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Why Winter is the Perfect Time for a Home Remodel.

Winter Remodeling

Winter is the time to cuddle up with a cup of hot coffee, a warm blanket, and the television. Between the cold and the longer nights, most people do not want to face any home remodeling projects. However, winter is the perfect time to have one. There are a number of great reasons why getting those home remodeling projects handled in the winter can be beneficial. 

Find Better Inventory- 

Since fewer people are doing home projects in the winter, the stock for products such as cabinet selections, flooring options, and fixtures is at its highest point. You can find more selections and get better pricing because most manufacturers are holding sales for the winter months to clear out older stock or to introduce new items. 

Warm Weather Fun- 

Completing a remodeling project in the cold bad weather means that this spring and summer when the weather is great, you won’t be stuck dealing with a contractor in your home or spending your time without specific areas of your home available to you. Instead, you will spend that time enjoying the space you created and the weather while your neighbor is waiting for his remodeling job to get started and fighting to get the right fixtures at the hardware store when they are all out of stock. 

Avoid Seasonal Spring Increases-

Most contractors and manufacturers increase prices in the spring before the busy season begins. Everything goes up from wood to countertops. The new inventory is out and last years inventory is gone. 

Contractor Availability-

It’s human nature, to take full advantage of the warmer days by planning and completing our home projects. The sun, the longer days and warm weather just get people going. We get that. However, the is also the time when most contractors are seasonally busy. Spring is the time when we are in full swing and finding time to schedule customers into early spring project completion fills quickly. Consider getting ahead of the game and finish your project during a less busy time of year to be assured that your project is done in time for the hot summer days. 

Financing Availability-

Just like the contractors, the financing companies also have a busy season for those Home Equity loans they offer. Springtime is the busiest with backlogs of paperwork. According to SmartMoney.com ,  homeowners should choose carefully between a Home Equity Loan or a Home Equity Line of credit depending on the project or projects that are intended to be done. Also, rates change often. In the winter, many lending institutions offer both options at a variety of “deals” and you can shop around a bit easier. 

 

Make use of those cold winter months and get a jump on your home remodeling projects before the busy season. With a little planning, building a deck or adding a porch can take place in the winter as well. No, you can not build during a snowstorm, but, there are a lot of days that we can get out and complete a project well ahead of schedule. Also, consider those indoor projects like kitchens, baths, and basements. Getting those completed so that you can enjoy the summer months having friends over to enjoy those things makes sense. Give High Quality Contracting, Inc. a call for your winter remodeling project! 

 

Pump Up with a New Home Gym

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Home Gym Ideas

Gym memberships keep going up in price, and you do not get a lot for the money these days. With crowded gyms, breaking equipment and working around their hours of service, sometimes what you end up doing is paying for something you don’t use. So, why not put that money where you will use it? A Home Gym will not only make your home value increase but will help keep you and your entire family in shape while you stay within the comforts of your home. No traffic, no crowded showers and shower shoes, just a great space and a great work out.

So how do you get started creating a perfect Home Gym?

We have compiled some great ideas and tips for making your extra space into a time saving, money saving, health improvement area.

Determine Your Space:

Determining how much space you’re going to need is key to creating the best possible work out space. What type of equipment do you plan to have: a treadmill, work-out bench, dance bar? Each area you plan to use requires a different amount of space. Your High Quality Contracting Inc agent can help you plan this out. We are experts in using lost space and putting a room’s square footage to the best use.

Air Flow:

Remember, working out bodies sweat. Your home gym needs proper ventilation. If you are using an upstairs space, windows are an option. If you are using a basement area, consider some ceiling fans.

Flooring:

Rubber flooring seems to be the range for home gyms, but that leaves the gym area a little less than appealing. Consider carpeting laid over rubber flooring. Another consideration, if this is a dance/yoga area, installing a heated flooring system will make it warm and cozy.

Lots of Lighting:

Building energy for a workout requires good lighting. Take advantage of natural light if possible with large beautiful windows or skylights. If this is not possible, be sure to install bright, cool white overhead lighting. There are many great products on the market in a variety of designs.

Colors Make a Difference:

Wall colors matter. Consider either painting the walls with bright or even fluorescent paint colors or with bright natural tones. Avoid using dark greys, blacks and deep blues on the walls. The dark colors will reduce your energy levels and make it more difficult to get yourself going during a workout.

Motivational Décor:

Don’t leave the walls empty with no décor. Putting up motivational posters, photos, and framed pieces can help to keep you inspired. Add large beautiful mirrors to the walls. Put some live, large, indoor plants in the corners to help with the air and the atmosphere. All-of-these things help make the space welcoming and motivational. Don’t forget to install either a water dispenser or cooler to the area to stay hydrated.

Equipment Decisions:

Choosing your equipment can be daunting. But, we have tips for that as well. First, consider your space. Do you have enough room for that treadmill or that weight bench? Second, what are your fitness goals? Do you want to build muscle, lose weight, build stamina or tone your body? Different types of equipment can help you achieve different goals. Finally, the budget. Review your budget and look for seasonal sales that are heading your way. Don’t forget the small stuff like Yoga mats, free weights, or exercise bands.

Sound System:

Although a sound system is not required for a good work out, it can sure help with motivation and focus. Decide if you would like a surround sound system installed with good speakers, or if a simple radio will do. Why not opt for the big system and enjoy the music? If you have the system installed, be sure that the installer hides the wires where possible.

We hope these tips help you to create the Home Gym of your dreams. Don’t wait until January to get going! You can get a free estimate by contacting your High Quality Contracting Agent today. Start the year with the gym already set and get yourself back into shape! Stop wasting cash and time at local gyms when you can have it all at home!

Home Theaters

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home theater

Take a Friday Night movie at home to a whole new level with a great theater room remodel. We compiled some awesome ideas for your home theater that will make going to the movies obsolete and give your family and friends years of enjoyment.

Start with the walls-

A good home theater has good walls that are soundproofed to keep the noise in while the rest of the house stays quiet. No one wants to wake the baby while watching the latest action thriller. To do this, a framed space should have proper soundproofing materials insulated into the walls and possibly the ceiling to lock in sound. The market is full of great products right now such as Acoustic panels and Sound Proofing Foam. These products should be installed by a professional. Also, do not forget that outlets and leaks should be insulated as well.

Hit the Ceiling-

No, not literally, but a beautiful theater room can have added zing added to it by updating the ceiling. Consider laying back and listening while the ceiling has amazing home theatre ceiling tiles from Armstrong or fun lighting options that illuminate the area in just the right places to encourage a relaxed feel. Pay attention to the details, such as the trim or decorative beams as you are laid back in your comfy lounge chair.

Floors-

Floors are important. Depending on where the home theater is located this may need soundproofing as well. If you are in a basement, the soundproofing may not be needed but perhaps a heated floor is in order to keep toes cozy during the winter months when you spend more time in the theater. Look for comfy carpeting or nice hardwood that will bring a warm and inviting feel to the space.

The home theater system –

Do not skimp when it comes to the home theater system. Make sure you get high-quality speakers that can produce surround sound. Get them installed professionally to ensure a quality experience. A large screen can add to your better than commercial cinema performance. Wires should be hidden to prevent children or pets from pulling on them. Add a control system that adjusts for lighting, sound and the touch screen controlled movie system.

Furnishings-

Here the sky is the limit. Home theater seating, a commercial grade popcorn maker or even a beverage cooling system can be installed into a bar or a side area for snacks. Some home theaters also have a small eating area for a table and chairs to eat while watching your movies. There is no limit as to the number of ideas we can create for your home theater.

For a new home theater room, contact a High Quality Contracting expert today for a no-cost quote. We specialize in creating a truly unique design for your home and will work with you to assure the best possible result for your space.

Chase Away Winter Blues with these Home Remodeling Tips.

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increased natural lighting in home

Wisconsin’s long cold winter months can sometimes cause homeowners to get the winter blues and increase the symptoms of depression. But have no fear, help is near. Did you know that by making a few remodeling changes to your home you can help with these symptoms?

Since it is Mental Health Month, we thought to share tips for remodeling that will help. It is a scientific fact that increased natural lighting can help with feelings of Depression and Seasonal Affective Disorder. By making some of these changes in your home, you can improve your homes natural light, air flow and a general sense of well being.

Full-length windows

If your home has small or very few windows consider larger windows or more of them to allow light in. Consider full-length windows that brighten a room or a large bay window. You can also add fun items like a window seat or a book nook to create that cozy feel and give you a space to relax in the sun.

Add skylights

Another great way to increase lighting is to add skylights. Skylights can bring in lots of light and improve your homes energy efficiency by allowing the sun to help heat your home. A skylight is like a window in the roof, but its frame is designed and flashed to withstand the rigors of rainfall that a shelter receives. It allows for daylight to fill the home with both warmth and light which in turn reduces your energy costs, the amount is dependant on the amount of sun that your area gets. The more sun, the more warmth, and light you receive.

Screened in porches

Screened in porches are great, but, what about changing that porch to fully enclosed space with large paned windows. This would provide plenty of space to sit and relax in the sun while still staying warm and indoors.

Change the hardware

Changing the hardware, you are using for the lights can also help. If you light switches are attached to poorly lit ceiling lights, opt to change those items out for newer energy efficient lighting systems.

Light bulbs can make a huge difference in the amount of light in a home. User a higher wattage if you are using only 60-watt bulbs. Consider fluorescent or natural exposure bulbs to brighten a dull and darkened room.

Open concept 

Opening up walls for an open concept look is not only a way to improve lighting but airflow and energy efficiency as well. The light can now resonate throughout the home more naturally as well as heat can be distributed efficiently.

Doors

Increase the brightness in your home with French glass doors rather than a solid interior door. You can still have privacy, but the glass allows the illumination to flow.

Don’t forget the front or back doors of your home as well. Install a newer energy efficient door with triple paned glass for security yet the ability to allow light to flow in from the space. Or consider a glass storm door which you can use to let light in during the day while still being able to close and lock the more massive solid door at night or when you are away.

Don’t let the winter months bring you down. There are so many ways to brighten your home. The best way to handle any home remodeling project is by contacting a High Quality Contracting, Inc design expert to help you devise a custom plan that fits your home and your budget.

Window and Door Drafts Affect Energy Efficiency

 

Frigid weather in Wisconsin is hard enough without having a draft around a window or a door that causes heat to escape. Drafts mean more heating expenses, and that can put a chill on your finances if you’re not careful. Improving energy efficiency is a must. The best option to improve this situation is to replace leaking windows and doors with energy-efficient products. According to the Department of Energy, heating costs are the most significant expense for homeowners and can be greatly reduced with proper insulation and quality windows and doors.

Not only that, but, Remodeling Magazine’s Cost vs. Value Report for 2017 claims an average ROI for replacement windows and doors is between 70-80% upon resale. There are some factors to consider when choosing new windows or doors such as frame type, glazing type, color, and energy performance rating.

 

What is The Energy Performance Rating?

 

The Energy Performance Rating is a regulated by the National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC) who tests, rates, certifies and labels windows and doors based on their performance rating. Ratings for such things as the U-Factor are labeled and help to inform purchasers how energy efficient a product is. To learn more about the Energy Performance Rating, you can visit https://energy.gov/energysaver/windows-doors-and-skylights/energy-performance-ratings-windows-doors-and-skylights.

 

 

What types of windows are energy efficient?

 

Most traditional styles of a window are now energy efficient including awning, hopper, sliding, fixed, double-hung, and casement.  Each type must be installed appropriately and air sealed to prevent leakage and to ensure energy efficiency. How the window is installed depends on several factors such as the type of window, the construction type of the house ( brick, stone, wood, etc.), the exterior cladding, and any weather-restrictive barrier.

 

High Quality Contracting Inc. works with several vendors including custom window options so we can replace any window type that you may need.

 

What about storm windows? Will that help my bottom line?

 

Not really, unless your window is broken, missing glass or has a sever leak problem, a storm window is not made to reduce energy loss. Seeing significant annual savings on your energy bill is highly unlikely.

 

What types of doors are energy efficient?

 

Just as with windows, doors also receive an Energy Efficiency Rating that can help you choose the right product. Styles also vary widely and can be matched with the exterior design of your home to create a fabulous focal point.

 

If you are looking for expert advice on what type of windows or doors would be best for your home, contact us today to schedule a consultation.

 

      

 

Kitchen Remodeling Pays Off in 2018 with High ROI

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2018 kitchen remodeling ROI

The hub of every home is the kitchen. This is where the “magic” really happens with great lasagnas, roasts, taco Tuesdays, and family conversations. Investing in the central area of the home can be beneficial to your bottom line when considering resale as well as long-term use.
Kitchen remodeling in 2018 offers a range of excellent options to invest in that will bring a smile to everyone’s face.

Remodeling Magazine, a national magazine for remodeling experts, featured their 2017 Cost to Value Report for most remodeling projects and once again kitchen remodels showing a high ROI if 82% depending on the changes made, making it a great investment for your tax dollars this season.

Considering the significant return on investment along with the comforts it will bring, why wouldn’t you want to upgrade and improve your current kitchen? We have compiled a few exciting trends for the 2018 year to share with you for your home kitchen project.

kitchen cabinetsStorage Solution Cabinetry –

Cabinet manufacturers are changing the way they make cabinets look and function by including hydraulic, easy to close doors that close and fold up with a touch of a button. They also have engineered some pretty remarkable features into their cabinets including UBS sockets and charging stations, hidden dishwasher in a drawer, appliance garages, corner cabinets with a lazy Susan installed, tray storage cabinets, and warming drawers. The variety seems almost endless from the manufacturers and now is the time to try them out.

 

Two-Tone Cabinets-

For visual interest and contrast in your kitchen, you may want to contemplate two-toned kitchen cabinets. By using the two-tones cabinets, designers can create focal points on an island, create a cozy atmosphere with lower cabinets being darker, and contrast finishes as well as colors with stainless steel appliances.

 

Darker Floors-

Darker colored floors are in this year with lighter walls and cabinets. Products such as deep warm wood tones, slate flooring, dark tiles with accents and dark laminates are available.  Dark floors tend to work better in larger homes and homes with larger rooms and open floor plans. Although very beautiful, before jumping on the dark wood, we would not suggest there use in dwellings active with large dogs as they do show scratches more than the lighter shades. 

 

Samsung's Family Hub Smart Kitchens-

Technology has grown in every aspect of our world, and that includes the kitchen. New smart kitchens offer integrated technology that automates or makes life more manageable from faucets to appliances and lighting. The new products can be added to a new home as well as remodeling an older home.

  • Motion Sense-equipped kitchen faucets
  • Refrigerators that alert you when your grocery items are running low
  • Programmable coffee makers
  • Lights that can be controlled by your smartphone
  • A refrigerator that touts an HD touchscreen that can be used to search the internet, play music or shop for groceries (Samsung’s Family Hub ($3,300 approx. as of 2017).

 

Pet-Friendly Kitchen Spaces-

Keeping our pets’ safe as well as happy is always a concern, and in the kitchen, it can be a challenge. 2018 boasts some amazing kitchen renovations that will ensure the whole family is satisfied. where your pet’s bowls and food can be stored with ease and slid safely away un

The Feeding Station- Forget the random bowls forever being kicked over and making the kitchen an eyesore, introduced is the built-in feeding station until the next meal time.

  • Built-in Pet Beds – Pet beds can now be built into the underside of a kitchen island or side cabinet space to keep Fido’s bed tucked safely away.
  • Hidden Gate- If you are trying to keep your best friend safely away from the stove a kitchen gate is a perfect solution. Installing the gate so that it tucks easily away by sliding it into its place makes this a gate we can get behind.

2018 Bathroom Remodeling Trends

bathroom remodeling

 

Welcome to the latest and greatest bathroom remodeling trends for 2018 with a home bathroom remodel. Bathroom remodels historically are an excellent home investment with a high ROI. HGTV boasts in a 2017 article that the ROI on a bathroom can bring as much as 100% at resale. So, what do you have to lose?

Enjoy the great comforts of a beautiful and functional bathroom with some of the hottest bathroom trends for 2018!

Spa Showers-

Let it rain! Hand showers, body sprayers, and rain showerheads bring the latest in shower fixtures to your home. In an overall bathroom floor plan, increasing the square footage and adding a tiled shower which features a bench and nooks for comfort. The raining showerhead and other spa features can make each morning a bathroom dream to start your day off on the right foot. Image the elegance and simplicity of the space with the function of the rainforest. Now that’s living!

Individual Vanities-

Sharing is caring, except when it comes to bathroom space. Then it is each man/woman on their own. We all want our private areas to get ready, and individual vanities with sinks are the perfect way to share a master bath yet still keep your personal space. Avoid cluttering the countertops with plenty of storage for both of you. Outlets can be installed inside of drawers to keep the top clean and bright as well. There is a wide range of excellent vanities available that allow for individualized spaces.

heated flooringHeated Flooring-

Bare feet on a cold bathroom floor is never fun, so why not heat things up with heated flooring. There are a variety of products out now that range in price and features including anti-fungal properties. Electric in-floor heating mats installed under the tile are relatively inexpensive to run compared to forced air over the long run. There are two types of radiant floor heating systems including hydronic systems and electric radiant floors. Both work well under most conditions.

Tucked-Away Toilets-

Hot in 2018 is the tucked-away toilet. This is mainly placing the toilet behind a fogged glass, decorative screen, or half wall to allow for extra privacy. You do not need a lot of room to make your commode more private as even the smallest space can provide the required room. Also, do not worry that this will make your room seem claustrophobic as there are ways to create the feel without significant barriers.

Furniture Looking Cabinets-

Basic cabinetry has taken a new twist with pieces that contain sculpted legs, paneling and other unique features that create a furniture look rather than the traditional bathroom vanity. These pieces come in a variety of styles from very sophisticated to match an elegant theme to cute country themes.

Subtle Colors-

Invoke a feel of relaxation with neutral colors this season. Gone are the days of glaring or dark colors. Subtle colors do not mean boring by any means. Creating a fresh feel with tile arrangements, recycled glass, or metallic mosaics to spice it up.

vessel sinkVessel Sinks-

Vessel sinks are made from an array of materials such as glass, marble, tile and cast iron. They also are styled in a variety of shapes such as round, leaf, square, and more. The collection seems endless making the space a focal point of the room. Vessel sinks work exceptionally well with furniture looking cabinetry.

 

To get an estimate on your bathroom project for 2018, contact us here. 

 

 

Southeastern Wisconsin New Construction at Its Finest

In Southeastern Wisconsin, the top New Home Construction company is High Quality Contracting, Inc. 

We are licensed and insured with decades of experience behind us, you are guaranteed the best possible experience from planning to construction, our team of experts will work diligently to provide the best possible experience. 

Here are a few examples of recent projects from High Quality Contracting Inc. 

You will find everything from a standard home builds to a more elaborate build constructed deep in the country. 

Many of our customers return over and over again and recommend their friends because we go over and above to make sure this is the best possible experience. 

Our team of craftsmen possess creative and innovative ideas to help build the best possible home, garage, addition, or office space possible. 

If you are looking to build for the first time or the last, we are the team for you. 

Give us a call today at High Quality Contracting, Inc to schedule a consultation and hear what great ideas we have to help you along the way. 

Remember, High Quality Contracting Inc, Is Craftsmanship That You Can Trust!

Declutter Your Kitchen with a Charging Station

charging stations for the kitchen

A remodeled kitchen can be one of the best projects for your home and give you the highest in ROI. With Smartphones, computers, and tablets all being a large part of any homeowners’ daily routine, it would make sense to add a charging station to the hub of your home, the kitchen. 

Today’s modern cabinetry allows for contractors such as High Quality Contracting to add a level of convenience to your kitchen that we were not able to do in the past. Along with that, new outlets constructed to effectively power a USB are also available.  

Here are a few great decluttering power station ideas for your future kitchen project: 

  1. Tip-Out Drawers
    Depending on the configuration of your cabinets, you may have a space for a small tip-out drawer when a full depth drawer is not an option. This is often the case in front of a sink or built-in range. The are is usually small and can be used easily for this option, reducing the amount of space wasted. 
  2. USB Wall Outlet 
    If you’d rather add USB charging ports to your outlets than buy USB power adapters, the best option is to install them directly into the outlets in the kitchen. You will need to be aware of safety codes regarding outlets, however, there are many great options for USB Wall Outlets now that are functional, good looking and meet industry standards. 
  3. Full Depth Charging Drawers
    Placing a charging station inside a full depth drawer works well because the most devices that need to be charged (tablets, phones, laptops) are typically flat. Laying them inside a drawer means you don’t have to worry about them falling or getting anything spilled on them.  This is ideal to keep things out of sight as well as safe. 
  4. Under-Cabinet Outlets
    Charging holders combined with the under-cabinet outlets are semi-revolutionary and very helpful. You can install a charging holder for your iPad that will not only hold the iPad while you scan your list of Pinterest recipes but, you can easily charge the unit safely at the same time. 
  5. Shallow Cabinets
    Like the tip-out drawer, a shallow cabinet can be a great way to use a thin space left at the end of a larger cabinet. A simple cabinet with doors is generally a less expensive solution than drawers and offers plenty of functionality. Many times there is a small space that can be used for a small cabinet, and inserting the wiring for a charging station there will keep everything up out of the way and allow room where you need it most. 

These ideas are great for modern families on the go. If you can think of any other great ideas for a home charging station in your kitchen, please be sure to write us a note by contacting us on our Contact Form

Move Over Man Cave, Welcome the She Shed

she sheds

She Sheds are the latest in construction projects, that are bringing about a buzz among homeowners.

The man of the house has longed for the Man Cave for many years. You know the place where you and your buddies go to watch the games, have a few drinks and kick back without the interruption of the family.  Men have pretty well mastered the idea turning dens, garages, and basements into the ultimate male hideaways that include billiard areas, bars, recliners, work out areas, and the ever favored Theater Screen TV. 

Women across the country have decided it is now time for the men to move over and create a She Shed for their personal retreats. 

These areas started out as a simple shed turned into a place to read or work on hobbies and have now become objects of great craftsmanship and elegant beauty.  

She Sheds now have items such as:

  • Heated Units
  • Air Conditioning
  • Fully Carpeted, Wood Floors or Tile
  • Wide Open Windows and Secure Doors
  • Built-in Beds, Sofas, and Storage
  • Hobby Areas
  • Charming Patios
  • Electrical Outlets including USB Ports
  • Gardens and Green Roofing
  • Moats ( Yes some have moats around them with fish swimming) 
  • Lofts 

This is not an all-inclusive list and is limited only by our imaginations. 

Why get a She Shed?   

Just like a man, a woman would like a place to call her own and sit in private now and then. The stress from family, work, and responsibilities can drift away for a few hours each week relaxing in a spot all to herself. 

High Quality Contracting, Inc can help you design an amazing She Shed with all the bells and whistles attached. Our craftsmen are skilled and have a multitude of great ideas to make even a small space into the best possible getaway for her.