Architecture and Landscaping

Your Next Home Improvement Project: A Backyard Patio

Architecture and Landscaping

Are you looking for the next home improvement project? Look no further than a backyard patio installation. Why a backyard patio? Backyards used to be spaces where children play and adults throw a BBQ party.

Today, however, backyards have turned into elaborate outdoor living spaces that can be used as Zen gardens, water parks, outdoor kitchens, or recreational areas.

An Outdoor Living Space

A backyard patio can be a good addition to your home, as it can turn your space into an outdoor living area. A Brisbane patio construction company can tend to your patio needs including design and patio roofing. Just Patios added that you could have an open-air patio made with the right budget.

Transterior Patio

As you plan for your backyard patio, why not take inspiration from the ‘transterior’ trend? This mainly concerns itself with the seamless transition between outdoor and indoor areas. You can think of this as a space that works both like an indoor and outdoor area.

Other Trends: Shade

Aside from the general design concept, you can design your patio in line with other backyard living trends — lighting, shade, appliances, and furniture. Concerning shade, homeowners have turned to roofing that can both offer shade and added value to the home. You can obtain a gable, skillion, or flyover roofing for your patio from a trusted patio construction company.

Other Trends: Lighting, Appliances, Furniture

As for lighting, homeowners have turned to LED lights. You can even go with ‘smart’ lighting that you can control through mobile devices or computers. Regarding appliances and furniture, you can go with BBQ grills, ovens, and other kitchen appliances or cushioned seating.

When you have carefully designed and constructed your backyard patio, you may be surprised with how much value has been added to your home. You can also enjoy your home even more.

3 Types of Materials Suitable for Kitchen and Bathroom Countertops

Architecture and Landscaping

Kitchen With Granite CountertopsAccording to a report, there are more than a dozen types of countertops available today. They all vary in their resistance to abrasion, heat, cuts, and stains. In addition, the report showed that the countertops that were a great fit for the kitchen also worked well in the bathrooms. shares some insights on the most popular ones.


Granite is the kitchen and bathroom material of choice for many homeowners, as it defines elegance and sophistication. Besides being attractive, granite also holds up to high temperatures, looks substantial and permanent, and comes in a wide range of colors. In addition, granite is almost maintenance free and it makes your cleaning process easy, as it only requires you to wipe it after use.


Quartz, also known as engineered stone, is a countertop material that consists of at least 90% quartz particles. The most attractive feature of quartz is its non-porous surface, which is resistant to scratches and cuts. In addition, it is resistant to acid and stains, making it easy to maintain.


The high price tag for granite and quartz may be beyond most people’s budget. In such cases, concrete turns out to be the perfect choice, as it is cast right in your kitchen or bathroom. Concrete counters are heat and scratch resistant, have additives that reduce porosity, can be tinted to the color of your choice, and have fine decorative finishes.

Your bathroom or kitchen countertops require the best material. The durability of the materials mentioned here allows them to withstand normal wear and tear. Their variation in colors and textures makes the countertops unique and attractive. Plan your next bathroom and kitchen renovation project and choose the material that suits your taste and budget.

Garage Floor Upgrade: Things to Consider

Architecture and Landscaping

Garage With Floor CoatingMany homeowners have trouble deciding on the type of design to use when upgrading their garage floors. This choice is particularly important because you have to ensure that the flooring upgrade will be durable and, of course, pleasing to the eyes.

Flooring firms, such as Handy Sanders, have honed the craft of doing home floors, not only because it is their job, but also to give you value for your money. While it may seem easy choosing the flooring materials for other rooms in the house, the garage floor is a different story.

It would be wise, then, for you to research on the best flooring material if you want a certain look for your garage.

Types of flooring materials for your garage

A concrete floor is susceptible to moisture, oil spills, and chemical spills, so you have to be careful when making your choice. Flooring materials have these subdivisions: coating and covers.

Garage Floor Coatings. Coatings may be cheaper than coverings, but they require more work before you can apply them on the floors. Coatings keeping your garage floor damp free, and they also increase the aesthetic value of the floor. Coating types include floor paints, epoxy paint, sealers, and stains.

Garage Coverings. It is very easy for you to cover the garage, even with no one to help you. All you need to do is sweep or vacuum the garage before putting on the floor cover. Covers come as interlocking tiles and roll out mats.

They may be expensive, but they completely change the appearance of the garage by covering all the deformities.

What to consider when choosing a flooring material

Here are some of the things to factor in when deciding what material to choose:

Cost. Always consider how much you are willing to spend for your garage floor project before you proceed.

Comfort and durability. Choose a durable material for your floor, and make sure it passes your standards for comfort.

Ease of maintenance. Pick a floor material that is not difficult to maintain or repair. You do not want to spend a fortune on fixing some rough spots.

If you are still unsure of what to do, it would be better to consult professionals on this. They may be able to answer all your questions. Just make sure to ask them all, as you do not want to regret the choices you make.

Estate Driveway Gates: Which One Should You Go For?

Architecture and Landscaping

Black Estate Driveway GateWhen you want your home to really shout “style”, there is nothing better than having classic driveway gates. What most people do not realize, however, is there are actually a number of options that you can choose from. Learn about your options now.

Slide Gates

Slide estate driveway gates slide from side to side to let the vehicle through. It can come in several forms, including rear pipe track, “V”-track slide, and cantilever slide gate. Each design is fit for a specific situation. For example, the V-track is ideal for areas that do not experience much snow. This is because V-track needs to be able to slide without any obstruction.

The same is true for a rear pipe track, which makes it possible to swap one for the other in case you need to update your gate’s look. Now, cantilever slide gates are ideal if your area experiences a lot of snow. As opposed to the first two, cantilever gates do not have wheels touching the ground so it does not matter if there is snow or not. The wheels, instead, can be found at the top of the gate.

Swing Gates

This type of estate driveway gate swings in the same way your room door opens. The gate can either be single swing or double swing. Depending on where the gate will be installed, you might come across an uphill swing gate, as well as a lift swing gate. As opposed to the traditional swing gate, this gate typically needs to be lifted before you can swing it open.

Barrier Gates

Barrier gates can be seen in tool booths. These typically come with booms that lift in order to let the vehicle pass through. These are generally recommended for controlling traffic.

Your choice of estate gate depends on your needs, budget, and preferences. Talk to a fence installation company to learn more about your options and make an informed decision.

Achieving Timeless Interior Design

Architecture and Landscaping

Classic Home InteriorThere’s really nothing as universally pleasing as a classic aesthetic. In terms of interior design, this statement rings true. A truly classic interior never gets old, especially for those looking to add a touch of elegance to their homes. Achieving timeless design isn’t very difficult. One merely has to know how and where to get inspiration, and what qualities set an enduring aesthetic apart.

On Furnishing

Achieving an authentic period look involves careful selection of furnishing. One needs to choose pieces that not only please the senses but also seamlessly blend with the overall motif. Not everything that’s old or antique will work with specific aesthetics. For instance, a table from the 1960’s would certainly look out of place in an interior intended to be the 18th century. There are lots of selections at dealers such as Authentic Provence, but it helps to do research to ensure that your selections do not look out of place.

Avoid Going by Trends

Timeless designs are ‘timeless’ for a reason. They do not follow trends. The trendy takes second place, in favor of pieces that stand the test of time. Three qualities govern timeless designs: simple, understated, and sophisticated. While there is room to add a few touches from trends, it’s important to not overdo it. Who would want to see an Andy Warhol painting hanging beside a 17th Century ‘grandfather clock?’ While there may be a niche market for such a look, this would likely be seen as objectionable by someone with a keen eye for design.

Get Inspired

A lot of old buildings exist with equally timeless visuals. Taking inspiration from their designs can be helpful. There are a lot of pictures on the web, and perhaps a few classic buildings near where one lives. It is inspiring to draw ideas from authentic works. Nothing beats someone who does adequate research in order to maintain accuracy. And if there aren’t any pieces that fit or that are old enough, being resourceful is important. Perhaps new yet classic-style pieces would do the trick, to fit the overall design.

A Checklist for Selecting the Right Construction Company

Architecture and Landscaping

Construction Business A good builder does not only need to complete the work but also ensure the work is excellent and satisfactory. You cannot expect to have a magnificent structure without a good builder. Nevertheless, finding a good one is easy so as long as you take into account some guidelines.

 Builder’s Reputation

A highly regarded builder will not hesitate to exhibit the previous jobs. Let them show you what they can deliver. Consider the variety of structures they can make. Some builders make excellent and unique structures such as flats, shades or even a teenage retreat cabin. Thus, they should be willing to refer you to some of their constructions.

Construction Quotation

Let your builder provide a fair quotation. In this case, you should enter into a consensus about the cost of materials. For instance, some builders may prefer to handle everything including buying and delivery of materials.

Alternatively, ensure that the builder hands over a payment schedule before signing the contract.


Ensure that your builder is certified and has all the necessary qualifications. You could request them to present some of their certificates especially if they have never worked for you. Builders should offer the following:

  • Insurance
  • Financial stability (to complete your project)
  • Professional membership and registration
  • Experience
  • Reference by other clients


Do you want your teenage retreat cabin and other projects completed in time? Right! Consider the availability of your builder. A good builder should be able and ready to meet deadlines. Specialists from Classic Cabins notes that the longer it takes to complete a structure can even cost you more. If the builder is a contractor, let them inform you of any other projects they have. Again, they should commit to do their inspection regularly.

Keep in mind that selecting the right builder for your project makes a great difference between stress and admirable hassle-devoid project. The good thing is that you now know what to ask or expect from your builder. By following these tips, be assured that your building will be a better experience and successful.

Determining Your New Home’s Square Footage

Architecture and Landscaping

Big Luxury House It’s a well-known fact that Americans have relatively large homes. The most recent numbers reveal that a typical single-family residence is 2,505 square feet, and that the median size is a substantial 2,306 square feet. It’s also worth noting that the average home size has been steadily increasing since the early 1980’s. Despite the slight decline in 2010, home square footage still continues to rise.

Whether you’re opting for a pre-built house or asking custom home builders to build one for you, square footage is one thing you can’t ignore. A house can be too big, and there is also the tendency to go overboard.

How Big Should It Be?

The University of California’s Center on Everyday Lives of Families may provide an answer. A study the center conducted reveals which areas of a home people spend the most time in. Perhaps understanding which rooms garner the most attention may help in determining the right amount of square footage.

Observing 32 middle-class families during a four-year period, the researchers show that the average family spends the most time in the kitchen and the ‘family room’ (if there is one). Other common areas such as the living and dining rooms receive attention sparingly, if at all. These results point to the possibility that a very large home, prized for its amount of floor space, may actually have a lot of wasted floor space, given that many areas of the home are not fully utilized. Most of the time, it comes down to the use of the floor space. A big home has a lot of it, sure. But before buying/building one, make sure you can use a good amount of that space. Otherwise, you’ll be paying more for something you can’t really maximize.

On the other hand, opting for a smaller home might be economical, but it also has its drawbacks. First of all, there is little (if any, at all) room to expand. A smaller abode might be good for a single person, but not exactly fit for a family. Secondly, there’s likely a considerable lack of storage space.

Consider these factors when deciding on how much floor space your new home should have.

Home Trends to Follow This 2017 to 2018

Architecture and Landscaping

A couple planning home improvementsJust like in fashion, home trends come and go every season and every year. This year, new trends are quickly gaining popularity. You may have a new home construction, or you may be planning a remodeling project. The following trends can keep your Minnesota home up to date and looking great.

Showers Over Tubs

For your bathroom, you may want to choose a walk-in shower than a bathtub. Many people seem to want walk-in showers without tubs under them. Walk-in showers provide easy access especially for the elderly and people with disability. They also fit inside small bathroom spaces. You can even use them in glass panes to create an illusion of space in small bathrooms.

Black and White, Metals, and Tech

For your kitchen, you can go with the black and white color palette trend, which you can accentuate with complementary colors. To achieve a better look for the kitchen, you can have white cabinets while your appliances can have a black finish. You can also go with metallic materials or finishes.

Modernize your kitchen using the latest technologies, such as USB ports and Wi-Fi-enabled devices. Homes by Tradition recommends discussing your needs and preferences with a reputable custom home builder in Minnesota.

Geometric Home

Do you want a home that will stay trendy until 2018? You can stay ahead with the 2018 trend predictions of Pantone, an authority in color and in home design. They predicted geometric patterns to adorn the walls and backsplashes of homes. You can also apply the geometric theme to your furniture and décor.

Wood Accents

While technology will remain present in the home, natural materials such as wood are predicted to make accentual appearances. In a white kitchen, for example, you can place wooden chairs, lamps, bowls, and plant pots for powerful accentual effects. You can even have wood installed on your ceiling or parts of walls in your home for better results.

The trends above can turn your new or remodeled home into a trendy living space. You can discuss these trends to your custom home builders for planning.

A Damaged Plumbing Puts The Health Of Your Family At High Risk

Architecture and Landscaping

Plumbing at HomeWhen you have a damaged plumbing system at home, you’re putting your family’s health at risk. Know what these problems are so you can immediately find a solution and avoid putting your family in danger.

A faulty plumbing system could bring more than just a mere inconvenience to your household as it can expose you and your family to health risks. Such health risks can range from minor to serious health problems that would require intensive medical attention.

This is why it is crucial to periodically check your plumbing system so you would know whether it is still okay or not. Below are some of the plumbing problems that could compromise the health of your family.

Plumbing Leaks

Plumbing leaks are often viewed as mere inconveniences that some households manage to endure, but it can also expose you to respiratory problems. When your plumbing system develops a leak, the water that drips out does not just vanish into thin air. It gathers in various areas in your ceiling, floors and walls, which generate moisture where molds and bacteria thrive.

These organisms, when they become airborne, can cause your family to suffer from myriads of respiratory problems like asthma and other respiratory-related allergies. To prevent this from happening, you should get in touch with expert plumbers in Salt Lake City to fix the leaks if there are any.

Blocked Drains

If your drains are clogged, you may notice water in the kitchen sink or your shower area pools longer before draining out. It could mean that your drain pipes may already have accumulated an unusual amount of residue, making it hard for water to drain out quickly.

Aside from giving you a nasty inconvenience, blocked drains can also become a delightful habitat for harmful bacteria and other dangerous pathogens. According to WebMD, hazardous organisms like E. coli and salmonella can get into your hands and spread to your food. This can expose your family to serious health problems that would require medical attention.

Obsolete Faucets

Living in an old house may give you a lot of benefits like authentic hardwood and brickworks. The problem is that the plumbing system that runs through the walls, floors and ceiling may also be vintage and outdated.

This means that the pipes carrying your water for bathing and cooking can contain lead deposits that have accumulated in the system over the years. Like what Medscape mentioned, when these lead deposits mix with water, it can become toxic, and before you know it, you may have inadvertently ingested some.

When you see the first sign of a plumbing problem, make sure that you correct it immediately. Failure to do so could lead to dire consequences that could compromise your health and your family’s. So act on it now.

How Parents Should Behave in the Clinic

Architecture and Landscaping

A worried woman sitting in the waiting roomThe ideal situation for any parent would be to take your child to a pediatric dentist and expect a pleasant experience. This scenario, however, does not happen for all parents. For some, trips to the dentist can be challenging. Thus, to allow a positive experience for both the parent and the child during a dental visit, it’s important for parents to cooperate and support the dental services provided by the dental practice. If you are a parent, here’s what you should do if you’re taking your child to a dental practice.

Exercise Patience

Be a role model to your child and show him or her that waiting is a good thing. Refrain from displaying feelings of impatience as your child may pick this up. If your child is the one getting impatient, see if you can do something to calm him or her down and take his or her mind off the wait.

Allow the Dentists to Perform Their Work

Most clinics require parents to understand that the best way to help them is to be a silent observer. Just observe what treatments the dentist is doing on your child. If you have any dental-related questions, it would be ideal to ask them before or after the treatment so you don’t distract the dentist.

Accept the Diagnosis and Treatment Plan

Some parents would probably feel uncomfortable if they find out that there’s a ton of dental procedures to perform. Instead of complaining, agree to the dentist’s diagnosis and the treatment plan. Take note that the dentist is performing these oral procedures to treat the oral problems of your child.

It is possible to go to the dentist and leave feeling happy about the service when you take note of these suggestions. There’ll be fewer problems for you and your child if you know how to behave accordingly.