Effective Ways to Find an Architect for Your Next Project

If you are beginning a remodel project or looking at building a home or office space, finding a professional and efficient architect is vital. Each one is different and may have different specialties, so it’s important to know what to look for during your search. Here a few tips to help you find the right architect for your next remodel, home, or business. 

Word-of-Mouth Referrals

Referrals are one of the best ways to find an architect for the construction of your home or remodel. Generally, if someone is pleased with the results they received, they will be happy to refer you to the source. However, it is still a good idea to research the firm and even interview someone who will be working on your project to see if they are a good fit. Here a few things you may consider asking in your interview:

  • Can you show me some examples of other projects you’ve done in the past?
  • How much time do I need to commit to this project?
  • Can you show me anything during the design process?

Also, the American Institue of Architects actually recommends talking to a few different firms to determine whether or not they match your same aesthetics. 

Understanding the Industry

There are some essential differences between architects and architectural designers. Typically, an architect is licensed by the state to design or advise on buildings for construction. Referrals can also come from other architects. This is an excellent approach to finding one that will fit your needs. They know the industry and can help point you in the right direction. If you need specific permits or requisite architectural services, firms like architect consultation new york ny are essential resources. 

Ensure Your Project

A professional architect will help ensure the progress of your project. It is their responsibility to oversee the construction of your home or remodel and verify it meets specifications and building codes. If you’ve done your research, you can rest assured it will be done right.

Simple Steps to Make a Home Wheelchair Accessible

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, nearly 40 million Americans are reported as having a disability in 2015. Four million of those people rely on a wheelchair or other mobility device. With the growing population of wheelchair users, the need for handicap-accessible homes has grown as well. Building a new home is a great choice but is not always an option. Here are a few changes that can be made to a home to make it ready and operative for a person using a wheelchair.

Entryway

Ensuring a person can get into, and around, a home easily is the first step to arranging it to be accessible. Construct a ramp over any entry stairs to allow a wheelchair to pass over smoothly. If a home has a second floor or is raised above the ground, having a cargo lift installed will improve usability drastically.

Bathroom

Install grab bars around toilets and showers. Make sure at least three contact bars are available around the toilet for maximum safety. If possible, have a tub converted to a walk-in shower large enough for a person’s wheelchair to be maneuvered in and out when needed.

Kitchen

Move essential items to the lower cupboards for storage and only use upper cupboards if needed. Consider the height of appliances carefully and how to position them to be used more effectively. Pull-out drawers with simple appliances ready to use are a simple change that can make an entire kitchen more usable. Have outlets installed inside or between cabinets. The lower height will allow better access than those at the back of the counters.

Preparing a home for use by a wheelchair user can seem like a daunting task. Arranging furniture to be open and making sure halls and walkways are clear of hazards are simple things that can be done to make a home more welcoming to a person in a wheelchair. Look at the accessibility standards set up by the ADA for more suggestions to make a home ready and welcoming for a wheelchair user.

What Type of Oven Is Right for You?

In many ways, oven ranges are the centerpiece of our kitchens; we use them nearly every day to cook a variety of different meals. As a result, it’s important to choose an oven that will fit your needs. It can be hard to determine which kind of oven will work best for you, however, so here are some facts to get you started.

Cooking Methods

You can purchase conventional, convection, steam or microwave ovens. Convection ovens are the most popular, using a fan to push the hot air around; this cooks food evenly and quickly.

Gas Ovens

The ovens in gas ranges are notorious for cooking food unevenly, making them less than ideal for an avid baker, but many homeowners prefer the gas stovetop. It heats and cools quickly, works even without power and will save you money on utilities. Before you set up your oven installation in Washington, D.C., however, you’ll have to make sure your home has a gas hookup. If not, you can spend the extra money to add one or default to an electric oven.

Electric Ovens

They cook food evenly, making them a popular choice and a good option if you use the oven a lot. For the stovetop, you can choose an electric coil, induction or glass-ceramic top; each of these has different pros and cons, but most do not heat or cool as quickly as gas will and using the range is impossible if you lose power.

Dual-Fuel Ovens

These ovens pair a gas stovetop with an electric oven, marrying the strengths of both power sources. The stovetop cooks quickly and the temperature is easily controllable while the oven cooks food evenly. While you can’t bake without power, you can certainly use the stovetop. As a result, however, dual-fuel ovens cost more than gas or electric ovens.

Each type of oven has strengths and weaknesses; your choice depends on what your home is set up for, your budget and your cooking preferences. Once installed, the right oven is a tool that can be a joy to use, forming the heart of your home.

Three Simple Ways to Freshen Up Your Home

Many homeowners find that their home becomes boring to them over time. The colors begin to feel drab and the overall look might start to feel dated. Fortunately, there are three ways that you can easily freshen up your house so that it once again feels exciting and modern.

A New Coat of Paint

A fresh coat of paint is one of the most cost-effective ways to change your home’s interior. Remodeling can be expensive and takes many months to complete, but painting has very little cost involved and only takes a few days. You can also hire someone like the professional painters nyc has to offer to make the job even easier. Choose trending colors for a modern touch.

Use Furniture to Add Excitement

You can spice up any room in your house by simply adding a new piece of furniture. Switch out your old and worn sofa for something bright and new. It will change the look and feel of the entire space. The same can be achieved with a new bed in your bedroom, a buffet for the dining room, or table in the kitchen.

Update the Accessories

If you follow the decorating trends, you will notice that the accessories change much quicker than the furniture or other elements of home decor. You can give your home a completely different feel by switching out the accessories for something new. For example, you can replace items with a primitive look for more traditional pieces. The result is a room that once shouted rustic country turning into a more classic design.

Once you paint the walls, add a few new pieces of furniture, and update the accessories, you will fall in love with your home all over again. It will have a bright, fresh feeling that will make you feel good every time you enter the house. Best of all, it is easy to accomplish with just a little bit of time and hardly any expense.