Choosing the Right Roofing Materials Can Reduce the Cost of Replacement

Do you know the difference between various types of roof shingles and materials? Aside from just aesthetics, there are many functions of different types of roof that should be evaluated when deciding what’s right for your home. Keep in mind, also, that most roofs are replaced – or at least repaired – every ten years. By carefully choosing your home’s roofing material, you can reduce the cost of replacement. In the long run, you’ll use less building material, fill up less landfill space with discarded material, and put less demand on our natural resources.  Here’s a simple breakdown from Roof Genius of a little bit about some of the most popular roofing composites out on the market today.

Composition Shingles are a good choice for a clean look at an affordable price. Higher quality versions made from asphalt or fiberglass shingles offer a more durable option and may be available with recycled content.

Slate actual shingle-like slivers of rock – is another roofing material that shows up on more upscale homes. Although slate is an expensive choice, it offers a very natural look and can be laid out in a variety of patterns.

Concrete tile is now a roofing material. Shingles, simulated wood shakes, lighter-weight tiles and concrete panels are being manufactured from a variety of fiber-reinforced cement products. Some are coated with plastics, enamels, or thin metals, and some contain recycled material. Although the products themselves are not yet recyclable, they are a good choice for durability and resource efficiency.

Wood Shakes offer a natural look with a lot of character. Because of variations like color, width, thickness, or cut of the wood, no two shake roofs will ever be the same.

Clay roofing tile is a good choice for homes with a southwestern, Italian, or Spanish Mission design, or even for homes with a modern, clean look.

Metal roofs are coming back into vogue. In the late 1700s, zinc, copper, and lead were the most popular materials used for roofing – such famous historic buildings as the Washington Monument and Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello have metal roofs.

Hot Mop roofs are mostly seen in commercial applications and hot-mopped asphalt roofing is sometimes applied to flat or semi-flat residential roofs that have good access and proper drainage.

Click here to read the entire client from Roof Genius.

Epa Cracks down on Energy Star Guidelines

From the Environmental Protection Agency:
April 19, 2010>

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is announcing new, more rigorous guidelines for new homes that earn the Energy Star label. Compared to the current Energy Star guidelines, the new requirements will make qualified new homes at least 20 percent more efficient than homes built to the 2009 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) – slashing utility bills for qualified homes by 15 percent compared to IECC code-built homes. The updated requirements will ensure that the government’s Energy Star label continues to deliver a significant increase in energy efficiency over homes that are built to code and standard builder business practices. These guidelines will go into effect in January 2011, although some builders may choose to adopt the new requirements earlier.

Key elements of the new guidelines for Energy Star qualified homes include:

· A Complete Thermal Enclosure System: Comprehensive air sealing, properly insulated assemblies and high-performance windows enhance comfort, improve durability and reduce utility bills.

· Quality Installed Complete Heating and Cooling Systems: High-efficiency heating and cooling systems engineered to deliver more comfort, moisture control and quiet operation, and equipped with fresh-air ventilation to improve air quality.

· A Complete Water Management System: Because Energy Star homes offer a tightly-sealed and insulated building envelope, a comprehensive package of flashing, moisture barriers, and heavy-duty membrane details is critical to help keep water from roofs, walls, and foundations for improved durability and indoor air quality.

· Efficient Lighting and Appliances: Look for Energy Star qualified lighting, appliances and fans helping to further reduce monthly utility bills and provide high-quality performance.

· Third-Party Verification: Energy Star qualified homes require verification by independent Home Energy Raters who conduct a comprehensive series of detailed inspections and use specialized diagnostic equipment to test system performance.

Click here for more information.

Usgbc’s Green Campus Initiative Making Strides

Most of us, especially those who are design/build conscious, are aware of the importance of incorporating sustainable design into as many aspects of our homes construction as possible. But exactly how much time and how many resources are being poured into creating sustainable schools? The U.S. Green Build Council’s “Green Campus Initiative” is spearheading the task of creating standards of practice for making more sustainable educational institutions across the board.

Visit the USGBC for more information.

Hai Unveils Latest Surveillance Technology

Some news from HAI:

Home Automation, Inc., the leading manufacturer of integrated automation and security products since 1985, announced recently that it is developing a Wireless Driveway Sensor.

The Wireless Driveway Sensor uses Earth’s magnetic field to detect moving metal objects (such as automobiles) that pass by it.  The unobtrusive Wireless Driveway Sensor can be used to turn on outdoor lighting when approaching, or used to alert homeowners when a visitor has entered the driveway.  Since the device is wireless, there is no digging or underground cable required.  The Wireless Driveway Sensor has two unique mounting options via the included stake or post/wall mount.

“This is a great value-add product for larger projects”, explains HAI President, Jay McLellan.  “Installation is easy for our dealers, and the additional benefit of showing driveway surveillance video when a car enters the driveway is an often requested feature.”

The Wireless Driveway Sensor is part of HAI’s wireless security product line, which requires the use of an HAI 64 Zone Wireless Receiver. The Wireless Driveway Sensor is expected to be available during the 2nd quarter of 2010.

Photo Credit: Diamond Driveways

Spring is in the Air

Feeling a bit congested and cough-y? It could be because of patchy air ducts , according to Energy Star.

The consumer standard for energy efficiency says that a duct system that is properly sealed and insulated can make your home more comfortable, energy efficient and healthy. That’s right, the asthma and allergy problems you thought were due to outdoor pollutants may actually be coming from simple home and garden dander entering your duct system. ES also noted on their “Green Up” page that making improvements to your duct system can protect the environment by enhancing indoor air quality which, in turn, preserves outdoor air.

To improve a poorly functioning duct system, ES suggests homeowners look for holes, tears, and other signs of leaking ducts and seal them using mastic or metal (foil) tape (never use ‘duct tape,’ as it is not long-lasting). Insulate all the ducts you can access including those in the attic, crawlspace, unfinished basement or garage. For more energy-saving tips, Visit Energy Star.

Lots More to a Floor than Meets the Eye

As one of the two most important rooms in your home when it comes to adding value, the bathroom is a great place to remodel. This space, along with the kitchen, is a room that potential buyers often look at very closely when deciding whether they’re going to close on a home. Therefore, if you are thinking about remodeling your bathroom, there are a few things that you will want to consider. Financial Web has put together a great list of tips to help you remodel your bathroom and add value.

One particularly interesting tip we found:

The flooring that you put in your bathroom can do a lot as far as adding value to your home. Flooring can give your bathroom an elegant look or it can make it look bad. Put some thought into what you want your floor to look like. In a bathroom, you now have several options for the floor. With the emergence of many vinyl products, you can achieve a realistic look without the cost. However, if you want to add value to the house, your best bet is still tile. Using ceramic, porcelain, or another natural stone tile is the best way to go for the bathroom.

Vinyl, laminate, or carpet does not add any value to your house as they are considered floor covering. They are not permanently attached. With tile, you are permanently attaching it to the subfloor and therefore it is considered flooring. You can do the same thing with hardwood, but hardwood in a bathroom is not ideal. With as much water as you will get on the floor, you will usually run into problems. With tile, you can do a pattern or alternate colors. It can create a look for your bath that no other type of floor can.

Visit FinWeb for the complete list.


Photo Credit: Furniture Fashion

2012 Home Design Trends Include Mixing Exterior Materials

Design Trends

Now that the weather is warming up and it’s prime time to start thinking about home improvement projects, home design trends are getting plenty of attention. There are a number of interesting trends in the home design industry right now, ranging from materials to amenities to space planning, and more. Take a look at some of the top home design trends, below.

  • Realistic space allocation- Most families use rooms like the kitchen much more than the formal dining room or parlor, so homeowners are building or remodeling accordingly, creating large kitchen spaces that make room for everything from food prep and storage to homework and entertaining.
  • Multi-generational living and universal design- Many families are returning to the traditional living arrangement in which parents, children, and grandparents are all under the same roof, requiring features like multiple master suites and more communal spaces. Aging-in-place and universal design features are also popular, allowing people to stay in their homes even when their mobility or health needs change.
  • Mixing materials- Gone are cookie-cutter facades; homeowners are personalizing the architecture of their homes with a mix of materials, incorporating wood shakes, siding and cultured stone into the exterior design. At Bordner, we offer a number of services to help you add style and function to your home, from stone and stucco to windows, doors, and siding.

What exterior home design trends are you interested in implementing in your Kansas City home?

Source: Building Online, Photo: Houzz

Fraudulent Roofers Possibly Hitting Kansas City Metro

Last month’s fraud case may still be a current threat: A February article from reports that impostor roofers have been making door-to-door rounds though the Kansas City Metro area informing homeowners that they’ve spotted extensive roof damage on their homes. One the unexpected homeowner agrees to hire the roofer for repair services, the contractor agrees to work with the insurance company to get the damage fixed.

There are about a dozen of these insurance claims being investigated by the National Insurance Crime Bureau for fraud in the Kansas City metro. Click here to read the entire article.

Contact Bordner Today to Request an Estimate

Bordner Gives You the Gift of a Renewed Home. A Kansas City home improvement leader for more than 20 years, Bordner scores a customer satisfaction rating of an incredible 9.78 on a scale of 1 – 10, compared to a national industry average of only 6.29. More than 40,000 clients across the Kansas City Metro area have learned to trust their commercial and residential roofing, siding, and window installation projects to Bordner.

Click here to fill out an Estimate Request form or call (816) 358 – 2102.

Lighten Up Your Landscape!

There’s that beautiful bit of time in the spring and summer after the sun has set when those flowers in your garden are at their fragrant peak and the air has cooled down to a comfortable temperature. This is an opportune time for highlighting the foliage you’ve spent the past few months cultivating. Below are some tips from for installing Feature and Safety lights in your yard to make the most of those perfect Summer evenings.

Feature Lights

  • When you have an exquisite array of lush garden flowers, plants, bushes and trees, you want to enjoy them and show them at their best both day and night. When planning your garden lighting, consider areas of interest that may be especially dramatic at night. Tall trees or hedges, for example, become impressive and mysterious with a spotlight (placed in the ground facing up towards the sky) at the base. Often areas of low foliage or large spreading leaves will look enchanting with a globe light hidden amongst them. Globe lights cast a soft sphere of accent light without drawing attention to the hardware.

Guiding Lights

  • A commonsense use of garden lighting is to illuminate walkways, protecting your delicate landscaping plants as well as preventing accidents. Styles appropriate for this kind of lighting include entrance or tier lighting. Both are a series of small shades atop a foot-long pole that cast light down and away, creating a wide circle of light on the ground. Solar-powered lighting is a practical and easy to install, giving effective for delineating a driveway or path. Art Perez, consultant lighting design expert for landscaping, suggests that although solar landscape lights are inexpensive and easy to install, you may not be as pleased with the light output. Perez suggests setting the lights in a southern exposure, as other locations will not fully charge the lights’ power cells.

Photo Credit: Appealing Curb Design