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The Pros and Cons of Open Concept Design

The Pros and Cons of Open Concept Design

Posted by on Dec 6, 2018 in Home Remodeling |

Because the large majority of homes in our area were built when the quantity of rooms was considered a premium when putting a home on the market, many of them ended up with a lot of small, closed off rooms. Lots of clients come to G.M. Roth assuming they should convert their home to an open concept design as part of their home remodeling project. As experienced design-build company remodeling professionals, we don’t think open concept is for every family or every house, we see many benefits for some situations, but also drawbacks in others. Here are some of the reasons you might want to consider home remodeling to an open concept design, and others why it might not be the right solution for your family.   Why Open Concept Works Perhaps the biggest reason to consider remodeling to an open concept living space is the sightlines. If you’re a family with small children, they can play in one area while you cook or clean in another. Whomever is cooking dinner won’t feel cut off from conversation, so open concept may connect you better as a family. The same is true when entertaining. The cook isn’t separated from the guests and can enjoy company from the moment they arrive. Another benefit open concept brings is that spaces seem larger. If your kitchen is small and feels cramped, removing a wall may allow you to expand your kitchen into your living space. Sometimes removing a wall allows more natural light into some rooms, tricking the brain into thinking the space is larger than it really is. The formal living room may not be an often-utilized space in your home. If you have a room that isn’t being used, opening up your floor plan may be a positive change. Current trends don’t support having a room set aside, almost like a showroom just to say you have it.  The majority of people today want to use all the space in the home to support their increasing family size. It’s Not Right for Everyone Open concept has its drawbacks. For example, if you do entertain a lot, your messy kitchen will always be on display. You may also find that while entertaining, the open environment is much louder than when you had several smaller rooms. As you look at the cost for home remodeling to open concept, your estimate may contain many elements you may not expect. For example, support beams may be necessary if you’re removing a load-bearing wall. Your design-build company will evaluate the basement and foundation to determine if you need structural reinforcement below the living space. These can add significantly to the cost of a remodel.  Worse still, if not researched during the design process, this could cause a major unexpected expense during construction, or even mean that the design has to be modified because a wall or...

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Bathroom Design Trends to Follow

Posted by on May 29, 2017 in Blog, Home Remodeling |

Some bathroom design trends are just that – trends that will quickly look outdated. Other trends in home remodeling will appeal to most people for years to come. When you work with a professional design build company, their experts can help steer you toward a style and design with staying power. Start With Tile Few elements are more visible in your bathroom than tile. Until fairly recently, tile was only added on shower walls and around soaking tubs. That tile often ranged in size from 4-inch squares to rectangular subway tile. Today, homeowners choose to install tile on floors, shower walls and surrounding tubs. Modern tile choices recommended by most design build companies include 12-inch squares and larger rectangular shaped tiles. Tile color is also an important place to start. One popular and longstanding bathroom design trend is to create a spa-like environment, and the right color tile can contribute to that feel. Showers and Bathtubs For many years, the only option for a luxurious master bathroom was to include a Jacuzzi tub or garden tub. Current trends in home remodeling lean more toward efficient use of bathroom space over requiring a large tub. Depending upon the size of the space you have to work with, a larger shower with glass enclosures may be a better design option than a large tub. If you do desire a tub in your bathroom, stand-alone tubs are gaining popularity. They come in many styles and can take up less space than a garden tub. Shower fixtures come in more styles than we can even begin to list. Many homeowners opt for multi-function shower fixtures with different water pattern settings. Others choose a combination of a traditional showerhead, wall jets, and a rainwater showerhead mounted in the ceiling. When choosing your shower fixtures, make sure that the fixture line you pick complements the style of the tub, sinks and hardware. The Sink Right now, there are many trendy sink options available. One of the ‘trendiest’ options that you may want to avoid is the trough style sink because it doesn’t provide for a true sink basin. A better trend that works in many bathroom remodeling projects are vessel sinks. These look like pretty bowls sitting on your countertop. There are several different styles and the visual impact they add can’t be beat.  Vessel sinks do require different plumbing details than a traditional sink, if you contractor doesn’t have experience working with them, you will run into problems with proper draining and venting. If you’re looking for a modern style but the vessel sink isn’t of interest to you, there are many traditional sinks that can help your remodel shine while maintaining a classic look. When you start any home remodeling project, it’s always best to work with a design build company that can not only execute the project, but help you bring your vision to life. G.M. Roth is just...

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The Value of a Design-Build Firm

Posted by on Jan 2, 2014 in Blog |

I was on the phone with the owner of a home that recently underwent an extensive remodel. Homeowners don’t always make it on an editor’s list of people to interview, and their quotes don’t always appear within articles. But, now and then it’s good to hear their perspectives, which can add interesting dimensions to a story, as it did to this one. The interesting part of our conversation didn’t come from discussing the design of the newly remodeled home or the owner’s satisfaction with the end result. Rather, the conversation took a left turn when we began talking about the way he chose to hire the key players in his project. He told me the architect he hired drew the plans, created construction documents and put the construction out for bid. Then, per contract, the architect managed the construction phase, which was handled by the contractor who won the bid. The arrangement was functional, but certainly not as efficient nor cost-effective as the client hoped it would be. In hindsight, the homeowner told me he would have done things differently. He would have hired a design-build firm and brought everyone together much sooner. I asked him why he took the design-bid-build route rather than following the design-build process, and he said he thought he was going to save money. I laughed and said, “You silly homeowner,” and he laughed with me. “Yeah, I’ll never do that again,” he chuckled. Most homeowners are not familiar enough with the remodeling process to realize the value of design-build. Too many homeowners believe the value lies in competitive bidding. Rarely is this the case, except maybe for exterior replacement work, a new driveway or construction of a community park. Certainly not for a whole-house remodel. Design-build, although not the only way to go, is the best way to go. It keeps one entity in control of design, construction, and the hiring and management of all contractors. Design-build is common in the remodeling market, but it can — and should — be applied to more projects than it is. I’d bet that satisfaction levels of homeowners whose projects were managed within the design-build process are higher than those whose projects took the design-bid-build route. Remodeling, like custom home building, has been described to me as, “a horrible business model,” because the product is reinvented for each customer and production efficiencies are difficult to establish. The best a remodeler can do is create best practices and procedures, and trust they will work as planned, every time. The design-build process — with its single point of control — is the perfect way to establish consistency, and to manage the unforeseen challenges inherent in every remodeling project. A few weeks ago — as part of our annual market trends survey — we asked remodelers, “Are you noticing an increased demand from homeowners for one-stop design-build services?” Preliminary...

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A Little Bit of Extra Space

Posted by on Dec 13, 2013 in Blog |

Would a little bit of extra space make you happy? Many people think they need to move into a larger home to get more space. We have helped thousands of your neighbors find more space right inside their homes, from home offices, to gyms, to expanding families. G.M. Roth encourages you to visit our beautiful new 6,000-square-foot kitchen and bathroom showroom and design center so that you can discover your own dream! Our exhibits feature 11 kitchen and eight bath displays to give you great ideas on products and designs, including kitchen cabinets, countertops, flooring, bathroom fixtures, replacement windows and siding. You’ll walk away excited about your own home project – guaranteed!...

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Why Choose a Design/Build Firm?

Posted by on Nov 25, 2013 in Blog |

1. Everybody is on the same team:  We’re all in this together and we all have the same goal –to arrive at a successful project that exceeds the client’s expectations for their project. 2. Total accountability:  One entity is accountable for everything –including how the end result looks, how much it costs and the timeline of completion. When the same group that designs the project also builds the project, there tends to be much more attention given to pricing and scheduling in the design phase. 3. Continuity:  A design-build firm is involved from start to finish, which adds an inherent efficiency. The chance for things to fall through the cracks is greatly diminished. 4. Expertise:  Design-build firms are experts in both fields. 5. Professional guides:  We’ve all heard the stories that design and construction can get out of hand and messy. Design and construction shouldn’t be chaotic or stressful. A design-build firm is a beacon to clients throughout the process, guiding the way to the best possible outcome. Design-build refines a system from beginning to end and manages it into orderly steps. 6. Involvement:  Design-build operates under the assumption that the client actually wants  to be an active participant in the design and remodeling of their home. By taking an involvement they’re guaranteeing that they get the outcome and satisfaction of their goals – what they want is going to be achieved.....

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