Your Building Blog for the Rochester Area

Insulation. Our Ancestors Were Creative

Posted by John Graziose on Wed, May 9, 2012 @ 13:05 PM

Custom home builder Gerber Homes insulation 144x150It’s amazing what you can get for the price of a cup of coffee.

Recently, I asked a home inspector to give me a history lesson about insulation.  I know what Gerber Homes of Rochester New York uses in their new custom built homes.  But, before Owen-Corning came out with the “pink stuff”, what kept out the cold?

Sometimes, you find out more than you really need to know.  I’ll start with the less gross stuff.

Newspaper. Chances are, many of the older homes in your neighborhood have newspaper between the walls.  Especially, if the home owners were “DIY-ers”.  Wadding up old newspaper was a favorite do-it-yourself trick.  And, it made sense.  Newspaper that didn’t line the parakeet cage, went in the walls.  Newspaper was cheap, and everywhere.  And, it made a pretty good barrier against the cold.

The down side is that over time, newspaper tends to fall apart and crumble.  It packs down and creates an open air space where cold loves to hang out. (Read higher heating bills). In time, it’s just as economical to stuff dollar bills in there.

I found out about newspaper years ago when my folks remodeled THE bathroom.  (Yes, we only had one.)  The house was build just after WWII by a discharged Army Major who forgot to cancel his newspaper subscription.  Stacks of newspapers talking about the troops in Europe were wadded up and stuffed in the walls.  I wish now I’d saved those papers.  But even as a little kid I asked “How come he only stuffed newspapers at the bottom?” No wonder that bathroom was always so cold.

Straw, Wool, and Horsehair. Farm homes had lots, so why not insulate the walls with the stuff?  Perfect logic right?  Hey, lots of things work for a while, but about the time a homeless field mouse family moves in, suddenly things get… Squeaky.

All this to say, isn’t there a better solution? Insulation blocks the transfer of heat or cold. This is pretty important when you live in Rochester NY. You don’t want winter winds coming in, and furnace heat going out.  Same in summer.  Let’s keep the air conditioning confined to the inside of the house.  But I didn’t realize insulation also creates a sound barrier.  You like your neighbors better if you don’t have to hear them in the shower.

I’ve seen the insulation Gerber Homes puts in their new homes.  Insulation that is made to stay thick and tight between walls for generations. But I always wondered why the insulation was pink.  Back in 1938, an Owens-Corning employee came up with the pink color for their fiber-glass product.  The stuff gained popularity in the 1970′s when the Pink Panther movies came out.  Owen-Corning grabbed the Panther and ran.

Whether you are looking to build a new home or add an addition to an existing home, see what Gerber Homes Rochester NY has to offer.  They have new In-Law floor plans you won’t want to miss.  With the cost of assisted living, an In-Law home or addition makes a lot of sense.  Click here to see In-Law floor plans.

If you would like to see a Gerber Homes model home, there are many around.  Mike in Victor NY, Leanne in Ontario NY, Sharon in Canandaigua NY and Lisa in Webster NY, would love to show you what Gerber Homes of Rochester NY has to offer.  Give them a call today!

Topics: Homes for sale Rochester NY, Homes for sale Ontario NY, homes for sale Victor NY, homes for sale Webster NY, In-Law floor plans Rochester NY, Insulation Rochester NY, insultion options Rochester NY, model homes for sale Canandaigua NY

New Home Options: Quartz Countertops

Posted by John Graziose on Wed, Apr 25, 2012 @ 13:04 PM

Model homes for sale Webster NYQuartz kitchen countertops, it’s all the rage, and with good reason.

Since I began house-hunting in the Spring, there have been a few things on my “Wish List.” And a few on my “Are Ya Kiddin’ Me?” List.

We’ve looked at some truly scary existing homes.  The one that comes to mind is the Ranch with the three huge dobermans. Their kennels took up the Living Room.  They had to. The pool table and cigar humidor were blocking the dining room and master bedroom.  I guess the homeowners were running late for the Open House, otherwise I’m sure the dead socks sitting on the bathroom sick would have been moved, right?  (It’s good to give people the benefit of the doubt, even if it’s way, way, out there…)

Most disturbing was the questionable and unidentifiable smell in the basement.  That one still haunts my dreams.

That was the last straw.  We decided to see what new home builders in the Rochester NY area had to offer.  That’s when we ran into Gerber Homes. It’s become one of those times you can look back and say “I made the right decision for a change.” I guess we’re not alone, look at what others are saying about Gerber Homes of Rochester NY.

So, with our “Are Ya Kiddin’ Me?” list a think of the past, I turned to my “Wish List.” Granite was one of the top 2 on the list.new homes Rochester NY

I fell in love with Granite.  I loved the colors, natural stone texture, and durability.  However, what I didn’t understand, was the upkeep.  We’ll keep that discussion for another time.

So here I was, gently caressing the Webster NY model home’s countertop, repeating “Ah, Granite…Ah, Granite…” over and over.  Lisa, the Gerber Homes’ sales rep caught me.  “Ah, actually, it’s Quartz.”

Quartz? It looks just like granite to me!  Here’s what HGTV has to say: “The new engineered material (Quartz)…mixes approximately 95 percent ground natural quartz with 5 percent polymer resins. The result is a super-hard, low-maintenance, natural stone-look countertop available in a dazzling array of colors.”

Quartz is practically indestructible.  It resists stains, and isn’t porous like other stone surfaces.  It can be cleaned with soap and water and still be about 99.9 percent bacteria free.

However, you really need to know how to install quartz, something Gerber Homes of Rochester NY does all the time.

New home builders Rochester NY 1These beautiful quartz countertops are just one of many upgrades in the Webster NY model home. And they look stunning with the Cherry Cabinets. Drop by and take a look through the model. Lisa West is an expert on all these things.  Give her a call at: (585) 329-1922 today!

Topics: model homes for sale Canandaigua NY, New Home Builders Rochester NY, new homes for sale Victor NY, Quartz countertops Webster NY, Additions Rochester NY, kitchens Ontario NY, model homes Ontario NY, New Homes Webster NY, quartz countertops Rochester NY, remoldeling Rochester NY

Flooring Options and Green Shag Carpeting

Posted by John Graziose on Mon, Apr 16, 2012 @ 13:04 PM

new homes for sale Rochester NYWhen considering flooring choices, new home owners have a choice of Hardwood, Engineered Wood, or traditional Carpeting.

But before we look at each option, we need a history lesson.  100 years ago, everyone had hardwood floors.  Many homes built in the 1800′s still have their original hardwood floors, and they look great.  Depending on the home’s use, the hard wood may look at little distressed, but it’s good to go for another 100 years.  A little sanding, a little TLC, and you have a brand-new floor.

But everything changed in the 1970′s.  OK, granted, the 1970′s were a creative decade, but honestly, Shag Carpeting?  What were we thinking?  It only got worse when we insisted this flooring disaster be avocado green or burnt orange.

Perhaps home owners thought the shag carpeting would look good with the Bean Bag Chairs. Or the gold speckled white Formica in the kitchen.  Shag carpeting and bell bottoms were not our finest hour.

During the 1970′s we added wood to paneling to everything.  Not the floor mind you, no, we paneled the walls.  Even our Station Wagons.

I like to think we’ve come full circle.  We know there’s a place for carpeting, and a place for wood.  And, we use both in a practical, yet beautiful way.

New home builders like Gerber Homes of Rochester NY think how a room will be used.  Gerber Homes is a family company. They understand we spill things in the kitchen.  That we want plush carpeting when we step out of bed each morning.

For instance, Gerber Homes’ Webster NY model home. There is Engineered hardwood in the Kitchen, Dining Room and Morning Room. Also in the hallways downstairs.  These are high-spill areas.  The new home owner can easily take care of the spill and get on with life.

I learned something about Engineered wood floors.  You can have the beauty of mahogany, cherry, and other expensive woods, for a fraction of the cost.  These floors last years with very little care.  Run a duster over them, and you’re good to go.

The best way to see different floor options is to stop by Gerber Homes’ Webster model home.  Lisa West is an expert on flooring.  You’ll see different floor samples, and then see how an entire floor looks in mahogany.  It’s really quite impressive.new homes builder Rochester NY

While you’re there, ask Lisa about the 13 new Colonial floor plans Gerber Homes has just added to their portfolio!  As always, Gerber Homes will tailor make your home to fit your needs.  Contact Lisa today either by email or phone:  (585) 329-1922.  Give her a call today!

Topics: Floor Plans Rochester NY, Model homes for sale Rochester NY, model homes for sale Canandaigua NY, Engineered Flooring Rochester NY, Hardwood flooring Rochester NY, Hardwood flooring Webster NY

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