4 Unconventional Ways To Approach A Home Addition Project

home addition unconventionalWhen approaching a home addition project, it is often desirable to take an unconventional approach. Everyone tends to do things the same way, and houses end up looking the same or similar to each other because of it. Having a house that stands out from the crowd gives it character and reflects the unique personality of the owner or owners. It may also increase the resale value of the home, as well, as buyers enjoy houses with interesting features that aren’t found in the typical home. Buying a home with something unconventional about it makes buyers feel they are getting something special.

Here are four unconventional ways to approach a home addition project that will add unsurpassed charm, character, and appeal to any house.

1. Create a Unique Floor Plan

When adding a new room to a house, it is too easy to fall back on the typical square or rectangular room plan, but everyone has that kind of room. Making the room more interesting by building it around an unconventional floor plan adds instant intrigue, charm, and appeal to it.

Depending on where the room will be added and how much space is available for it, floor plans can be almost any shape. An L-shaped room works well for a bathroom, for example, as it gives a private corridor for the toilet to make it separate and hidden from the rest of the room.

Triangular shapes work well for living room and porch additions that will be facing the sun either in the morning or the evening, as glass can be the main component of the angular sides, providing a spectacular, bright view of the outside. Other interesting floor plan shapes include octagons, trapezoids, and star shapes, which work well for just about any room addition, especially if the owner of the house is a creative and somewhat whimsical decorator.

2. Mix Styles

If a house is built entirely in one particular architectural style, mixing it up with a completely different style with a room addition will give the house an eye catching look that can’t be denied. For example, putting a space age modern addition onto a colonial style farm house ensures the house gets noticed and that people become intrigued as to what is in the unusual looking room. Likewise, adding an old-fashioned clapboard frame addition to a tiny house built with shipping containers makes a similarly intriguing combination. The key is to find balance in the styles being mixed. They should not clash, but rather contrast nicely with each other in a non-gaudy way.

3. Allow the Addition to Be Obvious

The conventional way to add onto a house is to make the addition blend into the existing structure of the home. The idea is for the addition to look like it’s always been there. A lot of architects are taking a different approach these days. They are allowing the addition to be obvious, to display the evolution of the home.

If the addition is later added onto, this can be made obvious, as well. Eventually, one large room will exist that has two or more distinctive looks. It is almost like having two or more separate houses in one. The look it forms is fresh and energizing, and one that homeowners and buyers alike will undoubtedly find enjoyable to both look at and be in.

4. Make the Addition a Separate Mini-House

When adding a new office, bedroom, bathroom, or even family room to a house, a unique, unconventional way to approach it is to make it separate from the main house. An entire room can be constructed just off the main house, with its own entrance. It can even have a porch of its own, windows on all four sides, a skylight on the roof, and its own heating and cooling source.

Putting a small bathroom on it makes it a self-contained retreat, and the perfect place for anyone in the house to go when they need some extra privacy. It’s not an entire house, so it can be teated as an addition, but it feels like a special getaway for anyone who goes there.

3 Basic Things You Need To Decide Before Starting Your Home Addition

things you need to decide before home additionBuilding an addition to your home is never a spur of the moment idea. A person may take months or even years deciding whether a home addition will fit into their needs, where to place the home addition so that it looks beautiful on the home, and what size the home addition should be so that it improves their daily life without compromising it. There are three basic things that you need to consider when thinking about building a home addition.

1: Who Will Oversee The Project?

Are you someone who needs to know everything that is going on at every single moment, or can you sit back and then just show up at the unveiling of the final project? You need to decide who will be at the work site every day managing the addition project. The last thing you want to do is show up at the site and see the place empty when there should be subcontractors finishing up the wiring and placing in the drywall.  You need a project manager.

Some architects will work with the project from start to finish as they not only design the project and provide the sketches but they can also coordinate the contractors and subcontractors at the site to ensure the plans are followed and the work stays on schedule. Other times the contractor will be the big boss of the subcontractors to properly schedule what work needs to be done at certain times so things run smoothly. You also want to know who to contact if you want to change something mid-project or if there are budget problems that will cause the project can be halted until everything is figured out.

2: How Much Do You Want To Spend On The Extras?

Always understand that the amount you planned to spend and the amount you will spend will be two totally different figures in the end. While you may want to spend less than the budget, some unforeseen circumstances can arise where you will spend more than you anticipated for the project. Anything from discovering there is mold in the walls to the home still having out of date wiring can add additional unplanned expense. Also, you may end up upgrading the materials you use for the addition. Instead of formica countertops in the new master bathroom, you may decide to spring for granite if your contractor has found a good deal from the supplier.

Decide on a budget that you would like to stick to for building an addition, then tack on a few extra dollar signs so you can cover emergencies and extras. Stick with this amount to cover the entire addition project. Expect the unexpected and your budget will be fine.

3: Do You Plan To Build Up Or Build Out?

There are two ways to add an addition to your home. You can build up by adding another floor to your existing home. The other alternative is to build out from the home along the ground floor. Both possibilities have their advantages and disadvantages.

Building out normally means that you can continue to dwell in the house while the project is completed. But the challenges are that you will use up some of your existing yard to the new addition as well as face zoning restrictions.

Building up allows you to keep the same space for your existing yard. Yet you can also face restrictions on how high you can build. In addition, building up for your addition may lead to more of a disruption to your daily life because of construction issues that come with a vertical addition.

3 Simple Things You Can Do To Make Sure Your Home Addition Goes Smoothy

Home addition goes smoothlyHaving an addition put onto your home is exciting, but some say that it is fraught with hassles. Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be a hassle. Making sure that a few things are in order before going ahead will ensure that the process is smooth, the end result is what you’re looking for, and that there are no problems after the addition is complete. Here are three things you can do to ensure that everything goes as planned:

  1. Have a survey drawing on hand. Homeowners typically get one of these when they buy the house, but not everyone has it handy when it’s finally needed. If the house is several years old, the drawings may have been lost at some point. Also, there are cases in which the original drawings were never handed over. When the drawings were lost or never owned in the first place, the homeowner should have a new survey done to replace them.Even if the original survey drawings are still present, a new survey should be done if the land has substantially changed. Changes that make this worthwhile include other additions that have been done, new outbuildings, new pools, and other such improvements.The reason it’s so important for us to have survey drawings is that they allow architects and builders to see exactly where the current structures are and exactly where the lot lines are. This ensures that your latest addition won’t interfere with what’s already on your land and that they won’t trespass over the lot lines.
  2. Know what to expect. Construction work is typically loud and dusty, starts extremely early in the day, and involves plenty of crew members. Many people find that it’s a good idea to go to a hotel during large projects like the construction of an addition. If you’re likely to be made anxious by the noise, it’s a good idea to go to a hotel while the construction takes place and then come back when it’s time to see the wonder of your completed improvement.
  3. Start with an architectural firm. While construction companies offer design and build services, an independent architect can ensure that you get multiple points of view and that can lead to a much better finished project.Architects will listen when you tell them all of the things you want to be able to do in the new part of the house, how you want to access the new area, and how big you want it to be. This allows them to design an addition that will make you happy for years to come. They also pay close attention to the currently-existing parts of your home so that the addition will come out looking like it was always meant to be there. Blending the old and new is often a challenge.  You won’t have to worry about that tacked-on look that can lower property values instead of enhancing them. Of course, an architect will also take care of the most basic factors of architecture, which is making sure that the design will produce an addition that give you the home of your dreams.

By preparing basic requirements beforehand, hiring a true architectural firm to do the design, and being ready for the inevitable noise and dust of new construction, you’ll do a lot to make the addition-building process go smoothly. You’ll also ensure that there won’t be any trouble down the line.

To learn more about the process of addition design or to set up an appointment to get one of our highly-detailed proposals, just contact us. We’ll be happy to come out and discuss all of your needs.

3 Home Addition Tips Every Homeowner Needs To Know

3 HOME ADDITION TIPSIf you’re thinking about adding onto your home, you’ve more than likely already spent a lot of time in front of your computer or smartphone doing research. After all, you want the new addition to be perfect, and there’s no better place to find tips and information than your trusty friend Google.

If this sounds like you, then you need to be well aware that no matter how much research you’ve conducted, there are three extremely important questions you need to ask yourself before you put on that addition.

Have you looked into the zoning restrictions that affect your addition?

Any professional architect will tell you that the first thing you need to consider are zoning restrictions. You don’t want to plan out an addition and buy the materials only to find out you can’t even build it. These restrictions will vary widely by geography.  In some locations, you might be good to go with any type of home addition and have less restrictions. Still, you can run into additional issues if you live close to wetlands and other types of restricted terrain. In residential areas, there can be many things you have to look out for. For instance, you more than likely can’t put on an addition that extends to within a set number of feet from your neighbor’s yard.

Also, keep in mind that your town could have restrictions that limit the size of an addition before you have to get a variance from the town.

Does your desired addition add value to your home?

Many homeowners fall victim to the belief that if they don’t intend to sell their home, then it doesn’t matter whether the addition adds value. Truth is though, adding value to your home is important for many reasons other than wanting to sell it at a higher dollar amount. You never know what life will throw your way, and you very well may find yourself in a situation in which you need to take out a loan using a home equity line of credit. In this type of situation, you’ll want your home to appraise for as much as possible.

There are many types of home additions that add value. You can’t go wrong with adding on a bathroom. Ideally, for each bedroom in the home, you’ll want at least one half-bath. So if you have four bedrooms, you’ll want at least two whole baths, or in the least, one whole bath and three half-baths. HGTV states that you can usually recoup anywhere from 80 to 130 percent of the money you invest in a new bath addition, and even better is the fact that everyone in the household will have access to a bathroom when they need one.

Have you hired a professional architect?

If you’ve yet to hire a professional architect to design your home addition, you need to do so ASAP. Even the best of construction workers can’t make a home addition look right unless a detailed blueprint is developed. A professional architect can pinpoint construction issues before they pop up, followed by providing solutions, which lowers the overall cost of the project and ensures it can be completed by the project deadline. And while you may know the exact way that you want your home addition to look, a professional architect can provide you with valuable pieces of advice that can have the addition project go better than you ever imagined.

4 Things You Can Do To Help Your Architect Do A Great Job

help your architectHiring an architect to work on your addition or renovate your home’s structure vastly improves the design process and ensures you are getting an improved home that is functional, aesthetically pleasing, and follows local building codes. Yet the design process is more than just having an architect rely on their skills and knowledge to create the sketches. It also counts on you communicating your home dreams and desires. That will help the architect create the vision that will make you happiest. When you are working with an architect, take advantage of these 4 things that you can do to help them do an exceptional job on your home design.

1: Have A Few Initial Ideas About The Design

To help the architect, it is ideal that you have a few design ideas and wishes in mind. They can take your vision and further refine it using their architectural experience and suggesting styles that will make your home look beautiful. If you have a hard time explaining the types of styles you like, you are always welcome to show photos, magazines, floor plans, and printouts of your ideas to the architect. Feel free to browse through the architect’s portfolio and point out the designs you like as well as the designs that you want to avoid for your home. Knowing both your likes and your dislikes allows the architect to move in the right direction for your project.

2: Tell The Architect About Your Budget

An architect doesn’t expect you to have a final budget amount set in stone. Yet they do need to understand a rough estimate of your financial resources that will be used for the project. Your budget will dictate the scale of the design, the materials that will be used, and the architectural strategies. In addition, an architect will suggest alternative methods and materials for your home design that you may not have considered that will help keep to your budget and thrill you with the design.

3: Ask Questions About Everything

Don’t be shy.  You have to feel comfortable about the home addition, construction or renovation plan. You’re the one who will living there, so you need to be happy. If there are details to the project that leave you scratching your head in puzzlement, ask questions. A big part of the architect’s job is to further explain the designs and plans so that you understand why the things are done certain ways.

An architect is there to change and refine the ideas into a working project plan. Architects also provide information in regards to permits, zoning codes, contractors and interior designs. They can work with you from start to finish on your new construction or renovation project.

4: Be Flexible And Trust The Architect

An architect’s job is more than just taking your ideas and making them a part of your home design. They also have to consider the mechanical system aspects of the construction or renovation.  That can include incorporating plumbing, heating, cooling and electrical work into the plans. In addition, an architect must always consider the structural integrity of the home when creating the plans.

At times, these things can clash with your ideas or force change to your original ideas. Have an open mind about the your design ideas and trust your architect. You will sometimes have to compromise looks for functionality and structural stability in order to have both a beautiful and safe home.

An architect seeks to please every client and make the final plans create a home that you will love. Following the above tips can make the architect’s job easier, help you further understand what the job entails, and allow everybody to work in harmony toward making your perfect home. Help them do a great job with your addition, home construction or renovation designs as they turn your home dreams into reality.

5 Ways To Solve Basement Remodeling Problems

basement remodeling problemsYour basement remodeling project may be hindered by several factors. Remodeling a basement can be tough, and many of a basement’s common features can stand in the way of creating a new living space.

If you’re intending to re-invent your basement space, and, if several design flaws are impeding your process—check out these five tips for overcoming common remodeling hurdles.

Tip One: Plan Around The Heater, Water Softener And Other Vital Home Components

If you’re remodeling a basement space you will likely have to work around several components that are vital to giving your home heat, hot water and sometimes clean clothes.

When remodeling your basement, choose efficiency over consistency. Put simply: Consider purchasing a smaller furnace, a corner-based water heater or a smaller water filtration system. Today’s models are often smaller and more efficient than those of the past.  Chances are, you can greatly reduce your basement’s clutter in doing so—freeing up much-needed remodeling space.

Moving these core components of your house’s “central nervous system” can be complicated and definitely require the involvement of experts, usually a plumber and possibly an electrician.

Tip Two: Dry It Out

As stated above, basements commonly contain water filtration systems, heat pumps and furnaces. Due to their closed-off design, basements commonly accumulate moisture and unwanted wetness. A basement is underground, and its closed-off design creates opportunities for dampness, humidity and otherwise meddlesome moisture.

Your ductwork, water heater and pipes should be well-insulated to protect your household. Fill foundation cracks, and look for ways to insulate. Sometimes, sneaky leaks will find their way into your basement.

By sealing air gaps and leaks, you’ll insulate your basement. Similarly, running a dehumidifier directly reduces moisture. If you can’t identify the source of leaks you may need to contact a professional who can better locate any sources of water or moisture that care causing you problems in your basement.

Tip Three: Consider the Ceiling

Ductwork, pipes and other holding areas are often situated near basement’s ceiling. When remodeling, these areas can be a problem. They can be unappealing to the eye and pose serious design difficulties. If you’re remodeling your basement, you’ll need to consider the overhead space.

Many homeowners these days are adding basement bars. Often a bar utilizes overhead storage space. Wine glasses, towels and other materials work well in such spaces, and you need to consider how to best boost your redesign possibilities for the ceiling.

Create a tray ceiling. These framed ceilings effectively reduce “pipe clutter” by hiding your basement’s utility resources behind the tiles. Additionally, you can create a frame and finish around low-hanging pipes or ducts that can add to the look your basement’s design style.

Tip Four: Check the Floor

Similar to the importance of ceiling detail, the details regarding your floor are also important.

Think about the floor and what you’re planning to do with it.  These days your options are endless.  You could paint the concrete,  put down tile, choose a durable carpet or use faux wood flooring.  It’s your choice.

Make sure that your floor is up to snuff before you try to improve it.  You may need to bring in a professional if you have a lot of large cracks or other defects that need correcting.

Tip Five: Re-Engineer Or Re-Design Your Support Columns

Your basement’s columns are needed for your household’s structural integrity, and they must be considered not only for aesthetic but also for safety.  Unfortunately, support columns can be meddlesome, and they can throw off your design plans.

If previous remodels have created awkward column areas—or, if your basement’s support columns have been “in the way”, don’t knock them down!

You should consult an architect before making any changes to these crucial parts of your house’s structure.

If you can work with the support columns where they are.  There are many ways to create a pleasing look for your columns.  You can make them part of the overall design strategy by either having them blend in or stand out.  Use your creativity!


Three Tools for Calculating Your Home Addition’s Cost

3 tools for calculating your home addition's costCalculating the cost of your home addition is important. Often, homeowners fail to calculate costs effectively—leading to financial mistakes and under estimation of total expense.

An addition may contain hidden costs, and maintaining your budget is among the most important parts of the process. When figuring your home addition’s cost, take advantage of these three tools. You’ll save yourself some problems by using them, and you’ll have a much better handle on the overall scope of the project.

Tool One: Cost Index

The Home Cost Helper Index contains a wealth of information relevant to home additions. Remodeling an existing house can cost more than new construction, as additions must be tailored around pre-existing conditions.

Take a look at the Home Cost Helper index to get a general idea what kind of budget you will need to consider before beginning a home addition project.

Of course your actual costs can vary widely, mostly based on where you live.  So you should consult local experts to get more realistic projections.  Architects and contractors can be a great help in this area.

Tool Two: This “Budget Equals Cash Plus Borrowing Power” Equation

When planning your project, make a list of all the building materials and equipment you can think of. Put the costs in an estimate spreadsheet. Increasing a home’s value requires an effective use of resources, and it requires an effective list to comprehend it all.

Understanding “borrowing power” is important. Your local mortgage lender can assist with your project’s valuation. They also can assist with borrowing. If you’re considering getting a loan—factor borrowed funds into your total budget equation. In the end, your equation should look like this:

Budget = Cash + Borrowing Power

Combining borrowed finances with total, spendable cash dictates your budget. Your total funds indicate your spending potential. Financing effectively is incredibly important for any home addition project.

Not only does it create a “safe building” environment, fiscally, it also helps create an accurate “home value” price. If you ever resell your home, you’ll have a literal shopping list of the items that went into building the addition and that can be a valuable sales tool.

Tool Three: Your Local Contractor

A general contractor is a wealth of material resources, information and skill. Professional assistance guarantees quality project management and that helps you maintain high-standard goals.

Additionally, your contractor understands industry regulations. He or she knows the “laws of the remodeling land”.  They can offer guidance that can help you save money in the long run.

When building an addition, your contractor can ensure that you are using the best materials for the job. While identifying costs is important, obtaining quality supplies is equally important. Contractors have been industry experts for years, and they can assist with all aspects of home addition projects including the all important cost aspect.

Why are Addition Calculation Tools Important?

Like any project, home remodeling consumes resources. Time, labor and money are these resources, and when you don’t plan, that leads to lost money, wasted time and poor execution. On paper, a remodeling project may look simple. It may look easy, too.  However, that is a misconception.  As with any project, planning is everything.

Approaching a home remodeling project with careful planning is important.  The structural planning and design planning is best left to the professionals like architects and contractors.  However the financial planning falls on your shoulders.

So prepare for your responsibilities and you will ensure that your home addition project stays on track and doesn’t break your bank.

What You Don’t Know About Home Additions May Hurt You

What You Don't Know About Home Additions May Hurt YouBuilding an addition to your home is one of the most exciting things happening in your life as you are gearing up with ideas on what to do in the extra space. Yet before one design idea hits the blueprint, you need to sit down and consider if building a home addition is the right project for your needs. There are several factors to consider that could actually create numerous problems that you weren’t expecting. Here are several things to know that could actually make your home addition dreams turn into nightmares.

Zoning Restrictions

You may have a grand idea to add an addition to the front or the side of your home. Unfortunately, local zoning laws in your area could prohibit the size and height of the addition. Certain municipalities will have rules regarding the number of feet you have available to build in the front, rear and sides of the house. Also, there could be restrictions in place regarding how high you can build the addition, and how much impermeable material you can have on the lot. The moment that you decide to add on an addition, you need to go to your local zoning board to find out all the restrictions in your area that you will need to consider before creating the design plans.

It May Be A Poor Investment

You have to consider how the addition will change your financial situation. Building an addition can be one of the costliest projects to take on. You will spend more on an addition than on any type of remodeling task done to your main home, and you can get very little financial rewards from it. If you plan to sale the home, the addition could actually have a lesser value than what it cost to build it when compared to the values of other nearby homes with similar features that are on the market.

An additional factor to consider is that an addition will change the value of your home when it comes to paying taxes. When a new assessment is done to the home, you might find that the addition has raised your property taxes based on all the amenities you place into it as well as the increased square footage. This new tax liability could be beyond your financial means. Also, don’t forget that adding onto your home will raise your energy bill as you will have to heat, cool, and provide electricity to the new space.

The Addition Will Change The Look Of The Home

In you mind, you have a fabulous image of what the addition will look on your home. Yet once the addition is built, it changes the exterior appearance of the house so drastically that you wince at the sight of it. The top problem is that the addition looks tacked on instead of always belonging on your home as the mismatched appearance will be seen by everyone traveling along the road. A poorly designed addition can be avoided by having an architect draw up the design as you will be able to see what the addition will look like when added to your home.

Building An Addition isn’t A Quick Process

Many people are under the impression that building an addition is a quick process. It’s not like building an entire home. Unfortunately, an addition involves more than you think. Not only does the exterior of the addition have to match the exterior of the house, all of the interior mechanical systems have to match. The plumbing, duct work and electrical lines will have to be run through the addition. Based on the size of the addition, it could take several weeks to several months to complete the project. You will also have to take into account bad weather and contractor, or subcontractor, schedules.

By understanding all the factors that are involved with building an addition, you can make an informed decision on whether to tackle this project. Then you and your architect can create the additional space that you desire on your home.

Do I Need An Architect For My New Jersey Home Addition?

Do I Need an Architect in NJWhen considering an addition to your house you’re going to have a lot of questions. And that’s completely normal. Putting on an addition is not something you do everyday. Most people don’t do it more than once in a lifetime.

One of the biggest questions about your home addition project is Do I need an architect?

Here are some points that you need to take into account while planning your addition project.

New Jersey Laws Need to Be Considered According to New Jersey law, all projects involving construction, enlargement, repair, renovation, alteration, reconstruction, or demolish to a structure requires first filing an application with the local township construction official in writing and obtaining the required construction permit that is issued by the township.

Plus, according to New Jersey law, any application for a construction permit for a single family residence shall be accompanied by at least two copies of drawing plans to show the nature and character of the work to be performed. The drawings need to be prepared by a state-licensed and registered professional architect or engineer and must bear the signature and seal of said professional.

Do I Need An Architect If I Have A Good Contractor? Good contractors are skilled with physical construction and management of labor, materials, construction cost and schedule. Many experienced contractors have good individual design ideas, what finish to use on this floor, what exterior siding to use on the front of the house, what light fixture to hang in the foyer. The architect, however, will use materials as an across-the-board, full wardrobe and will select and coordinate them based on the sentiment of choosing quality rather than quantity.

What About Using A Structural Engineer? Structural engineers are very skilled at design of the “skeleton” of a building, but it is not too common that their services are sought for the design of general building style or spatial organization, which is what an architect’s work includes.

What Differentiates Architects From Contractors And Structural Engineers? What differentiates architects from contractors and structural engineers is their ability to apply a universal approach to thought and design through all aspects and stages of a project.

Here are some examples. Placement of one window on the second floor affects another window below it on the first floor, leaving a better impression on the mind when they are aligned. Aligning the windows together may adversely affect one window’s placement in relation to the space it is serving; so, adjustment of the space may be required, and its adjacent space, and on and on until the architect can get it to reach a resolving termination. The architect’s experience of working with the spaces individually as well as together is the uniqueness that he brings to the project.

The content of the soil in the earth under the house will eventually determine the size of the very highest beam at the top of the roof, which will determine ceiling height and, in turn, psychological perception of a space, as height versus width and length are considered.

The bane of Jack-and-Jill bathrooms: two bedrooms occupied by children each with a door into a shared bathroom is a ticking time bomb for sibling battle when you consider that eventually the door of room A is going to be left locked by occupant of room B, upsetting room A occupant, who has to go around to room B and flip the bird before going into the bathroom. A kitchen island with a sink should not be placed directly across from the range. Staggering the sink and range, even slightly, is not as tiring to the cook.

Can’t I Just Do It Myself? Home design software and DIY weekend endeavors fall short of the full potential of a great architecture project. Positioned in the market to save the homeowner money, in part, by omitting the services of an architect, it also omits the value an architect’s experience adds to a project.

A good architect will include in the architectural drawings everything the homeowner wants, but will also provide concepts and insight that wouldn’t have been considered otherwise, making the project better developed and more rewarding and enjoyable for the homeowner and ultimately establishing greater resale value.

Good architects are skilled at listening to their customers. What the homeowner wants to do and can do, is the architect’s challenge to make happen and in the quickest, most cost effective, and creatively smart way possible. The homeowner’s words are the directive; the homeowner wants to be heard and the resulting spaces and building are a testament to the fact that the homeowner was heard. The architect ushers in that result.

Communication With Your Contractor Is Crucial The bridge from the homeowner’s mouth to the contractor’s hammer is the architect’s work together with the town’s approvals. The architect’s drawings are legal documents that represent graphically and in text what the homeowner wants to do. The drawings are also instructions for what the homeowner wants the contractor to build and they show the standard building and safety code requirements sought by the state. The architect’s drawings are meant to facilitate and legitimize that dialogue between homeowner and contractor. The bonus points the architect adds to the project are the ideas and concepts that take the homeowner’s directive to an elevated level. If a wife wants her husband to make a chicken dinner for the kids, from what source is the recipe that she gives him? Tyson Food Inc. or Julia Child?

Rules And Regulations In New Jersey Vary Widely State safety and building code requirements are written to protect the general public and act in the public’s best interest. The state defers interpretation and enforcement of the codes to local authorities that preside over projects being constructed; in other words, the township building department has the final say on what is being built in town.

Building officials differ from township to township in their interpretation of the codes; there is never unanimity. They each tend to look for specific issues, never all issues, when reviewing drawings and inspecting construction progress. While some look for barrier-free accessibility (handicap access) omissions from a design, others may be more concerned with ample insulation in the exterior walls, and other are concerned with the design of the exterior light fixtures and that they are circuited separately from the rest of the house. When asked if there is concern with one issue about which an inspector had not previously been concerned with, he or she will voice the affirmative, as opinion is now on record.

4 Ways To Find The Best NJ Architect For Your Project

The Critical Role That Creativity Plays In Your Home Addition

creativity home additionWhen it comes to adding onto your home, you ideally want to build on the addition for a particular purpose. Many people make additions to accommodate a growing family, to add on space for an office, or to simply make a space for relaxation. No matter your reason for building onto your home, it’s imperative to keep in mind that creativity can go a long way. For instance, adding on an office/guest room is an excellent way to meet two needs by adding on only one room. Here’s a quick look at the critical role that creativity plays in your home addition.

Your creativity matters

Your creativity matters, no matter how small or how big it may be. By intertwining your interests and creativeness into your home addition project, you’ll be able to make your construction endeavors incredibly exciting. Take for instance that you’ve always wanted a fireplace in your home. Within your home addition, you could incorporate a fireplace and skylights to create an invigorating room that takes advantage of Mother Nature at its finest.

The best way to identify how to incorporate your creativeness into your home addition is to first pinpoint your interests. Do you like sports? How about gardening? Have you always wanted a spa room? These interests of yours are perfectly capable of being integrated into your addition. Once you have chosen the aspects of your interests that you want your addition to reflect, it’s then time to start designing.

Think about cost-efficiency

Your creativity should always strive to improve cost-efficiency within your home, and there’s no better way to do this than by making a home addition that enhances your home’s heating and cooling efficiency. You need to explain to both your architect and your construction manager that you want the room to capture solar energy. It’s also imperative to point out that you want the solar heat to be appropriated in a way that it is distributed as heat for the rest of your home in the winter and then rejected as heat during the warmer months.

Think about colors

Are there two or more colors that when paired together give you a lively sense of happiness? Perhaps these colors mesh so well together that they appeal to you in a way that no other colors do. If you have certain colors that you absolutely love, you should definitely incorporate them into your home addition. Every time you walk into the new room, you’ll be enveloped in these colors, and you’ll know that the room has been personalized to your liking.

Get creative with paint and corner spaces

One of the most cost-effective ways to add character to any new home addition is by adding paint blocks to the walls. You can take a white wall, paint a burnt orange block and then add photos inside the block.

And don’t forget about turning your new room’s corners into versatile living space. One corner could serve as a sitting area, while another could be home to a corner bookcase, perfect for a small library.

It’s yours, so make it your own

Regardless of the reasons that your adding a room onto your home, your creativeness can make it much more of an enjoyable activity rather than must-do task. Even the smallest of spaces can be used as storage, indoor gardening and much more. Just make sure to explain your creativeness to those involved in your construction project as this will help ensure that your creative dreams become a reality.