Why remodeling contractors take too long?

Any one  who has been through any type of home renovation has experienced construction delays. It is a reputation that is well earned.

Why?

The reasons most laymen attribute this phenomenon to  are:

  1. They are using my money and going to another job
  2. They are disorganized
  3. They are lazy
  4. They are incompetent

While this is true in some cases, I will share with you from a professionals point of view, some additional causes. I happen to be a part of a franchise system so I know hundreds of remodeling contractors across the country and fully understand what happens. Here are the most common causes:

  1. The scope of work changes: more often than not, cleints have change orders to their original scope of work and this may require everything from updating the building permit,  updating the HOA information, ordering additional and possibly special order materials, and so forth. Meanwhile, we do not want to leave that job so the jobs that had been promised afterwards are now delayed!
  2. Unforeseen sight conditions: when you are a remodeling contractor, you cannot predict things you cannot see or know for sure. For example, when you are digging footings and there is a drain where no one know. This is a problem!
  3. Weather: for exterior remodeling, weather is a big variable that is quite misunderstood. Even if it only rains partially one day, there is a good chance that entire day is lost. It may result in an additional day or 2 if it is too wet to perform the service.
  4. Human factors: while we believe we are going to complete a project in a specified time, the skilled labor we all depend on are still humans! Meaning, they get sick, have problems, car troubles, etc…..

When you are planning your next  remodeling project, plan for these delays, they should be expected but most likely for the reasons you had not thought of!

For more on remodeling, go to archadeckofcharlotte.com

 

 

How do I pick the best color for my screen porch?

Charlotte outdoor living trex island mist deck

How do you pick the best color for your screen porch? Here are a couple of easy tips for you to take into consideration when making your selection.

What is the trim color around your windows and doors? If you want your porch to look like it’s a part of the home and not an afterthought, this would be the easy and safe way to choose a color for the posts on your screen porch.

 

Screen porch by Archadeck of Charlotte

Archadeck custom built this screen porch in Huntersville, NC

If you want a more rustic feel, perhaps you have a heavily wooded lot, than a nice wood tone stain color would fit nicely like the one below.

 

Rustic covered patio with exposed rafters and an outdoor fireplace with stone on columns by Archadeck of Charlotte

Rustic covered patio with exposed rafters and an outdoor fireplace with stone on columns by Archadeck of Charlotte

Color choices are endless but if you think about the above two considerations, it really makes it quite simple! To see a wide variety of colors and styles of screen porches, go to archadeckofcharlotte.com

 

Best Patio Surfaces in Charlotte, NC

What are the best patio surfaces if you are living in Charlotte, NC? It depends on what you will be using the patio for!

 

The most traditional surface is concrete. It is still the standard for track builders to provide a small “slab” outside the rear exit door of a home. The advantages are lower cost, low maintenance, and ease of installation. The disadvantages are primarily the propensity to crack and poor aesthetics. Stamped concrete improves the aesthetics, raises the cost, but does not address the cracking.

 

Flagstone is a popular surface for it’s aesthetics and is often found in high end neighborhoods. The advantages are the beauty and low maintenance, the disadvantages are the very high cost and will still crack over time.

 

Paver patios are the most popular surface in Charlotte. They combine the reasonable price point with good aesthetics. People believe that weeds can grow up in between the  pavers (which normally happens only when an amateur constructs the patio and does not add enough base or seeds fall from above and grow in the poly sand). They come in a variety of colors and sizes.

 

Finally, Travertine patios have been the fastest growing segment of the market here in Charlotte. They have tighter lines than traditional paves with less chance of weeds growing in between in the sand. In addition, the look resembles a tile and in fact can be purchased as a tile for applications directly over concrete on decks. The price point is slightly higher than pavers.

For more information on all outdoor living spaces, go to archadeckofcharlotte.com

Sun room options

The term sun room has different meanings and connotations. Archadeck of Charlotte is a custom sun room design/ build company and even we use sun room as a term loosely. This blog will break down the options for you and the implications.

  1. Traditional Sun rooms are integrated into the back of the house and are heated living spaces. When they are added to a home, they count as square footage towards both your taxes as well as your property value. More simply put, they have a nice return on investment if you sell your home when the market is up due to the fact the room has heat and air and is therefore part of the home. They are another room in your home that simply have more windows than the others. They are used for entertaining and relaxing.
  2. There are several companies that “manufacture” sun rooms. These are very similar to the option above. The primary difference is they are pre-fabricated off site, often have energy-efficient windows and doors, but do not look like part of the house. It is obvious they were added on after the fact.
  3. Archadeck designs and builds sun rooms that fit the definition of the first type above by using “stick – built” construction on site and integrating the room into the existing house seamlessly.
  4. Archadeck also designs and builds sun rooms that do not have heat or air conditioning but are more of a “3 – Season” room. These rooms are designed to provide all of the qualities of the above spaces but are less costly. Not only do you save on the fact that you will not pay for HVAC, this room also does not require insulation, termite treatment, vapor barrier, and so forth.

For more information of sun rooms, visit archadeckofcharlotte.com

Building a patio myself

A patio seems like a fairly easy project to tackle for those that are handy.

Outdoor-Fireplace-with-pave

What are the pitfalls?

  1. Grading – knowing how to slope the patio and when you will need retaining wall block to keep the patio from falling or separating
  2. Materials – having the information on how much off the base to purchase and how to compact
  3. Design – to build a patio is just part of it, the proper design to accommodate what  you want to furnish or seat on the space is another part
  4. Finish – how to keep the weeds from growing up through the seams and to keep the patio from staining easily
  5. Warranty – when you build it yourself, you may end up doing it more than once which increases your costs!

Charlotte outdoor kitchen travertine patio

Can I put a grill under a roof?

Most of our clients at Archadeck of Charlotte prefer to have a roof over them when they are using their grill. The idea of standing under the sun for an extended period is not exciting. Furthermore, being rained on is not an exciting prospect either!

For years we could design and build covered areas to place your grill. There is a building code violation that prevents us from doing that. The concept is that the practice presents a fire hazard.

There are 2 ways now we design “covered” spaces in order to be protected from the elements while you are grilling.

One is simply to design the outdoor kitchen or grilling station on the outside of the roof just enough to where you can stand under the roof while the grill station is not covered!

The second is a much more expensive but quite legal option. We can purchase and install a vent hood and place the outdoor kitchen directly under the roof. For more information on grilling and outdoor kitchens, go to archadeckofcharlott.com

What is the best way to clean my Eze Breeze Windows

Stone outdoor fireplace integrated into screen porch with EZE Breeze windows

 

Eze Breeze windows are manufactured by PGT Industries in Sarasota, Florida. Archadeck of Charlotte has been installing their porch window product for over 15 years in the Carolina’s.

There are many questions centered around how to best clean the Eze Breeze windows. If you read the warranty, you should never use a product containing alcohol (ie. Windex) as it will void the warranty on the vinyl panes.

The windows all have little tabs at the top of each pane that allow you to completely remove the individual panes from the track. Because they are so light weight, this is quite easy to handle. Once you remove the pane from the track, you can simply wash it down with a soft soap and water or the PGT makes a cleaner specifically for their own product that is quite effective.

Archadeck of Charlotte stocks the cleaner at their offices in Charlotte.

Go to http://www.archadeckofcharlotte.com