Wednesday, August 12, 2015

End of Summer Roof Care Tips Every Home Owner Should Read

Who wants to deal with roof maintenance? It’s summer! We know.  But we also know that the fall rainy season can sneak up out of nowhere, and it’s important to avoid major problems when the power is in your hands. 

Once you have gone through the checklist below, you’ll have a good idea about what needs to be done and what you need to hire someone to take care of for you, before it becomes a bigger or more difficult problem. 

These summer roof maintenance tips will take only a couple of hours, but the time spent is well worth it because it could save you from costly roof repairs down the road.To ensure your safety, all of these summer roof care tasks are performed from the ground. If there is a need to go up on your roof, and you don’t have a safe way to do it, please  contact us to perform roof repair or maintenance.

  • Start early. No one wants to stare at their roof in the heat of the day. Get up at 7, make your tea or coffee and get outside.
  • Use binoculars to inspect for water leaks at the roof and chimney.  You’ll want to pay close attention for any deteriorated, missing or damaged roofing material as these can be signs of water leakage.
  • Use a weather-resistant caulk to seal minor reachable cracks on your home’s exterior, walkway and driveway to nip the issue in the bud, long before any potential temperature drop.
  • The warm weather makes this an ideal time of the year to clean out gutter debris. Practice extreme caution when walking on the roof and follow manufacturer’s instructions when using a ladder to reach gutters. Use a shop vac or your hands to remove debris from the gutters. Contact us for bigger or more risky jobs.
  • While cleaning out the gutters, check for an accumulation of asphalt shingle granules. Granule accumulation in the gutters could signal it is time to replace the roof.
  • Remove moss and algae from roof to prevent moisture damage and rot. Brush down the roof, using a scrub brush attached to a telescopic pole to detach the moss and algae from the roof. Use caution when moving on the roof; moss and algae can make the roof extremely slippery.
These are all wise precautionary maintenance steps that should be taken to ensure your home is a safe place and won’t cost you a ton to repair later. Contact us at Unique Home Building to speak with a contractor and get your home cleaned, ready and beautiful!

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Simple Tips For a Simpler, Smoother and Easier Home Moving

Simple Tips For a Simpler, Smoother and Easier Home MovingMoving shouldn’t be so hard, yet when we know that it’s coming, we all slump our shoulders and our friends sympathize with a kindly pat on the back. Why? Because it’s a pain mentally and physically. You need options and solutions to make the process easier because you’re too busy to have that extra stress.
At Unique Home Building, our goal is to help you feel at home, whether it’s a new home build or a remodel. Regardless, you need to feel good about this transition and we are happy to share some of our best tips to reduce stress and keep things moving smoothly. (pun intended!)
Here are some simple rules:
REDUCE. Get rid of what you don’t need. We tend to move many things that we just don’t use and then they stay in the box in the next house forever. The less you pack, the less you have to move and unpack. If it doesn’t have deep family meaning or if you don’t use it often, stick it in a box and drop it off at Goodwill. Other families will be wonderfully grateful.
JUNK DRAWERS. All houses have them. Go through your drawers and put your “must keeps” in sealable plastic bags. You or your movers just can drop the bags into the box, and when you are unpacking, you can just dump it back in. Everything is together. This is especially helpful for junk drawers, utensils, underwear drawers.
MOVE BY ROOM.  Box things up one room at a time. Be extra efficient with labels. Use words like, closet, clothes, shoes, dining room utensils..  
SMALLER BOXES. Make sure you aren’t afraid to use many small boxes instead of less large ones. The large ones get packed with more things and can become heavy and cluttered. Smaller boxes keep things organized and specific. Easier to put away and easier to transport.
PLAN AHEAD. This one is about utilities. Utility companies need about a month notice to know you will be turning yours off, switched or turned on. Some require appointments that may be booked out 2 weeks. Don’t get stuck without phone, internet or gas, etc. Think ahead. Call your current and future providers and let them know your move date to determine the best on/off services days.
RELAX. Do not move and pack 7 days in a row. Every 3 or 4 days, stop. You will burn out if you just keep going. Even if you stop at noon one day, give yourself a long stretch of doing something relaxing and rejuvenating. Get a massage, go see a movie, workout, take a hike.. anything that gives you a deep breath.  

Whether you're buying, selling or even remodeling, Unique Home Builders are here to support you along the way.  Please contact us and let us know how we can best serve you!

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Need Some Ideas? Top Remodeling Trends and the Best Options for Your Home!

As you consider remodeling your home, different options will come and you want to have a logical and long term view of the situation. Do you think you’ll resell later on? Maybe you’re remodeling with intention to flip the house?

Regardless of your reasons, it’s important to make wise choices about what to change, add or take away during your home remodel. At Unique Home Building, we have expertly handled a spectrum of home remodeling needs in the Dallas area and we are ready to serve you too.

Our friends over at Realtor Mag shared some important trends and things to consider when planning your home remodel and we thought we’d share them with you. Here are our top picks from their list!

“Open spaces go mainstream. An open floor plan may feel like old hat, but it’s becoming a wish beyond the young hipster demographic, so you’ll increasingly see this layout in traditional condo buildings and single-family suburban homes in 2015. The reason? After the kitchen became the home’s hub, the next step was to remove all walls for greater togetherness. Design experts at Nurzia Construction Corp. recommend going a step further and adding windows to better meld indoors and outdoors.
Off-the-shelf plans. Buyers who don’t want to spend time or money for a custom house have another option. House plan companies offer myriad blueprints to modify for site, code, budget, and climate conditions, says James Roche, whose firm has 40,000 choices. There are lots of companies to consider, but the best bets are ones that are updating layouts for today’s wish lists—open-plan living, multiple master suites, greater energy efficiency, and smaller footprints for downsizers (in fact, Roche says, their plans’ average now is 2,300 square feet, versus 3,500 a few years ago). Many builders will accept these outsiders’ plans, though they may charge to adapt them.
Freestanding tubs. Freestanding tubs may conjure images of Victorian-era opulence, but the newest iteration from companies like Kohler shows a cool sculptural hand. One caveat: Some may find it hard to climb in and out. These tubs complement other bathroom trends: open wall niches and single wash basins, since two people rarely use the room simultaneously.
Quartzite. While granite still appeals, quartzite is becoming the new hot contender, thanks to its reputation as a natural stone that’s virtually indestructible. It also more closely resembles the most luxe classic—marble—without the drawbacks of staining easily. Quartzite is moving ahead of last year’s favorite, quartz, which is also tough but is manmade.
Porcelain floors. If you’re going to go with imitation wood, porcelain will be your 2015 go-to. It’s less expensive and wears as well as or better than the real thing, says architect Stephen Alton. Porcelain can be found in traditional small tiles or long, linear planks. It’s also available in numerous colors and textures, including popular one-color combos with slight variations for a hint of differentiation. Good places to use this material are high-traffic rooms, hallways, and areas exposed to moisture.
Charging stations. With the size of electronic devices shrinking and the proliferation of Wi-Fi, demand for large desks and separate home office is waning. However, home owners still need a dedicated space for charging devices, and the most popular locations are a corner of a kitchen, entrance from the garage, and the mud room. In some two-story Lexington Homes plans, a niche is set aside on a landing everyone passes by daily.
Wellness systems. Builders are now addressing environmental and health concerns with holistic solutions, such as heat recovery ventilation systems that filter air continuously and use little energy, says real estate developer Gregory Malin of Troon Pacific. Other new ways to improve healthfulness include lighting systems that utilize sunshine, swimming pools that eschew chlorine and salt by featuring a second adjacent pool with plants and gravel that cleanse water, and edible gardens starring ingredients such as curly blue kale.”
As you can see, there are many options to choose from. Regardless of your home size or situation, please call the contractors and Unique Home Building today, to talk about the best choices for your home and your budget.

Monday, August 3, 2015

Avoidable Mistakes Most People Make When Choosing to Remodel Their Home

Avoidable Mistakes Most People Make When Choosing to Remodel Their HomeAll too often, we’ve hear people’s horror stories of what went wrong when they decided to remodel their home. Lucky for you, we have the tips you need to know, straight from the remodeling company itself, Unique Home Building.

Set Your Priorities.
Every home comes with it's issues.  Some have black mold or plumbing issues.  These kind of things can cause a lot of underlying problems that you may discover at a bad time. For example, if you discover mold in any place - deal with it immediately. You don't want your contractor discovering later on that it is from a leak in the walls of the upstairs plumbing; that will need to be dealt with first.  Don't make this harder on yourself!

Wait to Decorate.
Wait until things are in progress or finished to buy your accents and appliances. You don't really know if any of it fit.  You'll end up going on a returning spree and with your contractor taking a jackhammer through the old tub to get the new one in—not worth it, in our opinion! Have patience.  It's coming.

Relocate What’s Valuable
While any responsible contractor will be respectful of your furniture and belongings, the chance of something being damaged if it’s still in the workspace is much higher. Instead of leaving it up to chance, move your belongings out of the work space before things get started.

Find a Good Contractor
With all the DIY info out there, anyone can 'be' an expert.  People think they know best – it’s their home after all, right? While that’s all true, there comes a point when you just need to trust that the contractor knows what they’re doing and let them guide you in the right direction, by making recommendations and suggestions to make your new home the best it can be.  It's your vision, but it's a big undertaking that should be left to the experienced professionals.

Your Home Will Be Unique
People often give photos to their contractors to follow, but then they are disappointed when things don’t turn out looking exactly like the photo in the magazine or on the Pinterest board. The thing is, those pictures are heavily edited and touched up, (just like models) and even if your contractor or builder uses all the same materials, there is usually no way to totally mimic a magazine photo in real life.

While an area of your home is being remodeled, there’s a pretty good chance that you won’t be able to use it during that time. If this is an essential area of your home, you might be stuck not being able to use it for much longer than is comfortable for you. If you need things to be completed by a certain date, make sure to tell the contractor at the very beginning so they can prepare to work towards that goal. Otherwise, things may be done on their schedule, within reason, but not necessarily your expectation.

In conclusion, we at Unique Home Building  know that a home remodeling project is something that most homeowners do only once or twice in a lifetime, if at all.  Therefore, the process tends to be totally new for most people.  Please, call us today, if you are looking for a contractor in Dallas, Texas to take care of your home rebuilding or renovation projects.  You are in good hands.