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Oct
12
2017

Benefits of Building New Construction

by Nicole Stevens

new constructionsWhen deciding on a new home or building, there is one major choice you have to make before going any further. Do you want to purchase an already constructed one, or should you work from the ground up? Is there a better benefit in building your own constructed home rather than buying an existing one? The following will help to show those benefits of building  new construction, be it a new home, commercial building, or any other workable places.

While it is typically more expensive to build your own home, it without a doubt will include everything you want. There won’t be any worry of liking certain parts of the home and hating other parts. You have complete control over what goes where, and how things will eventually come together. This rings true for other building types as well. Creative freedom and collaboration with an architect can produce amazing results.

Alongside having full control over the cosmetics of the construction, you have to build with up to date codes. This means there will be the most up to date electrical system as well as HVAC and insulation. This provides the home/building with much better energy efficiency which is better for the environment and your wallet every month on utility bills.

With this kind of energy efficiency, building a new construction also has a health benefit as well. Seems like a strange thing to say but it’s true! A new home/building will not have as much toxicity as an existing one. Most newer built homes are free from harmful past common household fixtures, such as asbestos, but could still have possibilities of lead paint or mold. Building from the ground up ensures that you will not have to worry about surprise mold, or a toxic paint on the walls because it is another aspect you have control over. This brand new construction has the potential to become a “green house," no harsh unknown/surprise chemicals and energy efficient appliances could save a lot of money and hassle in the long run.

After choosing the layout of your new home/building, finding the right interiors to run everything, and knowing everything inside is safe, it can leave you with a huge sense of satisfaction. Building a new construction is not an easy task, but when everything is said and done, it was all your creation. You made it all happen, and it came out just the way you want it, and it will be much more appreciated and respected in the years to come. 

SOURCE

Sep
05
2017

Is your home worth remodeling or is it time to list it?

florida home remodelingTo stay or to go? Here are a few pointers to keep in mind when determining whether there’s more value in remodeling your existing home or listing and moving on.

First, estimate the total costs of a new home purchase. Calculate selling and agent costs as well as the cost of packing, moving and loan financing. Remember not to overlook hidden items. For example, your buyer might ask that you replace the carpets before they buy. Or, there may be a need to replace appliances. Then, estimate what you may receive from the sale of your house and how much of that will be cash for your next down payment.

If you like your current neighborhood and school district, remodeling is probably your best bet. This way, you get exactly what your want in your home, and you won't suffer from buyer's remorse. A professional remodeler will sit down with you to estimate the exact costs associated with crucial renovations that are needed for you to stay. 

Compare the costs to move and the costs to remodel. Add in factors like your community, schools, and neighbors. When all's said and done, you may discover you more equity by staying in your current home and remodeling.

Aug
03
2017

OSB vs Plywood... How Do They Stack Up To Each Other

plywood vs osbA common question in our industry is “What are the differences between plywood and oriented strand board (OSB) and how do the two stack up to one another?”

Here, we will outline a few of the differences and give you a general comparison of the two: 

  1. Plywood
    Plywood is made by cutting ultra thin layers of a tree all the way around the tree’s circumference. The boards are then laminated together with a hot press. The first piece is placed to roll “up," then each subsequent layer is laid 90 degrees to the one beneath it, and upside-down. The result is a natural tendency for the boards to warp as each board is pressed against the other layers. Thicker plywood (⅝” and above - made from five or more plies) is much less likely to warp than thinner plywood (¼” or ⅜”).
    Layers of plywood derived from an area closer to the center of the tree will always have a tendency to warp which can easily be overcome by using the correct fasteners when securing the plywood to joists or studs.
    The laminate that forms the plywood will diminish over time if exposed to water. It is crucial to avoid over-exposure to water during construction as to avoid damaging or ruining the plywood. Water and plywood do not mix well - if left in a damp or wet environment, plywood will rot and have to be replaced.
  2. Oriented Strand Board (OSB)
    Oriented Strand Board is made by using glue and wax in a hot press to press smaller strands of wood together. It looks much like a collage of various wood chips. Unlike it’s counterpart, OSB lacks the effect of the forces that tend to warp the wood, so it is easier to achieve perfect dimensions.
    The one major disadvantage of Oriented Strand Board is the propensity it has to expand with moisture.  The edges of OSB dramatically expand when wet.  If the moisture remains in the OSB for some time, it may never return to its original dimensions.  The effects of water on Oriented Strand Board are far worse than those on plywood, although in both cases the avoidance of water and moisture exposure should be avoided.
Jun
29
2017

Wire your new construction for the future

wiring new constructionNot too very long ago, the majority of newly constructed homes and buildings were wired with little more than alternating current (AC) electrical power lines, a few phone lines, and a few TV cables. Times have changed, and we’ve come a long way, baby.

In the past, low voltage communication cabling was installed for a wide range of smart home systems.  Of course, new technology still, for the most part, requires connection to the same AC power lines; but several unique and highly specific requirements must also be met to meet the demand for smart homes and new, innovative technology.

Although most home automation enthusiasts install home automation in existing homes, many new construction homes are wired for home automation. A little pre-planning during a new home construction can save you a lot of extra work down the road.

One of the first things to have your electrical contractor do is run neutral wires to all junction boxes. Although most electricians do this as a matter of professional practice, making your preference known ensures you will always have a neutral wire available. Neutral wires are required for most powerline home automation devices.

Next, request deep junction boxes. Deeper junction boxes will give you more room to work, accommodate deeper in-wall devices, and in general make your life a lot easier.

Also, have your electrical contractor install (and wire) extra junctions boxes. If you don’t have a use for them at first, simply cover them with a faceplate. It is a lot easier to install extra junction boxes during the construction phase than it is coming back later and doing it.

Install cable conduits everywhere you even could remotely anticipate a need for wires (of any kind). Cable conduits are separate from electrical conduit and are used to run speaker wire, video cable, network cable, etc. Install conduits in walls even if you don’t anticipate using them right away.

Again, it’s a lot easier to install a piece of the conduit during construction than it is to fish speaker wire through a wall after the house is built.

Wiring Closets

Build a small, centrally located closet for storing patch panels, distribution panels, media servers, etc. Be sure your wiring closet is big enough to accommodate a rack with extra room for moving around.  Make sure you install ample cable conduits in this room because much of your wiring will terminate here.

Speakers

Even if you aren’t installing a whole house audio system initially, you should plan for it in the future and wire every room for in-ceiling or in-wall speakers. Trust us, at some point in the future; you’re going to want to add whole house audio to your home. 

Terminate your conduits into junction boxes, cover with faceplates and forget about them until you need them. Install at least one conduit and junction box at eye level in each room to accommodate a touch panel.

[Source]

May
24
2017

I just bought a lot of land, what’s next?

florida vacant land buildingMost likely, if this is the first vacant lot you’ve purchased, this is the first house you will build. While this can be both an exciting and promising experience, it can also get quite confusing and overwhelming quickly without a proper plan. So, here are just a few of the first steps you’ll take after the purchase of a new lot of land:

Surveying

Using wooden stakes, surveyors stake the corners and the lot lines of the lot and your desired position of the home on the building site. This process is referred to as “staking the lot." Surveying and staking are important functions, as homes have been found in violation of certain regulations or restrictions, and if a surveyor improperly surveys your land, they are responsible for the expenses associated with correcting the mistakes.

If there are existing stakes marking the corners and property lines of a building site, it is recommended that the lot be re-staked anyway as the stakes for the lot could have been moved or torn down before or since you purchased it. A surveyor will know how to locate and correct this issue and prevent what could turn into an extremely costly error.

Clearing and Excavation

Clearing a building site includes clearing trees, brush, rocks, and roots from where the home will sit, and usually an additional 10 feet or more around where the foundation will be - allowing space for heavy equipment needed at the building site.

Utilities Hookup

Your realtor or purchasing agent should have given you the information regarding cost and availability of utilities at the time your lot was purchased. You’ll need to make plans for each utility (phone, cable, water, electricity) to be paid for and installed before building, so that subcontractors can use at least the water and electricity for the building.

Footings

Footings are the base of a structure. They are made up of a mass of concrete that supports the foundation of the house and can be poured into trenches or wooden forms. Footings are probably the most important part of a new home building process. If footings move or settle, so will your home. If they are done improperly and not according to the dimensions of your building plans, the plans will need to be changed to accommodate the footings or be done over.

The locations of footings are checked by building inspectors before being poured to be sure they are deep enough and that they rest on undisturbed earth. This inspection is highly necessary and will help you avoid spending thousands of extra dollars in the future if there is a problem.

Foundations

Foundation material can be concrete block, brick or poured concrete. Stone foundations are no longer used because they aren’t as strong as concrete or brick. Stone is better used for aesthetic purposes - as a veneer like brick.

After the foundation is in and before the concrete is poured, it is wise to have your soil treated for pests or insects - termites in particular.

Rough-in-Plumbing

If your house is being built on a concrete slab (instead of wooden floor joists), once your foundation is in, backfilled, tamped (packed down), and your soil treated, your plumber will install your sewer lines and water pipes that will stay under the concrete. Also, any electrical wiring that goes under the concrete is placed in a conduit and roughed-in.

…..these are the first six basic steps that go into the building of every home. Stay tuned for the next blog which will cover the next steps that go into building your home from day one.

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Latest Blog Posts

Benefits of Building New Construction

Thursday, October 12, 2017

by Nicole Stevens

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Is your home worth remodeling or is it time to list it?

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

To stay or to go? Here are a few pointers to keep in mind when determining whether there’s more value in remodeling your existing home or listing and moving on.

Read more...

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RJ Builders, Inc.

RJ Builders, Inc.
207 North Blvd. W
Leesburg, FL 34748

(352) 787-4600 (phone)
Monday through Friday 9am-5pm EST

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