Steps to Remodeling a Kitchen – How to Plan a Kitchen Remodel

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The kitchen is the second most popular room to renovate (bathrooms being the first), and this year, millions of Americans will transform the appearance of this interior space. Whether you want to increase the value of your home, need more space or just desire a brand new look, a kitchen remodel will provide you with a great return on your investment — but only if you choose the right contractor.

You’ve heard the horror stories: contractors who botch everything up, leaving rooms in a worse state than they were before. That’s why it’s important you choose a professional with a good reputation and the right amount of experience. Want to know how to plan a kitchen remodel? Read on for a kitchen renovation planning checklist and information on how to find a contractor for your kitchen remodel.

When Is the Best Time to Remodel a Kitchen?

You can remodel your kitchen at any time of the year. However, the winter months are popular with homeowners who want to undertake a big kitchen renovation project. “Frozen ground and dry air are better for digging foundations and pouring concrete footers than muddy ground and humidity,” according to Angie’s List.

It also might be easier to find a contractor in the winter: “The winter months tend to be less busy for builders because everyone is waiting for spring and tax refunds to start their home projects.”

How Long Does a Kitchen Remodel Take?

It can take eight to 12 weeks to complete a kitchen remodel project. During this time, a contractor might replace or install new cabinets and countertops, change the flooring, replace electrical appliances and incorporate new fixtures and fittings.

This kitchen remodel timeline might sound lengthy, but you will still have access to amenities like a sink: “To ease the disruption, your contractor can easily set up a construction sink somewhere by running a couple of hoses from existing kitchen plumbing through the dust wall to a makeshift kitchen in an adjacent room,” says House Logic.

Rise Construction prides itself on its customer service and speedy kitchen remodeling. For more information on your next project, contact one of our professionals today.

How to Plan a Kitchen Remodel

You might have a general idea of how to renovate your kitchen, but it’s best left to the professionals. Dealing with plumbing and electrical systems is a lot harder than you think, and your remodel could result in a DIY disaster.

There are a number of steps you can take before you enlist the services of a contractor. You could create a design plan that outlines all the kitchen remodeling components you want to incorporate into your home. For example, you can choose which materials you want to use, or pick the colors that would work best in your interior space. You can give your kitchen plans for remodeling to a contractor so he or she knows what features you want.

You could also order materials and appliances for your kitchen remodel. “If you’re remodeling in stages, you can order them any time after the plans are complete and store them in a garage, away from moisture, or in a spare room until you’re ready to pull the trigger on the installation,” says House Logic.

How to Find a Contractor for Kitchen Remodeling Projects

Not all kitchen design contractors are the same. That’s why it’s important for you to do your research and find the right professional for the project. The Federal Trade Commission recommends you check with friends, neighbors or co-workers who have used a contractor in the past. “If you can, take a look at the work done and ask about their experience.”

You can also head over to review websites like HomeAdvisor and Yelp. The Better Business Bureau is another great resource you can use in your search. These sites provide you with all the information you need when searching for contractors in your area, such as qualifications, experience, and reputation.

You might also want to check with your local consumer protection agency or building department and ask them about licensing requirements. “Licensing can range from simple registration to a detailed qualification process. If your state or locality has licensing laws, make sure the contractor’s license is current,” says the Federal Trade Commission.

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Steps to Remodeling a Kitchen

Here’s a brief kitchen remodel checklist:

  • Create a budget and stick to it. According to HomeAdvisor, homeowners spend, on average, $21,751 on kitchen remodels. A good contractor, however, can help you save money on your project.
  • If you are planning a big kitchen renovation project, think about other costs such as alternative accommodation.
  • Consider the size of your kitchen and manage your expectations. You might not be able to incorporate all the features you want into your new kitchen if you lack space.
  • Ask your contractor about the payment. Will you need to pay for your new kitchen upfront or can you make payments in installments?

Follow the tips on this list to avoid a DIY disaster. Enlisting the services of a good contractor will help you execute the ultimate kitchen renovation.

Planning a kitchen renovation or other home remodeling in Houston? Get a personalized quote today by contacting Rise Construction.

Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Storm Damage? – Managing Storm Damage Insurance Claims

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If you’re a homeowner, you’ve probably wondered at some point: is storm damage covered by insurance? After all, repairing storm damage can be costly. In fact, studies show that the average cost of fixing a home affected by a severe storm is $6,765.

Luckily, homeowners insurance companies WILL help you cover the cost of a repair if your home is damaged in a destructive storm, and they will cover damage from a wide variety of weather events (from snow and sleet to hail, tornadoes, and more).

However, before you make an insurance claim after a storm, it’s important to understand your coverage: what’s covered and how you can ask your insurance company to cover it.

If you want to learn more about making storm damage claims for your home, read the following helpful information.

Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Wind Damage?

One of the most destructive parts of many storms is wind. Wind damage can cause structural damage to a home, destroy outdoor features, and even cause bodily harm to people inside or around the building. Typically, homeowners insurance companies will cover damage due to the wind, including if trees or branches fall on a house’s roof due to high-speed winds, snow, or ice.

Are Gutters Covered by Homeowners Insurance?

Gutters are an important structural part of your home. They help drain water off your roof and keep your home strong, and they help ensure that your property is healthy and safe to live on.

If your gutters are damaged in a storm by falling debris, hail, rain, wind, and more, then your homeowner’s insurance company will cover the cost to repair or replace them.

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Make sure the damage was done by the storm, though, and not regular wear and tear (or neglect). If something happens to the gutters because of your negligence or because they are old, it is your responsibility to replace them.

Get in touch with our repair specialists at Rise Construction after experiencing Houston storm damage to help you replace gutters or roofing. We can also take a look at older gutters and help you determine if you should replace them, so they are safe and sturdy before a storm arrives.

Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Hail Damage?

Hail from a storm can appear unexpectedly — and the damage it can do is significant. Usually, homeowners insurance companies will cover the damage done to a home by hail. However, there may be limits to the amount that will be covered (as dictated by your policy), so make sure to read it over to understand what will and won’t be covered.

How Does Your Storm Damage Insurance Claim Process Work?

If your house has been damaged in a storm, wait until the storm is completely over and it’s safe to go outside or to return to your home. Then do a complete assessment of the damage that was done.

You’ll want to take plenty of photos of each individual bit of damage so that you can show them to your insurance adjuster. When you’re inspecting your home for damage, don’t forget to look at the roof, gutters, siding vents, and more.

Once you’ve assessed your home for damage, you should contact your insurance company. Then you can make an insurance claim for wind damage to the roof or other parts of your house.

If you’re planning to make a storm damage insurance claim, you can get in touch with Rise Construction and we’ll give you a quote for how much it will cost to repair your home. Then, contact your insurance company to send an adjuster to look at your house. Your contractor from Rise will be present during the inspection, so they can ensure that your adjuster accurately estimates costs and gives you a fair deal. This could dramatically improve your insurance claims process after experiencing storm damage.

What Is the Difference Between a Developer vs. General Contractor vs. Builder?

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Many homeowners turn to professionals to construct their homes and residences. It can be confusing to know whether you need one or multiple residential construction companies. What’s the difference between a builder and general contractor? How is a general contractor’s work different?

Difference Between Contractor, Developer, and Builder

Here are the basic differences between general contractors and developers or builders — should you need to call on them.

General Contractor

This is the person who manages the bigger picture. He will usually have a crew or can subcontract other work that your home needs to be done. It is usually up to a general contractor to maintain and run a construction business. A general contractor keeps everyone involved focused and maintains the schedule for timely project completion.

It is also the general contractor’s job to come up with the contract for the total cost of construction. He will estimate all the fees depending on the subcontractors, your home’s needs and, of course, your budget.

Hiring all the subcontractors, securing permits and scheduling the construction is the general contractor’s responsibility. He should be aware of any building code requirements. He’ll be the one you check in with to ensure that the construction is following your agreed-upon timetable. Because his job encompasses so many details, you will need to establish good communication and contact.

Builder/Developer

A builder’s job is to handle every stage of your home’s construction — from the time the foundation is set to the framing, walls, tiling, and roof.

Other mechanical details, such as electric wiring, plumbing, heating and water sourcing may not be his complete responsibility, but he may outsource these.

When you take a closer look, there is a difference between builder and developer. Developers typically work with several housing units at a time, and complete the big picture framework like obtaining permits, installing power lines and sewer systems, and streets for an allotment.

Builders typically just work on building the house from the ground up and are rarely involved in the creation of a housing allotment as a whole.

Production Builders vs. Custom Builders

There is a difference, however, between a production builder and a custom builder.

Production builders construct a large volume of similar houses every year, in multiple locations and varying markets.
A custom builder sticks to the specific design of a building architect or designer. Custom houses are special in the sense that they will never be duplicated.

A building architect or designer needs a very specific type of education for his role in construction. Whereas a contractor may do construction as a trade, a designer’s work is more specialized.

How Should You Choose the Right Building Professional for Your Construction Needs?

No matter which developer, designer, contractor or outsourcer you choose, the key is great working relationships. Look for those who not only have the talents or construction skills, but also the personal skills to help you realize your dream home and bring it to life.

Good communication skills are essential, so look for those who will be open with you about everything, from budget to tools, design and every detail of your project.

If you are considering working with certain contractors or developers, do some research. Look for former clients who can give you an unbiased review of their work and what the experience was like. Once you have obtained references, you will have a better understanding of what to expect.

Remember, once you start out on the journey of building your dream home or commercial building, it will be exciting … but very challenging!

Do what you can to hire the right people who can take on the enormous responsibility, and it will be an experience you won’t regret.

For all your Houston construction needs, contact us online or call us at 281-817-7160 for a consultation.

4 Top Restaurant Remodeling Ideas for Your Upcoming Renovation

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A remodel of your restaurant can do wonders for business. The décor of your restaurant sets the tone for your patrons’ experience. Not only is it smart to evolve and change strategies, but a reopening can also drum up renewed interest from old and new customers around town. Here are five ideas you should think about implementing for your upcoming restaurant makeover:

4 Restaurant Renovation Ideas

Investing in your dining area can be a great way to upgrade your restaurant and build an engaged base of loyal customers. The top commercial construction companies in Houston can help you turn your visions into reality.

Check out the following restaurant makeover ideas before you begin your upcoming project.

1. A Fresh Color Palette Upgrade

A new color palette is one of the easiest and most inexpensive restaurant remodeling ideas on this list. If your walls are looking drab, a fresh coat of paint could be the simple fix your restaurant needed. Take this further by adding different pops of color through furniture, pillows, fixtures, and more.

The colors you choose to splash across your restaurant greatly affect the environment. Lighter colors can help a cramped space feel breezier or more spacious, while darker colors can create a more romantic and intimate atmosphere.

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You want your customers to feel good about spending their time and money to relax in the environment you’ve created. If you are rebranding, this is also a good opportunity to have your colors reflected in your restaurant or cafe renovation to increase the association with frequent diners.

2. “Mood” Lighting

Much like color, lighting can play a huge part in the vibe of your establishment. Dramatic lighting can give an edge to your restaurant. Skylights can make dining areas seem more spacious and cheerful with natural light (and save you costs on energy bills). Soft, warm lights facilitate a casual but cozy ambiance.

On the more practical side of things, a dim kitchen can make it difficult for staff to do their jobs efficiently. A restaurant that’s too dark is uncomfortable for visitors trying to read a menu. Lights that are too bright can be an unnecessary money sink and cause the environment to look sterile.

Make sure you consider all these factors when redoing your lighting. It can make or break the image you’re trying to portray with your target audience.

3. A More Intuitive Restaurant Layout

Do you find your customers are always asking to sit on one side of the restaurant over the other? Do they often complain about noise or proximity to the bathroom, kitchen, or other tables? Does your wait staff struggle to find a “flow” when maneuvering the restaurant?

If any of these problems sound familiar, you may want to rethink your restaurant’s layout. A large, open space can contribute to a noisy meal. If this frequently has a negative impact on your guests’ experiences, you may want to put up dividers to create more intimate spaces. On the other hand, you might make a space more casual and approachable by knocking a few walls down.

Consider moving the bar away from entrances if people standing around it cause traffic to passersby. Don’t rely on guesswork, you can use valuable customer and employee feedback to create a more natural and efficient restaurant layout.

4. Instagram-Worthy Bathroom

Stylish, fancy, or novelty bathrooms in restaurants and bars are taking over the Internet. Many commercial places have jumped onto the trend of the “bathroom selfie” with their remodels.

There are entire accounts, hashtags, and moments dedicated to pictures of people capturing moments in photogenic restrooms. The privacy of a bathroom makes people more likely to get that perfect shot for their Instagram. If your bathroom goes viral, it can be a good investment in spreading the word about your restaurant. In fact, many people say that bathroom selfie geotags have caused them to pay the business a visit.

Getting in on this bathroom craze can be as simple or as intricate as you want. You can keep it uncomplicated by putting up some interesting wallpaper or you can go full out with a theme complete with props and novelty toilets or sinks. The one thing you shouldn’t forget is a beautiful mirror. Lean into it by putting a sign up with a custom hashtag for people to use.

It’s easy to overlook the bathroom, but this necessary part of your restaurant will be used by nearly everyone who visits. Many people see it as a marker of cleanliness or style, and If it looks run down it can create a negative view of your establishment. This trend goes beyond just providing a clean space – it’s about setting your business apart in a unique way.

Hidden Restaurant Remodeling Costs to Be Aware of

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When your restaurant is closed for remodeling, choose your slowest month. This will help minimize financial consequences for both you and your staff. Let them know far in advance to help ease the transition before and after the remodeling is finished.

Prioritize options so you know what you are willing to let go of and what you want to keep. Make sure you have a budget that factors in restaurant renovation costs you might not have considered such as debris disposal, unexpected water or pest damage, permits or licenses, and any other surprises.

While choosing what to remodel, make sure you keep in mind what you might need to fix or change in the coming years. It helps to know that you’re investing in professional, experienced work that is solid.

Contact Rise Construction Today

Don’t trust just anyone with your upcoming restaurant build-out in Houston. Rise Construction has ample experience with restaurant renovations that is sure to improve your existing plans and deliver a stunning result.

Contact us today for a quote on your remodel.

ADA Requirements for Commercial Building & Existing Facilities

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If you are considering updating your office space, you may need to familiarize yourself with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Essentially, the ADA ensures access to a built environment that accommodates people with disabilities. In other words, ADA requirements for existing buildings need to be implemented to ensure that all individuals, regardless of ability, can use a building with minimal impediment.

The ADA Standards have been established to create design requirements for the construction and alteration of facilities subject to the law.  These enforceable standards apply to many places that include areas of public accommodation, commercial facilities, and local and state government facilities.

Failure to comply with ADA building compliance can lead to lead to serious financial penalties, which can start as much as $55,000 to $75,000 for a first-time violation, and a second violation rising to $110,000 to $150,000.

Additionally, failure to comply may also lead to liability issues that may result in costly litigation. Therefore, it is in your best interest to stick to best-practices for your upcoming commercial construction and renovation projects.

In this article, we will look at what you need to do, with an ADA checklist for existing facilities provided to ensure that your buildings are up to code when renovating commercial buildings.

ADA Requirements for Commercial Buildings

Because the highly-trafficked commercial buildings encounter the largest portion of disabled individuals, special care should be reserved to make your business compliant with ADA requirements.

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Here are just a few of the ADA requirements for commercial buildings that you may encounter when planning your upgrade:

  • Installing accessible hardware on doors
  • Upgrading public and company bathrooms (see below)
  • Accessible parking
  • Increasing the width of door frames to allow wheelchairs
  • Adjusting water fountains for all individuals, including wheelchairs
  • Replacing problematic flooring that may restrict or impede mobility
  • Railings or grab bars in appropriate locations
  • ADA handicap ramps or creating curb cuts at entrances/exits (up to 60% of entrances/exits much be ADA compliant)
  • Rearranging furniture, furnishings, and other features to reduce barriers to service

If you are looking for a comprehensive resource, the ADA has provided a full of its full list of regulations pertaining to specific matters to adhere to ADA requirements for commercial buildings.

ADA Requirements for Existing Buildings

Retrofitting and remodeling an existing building for ADA upgrades can be a difficult task, often requiring significant time and adherence to specifications to accommodate disabled individuals.

Buildings built before 1990 face a different set of challenges, which are described in ADA’s Public Accommodations and Commercial Facilities (Title III). Essentially, Title III states there must be accommodations made for existing buildings to remove architectural barriers unless it can be shown that removing a barrier is not “readily achievable” or accommodations can’t be made through other means.

The concept of “readily achievable” is subject to debate, but the language of Title III readily achievable as “easily accomplishable and able to be carried out without much difficulty or expense.”

Some factors to be considered in determining whether barrier removal is readily achievable include:

  • The cost of the required barrier removal
  • The financial resources of the involved facility or facilities
  • The number of people employed by the facility
  • The effect on the facility’s expenses and resources
  • Impact on the operation of the facility
  • Overall finances of the covered entity
  • The number of employees in the covered entity
  • The number type and location of its facilities
  • The type of operations of the covered entity, including the composition, structure and functions of its workforce
  • The geographic, administrative or fiscal relationship of the facilities at issue to the covered entity.

Furthermore, there are 21 suggestions given for how you can bring your existing building up to code:

  • Installing ramps
  • Making curb cuts in sidewalks and entrances;
  • Repositioning shelves;
  • Rearranging tables, chairs, vending machines, display racks, and other furniture;
  • Repositioning telephones;
  • Adding raised markings on elevator control buttons;
  • Installing flashing alarm lights;
  • Widening doors
  • Installing offset hinges to widen doorways
  • Eliminating a turnstile or providing an alternative accessible path
  • Installing accessible door hardware
  • Installing grab bars in toilet stalls
  • Rearranging toilet partitions to increase maneuvering space
  • Insulating lavatory pipes under sinks to prevent burns
  • Installing a raised toilet seat
  • Installing a full-length bathroom mirror
  • Repositioning the paper towel dispenser in a bathroom
  • Creating designated accessible parking spaces
  • Installing an accessible paper cup dispenser at an existing inaccessible water fountain
  • Removing high pile, low density carpeting
  • Installing vehicle hand controls

ADA Office Requirements

ADA office requirements follow similar standards to the previous adjustments to facilities, while also including additional measures to ensure that offices are usable for all individuals regardless of physical ability. To make your ADA office space compliant, you will need to do the following:

  • All doors should be at least 32’’wide in order to provide adequate space for individuals to pass through.
  • Office doors must be wide enough to accommodate those who use mobility devices such as wheelchairs and mobility scooters.
  • Heavy doors that require more than 5 pounds of force to operate need to provide additional assistance, such as an easily-accessible push-button to open or close.
  • Conference table or desk should be at least 27’’ high to allow room for those in mobility devices to easily sit at the table without bumping their knees.

However, small businesses that employ 14 or fewer full-time employees do not have to be ADA compliant. Additionally, businesses that have been operating for less than 20 weeks are allowed a grace period to become compliant.

ADA Compliant Reception Desk

Perhaps one of the most forgotten aspects of making your building follow code is by having an ADA compliant reception desk. The ADA reception desk requirements include:

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  • Counters with a cash register require a section of the counter must be at least 36’’ long and not more than 36’’ inches above the floor.
  • Sales and service counters require a counter that is least 36’’ long and not more than 36’’ above the floor. If achievable, provide a nearby auxiliary counter, use a folding shelf or area next to the counter. There must be a clear floor space in front of the accessible surface that permits a customer using a wheelchair to pull alongside. This space is at least 30’’ by 48’’ and may be perpendicular or parallel to the counter. This must also be connected to the accessible route that connects to the accessible entrance and other areas in the business where services or merchandise are provided.

ADA Bathroom Requirements for Commercial Buildings

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Restroom requirements for commercial buildings are a necessary concern to ensure compliance with guidelines and ensure that basic needs of all patrons are met for an ADA commercial bathroom. Therefore, let’s look at the most common ADA commercial bathroom requirements including:

  • Toilets:
    • A toilet seat must be at the height of 17’’ – 19’’.
    • The center line of the toilet must be between 16’’ and 18’’ from the side wall.
  • Sinks:
    • 30’’ by 48’’ access to the sink (the door must not swing into this rectangle).
    • Sinks should not be mounted 34’’ from the floor, and they should have a knee clearance of 27’’ high, 30’’ wide, and 11’’ to 25’’ deep. The measurement starts from the point where a person has 27’’ vertical clearance for their knees and a 9’’ vertical clearance for their feet.
    • Additionally, there must be a clear floor space and insulated pipes underneath the sink.
  • Stalls:
    • A clear circle of at least 60’’ around the side wall and 56’’ from the rear wall to allow a wheelchair to turn (the door cannot swing into the minimum required area for wheelchair-accessible toilet compartments).
    • Urinals should be wall-hung or stall-type at a maximum of 17’’ from the floor.
    • Water closets must be 17’’ to 19’’ from the floor (the measurement begins from the floor to the top of the toilet seat).
    • Flush valves must be easy to manipulate, not requiring tight grasping, pinching, or twisting of the wrist.
    • Grab bars should be at least 36’’ long on the rear wall or 42’’ on the side wall and be mounted 33’’ to 36’’ inches above the floor. Grab bars must also have a gripping surface of at least 1.25’’, mounted at least 1.5’’ from the wall, and be able to withstand a minimum of 250 pounds of pressure.

Contact Rise Construction for Your Commercial Construction Needs

If you feel that your building isn’t up to code, don’t worry: Rise Construction is here to help.

Consult Rise Construction to ensure that your building is compliant with the ADA’s specific regulations. The expert builders here at Rise Construction have extensive professional experience in renovating buildings, whether this includes a simple commercial build-out or a complete Houston office build-out compliant with the ADA’s specific codes and regulations.

Contact us for a quote today!

Hire a Contractor vs. DIY Home Renovation

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Maybe it’s time for a change in your home. But do you hire a contractor or begin a DIY home renovation? TV shows make it look easy. You might think you can save money. Sure you can, but is a potential nightmare worth it?

Today, we’ll look at DIY home renovation vs. hiring a contractor. You must think about costs, timeframe, physical labor, your skillset, etc. Whether you’ve just purchased a home or are looking to renovate areas of your established residence, it’s time to make the final decision.

When to Hire a Contractor

Keep in mind that if you require a special permit or even a license to work on a project, it’s time to look to the professionals. Asbestos inspection and removal? Leave that kind of thing to a contractor. Have a look at our City of Houston Building Code guide right here for more help.

Have a look at the following three sections to see when you should opt for a licensed contractor.

Structural Repairs

Older homes likely will need structural upgrades that demand contractors, architects, or even engineers. In these cases, you need to prepare for “surprises” along the way that affect your workflow, timeline, and budget.

Complicated Installations & Replacements

Replacing things like bathtubs, toilets, and sinks could result in costly mistakes if you aren’t experienced or trained in such an installation. Hardwood floors and tile can also present issues as you’re working around doorways, corners, and baseboards, especially if the room is large.

Further, if it’s time to replace windows in your house, then you should turn to the pros who understand the ins and outs of framing and insulation. You want everything sealed up tightly so that your home is energy efficient, keeping your bills lower.

Gas, Electricity & Plumbing

Remember those permits and licenses we mentioned above? That comes into play here. Disasters can occur when it comes to handling the plumbing, electrical, and gas related projects in your space. Don’t do this alone. Consult Rise Construction, your top construction company in Houston.

Above all, safety is essential. If a project or any aspect of a project could hurt you, kill you, or destroy part of your home, begin searching for a contractor who understands your vision and needs.

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When to Do It Yourself?

When you don’t need approvals, licenses, permits, and strict expertise, then you’ll be able to embark on a DIY home remodeling project. If the skills required for the renovation fall into your wheelhouse, get to work!

The following are challenges you might choose to accept on your own.

Cosmetic Touches

These home facelifts usually come with some flexibility. You can access plenty of online videos and how-tos. You won’t need approval; you will need to research. A favorite cosmetic DIY task is painting the interior of your home. Doing this yourself could save you hundreds of dollars in the end.

Light Demolition

We’re not talking about taking out entire walls here. But you can save yourself some serious cash if you can remove cabinets, fixtures, and moldings yourself. You might even choose to pull up your own carpet, wood floorboards, etc. If it’s a piece-by-piece takedown, you’re probably safe on a DIY track.

Simple Installations

You might find that installing your kitchen backsplash or vinyl flooring is doable. Adding a small wooden deck could take you as little as two weekends with solid planning and carpentry skills (first you should verify – is a permit required?).

Even if you think a project is cosmetic, light, or simple, contact Rise Construction for a quote today. We can help you determine a budget, timeframe, and skill level. We’ll help you understand if DIY is the best path.

Major Factors & Considerations

Before you set out on any project – contractor or DIY – think about materials and costs. A contractor has materials and equipment already, so instead of investing in tools, you might find it better to reach out for the help you need. Other factors to consider are time and potential challenges you may face along the way.

It’s smart to plan and determine the required skill levels for all phases of the project. Keep your safety in mind, too. Always opt for caution over costs. In the long run, if a contractor can complete the job to your satisfaction during an acceptable timeline, you’ll probably be better off with professionals in your corner. The pros understand all aspects of the reno, and they even anticipate problems they may face and have experience in managing such issues.

Use Rise Construction’s Houston home remodeling services for superior results. You’ll be in your new, fully-functioning space in minimal time, knowing that everything is correctly installed, repaired, or replaced.

Is it Cheaper to Build or Buy a House?

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A house is most likely the single largest investment you’ll make in your lifetime. Plenty of buyers put their heart, soul, and financial future into landing their perfect home. This all begs the question – Is building a house cheaper than buying one?

Several significant decisions go into building your own home vs. buying. We’ll look at the pros and cons of each process and reveal some financial factors that may help you budget and understand how to save money. These considerations will help you determine whether to build or buy a house.

Is it Better to Build or Buy a House?

In financial terms, is it cheaper to buy or build a house? Let’s discover the requirements for building and buying your next home.

Building a House

Pros of Building a House

Here’s a list of pros regarding building your own home:

  • Appliances are new and under warranty when you build. You can anticipate less upkeep. In fact, your maintenance for about a decade will cost you nothing.
  • You’ll get that energy efficient component. New homes incorporate the latest materials and equipment, so your energy bill will be lower.
  • You have the power to pay for exactly what you want. If you’re thinking spacious, you can have spacious. If you want hardwood, have hardwood installed. You won’t have to remodel. Instead, you’ll have a say in the original model.
  • Home insurance is lower than that of pre-existing homes.
  • You can often receive construction discounts. (Companies want to keep their crews working.) You can also receive builder’s discounts for materials.

Interested in building your dream home? Our construction company in Houston can help. Contact Rise Construction today!

Cons of Building a House

Here’s a list of cons concerning a new build:

  • It’s a gamble when it comes to appreciation. You can’t predict what will happen to the housing market years down the road. Comps aren’t consistent, so there’s no way of calculating what’s to come if you’re looking to sell at some point.
  • You must find land and select a builder, which can be easier said than done.
  • The price-point tends to be higher than purchasing an existing home. On average, building new will cost you around $290,000.
  • You could be waiting anywhere from four to six months on your new home. You may even have to move into temporary housing while you wait.
  • Purchasing upgrades can be quite expensive.
  • You’ll want to study and know what it means to be “up to code.”
  • You will likely have to hire an inspector.
  • Consulting an attorney might be necessary as you read over all legal documents between you and your contractor.

Buying a House

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Pros of Buying a House

Here’s a list of the benefits associated with purchasing an existing home:

  • You don’t have to worry about temporary housing or wait times. You can move in right after closing.
  • If you’re on a budget, you can make upgrades to the house more slowly.
  • Existing homes are likely in established neighborhoods where you know your neighbors as well as property values.
  • You’ll often spend less than a new build demands. On average, a single-family house will run you around $225,000.
  • Sometimes when you build, you can’t truly envision the home. You might even be dissatisfied with the finished product. When buying a house, you can see your furniture and family in it.
  • You’ll likely have established landscaping and trees.
  • You can flip the home if you’re looking for profit.

If you’re looking for help with remodeling or flipping, check out Rise Construction’s Houston home renovation services!

Cons of Buying a House

Here’s a list of the cons centered on buying an older/existing house:

  • Sometimes it’s after you’ve made your purchase that you discover its quirks.
  • You might become annoyed or financially strained while making foreseen and unforeseen upgrades. Maintenance can be an issue. Upkeep is a huge factor to consider.
  • When you buy an existing home, you’re stuck with the layout, unless you’re looking to make significant structural changes/additions.
  • You might have to spend a great deal of money to decorate the home with modern style. If the home is older, you may find yourself removing wallpaper and the like.
  • Home insurance can be higher on a pre-owned house.
  • Energy bills tend to be higher on older homes.

Upfront Cost of Building a House vs. Buying

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When considering building a house vs. buying a house, understand that overall, building a home may grow to be more expensive than you originally planned. Major renovations can get out of hand. You will probably save money if you opt to purchase an existing home that you largely appreciate.

On average, you’ll spend about $65,000 more on your new build vs. a pre-existing house. Upfront costs will be higher when building instead of buying.

Maintenance Cost of Building a Home vs. Buying

As you decide whether to buy or build a home, remember that new builds will often cost you less in upkeep. Many appliances and systems will be under warranty for at least a decade. So, if something breaks, it’s probably still covered.

With buying a home, you never know what you might run into. Older homes tend to have some quirks and hidden issues. Also, a pre-existing home may need both short-term and long-term upgrades.

Landscaping Cost of Building vs. Buying a Home

Don’t forget to consider landscaping when thinking about building a house vs. buying. This is a factor that people tend to forget about initially. You’ll want to think about creating a lawn, planting shrubs, and patiently waiting for young trees to grow.

A lawn and landscape will take money and time. On the flip side, when buying a home, you’ll likely discover established trees and mature yards already in place.

Decision Time

You might still be asking – should I buy or build a house? Carefully review the main criteria above. The ultimate decision depends on you, your family’s needs, and your budget. There’s no short answer or easy formula.

For assistance and a quote today, contact Rise Construction today!

Quick Guide to City of Houston Building Code for Homeowners

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You’ve had your eyes on a home remodel or renovation for years, and you’re finally prepared to choose a contractor and move forward. Before you begin, do some quick research on the City of Houston Building Code, so you know which of your construction or remodeling expectations are reasonable to expect.

With a basic understanding of the Houston, Texas building code, you can avoid planning and permitting issues. Avoiding these roadblocks can save you time and money, and help facilitate the timely completion of your project.

Don’t be afraid to solicit help from the number of construction companies in Houston that you might hire for your project. After all, most project managers will have a firm knowledge of what the Houston building code enforcement representatives look for before granting a certificate of occupancy.

When Do You Need a Permit?

Acquiring a permit requires you to spend additional time and money on planning and paperwork.For some small projects, you may question whether you really need a permit.

According to the City of Houston building code, you will need a permit for the majority of your projects. The most common examples of construction that requires a permit includes:

  • Remodeling Projects – Any remodeling tasks beyond superficial changes like painting walls or putting up wallpaper will require a permit.
  • Construction on a New or Existing Building – Any new residential or new commercial construction or remodeling will require a permit.
  • Repairs – Repairs to structural damage will typically require a permit. There are some exceptions for shingle replacements. See our previous article – Do I need a permit to replace my roof?

Do You Need a License to Get a Permit?

You won’t normally need a license to get a structural permit in Houston. However, there are exceptions for Houston roofing repair jobs. Roofing contractors are required to go through the Voluntary Registration Program to obtain the license needed for a roofing permit.

The applicant will need a certificate to prove they have comprehensive general liability insurance. The policy must cover the minimum limits of $500k for death or bodily injury and $500k per occurrence of property damage. If you need additional information, contact the Houston Permitting Center at (832)-394-9494.

To play it safe, ask your Houston residential construction contractor for advice or permitting help.

Have the Right Documentation

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The nature of your construction or remodeling job will determine which documents you need. We will cover three common documentation scenarios that will help you comply with the Houston, Texas building code.

Documents for Residential Repairs

You won’t need to submit plans for a lot of small repair jobs within your home. However, according to the City of Houston building code, you will need to submit the following if applicable:

Documents for Residential Re-Roofing

As discussed above, roofing and re-roofing sometimes warrants extraordinary building code enforcement. Fortunately, you won’t need to submit building plans for simple repairs or re-roofing unless the project requires rafter or joist replacement.

The minimum level of documentation for re-roofing is as follows:

Documents for Other Permits

The following information and forms are needed when permits are required for your residential construction or repairs.

  • Houston City Building Permit Application
  • Declaration in Support of Building Permit Application Form for either:
  • Evacuations and Fill Worksheet
  • Plans that comply with the 2015 International Energy Conservation Code, or that offer ResCheck or IC3 Compliance Reports.
  • Two copies of non-erasable, legible plans that include
    • Survey and plot plan
    • complete building plans that include
      • wall sections
      • floor, ceiling and roof framing plans
      • foundation plan
      • engineer’s seal when necessary

Trust Rise Construction for City of Houston Building Code Compliance

In many cases, a simple job turns into stacks of paperwork and red tape. Let the experts at Rise Construction help you plan your upcoming vision so that it complies with Houston building code from the start.

Our Houston home renovation team provides your family with a 100% satisfaction guarantee. Our on-site project manager will work to turn your vision into a reality, and exceed expectations at every step.

Call us at (281) 817-7160 or contact us online today for a quote.

Commercial Building Renovation Process – Office Renovation Checklist

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The commercial construction process can be very overwhelming. If you take the steps to understand the process, set realistic benchmarks, and remain organized, you can master the commercial property refurbishment process and turn your vision into reality.

For help from local experts, consult the Rise Construction commercial construction company in Houston today! Our experienced team delivers only the highest-quality service.

Stick with us for commercial building and remodeling tips (along with a checklist). The Rise Construction experts will start with the planning process and carry you all the way to post-construction. This guide will give you a better idea of what to expect throughout your project.

What Is Commercial Building Construction?

Commercial construction involves the building or remodeling of structures for leasing or selling to private businesses. These structures can be office buildings, licensed practitioner offices, medical centers, retail shopping centers, etc.

If it’s time to remodel your commercial space, you’re probably feeling excited and anxious. You might be launching a new business venture or expanding your current location. We’re thrilled for you! Commercial property refurbishment is a big step toward growing your company and improving the value you provide to customers or internal stakeholders.

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Sometimes, your business needs a simple facelift. Other times, it’s more in-depth than that. Maybe you’re seeking an interior redesign, an exterior makeover, or both. Whatever lies ahead, we’ll help you get the perspective you need with these steps towards constructing a commercial building.

If you’re looking to renovate soon, use Rise Construction’s Houston office build-out services. We believe in your vision, the process, and our ability to deliver what you’ve dreamed of.

Commercial Building/Office Renovation Checklist

Let’s have a closer look at each item that your office building renovation checklist should include.

1. Planning

Planning is number one for a reason. You must choose a site in some cases, which can prove to be a challenge based on your industry and goals. Once you’ve chosen a location and understand its limitations, it’s time to determine a budget.

You should introduce your architect to your general contractor early in the process; everyone needs to be on the same page. If possible, look for a company that specializes in the complete commercial building process – from designing to building and everything in between.

2. Design

The more detailed the design, the better. If you and your team paint a clear picture of what you desire, then fewer miscommunications and mistakes will occur. Your design will also help you throughout the planning and permitting process. All building and redesign plans must comply with the City of Houston Building Code.

Tip: Contract documents will be pulled together. You’ll see a projected timeline and set costs. Read over this material carefully. Before you sign off on any designs understand what you’re signing.

3. Pre-Construction

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The commercial building renovation process continues with you (the owner) giving the contractor notice informing them that they may proceed. It’s then that vendors and commercial subcontractors make their bids on your project materials and required services. At this point, all insurance and permit documents should be collected.

You can also prepare for a site investigation. This occurs so that you may avoid obstacles down the road, such as environmental hazards and other complications. The very soil that you’re opting to build on must be tested.

4. Procuring Materials and Confirming Projections

Your general contractor will then make all purchases necessary. All the labor, materials, and equipment needed should be in line and ready to go. It’s important that purchase orders are presented. These should reflect products that correspond to your set specifications and all initially agreed-upon prices. Avoid making oversights, because product and material details can quickly add up in commercial projects.

5. Construction and Post-Construction

We end this building renovation checklist with advice regarding the construction itself. There comes a time when all foundation, electric, and plumbing must undergo and pass a completion inspection. You can expect a “project punch-out” list. This is the step in your commercial building process where the fine-tuning occurs. Attention will be given to minor issues that haven’t met contract specifications, and adjustments will be made.

After every single requirement has been met your architect will provide a certificate of substantial completion and a final inspection will then take place.

Dominate Your Office Renovation with Rise Construction

Let Rise Construction be a part of your building process! We’d love to help your vision come to life. If you’re looking for a smooth, full-service experience, our construction company in Houston can help.

Contact Rise Construction for a quote today! 100% satisfaction with your commercial building renovation process is our number one goal.

Do I Need a Permit to Build a Deck in Houston?

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Working with a construction company in Houston to add a deck to your home is a great way to increase its value and create the opportunity to spend more time outside.

There are some important things you should know about building a deck in Houston before you decide to do it. If you’re asking yourself – is a permit required to build a deck in Houston? – this article is for you.

Do You Need a Permit to Build a Deck in Houston?

Harris County explains that all development requires a permit to build legally. According to the county engineering department: “Development means any man-made change to improved or unimproved real estate, including but not limited to buildings or other structures, mining, dredging, filling, grading, paving, excavation or drilling operations or storage of equipment or materials.”

However, according to the Houston Public Works Department, “Permits shall not be required for… uncovered wood decks, accessory to a one- or two-family dwelling that are not more than 30 inches above grade.”

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Ultimately, you will need a permit to build a deck in Houston if your deck will be covered or higher than 30 inches. The Public Works department has a standard drawing available for use while building an elevated residential deck that will be attached to your home.

Do I Need a Permit to Rebuild a Deck?

If you are rebuilding a deck in Houston, the extent of your work will determine whether you need a permit.

The Harris County Engineering Department states that “Permits are not required under the following situation: routine maintenance and repairs to existing structure; residential accessory buildings or structures not located in A or V Zones with floor areas of less than one hundred fifty (150) square feet.”

So, depending on whether your rebuild is light enough to be considered a repair to an existing structure will determine if a permit is appropriate. If you’re doing foundation work for your deck, you’ll likely need a permit from the Houston Permitting Center.

Required Information for a Deck Permit in Houston

If you’re applying for a deck permit in Houston, you’ll need some specific information to complete an application. What you’ll need to complete includes:

  • Residential permit application
  • Site plan
  • Engineered drawings
  • Fill affidavit

Requirements may change slightly depending on whether your home is in a flood zone or not.

Can I File a Houston Deck Permit on My Own?

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Do you need a professional engineer or contractor to file a deck permit, or can you do it on your own? According to the City of Houston, a structural building permit may be purchased directly by the owner of a house or property, or by an agent or a contractor. Thus, you do have the option to file for a permit on your own.

If you’re ready to get a permit to build a deck in Houston, you can start by filling out a building permit application form.

Obtain a project number from the city’s Permit Office. Then, you must verify your address and have your project evaluated. Finally, your plan will be reviewed. Once it’s approved, you’ll want to take a few more steps before you build, including getting utility releases and an optional certificate of compliance.

Where to Get a Permit to Build a Deck?

In Houston, to get a permit to build a deck you can apply to the Houston Permitting Center.

How Much Is a Building Permit for a Deck?

The price of getting a permit to build a deck in Houston depends on the valuation of your project. If your project costs between 1 cent and $7,000 the permit fee is $39.91. It increases from there as the cost of your deck increases.

How Long Does It Take to Get a Deck Permit in Houston?

Houston uses a one-stop process for building permits. If you have all your materials completed and ready, many building and improvement plans can be reviewed, and have permits issued within hours (the review time takes less than 30 minutes).

If you’re planning to add a deck onto your home or want to make other structural changes, and you want to know how to draw deck plans for the permit, consider using a professional company with lots of experience, like Rise Construction.

We are a design and build firm in Houston that can handle your planning and building needs. Our expert contractors can guide you through the administrative and permitting process, then get to work building the home of your dreams.

Get in touch with Rise today if you have any questions or you’re ready to get started.

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