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Plan a Successful Playground Design

The most important advice for planning a playground is to take your time. If you are rushed into any decision-making then it is likely that the end result will not suit your individual requirements. There are so many options and designs that it is important to consider them all prior to committing to the final design.

Another element that will help lead to a successful result is the involvement of the children that are using the space. Allow them to create their own ideas of how they would like the equipment to look. This will make sure that they value their new play space and will enable your chosen playground company to tailor the designs to available products. It is well-understood within the industry that idea generation from children can be incredibly resourceful and inspiring.

Following on seamlessly from this is the acquisition of a reputable playground company. They will support you through the entire process and will be directed by the strictest guidelines in relation to safety. Their experience will allow them the opportunity of tailoring your designs to

Types of Foundation Cracks

It is not uncommon to find minor cracking in concrete foundations, possibly indicating a need for concrete foundation repair. This is because concrete shrinks as it cures. Curing is not just the result of water loss, it is also a chemical reaction. The amount of shrinkage that will occur depends on many factors, such as the type of concrete that was used, the temperature at the time of the pour and how much water was used.

These are usually thin, vertical cracks that appear randomly throughout the foundation. They can range in length from a couple of inches to the entire height of the wall. If the concrete was incorrectly or poorly mixed, the cracks will tend to be larger. The degree and characteristics of the cracking can also be influenced by the use (or lack) of steel reinforcements. Shrinkage cracking will typically stop once the concrete has been cured.

Foundation cracks occurring in an older building should be of more concern. In particular, be on the lookout for vertical wall cracks that become noticeably larger in a

Customized New Homes

Space Is Everything

Where you will live is a big decision. Ever move into a house or apartment only to complain about the size of the bedrooms, the number of bathrooms, or the amount of storage space? Obtaining a mortgage loan takes effort and commitment on the part of individuals. Buyers tend to stay in their houses longer than renters. When you purchase a property, you either have to live with its inconveniences and inefficiencies or spend the money to make the necessary improvements. Buyers should take the same time and care needed to obtain their loans and put that effort into finding residences that will match their lifestyles and grow with them. Buyers of new homes have the opportunity to pick layouts that address their own unique needs and include customized features that simplify their lives.

Desirable Features

New homes provide a number of features that can increase owner satisfaction and happiness. Customized features include a variety of options and plans for both the indoor and outdoor areas. Design plans involve the number of bedrooms and bathrooms. Additional

Architects Versus Engineers

For anyone in construction, this may seem obvious, but it occurred to me that it may not be as obvious to everyone else. So Today I wanted to take a moment to discuss the differences between an architect and an engineer and explain why one is exceptionally qualified to lead the other.

Before I jump into the meat of this discussion, I want to share an experience I had several years ago. A higher education client was modernizing their university’s central power plant. Given the substantial engineering this project required, the Owner selected an engineer who was exceptionally skilled with the various building systems impacted by the project. The firm was hired directly by the owner and setup to lead the project. The engineer, realized that while the project was primarily an engineering project, there were several architectural elements that would also be impacted. Not having any in-house architects, the firm turned to an outside architect and hired them as a sub-consultant with the principal engineer in the lead.

The firm I was with at the time received the award to provide the architectural services. I was assigned the project and worked with the engineer to

Custom Built Homes

• The home can be completely personalized, which is why many choose this type of home. The buyer can have a say in every phase of the building process so they can have a tailor-made home. You get to choose the layout of the rooms, the sizes of the rooms, how many bathrooms, and bedrooms you need, color of wall paint, countertops, appliances, and more. Although custom built homes are more expensive you will have the satisfaction of investing in a home that suits them and you do not have to deal with the choices a previous owner made. You also do not have to spend money on upgrading your home.

• If there is a new subdivision that is being built, choosing a home here will allow you to build as you want. You can also watch as other homes are built and more people move into the area. If you purchase acreage, you can build it as large or small as you want and it gives you a chance to live in a remote area with very few neighbors.

• There are also lower maintenance costs as owners of brand new home generally spend

Waterproof New Construction

#1 – Protect Your Building’s Interior from Water Damage

While construction is underway, the site is going to be exposed to the elements. The frames, foundations, wiring, insulation, and floors will inevitably be at the mercy of the weather. If you’re using concrete and steel the hazard is less prominent, but the wooden materials is where the dangers of water really become more hazardous. Prolonged exposure to water will allow wood to begin to rot, become infested with mold, or render the entire structure unsound and unfit for use.

Waterproofing your building materials during construction will help prevent this from occurring. This will also promote a strong start to your project. As you’ll be better protecting your materials from damage, it also prevents expensive delays and replacements, as you will not need to be repairing continuous damage either during construction or after it has been completed.

#2 – Promote Long-Term Comfort and Sustainability

Waterproofing your new construction site early helps you to start sealing it off more efficiently than trying to it after building has finished. The measures taken help reduce moisture in the interior of the building, which makes it more comfortable to

Advantages of Design-Build

  • Faster Delivery – collaborative project management means work is completed sooner and with fewer problems.
  • Cost Savings – an integrated team is geared toward efficiency and innovation.
  • Better Quality – design-builders meet performance needs, not minimum design requirements, often developing innovations to deliver a better project than initially imagined.
  • Singular Responsibility – one entity is held accountable for cost, schedule, and performance.
  • Decreased Administrative Burden – owners can focus on the project rather than managing separate contracts.
  • Reduced Risk – contractor assumes full responsibility for all aspects of the project.

Ability to manage all aspects of home building or remodeling project means that contractor can offer more with fewer administrative burdens, better quality, cost savings, and reduced risk. Design-build services are comprehensive, keeping you in mind throughout the entire process. These kinds of services can include:

  • Pre-design Assessment
  • Lifestyle Design
  • Site Selection (owner’s or builder’s property)
  • Architectural Design Management
  • Certified Green Builder
  • Value Engineering
  • Bank / Lender Management
  • Demolition Management
  • Feasibility & Budget Assessment
  • Construction Management
  • Property Engineering Management
  • Product Selection Guidance
  • Budget Management
  • Zoning, Permitting, Building, and Governmental Approvals

Design-Build methodology provides for project delivery under a single contract inclusive of both design and construction services. The contract price is typically a

Structural Insulated Panels

The Panel Types

Before you get the panels, make sure you know the different types of insulated panels. The performance and lifespan of the panels will depend upon the quality of the fabric. Therefore, it’s important that you know the panels’ fabrication process and the way it was glued or bonded to the material of insulation. The performance of the panel will go down if it was glued or cured the wrong way. Given below is a description of different types of commonly used Structured Integrated Panels.

Polystyrene Insulated Panels

Most of SIPs are made with EPS, which is short for Expanded Polystyrene. This insulation type on the SIPs represents the measurement of the insulation. The final R value may be up to 5 inch thick. Usually, the size of these panels is between 4 feet and 24 feet in width.

Polyurethane Insulated Panels

Usually, these SIPs feature an R value of between R6 and R7 per inch of thickness. You can achieve the R26 with walls that measure 4.5 inches. Usually, these panels are produced in 3.5 inches of thickness for walls. For ceiling, the thickness of these panels is as much

House Extensions

Are you looking forward to an extra bedroom, a new living area for the whole family to enjoy or for a home office? The first and foremost step is to verify the viability of a house extension procedure in your property, no matter whether it is a single storey extension or a two (double) storey extension. Always keep in mind that only a well-planned sensible design can be cost-effective and provide you the likely benefits. Before you proceed, it is also necessary to recognise the need of a planning permission and verify whether your property is located in a conservation area. If so, it is highly recommended to seek advice from your nearby building control authority and do a research about the legal procedures related to the extension work.

Next, take time to find an answer for “how much does an extension cost?” For this, your exact requirement has to be analysed in detail. Based on your need, you can either choose a rear extension or a side extension procedure. A single storey extension, either done on the side or rear portion, is comparatively cheaper and it requires only minimal disruption. However, if you need more ventilation,

Wooden Garages

Surprising facts about wooden garages

Multi-purpose

The prime purpose of wooden garages is providing a safe place to park your car. Well, that’s not all. Wooden garages are multi-purpose and can serve other purposes other than accommodating your car. Some people use garages as a store where they keep gardening tools and other household equipment whose services are not needed regularly. There are also those who use garages as workshops. Last but not the least, some people turn their wooden garages as man caves. If the garage is big enough, why not use it as a man cave for one of those awkward nights?

Suitable for all seasons

Naturally, wooden structures are very attractive to the eye. Irrespective of what season it is, wooden garages always look attractive to the eye. Wood being a bad conductor of heat ensures that the inside temperature remains warm during winter despite the fact that it is freezing outside. A wooden garage is perfectly equipped to suit you in all seasons.

Maintenance of wooden garages

Wood is durable but there are a few things that you need to know about maintenance of a wooden garage. Wood

Reasons to Have a Custom Home

Functionality

The layout and usable space in the home can easily be tailored to match the specific needs. This is great for those that want the option to choose between the separate, defined rooms or the open floor plan. Also, it is possible to include custom features like a private library with walls of bookcases or a spiral staircase in the center of a room. There are plenty of ways to create the unique and stylish home when starting from scratch. It most cases, this would be very difficult with a semi-custom or pre-built home.

Material quality

The material quality can vary significantly. Many existing homes can include low-quality or prefabricated materials. A custom home makes it possible to have more input on the materials. This means that every part of the home is constructed with high-quality materials, brands and products.

Budget control

The process of having a custom home does not need to be expensive. The size, layout and materials can all be tailored to match the buyer’s budget. When it comes to working with a home build, the architect can help design a property that truly matches the requirements and each

Clarify About Builders

  1. Check Certificate of Insurance:

If he is insured, you will not have to bear the liability and compensation if something happens to him while working on site. Make sure you look for the certificate.

  1. How many years he has given to this industry?

If you have to choose anyone from the list of recommended builders, make sure you ask them this question. It will reveal how expert your builder would be. More the time, more will be the experience and ultimately, you will get the best work!

  1. Does he agree on monthly updates on the completed construction?

As you would pay the money, you have the right to be informed about the completion of the construction every month. Therefore, ask your builder beforehand to keep you updated during the construction.

  1. Does he agree to show his contracting license?

Every city, every county, and every state have a different set of construction parameters to be followed to obtain a license. So, if the builder is a genuine one, he must have the proper license to work in the industry. You must verify the license.

  1. Does he provide

Metal Handrails Vs Wood

Metal handrails are a much safer option, but also cost a lot more. Metal offers a unique design aspect that wood cannot offer. Many builders don’t offer metal, because it requires a speciality contractor that is knowledgable in metal working and welding. If you have the budget and access to a metal handrail builder, then they are the superior option. As with all home designs, pricing depends on the complexity of the work and the availability of metal stair builders in your area.

Metal handrails are superior in safety, because it is many times stronger than wood. To be precise, steel made to A-36 qualifications means a single square inch of that steel has a tensile strength of 36,000 pounds per square inch. That is seriously tough and can be a life saver. Imagine this: you are walking on your second floor and your dog left his bone in your path. If you don’t see it and step on it, you could lose your balance and go full-weight into your wooden handrails. Chances are those handrails and pickets are going to splinter and break, leaving you in for a 1-story fall that could cost you your life

Home Staircase Design

Wood staircases are the most common and cost effective. They can either be made from framing lumber and covered in carpet, or the stair treads and risers are made from higher-quality hardwood. Solid high quality wood includes oak, maple, and walnut. Stairs made from framing lumber are the most cost effective type. If you are dealing with a higher end home, then you will likely have the option of hard wood stairs. These stairs can also incorporate wrought iron balusters for the handrail. The biggest downside to wooden staircases is that they make a bit of noise due to the wood changing size (depending on the season and humidity).

Concrete stairs are a great option for outdoor stairs or industrial style homes and areas. Concrete is very strong, solid and quiet. It can have a multitude of textures added to it, and a variety of color to provide even more design options.

Finally, metal stairs are the safest, strongest and the most versatile from a design point. There are two types of metal staircases, metal-only, and metal with accent materials. Metal-only stairs are what most people think when they hear of metal stairs. Metal-only stairs are

Keep New Home Construction On Track

Visit the construction site regularly

There are lots of unnerving unknowns when it comes to new construction. Maybe your lumber has been left out in bad weather and is starting to show signs of wood rot, or a miscommunication with a subcontractor leads to your new home facing the wrong way!

The best way to ease your nerves, and ensure these problems don’t happen, is to visit the construction site very often to keep an eye on the progress. Don’t leave it until the final walk through before you see everything that’s been going on there.

Try to visit the construction site for a walk through at least three times.

The first time should be after the home has been staked out and surveyed as it gives you the opportunity to ensure it is situated correctly.

Once the framing is complete and mechanical installation has begun. This is the ideal time to address any issues, such as ventilation or the electrical wiring.

The last time to visit is for the final walk through; at this stage you will review the punch list. Try to visit as often as possible to address problems

Home Improvement Contractor

1. You’ll Save Money Doing It Yourself

Sure, it seems like you’ll save much more by taking on the project by yourself, but that usually isn’t the case for several reasons. One of them may be because you don’t have all the necessary tools for the job, and as everyone knows, tools can be expensive. By the time you’ve bought all the power tools you need, you would probably end up paying more than the price of a contractor’s service. There is also the possibility of making a mistake. Even the smallest mistake could end up putting the whole project in jeopardy. It’s better to have an experienced contract do it right the first time.

2. The Higher the Price the More Reliable

The price tag shouldn’t be your focus when searching for a dependable contractor. In fact, the reason contractors often charge a higher price is because there aren’t many other companies close-by to do the project for a lower cost. It’s the simple rule of supply and demand. Instead, you should choose a contractor based on legitimate reviews by real customers. That’s the best way to judge the services of any contractor. And

Construct A Durable House

Get a good contractor

This is the person who handles the construction work. The contractor is very sensitive as he’s the one who determines the quality of materials that are used and the quality of workers handling the project. For a long lasting construction you should hire a contractor with a good reputation.

If you are constructing a specialized house such as a storied house you shouldn’t hire a general contractor-you should hire a specialized professional with years of experience.

Be cautious of the materials

The materials you use greatly determine the quality of your house. If you go for low quality materials chances are that your house will be of poor quality and won’t last long enough. To be on the safe side you should use high quality materials.

The contractor you hire has a great influence on the material that go into the construction. To have control of the materials used you should buy the materials and pay the contractor for his/her services.

Flexibility

In addition to hiring a great contractor and architect you also need to ensure that your house design is flexible. This means that it must

Protect Trees During Construction Work

Protection of existing trees – heavy machinery and construction work within proximity of trees can cause irreparable damage. According to arborists, fixing tree damage is considered far more expensive than preventing it. For this reason, establish visible and durable barricades that keep trees protected. Young trees of 1 to four years require minimal protection of 30 cm area for each 2.5 cm of trunk diameter. For mature trees, the protected area should span two metres from the widest measure of their crown.

Protection of root systems – trees contain two types of roots: large and small absorbing roots. The large system expands in a horizontal direction and is 15-60 cm in depth. They serve to provide anchorage and nutrient transport. The smaller roots average 0.16 cm in diameter and serve to absorb nutrients and water. Damaging any of the two systems can have a significant impact on tree’s health.

Soil compaction – once a tree is established, any soil changing activity can prove detrimental to its health. With construction traffic near the tree, soil can become severely compacted, thus reducing permeability. Compacted soil significantly restricts root growth and contributes to less water and nutrients. A layer

Hiring a Masonry Contractor

After gathering several names of masonry contractors call them and make an appointment for them to come to your home to give you an estimate on the work that needs to be done. After getting a quote for the work you need done ask them if they are certified by the MCAA and if they hold a general contractor’s license. If they say yes ask to if you can see their license and certification. If they tell you it is at their shop make a note to stop by their shop to verify that they have them.

You should ask the potential masonry contractor you might hire when they expect to have the job completed. Although you cannot get an end date set in stone because problems can happen such as it could rain, they run into unforeseen problems, etc the contractor should be able to give you a tentative date of completion.

Another important question you need to ask is if they any references from other customers. Ask the masonry contractor if they can give you at least three names and phone numbers of previous customers. Call them and ask if they are satisfied with

Process of New Home Construction

Once they have the building permits the contractor can start the earthwork on the site. This will including any grading that needs to be done to create an even level foundation for the new home construction. During this part of the process the earth is removed or added as needed. All underground piping is also installed. If there is going to be a crawl space or basement it will also be added at this time. Once all the earthwork has been done the next step is to start framing the houses using steel or wood studs. The builders will create walls, roof framing, and floors at this stage. They may also install windows and exterior doors. Once the building of the house has been completed it is time to put the roof on to create a structure that is watertight. To give the house a finished look they may install brick or exterior siding.

Once the framing work and exterior work is done it is time to start on the interior work. Electrical and mechanical contractors will run the plumbing pipes and wiring throughout the ceiling and walls. The heating and cooling systems are installed and tested,