Cool Exterior Colors and Home Cooling Costs

Cool Exterior ColorsEven a cold-weather state can have its share of sweltering Summer days.  The air conditioner must work overtime sometimes during the Dog Days of Summer and the energy bills border on astronomical.  If you want to give your A/C and your wallet a break, it seems the only way to cool off is to jump into a pool, or go to a movie theatre or spend the day at the mall.

Passive cooling

Most people are aware that there are ways to keep the house cooler in the Summer besides just running the air conditioning continually.  The use of blinds on the inside windows helps keep the hot sun from infiltrating the inside of the house through the window panes.  Outside shutters may be closed and even planting large shade trees will help.  The use of light-colored roofing materials instead of dark-colored, or abandoning asphalt shingles in favor of light-colored natural stone, will quickly stop the roof from drawing the heat like a magnet to your rooftop and is beneficial to keeping your house several degrees cooler as well.  After all, you shuck off all your dark-colored duds and reach for those white and tropical colors during the warm-weather days, so your house should follow the same principle.  All the methods for thwarting the heat mentioned above are examples of passive cooling. Continue reading

How to Increase Home Value

Add a Sunroom

Add a Sunroom

If you want to increase your home’s value it is not always just about “keeping up with the Joneses” but enhancing the exterior of your home.  Sometimes, even though your home’s exterior is in perfect shape, and the landscaping is superb, there is always that something extra that can be added for improved curb appeal and increased value to your home.

A trending word these days is “repurposing” – taking what you already have and making it into something better.   Remodeling your home is akin to repurposing it, only you don’t turn it into another object, just a better version of the prior home … think of it as upgrading.

Few tweaks

Sometimes the smallest addition makes the biggest impact.  For example, a new, beautiful wood front door with an ornate stained glass inset could “make” the front of your home.  Likewise, plopping a porch pot with a bounty of seasonal flowers near a two-seater bench by that front door will most definitely lend ambiance to your home. A rocking chair on the porch adds a touch of hominess and says “welcome friends” that sometimes supersedes any type of remodeling efforts. Continue reading