How to Increase the Size of your Garage

It is always a good idea to make your garage bigger, as there are a lot of benefits you can enjoy from doing this. A bigger garage will be a lot more practical and it will provide much better utility as well, and it will even improve your house’s value. Although, there are some things you will want to keep into account of when it comes down to garage addition.

The first thing that you should do when you are planning on increasing the size of the garage is to come up with a good plan. When you are making a plan and a design you should consider aspects such as proportions, so your bigger garage will look like it belongs to the home.

Garage_door_additionOnce you are finished with the sketches, you will need to begin making detailed plans on what you want for the garage. You can make the plans yourself, or you could hire a professional architect to handle it for you. Typically, if it is complicated it is far better to allow the professionals to handle it because the plans will have to include: the materials, cross-sectional views, and also the dimensions.

Another thing you should consider when you plan on remodeling your garage is to get a price estimate.  If you want to hire a contractor, then it is always important to ensure that they can provide you with an estimate on the price. After all, it will not do you any good to hire someone you cannot afford.

If you are handling the project by yourself, then chances are you will need to hire subcontractors for more specialized work, so it is important to let these people know your building plans as well as your schedule.

After you have the plans and an estimate of the price, you can now begin getting the permits and develop a schedule as well.

When you have the permits and everything is ready then it is now time to start creating your bigger and better garage. Make sure you have allowances in your schedule, because even the best plans do not go according to plan.

If you would like to have more information then visit HomeAdditionPlus.com and take a look at the garage addition bid sheet. This bid sheet will provide you with a questionnaire, which can be useful for getting a quote as you can show it to your contractors. This sheet will also include the cost of doing certain things and how long it will take to construct certain things as well. So if you want a bigger garage, now is the time to do it.

Check out this great video for motivation!

How to Improve Attic Energy Efficiency

Statistics indicate that 85% of a house’s heat loss takes place through the attic space. Houses that were built before the energy crunch in the ’70s might have fiberglass insulation in the attic space or empty cavities between the joists. However, the house is still wasting too much energy, and the homeowner is compelled to spend a large amount of money to heat and cool the whole house. That said, how then can one improve attic energy efficiency?

Below are 3 ways you can use to improve attic energy efficiency

 
i). New Insulation – Effective insulation has been proven to slow the rate at which heat leaves the house during winter and gets in during summer. This means less energy will be required to heat as well as cool the house. In case your house has continuous wall cavities, new blown-in insulation can not only save enough energy but also improve your comfort. It is worth noting that it’s not advisable to add additional insulation into walls that are already insulated, but in the event that your attic isn’t finished yet, upgrading its insulation will reap you amazing benefits.

radiant barrier
ii). Attic Ventilation – During summer, good attic ventilation plays an instrumental role by reducing heat buildup. This in turn reduces cooling costs as well as prolonging shingle life. During winter, warm and most air seeps into the attic from the living space underneath. This means having good attic ventilation allows the heat and moisture to get out. This ensures that your attic remains dry, which means reduced ice dams. How then do you tell whether your attics are well ventilated? Some of the signs of poorly ventilated or under-ventilated attic include:

– Lack of vents on the roof or in the eaves.

– Too hot ceiling during warm, sunny days.

– Thick ice ridges on the eaves during winter.

– Condensed moisture on roof sheathing or rafters.


iii). Radiant BarrierRadiant barriers are installed in homes, usually in the attics, the main goal being to reduce summer heat which in turn reduces cooling costs. These barriers consist of highly reflective materials that reflect radiant heat rather than absorbing it. When the sun heats a roof, its radiant energy makes the roof hot. The heat travels to the attic side of the roof through the roofing materials. The heated roof materials will then radiate the heat energy to the cooler attic surfaces, including the attic floor and air ducts. Therefore, using a radiant barrier reduces the transfer of radiant heat from the underside of the roof to the surrounding attic surfaces, which in turn reduces the amount of energy you need to cool the house.

Conclusion – Improving attic energy efficiency is the key to cutting heating and cooling costs in your home. Use any of the methods highlighted above and you will have less to cater for every month.

New Trends to Expect in Home Improvement

There are several very fun and interesting trends that are taking shape in the home improvement industry as of late, and in this article, I’d like to discuss some of the best ones as we see it.

modern kitchenTastefully Modern Materials

I don’t think anyone would argue that a kitchen is judged by the material of the countertops and cabinets. It used to be that having a granite countertop meant that you went all out, but it seems the new trend is polished concrete or even quartz. They both offer a very clean and elegant look that never goes out of style. They are extremely durable and don’t show wear and tear. They can also be finished in just about any color that a person could imagine.

 
Smart Homes

The age of smart technology is firmly has been set upon us, and like it or not, it’s time to adapt our houses to the trend and upgrade the gadgets. Heck, they’re here to make our lives easier, so let’s embrace them. If nothing else, you can marvel at how cool they are. It used to be that you would get a plug-in timer to shut off your lights or sprinkler system at a set time. Nowadays, there are completely integrated systems for everything, such as the air conditioning, sound systems, security, and intrusion detectors. You can even fire up your hot tub from your smart phone. The list is nearly endless, and it keeps growing with every new advance in apps and wireless communication between devices. If you’re renovating a home or building a brand new one, these technologies will be standard in the next 10 years, so don’t get left behind. The value of your home depends on it.

Home Improvement Trends LED LightbulbLED Lights

Prices on LEDs have been dropping every year, just like every new technology. They are also taking different shapes and showing up in different applications, such as rope lighting. They last longer than a normal incandescent and they are also much more attractive to the eyes. They can be multi-colored and some you can even dim. Not to mention, they’re also really energy efficient. There really isn’t any excuse not to switch out all your light fixtures and bulbs to support this lasting trend.

Energy Efficient Designs

More and more thought is being given to the efficacy and cost effectiveness or green designs. Tankless and solar water heaters, solar panels, skylight tubes, large energy efficient fans, low impact air conditioning units, etc. The list goes on and on. Consider your carbon footprint when thinking of your next home improvement project. The initial buildout costs are much lower than in years past, and the lifelong savings you get from the increased efficiency are a total no-brainer.

Smaller Homes

We’re not suggesting that everyone should move into a micro-apartment, but it’s a noticeable pattern that younger people realize they don’t need enormous amounts of space to be happy. It’s a similar trend with the green movement – a move toward conscious consumption. Besides, with less space, one has a better opportunity to dress that space up much more glamorously than they would if they had to worry about a McMansion. Plus, your energy bills will be much lower. Although I’m not really much of a fan of this one, it’s worth noting that it’s becoming more and more popular.