Category: Uncategorized

Construction Timeline – What You Need to Know Before You Build

There are many variables that have to be factored in before we can adequately assess the time and cost of a project. One thing that most homeowners don’t see initially is that for a properly planned and designed project, the design and construction phases can last roughly the same amount of time. Learn the details of building schedules to lessen frustration, help your project go smoothly and prevent delays.Read More…

To Do’s: Your January Home Checklist

January may be cold and dark here in Alaska, but it can also be a time for bold beginnings. Make the most of the Winter by clearing space in your home, boosting warmth and dreaming up plans for the year ahead. Here are 10 to-dos to give your home a little midwinter TLC. Read More…

How To Survive A Large Home Remodel

Tips and Tricks on Survivng A Large Home Remodel

If you ask owners of residential construction companies in and around Anchorage, Alaska who they love to work with, they’ll tell you, that their best clients are the ones who are well-organized, know what they want, and listen to good advice. Why? Because homeowners who have laid a proper foundation for their upcoming remodeling job most often get the results they want with little or no friction. Every phase of the project is well thought out, seamless, and headache free for all involved. So if you want your next renovation to have as few problems as possible, then follow the guidelines below. Doing so can mean the difference between your remodel being a pleasant memory or a cautionary tale.

Create a Vision and Let it Simmer

One of the biggest mistakes that homeowners make during a renovation is losing patience. The old saying, good art takes time, is just as true with home modeling as it is for other artistic mediums. Every phase of the project from the initial concepts all the way to the last stroke of paint requires precision, planning, and focused intentionality. Remember: changing your mind can be costly. Position yourself so that you never have to come to that crossroad. This strategy is more important during the outlining phase than the execution phase. Give your ideas some time to grow and solidify. The reward is seeing the final design turn out exactly as it was in your head even if it took a few more weeks to flesh it out.

Don’t Go it Alone: Hire a Remodeling Consultant

In the business world, there’s an oft-quoted adage; You don’t know what you don’t know. When you launch your home remodeling project, you will often make poor choices, because you had no idea that the right choice even existed. By hiring a remodeling consultant who can guide you along the path, you now have a partner who will share with you a wealth of resources and valuable information. Anchorage construction specialists can help you avoid costly mistakes, enhance your ideas, and show you how to save money regardless of the size of your budget. There’s also a good chance that a consultant can show you what your room will look like using virtual room design software. Go ahead and hire the expert.

Check Your Calendar

If you want to take the stress out of home remodeling, then clear your schedule and do some detailed planning in advance. Look at your calendar and decide when would be the ideal time for you and your family to undergo a construction project. Clear your schedule and make time for this monumental occasion. If you are distracted by too many other life events, then you’re likely to cut corners or sacrifice quality work to get the job done more efficiently. Chances are, the project could take weeks instead of days if the remodeling contractor is to complete it according to your exact specifications. Do not burden yourself with too many peripheral activities. After all, this is a temporary and necessary improvement to your home.

Small Issues Equal Big Problems

While you’re caught up in the masterpiece that is to be your newly renovated room, someone has to be in the background looking at every detail. Assuming that this person is your contractor, he or she will approach you with issues that have come up. The issues in questions usually have to do with logistics that often concern residential construction companies. They could range anywhere from building codes and neighborhood guidelines, to a long-term structural problem or even difficulties with your home’s primary systems (plumbing, electrical). Whatever the case, you should heed your contractor’s advice. If they’re telling you to spend an extra $1000 on a bathroom membrane system to keep molding out, then doing so could save you needless headaches months from job completion.

Trailboss Solutions, LLC. is an awarding-winning Alaskan company that can handle all of your construction and remodeling needs from conceptual design to project completion. Our service area covers the Greater Anchorage Bowl from Girdwood to Eagle River and Chugiak, Palmer to Wasilla and beyond. If you would like to know more about how we can help you with your next renovation, then contact us at 907-646-1403. The installation of new windows may seem like a pricey and time-consuming project, but the rewards really speak for themselves. With so much money saved in heating and cooing costs, as well as added home value, it definitely ends up being a profitable investment.

How to Start Your Kitchen Remodel Process

So, you’ve decided to remodel your kitchen. This type of remodeling project can be incredibly exciting at first, however, once the initial excitment wears off, you are often left with what seems like a daunting task. How do you begin this remodeling project? What are your first steps? Here is a great step by step guide of how to start a kitchen remodel. Remember, Trailboss Solutions is experienced in kitchen remodeling and upgrading.

Homeowner’s Workbook: How to Remodel Your Kitchen

The Process Of Making Second Story Home Additions

If you need extra space because of a growing family, or for whatever other reason, you may need to rip off the roof of your home to add a second story. It can be cheaper than building a new and larger home and you can continue to stay in your favorite neighborhood for longer. It can seem a daunting task, however, and here we make the task easier by going into the process of 2nd story home additions in some detail.

The Options Available To You

There are three ways you could expand your home to a second story. You could either tear the roof off entirely and redesign the upper level, or temporarily sever the edges and lift only to replace it after the new story has been built. You could also extend the second story over your garage or other first-floor structure, without having to tear off the roof.

What Will It Cost You?

Depending on the kind of rebuilding you’re doing, the costs will be different, of course. If you’re simply adding up on existing rooms, you will be spending the least. There is no foundation work involved with this type of extension, which is usually the major part of vertical extension costs. You will still have to get the existing foundation checked to see if they can take the extra weight you’ll add on. But overall, building on top of existing rooms is the best option if you’re on a tight budget.

If you’re building a new story altogether, you can save money by reusing the existing roof. Simply hire a crane to lift off the existing roof in sections, and replace it over the new story. This will be cheaper than rebuilding the roof.

Building over the current footprint of your home will take a shorter time than extending beyond it. The new floor will take only a few days to settle in and weather. You can then do up the rooms yourself. Depending on how much money you are willing to spend on this story, you can take your time with it, DIY style, or get it done immediately.

With a little planning and some research in cheap materials and paints, you can come up with a far cheaper alternative to making ground-level additions. It is easy to double your home’s footprint in a few days with vertical building, at as little as half the cost of extending your home at the same level.

Tips To Ensure A Successful Job

· Prepare for height restrictions

Check your local building codes to see if there are height restrictions for ridgelines. This step is very important and should be done before you have the plans drawn. You can find out these restrictions from the city council.

· Provide enough support for new structures

Before you build the second story, you need to find out if the foundation of your home will be able to support a second story. Some houses aren’t built with planning for future vertical extensions. Your home’s foundation may not be able to support multilevel structures over it. You also need to check if the rafters can hold up the floors of the second story. You need to get an evaluation of your home done by a structural engineer before you go ahead with planning.

· Keep the proportions pleasing

When you plan, be sure to avoid making your home look boxy with extensions above the plain, rectangular existing building. You can add trim details, porches and roof pitches to break up the potential boxy appearance. You should also maintain the proportions of eaves, windows, shutters etc. to a size that pleases the eye once the home has been extended. These existing elements may turn out to look too tiny once the new floor has been added. Use new window trims or contrasting colors to bring a better balance.

· Keep the New Elements Consistent

This means your new windows, doors, roof trims, etc. should be consistent with the existing elements on the first floor. The end result should be pleasing to the eye, proportionate, consistent and look like a natural extension of the original home.

Expanding your home vertically is a good idea when you have a small property and you want to preserve as much outdoor space as possible. If there are new kids on the way, or if you want extra space for guest rooms or storage, you don’t have to leave your neighborhood and move to a new home. Simply add on another level or a few rooms over existing ones, and you can open up enough additional space.

Top 3 Summer Remodeling Projects for Alaska

Top 3 summer projects for your home

Now is the best time to get some remodeling projects done for your home, since Alaska’s short summer is finally here. In the specific Alaskan climate, summer is the best time for your home remodeling projects, when snow is not blowing and the temperatures are warm enough. Here are the top 3 summer remodeling projects:

Building a deck

For Alaskans, adding a composite deck their home is a great investment and statistics show that addition can recoup close to 90% of costs upon resale, which is a figure higher than the national average. But adding a deck is not only about maximizing the reselling price and recovering your investment with a profit.

Because Alaskans have to wait the entire winter to be able to get outside and grill, a deck is much more precious. Building a deck can extend your house’s living space. Any Alaskan would prefer a house with a cozy deck that can be used throughout the summer. This is a worthy and solid addition that will increase your outdoor entertainment opportunities as well as the value of your house. Decks made with Trex and other composite materials are especially attractive for home buyers. Composite decks usually provide a high return on your investment. Today, Trex decks cost almost the same as wood decks, but Trex provides advantages in terms of easy maintenance and care. If you decide to sell your home, if buyers see the word Trex’ on your home sale listing, this will most likely raise the value of your home. It is only natural for people living in the bright Alaskan summers, to look outside of their actual homes when they plan some home renovation projects. They wish to take advantage of any opportunity to spend more time outdoors. For this reason, the deck can quickly become just as important as any other room in a home.

Now, that the short summer is back in Alaska, it is the best time to plan and build your backyard retreat. You can find some stunning deck design trends online or in the specialty magazines. Today decks are no longer just a small place with room only for a lawn chair and a grill. In 2015, the trend in decks is to reach a square footage close to that of the home’s interior. Modern decks feature built in storage and seating as well as multiple levels. It is also trendy to light up your deck by choosing some accent lighting in order to combat the darkness. If you want to feel cozy on chilly summer nights you can also add an outdoor fireplace. This way you will be able to spend as much time as possible on your new deck. You can also add a custom-made, built-in gas grill. If you really want to take outdoor cooking to a whole new level you can have a fully functional kitchen on your deck, complete with refrigerator and cabinets. A pool or a hot tub will add some recreational fun to your new backyard while a fountain can add some soothing sounds to the relaxing atmosphere on your new deck.

Replacing windows

Good insulation of your house is very important in Alaska. Outdated single-panes windows will ramp up your energy bills and drain your heat. A good investment is a double or even triple-pane window. This can make a great update for your Alaskan house and it is a recommended remodeling project for this summer.

You also may replace existing 3-by-5-foot double-hung windows with insulated vinyl windows. Ensure you take accurate measurements first in order to have your new windows fit properly. This precaution will maximize your energy savings and ensure an easy installation as well. It is recommended to take all measurements from inside your home. Use the smallest measurements in order to have the replacement window fit inside your existing window frame.

Energy-efficient windows will not only help savings on the energy bill and retain comfortable temperatures inside, but they can also help to reduce the noise level coming from outdoors as well as with appropriate moisture control. The short Alaskan summer is the best time to consider window upgrades, replacement, and new windows. In the dark Alaskan winter months, large, new windows will brighten your outlook on life.

Garage additions

A shoddy garage door can make a very poor first impression to your guests. Fortunately, you can spend only around $1,500 on a stylish replacement garage door. This can gives you a 76 percent investment return in case that you later decide to sell the house. In case that your house completely lacks a garage, you may consider building a detached model. For a basic 26×26-foot garage, you’ll pay under $49,000 and get a 64 percent return on your investment in case of reselling the house.

A garage addition can add beauty, space, and value to your home. You can also choose to add a new roof line complete with attic storage or completely replace your old garage. Or, you can add interior wall finish for the same midrange two-car garage. You may use three walls and interior wall finish using moisture-resistant drywall on ceiling.

You can install at the rear wall some modular storage systems including lower and upper storage cabinets complete with work surfaces, wall panels, and required task lighting. Provide base molding at the perimeter and trim all doors and windows. Paint all ceilings, trim, and walls and finish cement floor with a slip-resistant epoxy sealer. Statistics shows that in average Alaskans can recoup more than 100 percent of the cost of a garage addition.

The Process Of Whole House Remodels.

Anchorage Remodeling Process

Are bored with the look of your house from the many years spent in it? It might be time for you to remodel your home and breathe a new live into it. What more, you will also increase its market value!

Remodeling a home is a major project that needs a lot of work and can be quite expensive depending on the the kind of materials you intend to use and the amount of work you will need done. There also other factors that you should consider when remodeling your house such is the outdoor landscaping of a garden or a patio and indoor aspects like appliances, painting and textures. Regardless of the level of remodeling you need to do on different areas of your home, there are various steps that should be taken all through the process. Here are the steps that will make your work easier and stress free when remodeling your home for both you and the contractors.

Preparation

Preparing for your house remodel is actually the most extensive step in remodeling your home. You will first decide on the kind of contractors you will use and the projects you would like to work on your own. Write down a simple yes/no list of the things you would like professionally done and the do-it-yourself projects. You can save some money by working on minor projects such as restructuring your patio furniture or installation of lights and let the professionals work on the major projects. Look for the right contractors and subcontractors to work on those parts you are not able to work on. You will also have to consider the costs that you are likely going to incur in each part of the renovation project and establish whether these costs will meet your estimated budget. Check with Anchorage authorities and apply for the necessary permits.

Design

It is important to have a professional designer or architect come in when working on the design of your remodel to assist in proper planning on the extensive amount of work of needed . They have a wide knowledge about the all the necessities for each project and the amount of time each project will take. They will also prepare you for the period of time you will not be able to live in your home or the period of time your home will be unavailable for you and your friends to visit.

Foundation, siding, windows and roof

Make sure you protect your future renovations by ensuring that the house does not collapse on you, and that it will always stay dry ( windows, roof and siding). Firmly secure your foundation. If there are areas that need major structural repairs, such as carrying beams and weakened walls, do it then to avoid future disappointments. Repair or replace the roof if necessary. Heavily damaged windows should also be replaced to avoid any injuries during the remodeling process. Work on the siding if it is seriously damaged, otherwise leave it for later in the remodeling project.

Demolition

This is a process that can really mess your house. It is important to move your belongings from the areas that are being demolished so that they are not damaged. All the areas to be renovated should be carefully demolished while at the same time exercising caution when demolishing services that are coated with lead based paint. Rent a big container for disposing waste.

Structural carpentry

This is the time to engage the carpenters for the major carpentry projects. Such things include

· Moving walls

· Building new walls

· Removing doors and adding new doors

· Putting up construction windows

HVAC ductwork, plumbing, and electrical

Since the ceiling and the walls are open, a HVAC company should install ductwork for heating and air conditioning. It is also the best time to put up new plumbing and electrical systems.

Insulation

This is the last activity to be done on the open walls. Installation of fiberglass batt insulation in the attic and the walls.

Drywall

After inspection from the plumbing and electrical inspector, you can then close your walls up. A drywaller will hang sheets of drywall, apply drywall compound and allow the compound to dry. After it has dried, it will be sand smoothed.

Flooring

It is best to install the floor later in the renovation process to save the floor surface from any kind of damage.

Windows

Replace windows or install new ones

Interior painting and other finishes

Here you introduce fine carpentry for installing bookcases, baseboards and any other features you need installed. Painting interior walls, putting up wallpaper and all the detailed surface finishings should be the last activities you carry out indoors.

Auxiliary building

This is the last project so that you do not finish all your money on projects that are not directly related 

to the home remodeling. Such major auxiliary projects may be swimming pools and sunrooms.

When planning a home remodel in Anchorage, also consider putting up grab bars and a universal accessible design. This may not be for yourselves, but for older people who may visit. A home that is accessible is also highly valuable when reselling.