cracked foundation

Expensive Home Repairs & How to Avoid Them (Part 1)

Your home is likely your most expensive investment, so you should be doing everything in your power to protect it. Home repairs can range from a few hundred dollars to several thousand (or more).

The good news is that there are many steps you can take to prevent some of these home repairs. Today we begin a two-part series on expensive home repairs and how to avoid them; you may even be inspired to begin shielding your own home from these common problems with a few simple steps. Continue reading

window condensation

Moisture on your Windows?

With strong summer storms rolling through the central PA area, large temperature swings can follow. Once the outdoor temperature drops and the indoor temperature in your home stays high, you may start to notice moisture on your windows.

Fortunately, this doesn’t always mean something is wrong. When it comes to window condensation, you’ll want to look at several different variables that could be contributing to your condensation issue. Sometimes condensation can even be a good sign, proving that your windows are performing very effectively.

Use the helpful guide below to determine whether your window condensation indicates a problem. Continue reading

small block home on grass

Modular Home Drawbacks

With the rising cost of home ownership, everyone is exploring ways to save on their new home. You hear a lot about the tiny home trend these days, although their numbers are relatively few and places to put them are limited. A much more commonly considered option is the modular, or prefabricated, home. Are modular homes a good way to get the most for your money on housing? Let’s take a look at a few things you should consider.

What is a modular home?

A modular or prefab home is partially built in a factory. The home arrives in modules, or panels, at your location, and is assembled at the site. Because of this, modular homes are typically built fairly quickly. They are offered in a range of designs and styles to suit buyer tastes. Continue reading

Interior Wall Cladding FAQ

wall claddingOne of today’s more popular interior design trends is decorating the home with wooden wall cladding. Turn on any reality TV home show like Fixer Upper and you’ll most likely find someone doing a renovation with shiplap (although in Fixer Upper’s case it sometimes is another type of wall cladding that’s being incorrectly identified).

This trend has started a new wave of recycling and created an interest in a type of home makeover that is often simple enough to perform as a do-it-yourself project.

For those of you who may be considering adding this feature to a room in your own home, we put together a FAQ to help you learn more about working with shiplap and other wooden wall cladding. Continue reading

walk-in shower with seat

Showers or Bathtubs? Which is Perfect for YOU?

A recent trend in bathroom remodeling is doing away with shower/bathtub combinations. But what should replace them? If space and budget is flexible enough for both, putting in a standalone tub and separate walk-in shower makes great sense. If either your budget or space are limited, then you face a tough decision. Will it be a shower, a tub or another shower/tub combo?

Let us help make this decision a little easier by offering a few pros and cons for each. Continue reading

a remodeled kitchen

How to Renovate Your Kitchen

That exciting time in homeownership has finally come! You’ve sat down and made all the necessary considerations for your kitchen renovation and it’s time to get down to business. Suddenly, uncertainty creeps in. You’re not really sure where to start.

That’s where Norman Graham Builders can help!

If you’re taking that thrilling step into remodeling your kitchen, you’ll want to read this simple guide to keep you focused and moving through the process. Continue reading

a remodeled bathroom with walk-in shower

Magic Measurements For Your Next Bathroom

Have you ever thought about why everything in your home or apartment is at just the right height? Here’s why:  the national building and design industry puts forth recommended guidelines that homebuilders like Norman Graham Builders use when building a custom home in Lancaster County.

Today we’d like to share some of these common measurements for a bathroom addition, remodel or renovation. These numbers can be customized to suit the preference of the homeowner, but they’ll give you a starting point for reference, whether you’re performing the work yourself or hiring a professional.

Bathroom Measurements Continue reading

Are You Committing A Common DIY Blunder?

tile repairDo-it-yourself projects are great for keeping home ownership costs down. That is, as long as you don’t end up making a mistake and cost yourself more than having an expert come in and do the job for you.

While there certainly are some do-it-yourself renovation headaches, there are also a large number of projects that homeowners should be able to tackle themselves. The experts at Norman Graham Builders want to help you handy homeowners by offering advice on avoiding common do-it-yourself mistakes people make on home projects.

Common DIY Mistake #1 – Failing to prepare adequately

We haven’t yet been able to find someone who has been over-prepared for a home improvement project. There’s a lot that can go into properly preparing for the task at hand, and it all depends on what project you’re trying to tackle. Some common steps you’ll want to check off before diving into a DIY project include: Continue reading

Large custom home exterior

Sizing Your New Home

Whether you’re shopping for a new home or planning a new custom built home, you’ll likely ask yourself at some point: How big a home should we buy? This question’s answer depends on your family’s current needs, your plans for the future, budget constraints, and more.

Here at Norman Graham Builders, we want to help you answer this common question by offering some helpful guidelines. Choosing the right sized home is one of the most important things you can do to ensure a positive home ownership experience.

Too big and you run into issues like:

  • Higher costs – We’re not just talking about the cost of the home itself, but also energy costs to heat or cool space that you don’t use, higher taxes, and increased cost of insurance. And those extra rooms will need to be furnished as well!
  • Time suck – With all that extra space, you’ll be spending more of your time cleaning and maintaining parts of your home that might not see much traffic.

Continue reading

an open custom kitchen

5 Things to Consider Before a Kitchen Renovation

You’ve made the decision: it’s finally come time to renovate that old, worn-out kitchen your family has made do with over the years. You know it will take a bit of investment, and you want to make sure it is done correctly so you can enjoy your new space for years to come.

Norman Graham Builders is here to help!  We’ve put together a list of five things to consider when planning a kitchen remodel. Following this guide will help you avoid problems and ensure that your dream kitchen becomes a reality. Continue reading