Do-It-Yourself Projects

  • Spring Into Spring Cleaning

    3/9/2012 5:55 PM

    They say March comes in like a lion and out like a lamb. This month, why not set a goal to have your home cleaned up and ready to welcome spring?

  • Economical Home Improvement Projects

    4/13/2011 12:00 AM

      With the state of our economy, homeowners today are more interested than ever in easy, budget-conscious ways to add value to their home. Christine Romans, a veteran CNN money correspondent, says that at the peak of the remodeling frenzy in 2005 a homeowner could recoup 80% of the cost of a state-of-the-art kitchen. But today the value a homeowner can get from a big renovation project is falling fast. So homeowners should be smart about which improvements to invest in. Don Zeman, experienced home contractor and host of the home improvement radio show, Homefront, says there are key home improvement projects that can make life in a current home more enjoyable in the short term and pay big dividends for homeowners when the time comes to sell the home. Projects that Don recommends include: Replace old, leaky windows with energy efficient vinyl replacement windows. Not only will new windows make the whole house look better, but Energy Star-compliant windows help save on energy bills all year long. Trim out exterior windows and doors. If there is old, rotting wood around windows (or no trim at all), a good choice is low maintenance all-weather PVC millwork, which resists insects, rot and termites. Bump out to a bay window or bow window. Along with adding extra living space, bay and bow windows add instant visual interior and exterior appeal to homes. People value the extended space that can add room for a window seat, highlight a Christmas tree or simply bring more light into the home.  

  • Entry Door – Repair or Replace?

    1/27/2011 12:00 AM

    The entry door to your home is a focal point for the front of your house. Unfortunately, front doors see a lot of wear and tear from heavy use, sun, rain and temperature changes. An old entry door can send your energy bills skyrocketing. In climate regions like Maryland, Virginia & Washington DC, your front door needs to help ward off  cold winter conditions  If just one door to your home is letting in a draft, you’re paying much more than you should in order to heat or cool your entire house. Even a fraction of an inch can create a costly (not to mention uncomfortable) draft as air seeps in and escapes out around all sides of the door—not just along the bottom. Should you try to repair your entry door or replace it? Older doors are often made of wood. Over time, the elements will cause it to eventually crack, warp and peel. You could try repainting, caulking or other means of repair, but it’s not the most cost-effective solution, even in the short term.  An energy efficient door will make your home more comfortable. Exterior doors on the market today use the latest technology to help insulate your home, keep the elements out, and come in a variety of materials, colors and decorative options. And most doors are sold pre-hung, with the door already hung in the frame, a tight threshold and weather stripping. Everything is designed to work together to create a very energy efficient solution. A new entry door is the easiest, most cost-effective way to dramatically increase your Maryland, DC, or Northern Virginia home’s curb appeal without going through the hassle and expense of major renovations.  

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