Green Remodeling Trends in 2020

Green Trends focus on indoor air quality

Making Homes Healthier

Green building has been a hot topic in the remodeling and design industry for quite a while, especially in older homes. More recently, making homes healthier is just as important as sustainability in making green choices.  Older homes are typically inefficient and provide unhealthy indoor air. The basics of building science and designing for the environment are necessary to consider and the knowledge is there in making homes healthier.  As a Green Certified Professional remodeler, Steve Shinn and the team make sure sustainability, performance, and design come together.

“We need to look at the home as a system and not just a bunch of little parts,” Shinn says. Homework Remodels help homeowners figure out which enhancements promote healthy indoor environments – without breaking their budgets.  Below are some things to consider when planning for your next remodel and creating a healthy home.

First, test for potential issues

A healthy indoor environment free from VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds), formaldehyde, mold, and other pollutants not only makes your home more enjoyable to be in, but it can also help prevent asthma or other respiratory illnesses.

Make sure your home is not harboring mold, radon gas, carbon monoxide.  There you can test with kits available to consumers.

Be green in your home improvement practices

One of the best ways to ensure good indoor air quality is to think ‘green’ when taking care of your home.  Using green cleaning supplies, minimizing the use of sealants and purchasing furniture with low risk of off-gassing can help you keep the air you breathe healthy.  Choosing environmentally sound green flooring and countertop materials will help you manage air quality as well.

Deconstruct instead of demolishing

When remodeling your home, think strategically about what to deconstruct and what items to keep.  Demolition has an immense impact on the environment due to material waste.  It also can save you money when you find materials within your own home to reuse in new ways.  Light fixtures, molding, cabinets and even doors can be repurposed.

Refresh instead of replacing

Repurposing items and materials are still an ongoing trend. Saving natural resources and reducing the emissions from the manufacturing and transportation of these materials saves the environment.

Cut down VOC’s

Environmental concerns include surface finishes for building products.  Choose products that are low or no VOC (Volatile Organic Compounds).  VOCs are emitted by a variety of home products. As people become more aware of what is in the products that surround them in their homes, they care about how much their paints or carpets are off-gassing.  From cabinetry to flooring, these products often have added urea-formaldehyde, which emits gases and harms healthy living. Glue, sealant, paint, and coating may also have toxins. By moving away from the look of surfaces embalmed in smooth polyurethane, you are also improving the indoor air quality.

Amp up ventilation

To suck bad air out of a home and bring fresh air in, you need to install adequate ventilation. Add a fan in your kitchen and bathroom and it will help remove odors, bacteria, humidity and cut down mold growth.

If your home is sealed tight, you will also need to install a small reverse fan that introduces fresh air into the house.  This improves air circulation and helps stop the growth of mold.

And, open your windows more often in general, and let fresh air circulate in your home!!

Add air filtration

According to the EPA, the air inside your home could be up to five times more polluted than the outside air. But there’s no need to hold your breath—air purifiers can help clean the air by capturing microscopic contaminants. The filters remove irritants like mold spores, pet dander, cigarette soot, and dust, making it easier for people with allergies to breathe.

“A lot of new air conditioning manufacturers are providing high-efficiency HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filtration systems that are built into the ductwork,” Shinn says. “It will help reduce heating and cooling bills and keep your home cleaner.”

Another option is to build a green wall, setting out plants or growing herbs in your home creates more oxygen and filters out pollutants.  Making design choices that respond to the human inclination to seek connection with nature – can be as simple as adding some literal green to your living room with a plant or two.

Making your home healthy

Wellness-focused changes can include paint, flooring or cabinetry with non-toxic materials, touchless faucets that reduce germ spread, circadian lighting that improves sleep, water, and air purification systems.  Ready to make your home more healthy?  Let us do your homework for you!  Call (480) 895-3442 for a free 60-minute consultation.  Learn more about us here.

It’s That Time of Year!

Whole Home Remodel in Biltmore, Arizona

NARI CONTRACTOR OF THE YEAR AWARD PROJECT

*This is from our sister company, Homework Remodels. 

It’s that time of year! The NARI Contractor of the Year Award Project submission!  Our project is being submitted in the Entire House category, $250,000 – $500,000.   This entire house project is reviewed by an impartial panel of industry experts who select winners based on each entrant’s submission, which includes “before and after” photography and project descriptions. Judging focuses on problem-solving, functionality, aesthetics, craftsmanship, innovation, degree of difficulty, and entry presentation.

OUR PROJECT’S BACKGROUND

We are excited to give you a little bit more background on this amazing whole house renovation in Biltmore for our clients.  Our clients wanted to turn their rental property into their part-time residence. With this lifestyle shift looming it was time to put their personal stamp on this investment property and check off all the must-haves on their list. They had lofty goals that would alter both the inside and outside spaces, but they needed assistance fine-tuning it all. That’s where we came in! Continue to read how this house became our NARI Contractor of the Year Award Project.

DESIGN AND PLANNING PHASE

During our Design and Planning phase, we prioritized their list and allocated a budget to each action item. For this home, virtually every surface would be modified.  The owners purchased this house for its million-dollar view of the mountains, thus giving them space to enjoy its view was monumental. Their outdoor living space was as important to renovate as was their interior.

THE KITCHEN

The Kitchen needed a floor to ceiling update. We modified built-in closets and an awkward shelf unit to improve efficiency and increase storage capacity. New cabinets, counters, appliances, backsplash, and lighting were installed. With very little room to rework the floor plan, we made sure that the space functions well. Thus, we curated a well-organized space with ample cabinets, tall wall cabinets, and interior cabinet storage solutions.

THE LIVING ROOM

The Living Room retained its existing layout but needed a fireplace façade update. The launching point for the silver Travertine used around the home, we installed the new stacked stone facade and coordinated the fireplace hearth with the silver Travertine coping stones.  Then, we added a custom reclaimed wood mantel. By replacing an unnecessary sliding glass door with a window, we created new space for furniture placement.  Then, in a corner near the kitchen, we added a dry bar with cabinets to complement the kitchen.  Glass front cabinets, a wine fridge, and a custom decorative backlit glass countertop make this space unique.

THE MASTER SUITE

In the Master Suite, we focused on comfort, color and then creating a bathroom to accommodate aging in place. The bedroom’s high ceiling left the space extra warm in the summer and cool in the winter. To assist with the comfort level, we installed a new Pella sliding glass door with shades between the glass and a mini-split heating and air conditioning unit. In the Master Bathroom, to achieve a more open feel, we removed a doorway and built walls to create a private water closet and pony walls for a zero-clearance shower. This new walkway would provide access to an additional clothes closet that had previously been part of a guest bedroom.

In need of a home office, a large guest bedroom was divided to create a home office while keeping a guest bedroom with a closet and access to the attic. The whole home would receive an update for paint colors, flooring, millwork and lighting.

OUTDOOR LIVING SPACE

This homeowner’s renovation included a total remake of their outdoor living space. The landscaper refreshed with new plantings, then the boldest change was the new fireplace they built near the updated spa for additional privacy. The new stacked stone fireplace adds ambiance and warmth for enjoying crisp winter evenings. The new Travertine patio and wall caps replaced the worn terra cotta. Lastly, they added a built-in barbeque with a bar area to complete their new outdoor living space. This amazing space is perfect for serving and hosting!

FRONT OF HOME

This area begged for design details.  Thus, we added new garage doors with windows, adding natural light in the garage.  The silver Travertine patio extends around the palm tree giving them a spot for a bistro table where they enjoy morning coffee. Then, we painted the band around the top of the home and the columns along with the fascia to complement and outline the roof. New coach lights are the finishing touch for the front of the home.

THE END RESULTS

Our clients are thrilled with their ‘new’ home and we are excited to share it with you! With any project this of this magnitude, there are always challenges that create change orders to our best laid out plans.  Good communication throughout this entire project kept everyone on the same page.  This project truly enhanced the home, through functional living space, well-planned design elements and added convenience for the homeowners.  Their future is bright as they look to age in place within their home.  We believe it is a perfect submission for the NARI Contractor of the Year Award Project.  See more of Homework Remodels’ featured projects here as well as our own here.

We turn your home remodeling ideas into a reality.
Call us today to book a complimentary 60-minute consultation (480)895-3442.

Outdoor Living Space Project Nearing Completion

Two story deck renovation and storage room addition nearing completion

We are excited to show you our outdoor living space project that is nearing completion!  If you haven’t caught our other blogs about this North Phoenix home renovation, you can catch up by reading the first blog here and the second one here.  Outdoor living space in Phoenix is almost as important as indoor living space and we’ve enjoyed working on this amazing deck and storage room two-story addition. The back of the house faces north with a stunning view of Lookout Mountain Preserve and the northeast valley. It has been exciting to create a new space where our clients can enjoy their scenic view from their new deck and outdoor kitchen!

What our goals have been

The goal for our client was to have a larger outdoor space to do the entertaining he enjoys. This beautiful stucco adobe style home’s first floor was built below grade level. The second story of the home is dedicated to the main living space with the kitchen, living room and dining room. By expanding the deck space, and integrating an outdoor kitchen, we will create a much larger outdoor living space for this home.

We are almost done!!

With all the details almost complete this deck renovation has made quite the change for our homeowner’s outdoor entertaining space.  So much so, he has already had multiple gatherings.  It is that time of year in the Valley of the Sun to get out and enjoy our outdoor living spaces.  Fall, football and stunning sunsets set the mood.  The deck has electrical for misting fans, lights, and TV mounts.  There is an area for cabinets to be installed including a sink base, storage shelves, and a built-in barbeque.

The interior of the storage space walls is sheeted with plywood and painted gray as the perfect backdrop to the wall storage solutions and racks that will be installed for the work areas.  The ceiling was painted black to maintain the desired focus of the homeowner.

Excited for the finish to come soon as the details fall into place.  It is going to be perfect for entertaining and enjoying the gorgeous view of the valley.

How to Avoid 6 Kitchen Remodel Mistakes

Creating a Kitchen Space for Family Gathering

In today’s hectic and digital world, the kitchen creates space that families can gather, cook and spend time together.  Making it one of the most comfortable rooms in your home is almost a necessity since this is the one room that everyone ends up in! We spend time in the kitchen eating our meals, having snacks, enjoying gathering as a family, and entertaining friends. Thus, if the kitchen doesn’t flow with the rest of the house – or the room itself – it becomes a space to avoid.  Remodeling your kitchen can transform your space so that it is warm and inviting, but also functional.  When planning your kitchen remodel, here is how to avoid 6 kitchen remodel mistakes.

Solutions to How to Avoid 6 Kitchen Remodel Mistakes

1. Open Shelving

While Open Shelving is often approached as making your kitchen space seem more open, it can also create an atmosphere of too much busyness.  Open shelving is a wonderful way to add character to the room and display your prized pieces, be cautious, however, too many knick-knacks or stacked baking pans and skillets can interrupt the flow of your kitchen and certainly take away from the rest of your design for your kitchen.  We suggest keeping the open shelves neatly adorned and choose wall or base cabinetry for the less decorative items.

2. Stainless Steel

A little stainless steel goes a long way towards making a kitchen look modern. Too much can make it look like an operating room or an industrial kitchen (not to be confused with Industrial Design Style). Make sure to break up the stainless steel with some complementing colors and textures from other areas in your home. One way to do this is to choose stainless appliances with a colorful countertop, or a stainless steel island countertop with colorful appliances and wood open shelves.

3. Poorly Placed Appliances

Nothing breaks up the flow of a room like making it difficult to use. Not being able to open your refrigerator and walk by it or your dishwasher and stove, at the same time not only hampers the use of your kitchen, but it also appears cramped and unfunctional. Creating the right flow for your space can make all the difference.  This should be one of the first things you’ll want to talk with your Kitchen Remodeler about.

4. Making it too Bland

The white kitchen is in high demand, ‘safe’ colors like beige, tan, and white flow together, but they can also make a kitchen boring. A monochromatic design scheme is beautiful when done well, but can fall flat. Add some flavor to your kitchen to give it character. Bring some of the colors from the adjoining rooms into the kitchen to add depth and carry the flow of colors from room to room.  You can also add texture with wood, shapes, and fabrics. Since you are wanting to create a space for gathering family and friends, make sure your family’s personality is reflected in your newly remodeled kitchen!

5. Trash Cans/Recycle Bins

Absolutely necessary, but what to do with them?   To create a beautiful space without also interrupting the flow of your kitchen, trashcans and recycle containers should be planned into your new kitchen remodel. There are many ways to keep these items functional, whether in a pantry, base cabinet, or other built-in space. They will be accessible but hidden.

6. Installing in the Incorrect Lighting

Nothing makes your kitchen more functional than effective lighting. Kitchens need an overhead light for general lighting and a spotlight to perform specific tasks such as preparing food. Of course, you don’t want your kitchen only to be functional; you want it to look good too. In order to highlight the style of your kitchen, add in accent lighting with pendant lights over the island/peninsula or above cabinets and toe kick lighting. This is another great way to add in your personality.

Avoid these 6 kitchen remodeling mistakes, schedule your appointment today!  Tri-Lite Builders has the solutions that will create the space in your kitchen where your family and friends will want to gather.   We have designed some of the most unique and amazing kitchens in the greater Phoenix area. Our work has been featured in several magazines and online publications, and we’ve received the Contractor of the Year award multiple times. We love the entire kitchen remodeling process and would be honored to help you realize your kitchen’s full potential.

Home Remodeling in the Greater Phoenix Area

Start your project by calling us at (480) 895-3442 or emailing steve@trilitebuilders.com to discuss remodeling your home, kitchen, or bathroom.  We offer no-obligation in-home consultation. Our award-winning designers and craftsman are eager to work with you to make your vision for your home a reality!

A Look Behind the Walls

All that blown insulation settled into its spaces. Drywall installed on the ceiling. Plywood acclimating so it can be ready to sheet the walls once the ceiling is complete.

We are excited to continue to share our progress on this amazing two-story deck and storage room addition for our latest North Phoenix home remodel by giving you a look behind the walls. The back of the house faces north with a stunning view of Lookout Mountain Preserve and the northeast valley.  You can read about the remodel of this outdoor living space and storage room addition in its beginning stages here.

Behind the Walls of the New Storage Addition

With our Monsoon season almost ending we are getting quite the storm this week.  So, we are giving you a look inside, behind the walls, of this two-story addition.  This first floor is going to be a secure, temperature-controlled storage room.  With a ceiling height just over 9’-0” and over 200 sq. ft, this room below the new deck addition is the perfect space for additional storage. Above this new room addition will be an outdoor kitchen and additional deck space.

Photos

Take a stroll through the photos to see where we are currently in this process. We’ve captioned each of them to give you a look behind the walls.  We are excited to show you how this unique outdoor living space and storage room addition turns out in a future blog!

Trending Kitchen Storage and Design Ideas

Trending Kitchen Storage and Design

Your dream kitchen is just around the corner! Categorically, the number one desire in remodeling a kitchen is to create more storage in the existing space. Obviously, this is a great way to give your kitchen the functionality it needs, but you can also infuse it with creativity along the way.  Whether you are doing it yourself or having Tri-Lite Builders plan your new kitchen, you can be inspired by these trending kitchen storage and design ideas.

Reclaim and Recycle

Using reclaimed material is still on-trend and is expected to continue.  Reclaimed wood is everywhere and easy to find cost-effectively or even free. Old shipping crates, used pallets, and old furniture are all sources for wood recycling.  Using these materials may require sanding and refinishing to make the pieces usable.  Some recycled wood will work for a more rustic look. It all comes down to the finished look you desire.

Kitchen Pantry

If organization and saving money are your goal, consider building a kitchen pantry. When building a pantry, think about the space in relation to having all the food items and small kitchen appliances you need for meal preparation within easy reach.  Pantries are a great addition to keeping your weekly budget for groceries in hand since you can easily see what foods you have stored.

Material Combinations

Today’s trends invite you to think out of the box!  Create striking visuals by mixing materials and tones for your kitchen cabinets. You can get this effect easily by using different materials and/or shades for upper and lower cabinets. For example, consider wooden lower cabinets, and upper cabinets with metal for an interesting contrast. Alternatively, you could consider a dark wood for the kitchen island, white cabinets for the base cabinetry. You can also use glass or open shelving for the upper cabinets. No longer are matching cabinets a necessity for an attractive looking kitchen.  Choose materials that you like above any other factors.

Since you are designing the kitchen of your dreams, explore the different material choices as well as storage solutions.  Kitchen storage possibilities aren’t limited to cabinets or a pantry. You can use the same creativity in your materials and design for kitchen islands. Check online to discover more kitchen storage options that will make your kitchen uniquely yours! You can also explore our award-winning kitchens in our portfolio here!

Home Remodeling in the Greater Phoenix Area

Kick start your project by calling us at (480) 895-3442 or emailing steve@trilitebuilders.com to discuss remodeling your home, kitchen, or bathroom.  We offer no-obligation in-home consultation. Our award-winning designers and craftsman are eager to work with you to make your vision for your home a reality!

Outdoor Living Space

In Phoenix, outdoor living space is almost as important as your indoor living space!  And when a client and Homework Remodels come together with goals, design, and craftsmanship, we can make it a GREAT outdoor living space.

We are excited to share our progress on this amazing deck and storage room two-story addition for this North Phoenix home. The back of the house faces north with a stunning view of Lookout Mountain Preserve and the northeast valley.  It is a view worth capturing for our client.

Goals

The goal for our client was to have a larger outdoor living area to do the entertaining he enjoys. This beautiful adobe style home’s first floor was built below grade level. The second story of the home is dedicated to the main living space with the kitchen, living room and dining room. By expanding the deck, and integrating an outdoor kitchen, we will create a much larger living space for this home. Perfect for entertaining and enjoying the gorgeous view of the valley.

The Beginning Stages

Originally, the deck off the back of this home was covered with a canvas awning which required a wireframing/support system that cluttered the back wall. Through time, the canvas awning became weathered worn.  Homework Remodels has replaced this dated feature with a pergola style roof that will provide shade, protection and more style to the deck and to the back of the house.  Our client also wanted more storage space.  We are building an addition to the back of the house which creates a storage room, the roof will serve as additional walk deck space for the new outdoor kitchen.  This newly uncovered walk deck area will directly extend from the current deck so that it spans the width of the house.

Expanding outdoor living space can present many challenges, but we are well underway!!  If you are looking to create new space in (or outside of) your home, you’ll want to follow along with our progress and see the finished project coming this fall!  See more of our remodel projects here.

Drop us a line!

Get in touch with us!