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Home Design | Home Plans

14Sep/14Off

Home Construction Projects – How to Ensure Home Plan Approval at Local Building Authority

As an Owner Builder, getting approval from the Building Department can be a challenge. There are building codes to follow, neighborhood restrictions to comply with, and often a whole host of hoops to jump through. This can be overwhelming for the average person taking on a building or remodeling project.
 
It can take weeks or months to get a major project approved by your building authorities and if you're not prepared well or if you have insufficient expertise, you can fail completely. This one challenge is often enough to dissuade people from attempting to manage their own projects.
 
THERE ARE PROFESSIONALS WHO CAN HELP YOU
 
I recommend professional help. Wasting time is wasting money. We're not talking about painting a room or replacing carpet. A major remodel, addition, or building a home from scratch is a big endeavor and you're going to need a lot of help. Getting the proper professionals lined up from the very beginning is going to help you immensely. The first real hurdle they'll help you over is the approval of your building plans.
 
If you've been following my articles and the information found at sites like Dream Home Creation, you know the value in the practice of using a Home Building Coach to assist you in any major Owner Builder process. Your coach will guide you to all the proper steps and professionals to ensure your success.
 
How To Ensure Home Plan Approvals
 
In the interest of brevity and simplicity, I'm going to show you one path you can take to accomplish this goal. There are others. As an owner builder, you'll find this path or a close variation of it, to be useful and easy to follow.
 

  • Hire a HomeBuilding Coach first: Getting this consultant in your corner is going to make life much simpler. Her contacts, experience, and knowledge will save you time and money. Do this as soon as you decide to build.
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  • Use a professional drafter, designer, or architect: Your coach can lead you to the best solution for you and your local requirements. A drafter should be the least expensive but may not be "allowable" in your market. When using a drafter, you'll likely need a structural engineer to sign off on the plans.
  • Work with a Structural Engineer: As mentioned, with a drafter it will be required or highly recommended. Most residential designers and architects will work with these engineers anyway. The engineer is going to calculate and certify that all codes were followed.
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  • Communicate closely with your professional team: Once plans are submitted, the building department is going to come back to you with "corrections". As an owner builder, you will likely be the one who must relay the needed changes to your team. Keep them informed and keep them motivated to make the corrections.

It's not really that hard to get your plans approved if you put the right people in place. Work with your coach and keep the ball rolling. These professionals will know the requirements and they'll be able to communicate with the building department if there is any confusion about what they want. You don't want to be doing this yourself.
 
Following this plan will remove the "plan submission overwhelm" and get you going towards your home building or remodeling goals. Make the decision to use these professionals and eliminate this most difficult challenge.

7Sep/14Off

Home Decoration Made Easy With the Use Cabinets

Home is a place where we spent a considerable period of our entire life. Therefore it is undoubtedly an important part of our life. Each one of us desires to possess a house of our dream. We nurture it and decorate it with utmost care and affection. We take care of its each and every detail, such as color of the walls, flooring, its design, and overall the furniture. Furniture constitutes the main decorating elements of our home. We select furniture for our home with proper planning and thinking. We keep various aspects in mind while purchasing furniture for our home. Things that we keep in consideration are layout of the rooms, their ambiance, and our taste as well.

Some furniture serves dual purposes. They not only make our rooms look beautiful, but also help us to store necessary things inside it. Some of them are wardrobes, divans, and cabinets. Cabinets are very useful as furniture. They not only provide a stylish look to our home, but also make our rooms and kitchen cluttered free and clean. For kitchens and bathrooms, cabinets offer numerous possibilities to make the d├ęcor more attractive and spacious at the same time. If we compare the price of the cabinets with other set of furniture, then we will find that cabinets provide us a cheaper option to decorate our rooms, bathroom, and kitchen. They are relatively cheaper than any other furniture, like sofa sets, wooden wardrobe, designer beds, etc.

Apart from the price factor, cabinets are also easy to install, and are easy to manage as well. if we take the example of other furniture, then they are quite difficult to install. But cabinets provide us an easy option to do with our home decoration. If you have the basic knowledge about the components of cabinet hardware, then it becomes very easy for you to understand the process of installation. There are basically four components or hardware in a cabinet. The main component is the cabinet door. Since they constitute the outer portion of the cabinet, therefore it is necessary that we must be careful with their designs. You should select the cabinet doors which can match or compliment the color of your room, kitchen or bathroom. If you want to give a brighter look to your room, then you can choose cabinet doors with light and bright color. Or, if you want to give a colorful appearance to hour bathroom, then there are cabinet doors with multiple colors.

Apart from the cabinet doors, cabinet knobs and pulls are said to be the next most important part of the cabinets. Cabinet knobs and pulls have a very big and huge market. You can find numerous brands with their excitingly new products. There are various materials and designs available for the cabinet knobs and cabinet pulls.

Cabinet hinges and cabinet latches are the hardware that keeps the cabinet moving and working. Therefore you must select them wisely. They may not add up to the beauty of the cabinets, but they surely decide the overall performance of the cabinets.

2Sep/14Off

Swimming Pool Landscaping Design Basics

Swimming pool landscaping design may require a little more planning than landscaping your backyard, but it's still something a non-professional can handle. And it's worth doing. Get your swimming pool landscaping design right and you can create a little piece of paradise right outside your door. Here are some ideas to get you started.

Planning Your Design

When you first start collecting ideas for your swimming pool landscaping design, take note of the colors, textures, and patterns of straight lines and curves in your house and any nearby garden structures. Working with these same colors and patterns, or ones that are compatible with them, will lend a feeling of continuity to your landscape that makes it look well organized.

Plant Choices for Swimming Pools

Plantings soften the lines of swimming pool equipment, provide privacy, and help the pool area blend in with the rest of your home's landscape. For a low-maintenance swimming pool landscaping design, broad-leafed evergreens, ornamental grasses, and ground covers are the best choices. One or more trees on the south side of the pool can provide shade on hot days without blocking the sun on cooler days. When you're looking for swimming pool plants, avoid deciduous trees, plants that attract bees, bear fruit, have thorns or prickles, or develop invasive root systems that could damage the pool.

Fences for Safety and Privacy

If you're going to have small children or curious pets around, a fence is vital for safety reasons. Being able to lock up the entire pool area gives you peace of mind and could save lives. The right fence design can also provide privacy. A full privacy fence is usually six feet or higher, with boards arranged in an overlapping, shadow box, or tongue-and-groove pattern. If you prefer semi-privacy that lets air and light pass through, consider a lattice or basket-weave fence.

Windbreaks and Baffles

Even a light breeze can steal warmth from a pool area. Fortunately, you can redirect chilly air currents by building a windbreak or baffle. First, start by identifying the wind currents in your yard and then use this information to decide where you'll need to place the fence/baffle for greatest efficiency. You don't have to use a solid wall or fence for this; dense shrubbery can also provide good protection.

Swimming Pool Lighting

Outdoor lighting is another safety feature every swimming pool landscaping design needs. At a minimum, lights should be added to the pool's deep end, on the steps, and around the perimeter. While incandescent and halogen quartz pool lights of both 120-volt (at 300 or 500 watts) and 12-volt (at 100 or 200 watts) are still on the market, fiber optics last longer and provide better lighting.

Patios and Decks

The right paving and decking assures a safe, slip-resistant surface that's easy on bare feet. Pavers may cost more than bricks and concrete, but they're a better option for a swimming pool landscaping design. Not only do they allow for different patterns and colors, but they also move, rather than crack, with the ground's movements, so they'll last longer. Ordinary brick can work, but make sure the bricks you choose have somewhat rough surfaces, so they provide some traction. In any case, avoid using wood. When exposed to water, wood can splinter and warp over time and it's slippery for bare feet.

If you're just starting to plan your swimming landscaping design, take some time to browse through photos and pictures either in landscaping books or online. That way you can get a good idea of what's possible and you won't be thinking, "Oh, I should have done this instead," after you've already finished your pool landscaping.

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