residential-addition

3 Questions to Consider Before Building a Residential Addition

Many residential additions arise out of the need for more space or as a way to add more functionality to your home’s current design. Residential additions can also be a great way to add value to your home. As you make plans to add on to your home, there are some important questions to consider first. Here are three big ones to ask yourself:

What addition can you build?

It can be easy to let grand visions run wild – not to mention incredibly fun –  but one of the first questions to consider before building a residential addition is if there are any zoning or building restrictions on your specific lot or in your community. For example, in Coral Gables, all home projects must first go before the Gables Board of Architects before being approved. This is to maintain the traditional aesthetic of the community as well as ensure consistency with regulations and stylistic elements. Having a qualified architect on board is a good idea to advise on processes like this as well as help bring your overall vision to life.

What architectural features do you want your residential addition to include?

Adding an addition shouldn’t compromise the aesthetics of your home. You want it to complement the existing structure and features both inside and out, which means paying attention to how the roof, shingles, and siding will blend, as well as interior flooring transitions, beams, posts, windows, and doors.

How much will your residential addition cost?

In many ways, your budget will dictate the scope of your project. Make sure your expectations and budget are in alignment for the addition itself, but also for the longer term cost increases that may come from the addition in the form of increased energy bills, property taxes, and other ways.

If you’re looking to build a residential addition onto your home, our experienced and reliable team is ready to construct a seamless extension to your space that is completely customized to your wants and needs.

Call us at 305-790-1722 to schedule a free consultation.

reasons-for-impact-windows

Why Impact Windows are Worth the Upgrade in Your Home

As homeowners, we do a lot of prioritizing, emotional investing, and budget balancing when it comes to determining where and how we want to spend our money when making improvements to our home. Some upgrades may be considered more “fun” (e.g., a new kitchen or an addition), while others we end up making out of practical necessity (e.g., replacing rusted cast iron pipes).

Depending on who you’re talking to, impact windows might fall somewhere between the two. While they can be very aesthetically pleasing and completely transform the way you think about and prepare for hurricane season (an intangible many of us can’t value highly enough!), they’re also incredibly practical from a budget perspective. Not only do you save money on potential hurricane damage, you also reduce energy costs and homeowners insurance as well as increase the resale value of your home (need more reasons? Here are five).

Impact Windows: Worth the upgrade?

As you consider the best ways to improve your home, impact windows should be right up near the top of your list. While, yes, they can be on the pricey side, the returns in terms of peace of mind, efficiency, safety, and overall savings are enough to make it worth the investment. Not to mention, real estate agents frequently cite it as one of the best things you can do to speed up the sale – and asking price – of your home.

The decision to upgrade your home’s windows to impact glass windows is certainly a big one that brings many questions to mind – especially here in South Florida. At BigFoot Construction, we specialize in installing impact windows and are always ready to answer your questions.

If you’ve been considering making the upgrade in your home, give us a call at 305-790-1722 to learn more about the benefits you’ll reap by installing impact windows. With hurricane season upon us, it’s important to make the leap as early as possible – to be sure your windows are in place before any storm approaches. Give yourself at least 6 weeks lead time.

 

 

residential-preconstruction-miami

Your Guide to Residential Preconstruction

Here’s a sobering statement: The overall success of a renovation or a remodel can be largely determined by decisions and actions taken well before the first hammer even hits the nail. It might sound surprising, but that’s just how important residential preconstruction is to the scope of your project.

Let’s dig into the specifics of what pre-construction services entail and why this step is so critical to your residential construction project – in Miami and beyond.

What are Residential Preconstruction Services?

Before your project gets off the ground, some serious planning needs to take place. How long this step takes depends on the size and complexity of your project, and it’s generally conducted in coordination with architects, engineers, inspectors, design consultants, builders, and, of course, you, the homeowner, and any other project stakeholders. The primary goal of pre-construction is to set the scope, schedule, and budget for the project — and gives you time to ask all the important questions. Pre-construction includes the following items, among others:

  • Site analysis – Physically review the site and create a general site master plan.
  • Permits and approvals – Ensure plans receive necessary approvals and project permits to proceed with the build. These vary from city to city and municipality to municipality, so it’s important to understand local processes and allow adequate time to secure permits.
  • Value engineering – A project’s scope can quickly surpass the available budget if a well-defined project estimate is not used. Value engineering helps flag opportunities to substitute products, materials, and systems to better fit the budget while still maintaining original function and design intent.
  • Buildability review – Clarify details, design documents, and decisions.
  • Budget analysis – Align project goals and expectations with scope and projected costs.
  • Scheduling and logistics – Proper planning and scheduling ensures that deadlines are met and the project progresses as expected.

“What value do pre-construction services add to my build?”

Building a home or undertaking a remodeling project is exciting. That’s part of why we love our job so much. But failing to adequately plan and prepare can spell big trouble to your budget, timeline, and overall expectations for the project. It’s important to resist the temptation to jump right to construction and renovation work with the thought that you can make important decisions on the fly. It just doesn’t work that way in residential construction. Nor should it.

Residential preconstruction planning allows you to see a full picture of your project’s scope, budget, and schedule while also bringing to light any anticipated challenges or red flags that could be detrimental to the project.

The foundation of a strong build rests on strong plans. Make sure you get your project off to the best start with pre-construction services — and take the time to make sure you have the right residential contractor for the job.

If you have more questions about what residential preconstruction is and why it’s invaluable to a build, give us a call at 305-790-1722 to discuss.

Questions-Impact-Windows

What You Need to Know About Impact Windows

As a homeowner in South Florida, you have several options when it comes to protecting your home from damaging hurricane winds and flying debris. While plywood may be an inexpensive way to protect your windows during a storm, there are better – and more convenient, attractive, and technologically sound – methods to safeguard your home. Installing impact resistant glass windows is one of them.

Impact windows are becoming more commonplace across South Florida not only because they’re extremely effective, but also because of building codes that stipulate new constructions be equipped with hurricane shutters or impact windows. Impact windows also do more than just protect your home from storms. They help reduce energy costs, noise pollution and add value to your home. In fact, there are quite a few things that are not as well-known about Impact Windows that may help you as you decide whether to add them to your home.

Impact windows and hurricane windows are not the same thing

While the terms may be used interchangeably by some, impact windows and hurricane windows differ in some key ways, namely the level of resistance they offer. Hurricane windows offer less insulation and their primary function is to resist wind damage. They do little in the way of protecting against projectiles (or other unwanted intruders for that matter, including noise intrusion). Read: not as hurricane proof as you may want when storm season gets near.

Impact window types are differentiated by their laminate procedure

There are several types of impact windows on the market, which are identified by the way the laminated glass panes are bonded together with the interlayer. The two most common types consist of either multiple layers of polyvinyl butyral (PVB) sandwiched between sheets of glass, which handle smaller projectile impacts very well, or PET laminated glass combined with PVB-treated glass. This option makes for very strong glazing but also comes at a higher price tag.

Impact windows must be paired with stronger window frames

If you’re installing impact windows, it’s better to replace the entire window system rather than try to retrofit. Impact windows will not work as designed if they are not secured to equally strong window frames to help ensure stability.

Installing impact windows in your home is a great way to protect and add immediate value to your property. If you’re interested in talking further about adding impact windows to your home, give us a call today. We’d be happy to do a site visit and provide an estimate.