want a breakfast bar where your family can sit for meals and snacks? Will you need extra room for countertop appliances? “My rule of thumb is, to always double the amount of counter space you think you’ll need,” Berkus says. “You can never have too much, especially if you like to cook and entertain.”

6. The slate is simply too clean
A large, open-concept kitchen can seem appealing, but it can also be daunting to design and decorate. “Don’t be afraid to do something unexpected in the kitchen to break up the space,” Berkus says. “I love the idea of creating an unexpected seating area in your kitchen. Shop your weekend flea markets or online stores for a vintage sofa, coffee table and rug to set up an area for your family to relax in.” Ultimately, Berkus says, keep in mind that the kitchen truly is the heart of the home. “Kitchen design is about creating a space in your home that brings the whole family together, and is the best place to reflect your sense of personal style.”– (BPT)

Get Started with the Home Addition Guide

In our last blog we told you about our new Home Addition Guide and how it can be a useful tool to help guide you in your home renovation process. This blog will tell you how to get started with the Home Addition Guide This time we will give you an insight into the first two steps.

The first step in the Cipriani Remodeling Solution’s Home Addition Guide is about exploring the home addition options. When it comes to adding on to your home it’s always a good idea to put a lot of thought behind it because after all, an addition is the single biggest home remodeling purchase you will ever make. The reasons to do an addition are numerous, but assess your needs and explore all options. Is this the smartest way to add space to the house? Have you constrained to fit features and functions into your existing space? How important is this added living space to you? You need to ask yourself some of these things because just remember, keeping your needs in mind helps you to keep costs down, no matter what choice you end up making.

Collingswood, NJ Addition exterior image

Collingswood, NJ Home Addition by Cipriani Remodeling Solutions

Step two deals with dreaming up the addition ideas. Think of design ideas that will complement your current floor plan and stay true to the architectural style of your home. When adding on, it is important to ensure that the natural look and flow of the home is considered so that it becomes a natural extension of it. Additions not only add space, they also add character and style to a home. It’s about creating the perfect addition for YOU and the options are plentiful when it comes to designing your new dream space. Whether you’re looking to add a single-room addition, bump-out, sunroom, in-law suite, family room, second-story add-on or expansion of your home, a well-planned addition will solve all your living space challenges.

Collingswood, NJ Home Addition Interior view

Collingswood, NJ Home Addition by Cipriani Remodeling Solutions

Stay tuned to learn more about the Cipriani Remodeling Solution’s Home Addition Guide. For more information, info@ciprianibuidlers.com or visit our Home Addition Guide Page.

To learn more about the Collingswood, NJ home addition featured in this post, visit the Addition Showcase.
SPECIAL FEATURE—FREE Design Clinic March 10th, 2016 6:30-8:00pm. Join us and learn ways to gain space in your home. For more information, visit the Design Clinic page.

Empty Nesters Boost Home Value

Above image- Balanced natural light and passive ventilation come with decorating flair when skylights are added to a room. Operated by touchpad remote control, Energy Star-qualified solar powered fresh air skylights and blinds, along with installation costs, are eligible for a 30 percent federal tax credit. Get details at www.whyskylights.com.

Empty nesters, boost home value and your spirits with savvy, appealing improvements.

Whether they’re heading off to college or they’ve finally finished their education and are starting their careers in a distant city, the departure of kids from your nest makes for a bittersweet time. If you’ve committed much of your energy-and most of your home-to raising kids for a couple of decades, you may be at loose ends when they move out. Home improvement is just the ticket to make yourself feel better!

Updating your home after the kids move out is good for you on multiple levels. In addition to the emotional boost, improvements can enhance your home’s resale value if you’re planning to down-size down the road. Or, you can focus on home improvements that will facilitate aging in place, like improving the lighting and usability of key rooms, such as bathrooms and the kitchen.

Here are a handful of renovation ideas for baby boomers looking to reclaim their home spaces after the kids have left the nest:

Emphasize natural lighting and ventilation

Vision changes as you age, so the artificial lighting that worked for you when you were in your 30s or 40s may not be adequate when you enter your 50s and 60s. Lighting is an important upgrade if you plan to remain in your home into your Golden Years. Look for improvements that will help aging eyes see better, like increased natural lighting and task lighting in work areas.

Modern, energy efficient fresh air skylights are a cost-effective and beautiful way to improve a home’s natural lighting and passive ventilation. Especially effective for ventilation in kitchens and for ventilation and privacy in bathrooms, skylights like those made by Velux America can work in virtually any room – even those with no direct roof access. Have a ground-floor laundry room, closet, hallway or other area that could use more light? Sun Tunnel Tubular skylights can deliver natural light from the roof into all areas of the home and electric light kits are available for 24/7 functionality.

Energy Star-qualified, solar-powered fresh-air skylights can also improve a home’s energy efficiency and improve indoor air quality through passive ventilation. Solar-powered blinds, available in designer colors and patterns, further boost the efficiency and beauty of skylights. Plus, the skylight, blinds and installation costs are eligible for a 30 percent federal tax credit for energy-efficient home improvements. Visit www.whyskylights.com to learn more.

Create a “me space”

You already have a guest bedroom, so there’s no need to leave Junior’s old room set up as a bedroom. Turn it into a space that works for you, like a home office, exercise room, music studio, craft room, workshop or home theater.

As you’re planning the improvement, keep in mind your long-term plans. If you’ll be selling the home at some point, consider a room that will have broader appeal, like a home office. If you plan to age in place, remember to incorporate features that will facilitate your use of the room even if you experience mobility issues down the road. For example, you may want to take the opportunity to widen doorways, replace doorknobs with door handles, replace loose carpet or slippery tiles with slip-resistant flooring, and improve natural lighting and ventilation throughout the room.

Renovate (or create) a master bathroom

Bathrooms sell homes, and if you’ve had to share your bathroom with the kids or live with an outdated master bathroom – or none at all – now’s the time to renovate your bathroom. In addition to all the luxurious features you’ve been dreaming of, like a rainfall shower head and heated floor, keep in mind the practical improvements that will make the room safe and usable as you grow older.

Look for slip-resistant flooring, improve natural and task lighting and replace faucet knobs with easy-to-maneuver levers. Install grab bars around tubs and toilets, as well as in the shower. Bath product designers are now making grab bars that offer the look of design elements coupled with the security of sturdy support.

The departure of your children creates an opportunity to accomplish some home improvements you’ve been dreaming of for a while. As you’re reclaiming spaces once devoted to kids, look for improvements that can increase your home’s value and help you stay in your house as long as you wish.

For more information about universal design and how empty nesters boost home value , contact CiprianiRemodelingSolutions.com. One of our award-winning Certified Aging in Place Specialists would love to have a conversation with you about adding value and making lifestyle renovations.

Cipriani Remodeling Solutions Aging in Place Specialist

Aging eyes require more light for safety and for performing everyday tasks around the home. Energy Star-qualified solar powered fresh air skylights provide balanced natural light and passive ventilation to make the home brighter and more pleasant. Solar powered blinds are available for light control and increased energy efficiency. The skylights and blinds, as well as installation costs, are eligible for a 30 percent federal tax credit. Get details at www.whyskylights.com.

 

(BPT)

Affordable Big Impact Home Winterization Tips

Affordable Big Impact Home Winterization Tips

Although you may prefer to forget, last winter’s subfreezing temperatures may not be an isolated occurrence. Weather experts are already discussing if El Nino and arctic air from a polar vortex will cause colder than normal winter weather throughout the country. Is your home ready to withstand the chill?

Smart homeowners are taking time now to prepare their homes for the harsh weather. Winterizing not only helps maintain comfortable temperatures inside, but also helps lower your energy bill. Fortunately, some of the improvements that have the biggest impact are also easy to do and surprisingly affordable.

1. Seal gaps and cracks

The average midsize U.S. home has a half mile of gaps and cracks according to www.energystar.gov. Cold air infiltrates through those spaces causing your furnace to work overtime. An easy way to combat the problem is to use Great Stuff(TM) Gaps & Cracks to fill openings around electrical outlets, plumbing pipes, doors, dryer vents and more. Sealing your home takes just a few hours whether you do it yourself or work with a contractor. Visit dowgreatstuff.com/winterize to learn more.

2. Reverse fan blades

Your ceiling fans aren’t just valuable during summer – they can help reduce energy costs by circulating warm air that rises to the top of rooms. To ensure your fan is circulating the air correctly, you need to reverse the blades. Most modern ceiling fans have a handy switch that controls the blade direction. During the winter, set the blades to spin clockwise to help warm rooms and set to counterclockwise during summer for cooling breezes.

3. Eliminate drafty windows

Have you ever felt a draft as you walked by your window? Gaps around windows are a major source of heat loss. Seal out those drafts with Great Stuff(TM) Window & Door Insulating Foam Sealant. This specially formulated low-pressure sealant is easy to apply and insulates the window without bending the frame when properly applied. Another great tip is to open the curtains during the daylight hours on south-facing windows so the sun can help heat your home naturally. Close curtains when the sun sets to reduce the chill.

4. Install an adjustable thermostat

An adjustable thermostat is an effective tool for maintaining a comfortably warm home and cutting heating costs. If you have one but don’t have it set, now is the time to learn how. By adjusting the temperature down while you’re sleeping or away, you can save plenty of money. In fact, by turning your thermostat back 10 to 15 degrees for 8 hours, you can save 5 to 15 percent a year on your heating bill, according to energy.gov.

5. Tune up your furnace

If meteorologists’ predictions are correct, your furnace will be working hard this winter. Make sure it is working effectively and efficiently by scheduling a tune-up now. A qualified technician will check the coils and clean and lubricate important mechanical parts. Some utility companies offer free checkups to customers, so be sure to ask about your options. In addition to a tune-up, remember to change your furnace filter once a month during the heating season to maintain proper air flow.

For more great home winterization tips, visit CiprianiRemodelingSolutions.com. One of our award-winning designers would love to have a conversation about conservation. (BPT) 

Editor’s note:
®™ Trademark of The Dow Chemical Company (“Dow”) or an affiliated company of Dow.

3 Simple Ways to Add Nostalgia During the Holidays

3 simple ways to add nostalgia during the holidays.

Fond memories of holidays past are one of the many gifts of the seasons, and it turns out a bit of nostalgia is good for you. It can make you feel less lonely, bored or anxious, and more generous, tolerant and happy, according to a New York Times report on nostalgia research.

You don’t need research to know that remembering good times makes you feel good. This holiday season, why not foster a sense of nostalgia? Here are three ways to bring some of the best things about bygone holidays back into modern holiday celebrations.

Decorating with a touch of yesteryear

It’s easy to evoke a sense of nostalgia with holiday decor. Retail and specialty stores carry a variety of decorations that evoke the look of past decades, from the roaring ’20s to the sparkly ’70s and beyond.

Choose light strands with larger bulbs to mimic the look your grandparents enjoyed in the 1950s, or candolier bubble lights for a ’60s or ’70s flare. Glass ornaments in intricate shapes also recall an older era, as do tabletop ceramic trees with mini lights.

A simple online search will yield many nostalgic decorating options, or you can often find vintage pieces at yard sales and flea markets. The important thing is to look for items that remind you of a favorite holiday memory.

Finding nostalgia in favorite holiday foods

Everyone has that time-honored family recipe that is the showpiece of holiday feasting. Certain foods and flavors, like peppermint candy canes, turkey with all the trimmings, pineapple-topped ham, and frosted sugar cookies are delicious musts for holiday celebrations. If it’s been a while since you made your family favorite, dust off the recipe this year. Or, you can try something that’s both new and nostalgic at the same time, like this recipe for Goji Ginger Popcorn Balls from Frontier Co-op:

Goji Ginger Popcorn Balls

2 tablespoons coconut oil

1/3 cup organic popcorn kernels

1/2 cup Frontier Organic Crystalized Ginger, diced into small pieces

1/2 cup Frontier Goji Berries

1/2 cup brown rice syrup

1/2 cup sunflower seed butter

Directions:

In a large stockpot over medium-high heat, heat coconut oil until melted. Add popcorn kernels and cover pot with lid. Heat popcorn, shaking the pot occasionally, for about 3-5 minutes, until popping slows and the majority of the kernels are popped. Remove from heat.

Pour popcorn into a large bowl, removing un-popped kernels. Add crystallized ginger and Goji berries. In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, combine brown rice syrup and sunflower seed butter, stirring occasionally. Continue to heat mixture for about 3-4 minutes, until contents are well combined and easily pourable. Pour mixture over popcorn and, using a wooden spoon or your hands, coat popcorn. Lightly wet your hands and form popcorn into 18 3-inch balls. Serve as soon as possible.

If desired, substitute non-sweetened or sweetened sunflower seed butter for the unmodified sunflower seed butter, but expect a slightly different consistency and taste.

Reliving memories with music

What holiday party would be complete without festive music playing in the background? While you may love modern holiday tunes, vintage music is a great way to create nostalgia during the holidays. Whether you’re a fan of traditional carols or favor rock reinventions of traditional tunes, music is a great way to create nostalgia at the holidays.

Technology has made it easier than ever to find and enjoy music from every era. Why not put together a play list of holiday music that was popular during some of the happiest holiday seasons you remember? Can’t recall what was playing the year you finally got that skateboard you dreamed of? Check with your parents – your mom probably remembers! And even if she doesn’t, you’ll have a good time reminiscing together. (BPT)

 

5 Easy Steps to Winterize Your Outdoor Living Space

Cipriani Remodeling Solutions shares 5 easy steps to winterize your outdoor living space.

Ahh, the backyard – it’s served you well all summer. But now the seasons are changing and colder weather is on the way. Which means you need to prime your property from the ravages of winter. That’s right, it’s time to winterize!

Since you can finish your indoor winterizing as temperatures get cooler, it makes sense to winterize your outdoor living space first. With that in mind, here is a five-point checklist to help safeguard your home from Jack Frost for another year:

Prep your deck. Your beautiful deck has been a source of outdoor enjoyment all summer long, so now it’s time to protect your beloved structure before winter rears its ugly head again. Of course, the amount of work you have to put into winterizing your deck depends on your decking material. For example, a durable, long-lasting material such as beautiful Western Red Cedar requires the least amount of maintenance. That said, all decks require some upkeep.

So to preserve your deck’s luster, start by cleaning it with a warm soapy solution and a soft bristle brush (never power wash). It’s important that you remove all dirt and debris from both the surface as well as in between the boards during this process because the more ventilation your decking has through the colder months, the better it will look come springtime. Next, inspect the deck for the presence of mold. If present, wash the deck with a mild oxygen bleach solution and leave on the surface for 30 minutes before rinsing thoroughly. Finally, remove anything that might leave marks on the deck’s surface from inconsistent weathering – think outdoor furniture, movable planters, door mats etc. As for finishing your deck with a fresh coat of stain etc., that’s really more of a spring job (i.e. you’re off the hook for another six months).

Inspect your windows. Take a stroll around your home’s exterior and inspect each of your windows to see if any gaps or cracks are present. If you find some, apply caulking to the openings and this will prevent cold air from seeping through these cracks during the winter, which in turn, will cut down on your heating bills!

Protect those planters. These days, most planter boxes are made with Western Red Cedar. That’s because it’s naturally resistant to rot, decay and insects; and therefore, doesn’t require treatment from potentially dangerous chemicals that can leach into your soil and plants. But like all garden beds, Real Cedar planters need protection during the winter months. Start by removing all soil and cleaning the boxes as you did the deck. Then if possible, store your emptied planters in a garage, shed, under the porch etc. If you can’t, then cover them with a water repellent tarp to protect from moisture buildup – but make sure you don’t seal the tarp. As with decks, it’s very important that you allow for proper ventilation.

Trim those trees. As you walk around your house inspecting your windows for cracks and gaps, this is also a good time to take a look at your trees. Look for trees that are old, appear weakened or diseased. In addition to the trees themselves, you should also check for any dead branches, particularly those hanging near or over your home. As snow accumulates over the winter, the weight may be enough to bring a diseased tree or branch down, potentially damaging your home. You can eliminate this risk by removing any dead trees or branches now before the first snow starts to fly.

Guard the grill. If grilling is one of your favorite summertime activities, you don’t have to abandon it just because winter’s coming. A Real Cedar BBQ cover can protect you from the elements, allowing you to grill all year long. And because the cover is made from a naturally resilient wood like cedar, you’ll be BBQing in all kinds of weather for years to come. You can find free plans to build your own BBQ cover in Real Cedar’s outdoor section.

For extensive project plans, maintenance tips & design inspiration, visit Real Cedar.com. Or if you like to “DIY on the Fly”, download the new Real Cedar Mobile Toolkit app for fast and easy building facts. Available for free from Google Play Store and coming soon to iTunes. (BPT)

For more information about winterizing your outdoor space, contact one of our award-winning remodeling consultants at CiprianiRemodelingSolutions.com.

How to Select Roofing Shingles

The 3 C’s of choosing diamonds and shingles: Knowing more means paying less.

Shopping for an engagement ring can be confusing. But knowing the 4 C’s of picking a diamond – Cut, Color, Clarity and Carat – can help consumers get the best gem for their money. Shopping for roof shingles can be confusing, too. But knowing the 3 C’s of buying a new roof – Cut, Color and Coverage – can help consumers choose the best roof for their home and make the entire process easier and less expensive.

1. Cut

Cut refers to the shape of the shingle and can have a huge impact on a roof’s appearance. Depending on the cut, specialty laminated asphalt shingles, like shingle manufacturer TAMKO Building Products’ Heritage Woodgate line, can give the illusion of wood shake shingles. Other options can resemble stone, slate or tile. Shingle cut can also give a modern or vintage look to a home, so it’s important to choose a cut that fits the style of the rest of your house. The shingle cut can also affect the installation speed and the cost of your roof. The shingle application method shown here http://bit.ly/1dORpuC can help speed installation and reduce waste.

2. Color

When you think of shingle color, you probably think brown, gray and black. And while those traditional colors are still very popular, in recent years asphalt shingles have been introduced in a wide variety of colorful hues. Color trends include high-contrast options like Rustic Evergreen and Glacier White, as well as a popular move toward natural colors emulating the vibrant tones found in nature. “People are getting creative with their roofing – it’s not just utilitarian anymore,” says Stephen McNally, vice president of sales and marketing at TAMKO Building Products. “People are seeing it as a palette – one of the first things visitors notice about the house.”

When choosing a color, take into account the exterior color of your home, including siding, shutters, porch and front door. If the lots are close together, also consider the colors of the exteriors and roofs of the homes on either side of yours. Some options include contrasting colors, complementary colors or analogous color schemes.

3. Coverage

It’s important to understand the warranty on your roofing system. Coverage includes which items are under warranty, under what circumstances the roof is warranted and for what amount of time. Most roof warranties don’t guarantee your roof will last 30-50 years, but do provide options if you experience a manufacturing defect during the warranted time frame. Look for a warranty with longer “upfront” coverage, as these typically offer more time during which both materials AND labor to install replacement shingles would be covered (tear off, removal and disposal is typically not covered). Manufacturers’ warranties don’t cover regular wear and tear of your roof and weather damage is also not typically covered by manufacturers, which is where your home insurance comes into play.

Also, many times problems with a roof are the result of improper installation, so make sure to choose a reputable local roofing contractor, preferably a preferred installer who has received training from the company that manufactured the shingles. Also, ask whether your contractor offers a separate warranty for the installation of the product and for what period of time.

Understanding these three C’s of roofing can help you buy a “gem” of a roof and hopefully save time and money. For more tips on choosing the perfect roof for your home, visit www.TAMKO.com. (BPT)

To see more finished roofing projects and for more information about how to select roofing shingles, contact CiprianiRemodleingSolutions.com. One of our award-winning design consultants would be happy to have a roofing conversation with you.

Fall Curb Appeal in 5 Simple Steps

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Soon, all things pumpkin spice will be here, including the home visitors that bring them. In preparation of the door bell ringing, create a little spice of your own with some seasonal curb appeal. You don’t have to limit yourself to pumpkins and hay bales — below are tips and projects for sprucing up your home’s view from the curb this season.

Front door, first impressions

Your front door is one of the first things people notice about your home. Give your door a fresh face with a coat of paint in a bold fall color to draw the eye to this focal point of your home.

Another project is to replace the door entirely. Consider options with decorative glass accents, and stunning sidelights (windows on either side of the door) to add more natural light while maintaining a sense of style and privacy. Plus, as temperatures start to drop, Energy Star -qualified entry doors, like those from Pella, will help maintain your home’s energy efficiency. For entry door inspiration check out Pinterest, your resident showroom or your local home improvement store.

Accessorize with new hardware

Replace your front door hardware for a quick, easy facelift. Choose hardware finishes that compliment light fixtures, mailbox and house numbers for a polished, cohesive look. You’ll be delightfully surprised what a difference new hardware can make in creating an updated look to your home.

Refresh exterior body and trim colors

For a dramatic change, repaint your home’s exterior. It’s bold and can make your home stand out from other homes on the block. Not up for the bold change? To make an impact with a smaller change, add new trim colors. When updating trim, choose color schemes that match your home’s primary exterior color, or complement it with a fresh twist.

Create points of interest with plants

You don’t have to stop enjoying beautiful plants and flowers simply because summer is over. Add pops of color by arranging pots filled with hearty fall flowers like mums, sedum or asters around your front door, or on a porch or deck. Incorporate planters or container gardens of varied sizes, shapes and colors to add visual interest.

Accent with lighting

As summer light fades into shorter, darker days, add exterior accent lighting to the front of your home. Illuminate a walking path with ground-insert solar lights. Or consider solar spotlights to bring out landscaping or to shine on your updated front door. Install matching light fixtures outside your front door, garage door or patio door to provide well-lit entrances that are stylish and inviting to neighbors and guests.

For more curb appeal inspiration, follow Pella on Pinterest and Houzz and visit Cipriani Remodeling Solutions for more ideas on how to transform the look and comfort of your home inside and out.