Assistance with Contractor Jargon

Most of our customers are new to remodeling projects.  They are interested in making their home bigger, brighter, more useful or just different.   One thing we run into on most jobs is unfamiliarity with the jargon we use in the remodeling industry.  To help you with this, we have provided here a dictionary of some of the more common terms we use, and what they mean.  Please always ask us if you don’t understand something, we are here to help.

Allowance – A specific dollar amount allocated for a specific item.  For example, you might have an allowance for plumbing fixtures for your project.  After selecting the exact fixtures, the final amount will be calculated, but the allowance is a good estimate of what a reasonable quality set of fixtures should cost.  

Bearing wall – An exterior or interior wall that supports the roof or overhead floor joists.

Building Permit – A document issued by the city or other governing authority.  This document gives permission to go ahead with a construction project.

Change Order – A change order is written documentation to the contractor to change what is in the original contract.  The change order should include changes to materials, methods and costs.

Draw – A total project budget is not usually paid all at once.  A payment made for services to date is considered a “draw” from the total budget.

Expansion joint – A flexible material between two surfaces, allowing joints to expand and contract in different temperatures.

Lien – If a subcontractor is unpaid, he may obtain a lien from the courts.  When enforced, the property can be sold in order to pay off the lien.  If the subcontractor is paid in another way, he will sign a lien release to remove the lien responsibility from the property.

Mud – Any type of plaster or spackle that is used to coat walls, ceilings, foundations and other surfaces.

Punch List – Near the end of the project, the contractor will walk through the project and make a list of things that are still left to be done.  This is known as a punch list.

B & R Construction can help you with your home remodeling project. We work in the Los Angeles area, and are a full service home remodeling company.  We specialize in kitches, bathrooms, additions and new construction.   Contact us today for a free, no obligation estimate.

Getting Your Eggs in the Right Basket with our Kitchen Remodeling Contractors

You’ve been thinking a lot about eggs lately, as you’ve been buying, filling and hiding plastic Easter eggs, assessing your retirement nest egg as you complete your 2012 taxes, and realizing that the egg holes in your fridge door are, like the fridge itself, incredibly outdated…. If you’ve played your tax cards right, perhaps you even have an Easter surprise headed your way, in the form of a tax refund—which might just as well become a nest egg for something special, like replacing more than just your outdated, and power guzzling, fridge.

We suggest that you call your friendly local kitchen remodeling contractors and let’s discuss how you can transform that nest egg into a lovely new kitchen. Together we can hatch a remodeling plan that will renovate your kitchen into a space you will enjoy working in, with appliances that are modern and energy efficient. Here are some things to consider as you think about how to improve upon your current kitchen:

  • What did you find while you were hiding Easter eggs in your kitchen? Perhaps you saw some chipped counter tops, broken moldings, cracked floor tiles, or the poor condition of your breakfast nook bench cushions. Your kitchen is one of the most lived-in spaces in your home, and that wear and tear really shows after a while.
  • What besides your fridge is old enough to be causing undue strain on your utility bills? Yes, new appliances cost, but the cost of running your old appliances may be higher than you realize.
  • Do the work space and work flow in your kitchen really work for you? Many kitchen setups just aren’t functional. If you and your family bump into each other in the kitchen, perhaps it’s time for a professional assessment of your kitchen space, with an eye to making it really work for you.
  • A kitchen remodel, done right, adds value to the nest egg that is your home.

So why not contact us today for a free, no obligation assessment of your kitchen? From design to execution, our professional, experienced team will transform your kitchen into a beautiful, functional and energy efficient space that will be a joy to work in and a pleasure to show off!

Kitchen Remodeling Contractors: Choosing the Best Contractors and Design Trends for 2013.

The kitchen is one of the best-loved and most heavily-used rooms in your house. For that reason your choice of a kitchen remodeling contractor to complete your desired upgrades cannot be made too carefully.

Too often contractors are selected rapidly and without careful investigation of their prices and contractor’s license. Many contractors intentionally misquote the cost of the job in order to be hired (with the intent to add extra expenses later), leave without completing the job or provide questionable work completed low-quality materials.

When selecting your contractor be sure that he has a license and insurance as well as workman’s compensation. Research the company to determine the length of time they have been in business, see customer reviews and ensure they’re qualified to provide the services advertised.

After you’ve selected a contractor for your kitchen re-model be sure and investigate the design trends for 2013! According to one article trends for this year include; fresh, white-painted cabinets, durable and luxurious quartz countertops, gray accents, environmentally-efficient LED lights, electronic, hands-free faucets to maintain a sterile environment, satin, nickel finishes for a modern look and glass backsplashes to add dimension and shine.

One designer called the current trends a “modern cottage.”  She says that “it’s not stark modern design…it has natural materials, textures and layering, with lots of whites and grays. There is nothing fussy or frou-frou about it.  Although stainless still reigns, there is growing interest in white ranges and refrigerators in a new glossy finish, as well as soapstone countertops and floating shelves.”

Using a top-quality contractor to implement the latest color and design trends is guaranteed to provide a kitchen makeover you’re thrilled with!

Window Replacement as Part of a Home Improvement Project

Window replacement is often part of a home improvement project.  Windows are a big investment, and not many people buy them regularly, so the lingo used in the window industry is something you will want to know before shopping for windows.   Here are the terms used for each part of a window.

Head – The head of a window is the main horizontal part forming the top of the window frame.

Jamb – The jamb are the two vertical pieces of the window frame.

Sill – The sill of a window is the bottom horizontal part that forms the frame.

Frame – The frame is the combination of the head, jamb and sills that form the opening in which the window sash is set into.

Grilles – The Grill is any bar that divides the window glass into smaller panes.  In many cases, the grilles are decorative and are just set into the frame.  This is also known as a muntin bar.

Balance – A mechanical device used in some windows to balance the act of opening and closing.  The device makes opening and closing the window a bit easier.

Casing – The casing is the exposed molding on either the inside or the outside of the window.  The casing covers the space between the window frame and the wall.

B&R Construction can help you with your window replacement project, or any other home remodeling project that you are taking on.  We work in the Los Angeles area, and specialize in kitchens, bathrooms, additions and new construction.  Contact us today for a free, no obligation estimate.