Home Inspection Red Flags

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Home Inspection Red Flags

A home inspection report is an assessment of a house. It includes a long list of everything that is wrong with the home. The inspection is done before the sale of the property is finalized. This gives potential buyers the opportunity to re-negotiate the price if there are issues that will need to be repaired. Not all of the problems an inspector finds are a big deal, but some of the issues may be significant. The following information will help you determine what you should be the most aware of when reading a home inspection and which items you shouldn’t worry about.
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The Summary

The first part of the home inspection report that you want to look over is the primary recommendations. This is also called the summary. This portion covers health and safety concerns. For example, it may state that there is a problem with mold. If you think it may be a harmful level, you can get it further checked out by a mold remediation specialist.

This section may also discuss electrical issues that could be a potential for hazard. Even a leaky roof being listed in this portion of the report can be cause for concern. Leaky roofs can create water damage that can affect the wood-framed structure of a house.

Costly Issues

The home inspection report can also list big-ticket issues. This includes electrical, structural, and mechanical problems. These are the types of problems that will be expensive to repair, and they may be cause for re-negotiating the price of a house. They are not problems that can be easily fixed during a NJ home remodeling project without costing you extra time and money.

Electrical issues worth worrying about would be old wiring that is dangerous, faulty wiring, ungrounded receptacles, or outdated knob and tube wiring from the 1950s or before. Structural issues range from older roofs that need to be replaced to cracks in the foundation that can be a sign of structural damage. Finally, mechanical problems are issues related to waste plumbing lines that do not drain properly or low water pressure.

Issues That Vary in Price

Some of the problems revealed during a home inspection can vary in price when it comes to fixing them. For example, termites are common in older houses. How much it will cost to take care of the issue depends on whether there is an active infestation or simply damage left behind from past infestations. This is something you may want to have the seller fix before finalizing the sale.

Mold is never good to find listed on your home inspection report, but it can be removed. The question is for how much. Surface mold is easily taken care of while mold found in the attic due to poor ventilation could require an entirely new roof in order to ensure the mold is removed.

Less Obvious Issues

No home will have a perfect inspection report unless it is newly constructed. Older homes often have issues that will be noted in the report. Some of these are simply a matter of age while others are red flags.

Look at any cracks found in a house as a red flag. As a home settles over time, cracks will appear. Although the cracks themselves seem harmless, they can be a sign of bigger issues. As homes settle, problems such as loose pipes can arise. Original pipes and plumbing may also rust with age. Cracks may even create further problems by allowing pests a way to enter the home.

Soil piled up against the house is another red flag. This soil can keep the water from draining away from the structure properly. This water can damage the foundation creating devastating damage.

Items You Shouldn’t Worry About

Although every issue deserves a certain amount of attention, there are things that will show up on the home inspection report that won’t affect the sale. Top of this list is appliances. The report may list appliances such as the dishwasher, stove, refrigerator, washer, or drier as not functioning correctly. These are items that you can have replaced during a NJ kitchen remodeling project or replaced with your existing appliances.

You can also overlook certain exterior issues. If the siding or paint is listed as being in poor condition, you shouldn’t worry. These are mainly cosmetic problems and shouldn’t change the sale of the house in any major way, but you will want to repair them on your own once the property is yours. This can be discussed with a home remodeling contractor.

Although the results of a home inspection report can be disappointing, it does allow you the opportunity to negotiate the cost of the house with the seller. A new offer could offset the price of repairs. You can also discuss whether or not the seller should pay for a portion of the repairs before finalizing the deal. Don’t become stressed over your home inspection report. Look at it as a helpful tool when considering the purchase of a new home.

NJ Home Remodeling Holiday Gift Guide

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Wouldn’t it be nice to give your spouse or partner a present this holiday season that would make them happy all throughout the year? Giving a loved one the gift of a home renovation is definitely a gift that will keep on giving. It will please them each time they enter that area of their house while possibly providing them with additional storage and organization. Best of all, it can increase the value of your home. Each time they enjoy their newly remodeled space they will lovingly remember the thoughtful gift you gave them.

give the holiday gift of a home remodel

Which Area to Renovate?

If your partner or spouse is constantly complaining about one room, in particular, your decision as to which room to renovate will be easy. In fact, if you listen to exactly what they dislike, you will even know what direction to take your NJ home remodeling project in. On the other hand, you might want to simply surprise them with something completely different. We have a wife that is purchasing a wine room for her husband for Christmas. That is certainly one lucky guy.

If you are still indecisive, begin with the idea of a kitchen remodel. The kitchen is the heart of the home, and updating it will increase the value. You can update the appliances, add special, features like an attractive range hood, and design an island that will meet your individual needs. The island can be anything from a little extra counter space with bar stools on one side for additional seating to a command center complete with a built-in microwave, small refrigerator, and farmhouse sink.

The bathroom is another popular room to remodel, and anyone would be excited to be the recipient of that gift. You could put in a new walk-in shower, a large tub, and double sinks for luxury and convenience. If space allows, you could even include features like a dressing area or walk-in closet into the design. Whether going large or small with the remodel, be sure to include beautiful new cabinetry that will give you and your loved one extra storage while enhancing the overall look of the room.

Along with the kitchen and bathroom, you could consider giving the gift of renovating one of the forgotten areas of your home. Basements can be finished in order to provide you with extra bedrooms and bathrooms, a home office, or a family recreational room. Consider places like the laundry room too. This is usually the last place to get any attention. Homeowners see it as functional, but it can also become a bright and welcoming room that everyone will enjoy using.

The holidays are a busy time of year when you are entertaining many of your closest friends and family. As you host dinners and parties, you may realize just how little space you have. Think of how delighted your spouse or partner would be if you present them with a dining room renovation. Talk to your home remodeling contractor about possibilities such as opening it up into the kitchen and living area in order to create a great room that is ideal for entertaining.

How to Present the Gift of a NJ Home Remodeling Project

Although a home remodel is a wonderful gift idea, it can be hard to give as a present. You can’t exactly surprise someone with a newly renovated room while they are living in the house, and it certainly isn’t the type of gift you can wrap and place under the tree. Fortunately, there are ways you can still have the thrill of opening a present and surprising them. All it takes is a little creativity.

If you are planning on remodeling the bathroom as your loved one’s gift, buy them a new set of luxurious bath towels. Wrap them up with a note tucked inside that announces the renovation. The same can be done form a kitchen by giving a new set of dishes or cookware in the same manner. You will have the fun of seeing the expression on their face, and they will have an actual gift to open on Christmas Day.

No matter what area of the house you, decide to remodel or how you plan to present the idea, a home renovation project can be the perfect gift for your spouse or partner. It will, be a gift that keeps, on giving by offering you and your loved one an updated, organized room that you will both treasure for many years to come.

Kitchen Material Trends: Not all materials are created equally

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Not all materials are created equally, and fashions come and go. So what are the latest kitchen material trends when it comes to designing a kitchen or bath? Melania Holiat is director/designer of Trade Mark Design & Build, based in Hawthorne, New Jersey, and is also a member of the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID). Here she talks about some of the most fashionable materials being offered today.

Kitchen Material Trends

There are many new up-and-coming materials in the building industry, some of which are just starting to have an impact on the design world; others which have been around for a while but are nonetheless still gaining in popularity. It’s all about getting away from ordinary materials and experimenting with different elements.

Countertops

Some of the newest kitchen material trends in making countertops are:

  • Bamboo: Becoming more and more popular as it grows fast, looks nice, is durable and sustainable.
  • Lava: Fairly new in the marketplace, the lava we use is harvested in France from the mountains there, is cut into slabs and then kiln-dried. Depending on the look that is desired, various glazes can be applied, either glossy or grackle glaze. Interestingly, lava countertops wear just as well as granite countertops, as they have the same type of wear rating.
  • Glass: Countertops made from glass are becoming incredibly popular. They are coming out in variety of thicknesses, textures and patterns, and therefore we are not limited to a plain clear generic focal point. We are also able to put things into the glass – air bubbles and shells, for example – to add interest and texture and create a unique piece.
  • Concrete: Also popular material for a countertop as you can put all sorts of things into it, including branches, heirlooms, coins, keys and knickknacks. They are put inside and then sealed with an acrylic coating to maintain their quality. Concrete countertops can either have a matte or a slightly polished finish, and come in a variety of colors. You can go from any color you imagine, and can even do a countertop that integrates into a sink, which means one piece of concrete is molded downwards seamlessly into a sink.

kitchen material trends - machine hammered stainless steel, hammered stainless steel, machine hammered stainless steel countertop, stainless steel countertop, custom stainless steel, metal textures

Cabinetry

When it comes to kitchen cabinetry, then bamboo, stainless steel and glass are all the most popular when it comes to current contemporary trends. High-gloss acrylic is particularly popular, with the trend leaning toward bright, vibrant colors, including crimson, magenta, chartreuse and anything that is nice and bright. These cabinets are often accented with stainless steel panels or sleek black countertops to give a contemporary look and feel to your kitchen.

Flooring

All types of flooring have come back into fashion these days. Recently, many people wanted to a wooden floor in every room of the house, even the kitchen, where it was not always durable. Now we have cork, which is an interesting material, one that is much more versatile than you might think.

Now we are also seeing a lot of tiles that are made to look like wood planks, so you have the durability and maintenance level of a tile, but the look of an actually wood floor. It looks realistic, in part, because it can be bought in the same lengths that wood flooring come in.

Trade Mark Design & Build offers free quotes and kitchen design plans with no obligation, contact us at 973-636-0100 to get started on your kitchen project and learn why we are known for making “Home Remodeling Simplified”!

 

Trade Mark Design & Build of New Jersey Receives Best Of Houzz 2016 Award

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Over 35 Million Monthly Unique Users Nominated Best Home Building, Remodeling and Design Professionals in North America and Around the World

Hawthorne, NJ January 28, 2016 – Trade Mark Design & Build of Hawthorne has won “Best Of Customer Service” for the second year in a row on Houzz®, the leading platform for home remodeling and design. The home remodeling company was chosen by the more than 35 million monthly unique users that comprise the Houzz community from among more than one million active home building, remodeling and design industry professionals.

Best-Of-Houzz

 

The Best Of Houzz is awarded annually in three categories: Design, Customer Service and Photography. Design award winners’ work was the most popular among the more than 35 million monthly users on Houzz. Customer Service honors are based on several factors, including the number and quality of client reviews a professional received in 2015. Architecture and interior design photographers whose images were most popular are recognized with the Photography award. A “Best Of Houzz 2016” badge will appear on winners’ profiles, as a sign of  their commitment to excellence. These badges help homeowners identify popular and top-rated home professionals in every metro area on Houzz.

“Anyone building, remodeling or decorating looks to Houzz for the most talented and service-oriented professionals” said Liza Hausman, vice president of Industry Marketing for Houzz. “We’re so pleased to recognize Trade Mark Design & Build, voted one of our “Best Of Houzz” professionals by our enormous community of homeowners and design enthusiasts actively remodeling and decorating their homes.”

Follow Trade Mark Design & Build on Houzz.

About Trade Mark Design & Build

Whether you have a vision for the completed project or are just figuring things out, Trade Mark Design & Build of New Jersey will create something you love. Our secret? You. We believe in collaborating closely with our clients on design that’s anything but one-size fits all. Each remodel design is customized, for an end result that’s uniquely crafted for your family’s taste and needs.

Known mostly for our kitchen and bath design, Trade Mark Design & Build offers top-to-bottom remodeling for any room in the home, including home offices, entertainment centers, wine rooms, and home bars. Kitchen and bath renovations feature complete custom kitchen cabinetry in addition to custom counters–allowing for a truly one-of-a-kind space. Turn unused or underutilized space into the kind of great, personalized space that makes a home, well, home!

Revamp your home without the hassle. We’ll work within your budget, and stick to a clear, outlined time frame. So go ahead–get excited about redesign without worrying about the hassle. If you need inspiration, check out our gallery of featured projects.

Trade Mark Design & Build. “Home Remodeling Simplified”

About Houzz

Houzz is the leading platform for home remodeling and design, providing people with everything they need to improve their homes from start to finish – online or from a mobile device. From decorating a small room to building a custom home and everything in between, Houzz connects millions of homeowners, home design enthusiasts and home improvement professionals across the country and around the world. With the largest residential design database in the world and a vibrant community empowered by technology, Houzz is the easiest way for people to find inspiration, get advice, buy products and hire the professionals they need to help turn their ideas into reality. Headquartered in Palo Alto, CA, Houzz also has international offices in London, Berlin, Sydney, Moscow and Tokyo. Houzz and the Houzz logo are registered trademarks of Houzz Inc. worldwide. For more information, visit houzz.com.

 

3 Iconic Women Architects

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In the arena of building, architecture and design, female contributors often get lost in the shuffle of a heavily male-dominated industry.  Over the years doing New Jersey home remodeling, we always look to our role models in design for inspiration and ideas. There are many female architects and designers that have contributed so much to the field and created iconic design masterpieces that inspire us today. In celebration of Women’s History Month, here are a few of architecture’s leading female icons.

Hotel-Lafayette
Downtown Buffalo’s historic Hotel Lafayette designed by Louise Blanchard Bethune

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Louise Blanchard Bethune – The first recognized woman to work as a professional architect in the United States, Bethune started her own architecture firm in 1881. She was responsible for buildings ranging from stately hotels to school buildings, and pioneered one of the first US projects to use steel framing and slabs of poured concrete in construction.

Norma Merrick Sklarek's Pacific Design Center
Norma Merrick Sklarek’s Pacific Design Center

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Norma Merrick Sklarek – One of the first African-American female architects to obtain an architect’s license in the United States, Sklarek operated primarily in New York, though her nation-spanning career would later take her to California. In the 1980’s, she kept her record-breaking momentum going by forming the first architectural firm to be created and run by an African-American woman.

Hearst Castle Library interior
The interior of the Hearst Castle library

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Julia Morgan – Aside from her extremely memorable work on California’s Hearst Castle, Morgan also holds the distinction of being the first female to be granted an architectural degree from the l’Ecole nationale superieure des Beaux-Arts in Paris, in 1902. She was also responsible for the majestic Los Angeles Examiner building, as well as a variety of other projects for the Hearst publishing empire.

Has the thought of these trailblazing architectural feats inspired your own ideas at home? Call Trade Mark Design & Build today and let us help you build your own visually stunning legacy at home. This of course is by no means an exhaustive list. Tell us in the comments, who is your design inspiration?

 

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These Hot Kitchen Floor Trends for 2014 Will Have You Floored

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Black & white mosaic tiles makes for a beautiful floor design.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Floors steal the show in NJ kitchen remodeling trends for 2014. Kitchen makeovers are one way to increase the value of a home as we discussed earlier, but the focus needs to be on functionality. Flooring gives you an opportunity to add extreme style to the mix and get something really distinctive for your home, while ensuring sturdiness to last for years ahead.

Bold Patterns are Key

Overall, kitchen remodeling in Bergen County, NJ is focusing on color to create dramatic flair. You can top off a balanced kitchen with a fancy floor with a pop of color to give everything just a little more punch. Patterned floors are in this year, and an experienced firm like Trade Mark Design & Build has access to some eye-catching products that enhance the kitchen color palette.

A kitchen with white walls and cabinetry for example, will really stand out with a white and black beveled cube design on the floor. Look for a pattern that creates depth using colors and lines to make the geometric designs stand out.

The Art of Illusion

The nice thing about vinyl flooring is the ability to create illusions with it. Vinyl is a common choice for kitchen floors because of its low cost and resilience. You don’t have to settle for boring just because you opt to save. Choose a pattern that imitates tumbled marble or hardwood. You get a nostalgic look that adds to the kitchen’s appeal without the expense of real wood flooring.

The focus of the International Ceramic Tile Fair in Spain this year was creating oxidized looks that give the appearance of stone, metal and wood for contemporary flooring, proving illusion as a design concept works.

Flooring designs are the style anchor for any room. Make your kitchen stand out with bold choices for 2014. Contact the Trade Mark Design team to see what flooring options we create for your home.

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Schrock NJ Kitchen Cabinets

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One of the most important steps when redesigning or constructing your kitchen is maximizing the amount of space possible. Finding enough storage can sometimes be difficult when working with a small space. We have two decades of experience in the NJ home remodeling business and have figured out the best way to customize a kitchen to make it the most convenient layout while ensuring aesthetic appeal.

One of the best ways to maximize space is by using the best cabinets for your needs. One of the premier cabinets we like to use is

Schrock cabinetry which are designed to the highest standards with maximum function and organization in mind. This is one the most functional ways to reduce clutter and will help even the most disorganized person keep everything in its place.

We highlight some of their unique designs below:

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Easy Homemade Ice cream Recipe

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I don’t want to alarm anyone, but this warm weather is not going to last forever. It’s important to make the best of it while you can—for some of us, it’s finally going forward with that home remodeling project, but for others it’s just enjoying the final few weeks of summer sunshine! Whether or not you have had your kitchen remodeling completed this summer or not, you can still enjoy the tastes of summer. With the following ice cream recipe and technique, you won’t need much counter space or any high-tech equipment, so grab the family and start this great activity!

 

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