3 Upgrades That Give a Major Boost to Your Home’s Value

Investing in home improvement projects creates value in two key ways: first, it provides for personal enjoyment while you live there and then, if the renovation is done well, it should increase the future resale value.

If you’re looking to make an upgrade that will reap significant returns down the road, focusing on kitchens, windows, and bathrooms are always worth considering. Here’s why:

Kitchen upgrades

For many, the kitchen is the heart of the home. It’s where families gather and where guests tend to congregate. Kitchen remodels can also be expensive and disruptive to daily life, which is all the more reason future homebuyers will appreciate it – by making the kitchen the focus of your home improvement project, you’ve done the dirty work for them! Fresh, modernized kitchens consistently do well for resale, and if done right, it’s possible to recoup nearly all or more of your investment.

Window replacement

Replacing old, inefficient windows are important value-adds to homes regardless of your location. In Miami Dade County, however, even more important is replacing outdated standard windows with ultra-durable impact windows. Not only do these windows offer superior protection from storm damage, they also save homeowners money on insurance premiums and energy costs.

Bathroom remodels

Upgrading bathrooms also bring a strong return on investment when done tastefully. Even small upgrades like replacing a vanity or modernizing hardware, paint, or tiling can make a big impact. Quality executed bathroom renovations have the ability to transform your home and your experience within your home.

As you choose to make improvements to your Miami home, consider Bigfoot Construction for the job. We’ll meet with you to discuss your plans and what you want to achieve with your renovation. After the consultation, finalized design plans, and the necessary permits have been obtained, we’ll get to work with efficient and quality workmanship. Call us today at 305-790-1722 to learn more about how we can help with your specific project needs.

Avoid These Common Mistakes When Installing Impact Windows

In Florida, what might feel like the calm before the storm can really be the storm before the calm for those rushing to get impact windows installed before hurricane season arrives. But in their haste to install impact windows in their South Florida home, common mistakes can be made. Make sure you take a breath now so you can avoid these three common installation mistakes that many homeowners succumb to.

Forgetting to secure a permit when installing impact windows

Building codes and permitting requirements vary from city to city and county to county. Before you install new impact windows in your home, it’s important to understand the permitting and approval process specific to your location. Your residential contractor will be a valuable resource in helping you navigate this process. In fact, an experienced contractor will simply take care of it for you, but it is still wise to understand the process.

Going the DIY route or hiring an inexperienced impact window installer

While you might feel emboldened by a recent DIY home improvement project, installing impact windows is not a job to be taken lightly (nor is it a light job – impact windows are heavy!). Proper installation requires precision every step of the way – from accurate measurements to exact care with secure installation. This is one job that should only be entrusted to an experienced impact window installer.

Relying on cost as your primary decision factor

The bottom line can be hard to get past when making a decision about something like an impact window investment, but relying on cost as your sole decision factor should be avoided whenever possible. Consider things like the overall aesthetic and ease of use. While you might not think they’re a big deal now, it may be worth paying a little more now to get the right windows than decide to replace the entire windows a few years down the road.

Make sure your impact windows are installed correctly and efficiently. Give us a call today at 305-790-1722 to get started.

How Impact Windows Can Reduce Homeowners Insurance Premiums

Homeowners insurance in Florida is expensive – among the most expensive in the nation to be exact. Our geography makes us susceptible to home damage caused by major windstorms and hurricane force. And while damage caused by Mother Nature is out of our control, one thing that is in our control is what we do about protecting our home and keeping more money in our wallets.

Fortunately, the state of Florida issued legislation in 2002 mandating insurance companies to offer homeowners discounts on their insurance premiums if they install features that reduce damage and loss from wind storms. This includes installing things like impact windows and doors and are now one of the best ways to reduce homeowners insurance premiums.

Where to Start to Reduce Homeowners Insurance

In order to apply for a homeowners insurance discount or credit, it’s best to contact your insurance company prior to installing your impact windows so you understand what specific requirements you’ll need to meet in order to qualify for discounts as they can vary from company to company.

Then, start your research. Interview potential impact window installers by asking them these three important questions and calculate how much you can save with new impact windows. To estimate your potential savings, you can use the Florida Wind Insurance Savings Calculator.

As an added benefit, you’ll also save money on your energy costs as well as add immediate value to your home. What’s more, you won’t have to deal with costly clean up and disaster recovery after a damaging storm comes through.

Start Saving Today

Once installed, your residential contractor will help ensure that you have all the proper documentation, certification, and forms required by your insurance company to begin saving money.

At BigFoot Construction, we specialize in installing impact windows that provide structural protection in the event of a hurricane or other damaging winds as well as help reduce costs. Get in touch with us today at 305-790-1722 if you have questions about installing impact windows in your Miami home.

What to Look for When Hiring a Residential Contractor

4 Things to Look for Before You Hire a Residential Contractor

Homeownership offers exciting opportunities to create your own dream home – whether that’s by building it from the ground up or by renovating an existing property so it better suits your vision and needs. If you find yourself looking for a residential contractor for a renovation or addition to your home, it’s important to do your homework ahead of time so you save yourself headaches and added expense down the road.

When hiring a residential contractor in South Florida, be sure you feel completely confident about these four things:

The Residential Contractor’s Background, Experience and Credentials

Make sure the person you hire has experience with the type of residential remodeling project you are hiring for and get in touch with references to ask about the quality of work and service the contractor provided. It’s also imperative that your residential contractor is licensed and registered and carries the appropriate insurance. If the contractor is not credentialed, he or she will not be able to pull the necessary permits to get your job done.

The Depth of the Residential Contractor’s Bid

As you gather a few bids, look for similarities and differences among them and trust your instincts if somethings seems off. Don’t be afraid to ask follow-up questions, and be wary of any low-ball offers. As the adage goes, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. If you want to dive deeper into it, ask the contractors to go into more detail about their bid – why are they saying this is how much it will cost? What are they taking into account? Compare notes and you’ll often see why two bids are coming in with different numbers — and why the higher bid on paper may actually have a lower cost when your project is completed.

All the Intangibles

These are things that can’t be put as a line-item on a bid – do you deem the contractor responsible and reliable? How is their communication style and does it jibe with yours? Depending on your home’s project, you will likely be spending a lot of time with the contractor you select. You want to be sure you’ll work well with the person and that your expectations will be met.

The Contract’s Fine Print

Before committing to a contractor, make sure you fully understand the contract. What are the payment terms, timeline, and project schedule? What materials and fixtures will be used? This is again your opportunity to ask questions — and don’t be afraid to ask every single one. If they don’t take the time to answer your questions now, are you comfortable that they will answer it when your bathroom’s walls have been ripped out? Once you’ve got the details ironed out in the contract, things will move pretty quickly.

Have any specific questions you’d like answered (or like a second opinion on a project you’re planning right now)? Feel free to contact us.