This week I have a meeting with a house designer and I'm super excited. So, I want to talk about what you and I should do to prepare for those initial design meetings. What documents and information we’ll need for those meetings to be less time consuming and more successful.
Now I’m not going to talk a lot about how to choose a designer or architect. If you’ve listen to this show for a while, you can probably figure that out. Ask friends and family, and even contractors for their recommendations, and get several references before settling on a house designer or architect. What we’ll focus on today is what you do after you’ve decided on a specific design professional.
Before we get to that, let’s go over a few Pro Terms.
Pro Terms: Architect, Draftsman and House Designer
Most people think of their pets as members of the family. So, it only natural to consider them when designing your new home. This week I have 9 quick tips for designing a pet friendly home.
1. In the rooms where you think your pets will spend most of their time, choose glossy or semi-gloss paint or tile, which are easy to wipe down if they get stained or wet.
In cold, northern states of the US, most homeowners really don’t have much choice of what type of foundation their house will have. Most cold climate foundations are basements. That’s because the footing, which is lowest part of the house, right beneath the foundation, has to be placed below the frost line.
The frost line is the depth at which frost or ice penetrates the ground. Ground above the frost line freezes, and ground below the frost line does NOT freeze. Footings should be placed below the frost line to prevent foundation freezing and shifting.
Since frost lines are deeper in cold climates, deep foundations must be constructed, that’s why basements are so popular in the cold, northern states.
The house that my husband are planning to build will be our forever house— the first and last house that we’ll ever build. At least that’s the plan.
Eventually, everyone of us will either rent, buy or build our last home- the one that we’ll will grow older in. The one where our adult children and grandchildren will spend holidays.
This week’s quick tips will give you some ideas about how to design a forever house. The list includes universal design elements, meaning features that will allow anyone of any age, or anyone with any level of mobility, to enjoy and live in the house.
But a forever house shouldn’t just be physically accessible to us as we age. It should accommodate changes in lifestyle, habits and traditions as we progress from busy, working people to retirees.
Ok, ready for the forever home quick tips?
1. Make climbing stairs an option, not a necessity.
This morning, when I was on my knees scrubbing my small, framed, fiberglass shower stall, I thought to myself, “What would I do to make this shower better? How would I design the perfect shower?” One that would be a pleasure to use everyday and one that would be easy to clean and maintain. In this weeks episode, I’ll share with you some of the things I came up with. We’ll go over some quick tips for designing the perfect shower.
Now, obviously, what a perfect shower is for me, might be the perfect shower for you. But I think you should be able to get several good ideas from this week’s perfect shower quick tips.
1. Make the shower large, but not expansive.
Solid hardwood floors are on the wish list of most people that I know who are planning to build a home. Wood floors are warm and welcoming, but they’re also expensive and they don’t hold up well to moisture and humidity, pets, rowdy children and heavy foot traffic.
Fortunately, wood flooring alternatives have now entered the residential market in the form of wood look tile and wood look luxury vinyl flooring. They provide the warm look of wood, without many of the downsides that go along with hardwood flooring.
What gives these alternatives the look of hardwood is an high definition wood image that’s applied to the surface of the tile or vinyl. In this week’s mini lesson, I’ll give you the pro and cons of wood look tile, plus some buying tips. Last week we went over the pro and cons of luxury vinyl flooring. Take a listen to episode 65 if you missed that.
Ok, moving on to some Pro Terms.
PRO TERMS: Glazed tile, color body tile and through body tile.
Luxury Vinyl Flooring that Looks Exactly Like Hardwood. Learn Why LVF is the Fastest Growing Flooring Segment— BYHYU 065
Listen, I know what you’re thinking when I say vinyl flooring…inexpensive, unattractive, linoleum-like floors. Not something that you would consider worthy of a new, custom built home. I used to think the same thing.
I always assumed that I would put hardwood flooring in my dream house. But, now I’m not entirely sure. I’ve seen more and more wood look alternatives that look exactly like solid hardwood. And what’s really intriguing is that I’ve seen these wood look alternatives in several luxury model homes. Plus, in doing a bit of Google research, I’ve read that many homeowners are specifically requesting wood look alternatives, even in high end custom homes.
This week, I’ll tell you about the pro and cons of wood look luxury vinyl floor planks and next week we’ll cover wood look porcelain tiles. Both are great options for the look of wood, without the cost and maintenance associated with solid hardwood flooring.
Before moving on to the mini lesson, let’s cover a few of Pro Terms.
Resilient flooring, linoleum and vinyl.
Kitchen islands. They’re one the most requested kitchen feature in new homes. This week’s quick tips will cover how best to organize your kitchen island and what type of island storage might work well for you and your family. You should customize your kitchen island to reflect your habits, needs and desires.
Tip #1: Decide what you want to primarily use your kitchen island for because that will determine how to make the most efficient use of that space.
Lots of people like the idea of building green, or a least a greener. But, although the term green building is often used, many of us are not quite sure exactly what green building is, or where to go to get easy to understand information about green building options.
This week we have an interview that will help explain what green building is and why it’s important. We’ll hear from Sheridan Foster, founder of Elemental Green, a great online educational resource for green and sustainable building products and techniques.
Before we get to that, let’s go over a Pro Term: Right sizing
Have you ever gotten out of the shower, dried off and just had to get out of the bathroom for a few minutes because it was so hot, humid and uncomfortable?
I mean, you can’t get dressed when you’re hot like that.
You know what could help minimize that problem? A powerful, bathroom exhaust fan. Powerful, but quiet, because if the fan is annoyingly loud, you won’t use it regularly.
Choosing the right fan for your bathroom is more important than you might think. Without an appropriately sized exhaust fan, not only can your bathroom be uncomfortably hot and humid, not to mention smelly, but over time, you risk causing moisture damage to your bathroom drywall and cabinetry, plus you increase your chances of developing mold and mildew on your shower walls, drywall and even on the wood framing beneath the drywall. Not good!
According to the Home Ventilating Institute, every home needs ventilation for protection against unhealthy indoor pollutants and excess moisture and heat. Let's go over a few quick tips this week that will help you choose powerful, but quiet bathroom exhaust fans.
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