New Home Day 1 2015 Builders Blitz

  Well we got the ball rolling today in Fullers Landing.  At the crack of dawn my framing crew was busy working on the new home for the Ho-Maw Family.  As we worked through the day things went pretty well for he most part.  We ended up short a few floor joist but Carter Lumber made it happened and had the lumber to us in less then an hour from phone call to delivery, thanks to them for the special service.  By the end of the day we were finished framing the first floor and had all the walls built for the second floor.  The trusses were handed up to the appropriate levels and some were even set and fastened.  Some sheathing was placed and work was started on the roof.  Our plumber, Current Mechanical made it into the new home to start the layout and run some of the drain work.  If all things go well tomorrow we should have the roof completed as well as the heating and cool, which will be done by JF Miller.  With a weather forecast that is calling for rain lets hope it doesn’t last long and get too soggy.  All involved have been very team oriented which is much appreciated, with […]

Habitat For Humanity Builders Blitz 2015

Habitat for Humanity was founded by Millard and Linda Fuller in 1976. Through the hard work of volunteers, community groups and churches the organization has built or repaired 1 million homes Worldwide. In Fort Wane, Indiana we are doing our part to extend the mission of Habitat for Humanity by building new homes for those that need a hand up. The new homes are built for no profit and a zero interest loan is given to the new owner. The money that is paid back is used to fund the next project. The revolving fund continues to build to help additional families get a new home. All potential owner applies for the opportunity to be a part of the process. The families must volunteer their time to either help with the home they will move into or others in the program. The neighborhood in Fort Wayne, Fullers Landing, is really something special in the Habitat for Humanity organization. Being in the suburbs is something a little unique, in the times past they would build the homes in areas that didn’t have much potential for the real estate to appreciate. Mixed in with other new built market priced homes will give […]

Lighting Your New Home

Thomas Edison began serious research into developing a practical incandescent lamp in 1878. Edison filed his first patent application for “Improvement In Electric Lights” on 14 October 1878. After many experiments, first with carbon in the early 1880s and then with platinum and other metals, in the end Edison returned to a carbon filament. The first successful test was on 22 October 1879, and lasted 13.5 hours. Edison continued to improve this design and by 4 November 1879, filed for a US patent for an electric lamp using “a carbon filament or strip coiled and connected … to platina contact wires”. Currently it is quite difficult to find a typical light bulb for a new home, especially in wattages over 40. The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 was designed to implement sweeping changes to energy policies in the United States. The stated mission of the act is “to move the United States toward greater energy independence and security, to increase the production of clean renewable fuels, to protect consumers, to increase the efficiency of products, buildings, and vehicles, to promote research on and deploy greenhouse gas capture and storage options, and to improve the energy performance of the […]

It Starts With a Good Foundation

When building a new home the foundation is placed first, this is so important to be done correctly because the balance of how the house finishes off will be effected. The common types of foundations are the slab on grade, a crawl space and a basement, or a combination of the three. In Indiana the slab is the most economical choice. A trench is dug below the frost line, our area that is 3’ deep. Any loose soil is removed by hand with a shovel and foam insulation is placed on the side of the trench, then concrete is used to fill the trench, this is known as the footing. While still wet stakes are placed into the footer to fasten the forms once the footers have cured. Forms are fastened and the center of this formed space is filled with stone or gravel to prepare for the plumbing and heating and cooling contractors. I have been questioned many times about the repair of any future plumbing or duct work under the slab. Yes it is possible it may need done, however, my experience has been the cost of a crawl space or a basement far exceeds the cost of […]

Just Add Water

One amazing building product is concrete. Concrete is a mix of cement, sand, stone and water, and then mixed into a paste. Many people confuse the difference between cement and concrete, concrete is like a cake mix and cement is the flour. The Romans invented concrete over 2100 years ago; they revolutionized the building of large structures. Today’s advances in production processes and quality control of materials produce a better, stronger mix then back in the day. The alternate products other than straight portland cement create performance mixes the offer better finishing characteristics as well as the opportunity to use recycled products. Two of the most common cementitious products are slag cement and fly ash. According to the Slag Cement Associations web site, slag cement has been used in concrete projects in the United States for over a century. The replacement of the typical cement with slag cement offers some different performance and finishing properties such as a lighter color, better workability, higher compressive and flexural strength and improved resistance to chemicals. The Portland Cement Association reveals that fly ash is a by-product of burning pulverized coal in electrical generation. It is unburned residue collected on mechanical or electrostatic separators. […]

From The Ground Up 3

To continue the discussion of single site development…. In our past postings we went over information on a septic system, water well, entrance drive and subdivision of the property. The last few items to consider and be aware of prior to purchasing a property to place a new home is the subsoil conditions and proximity to electricity and gas services. Are other homes in close proximity to the site being considered and are utility poles lining the county road. If the answer is yes to one or both questions it is a good chance power is accessible. Most power poles will have the utility companies tag fastened to the pole, take down the information and contact the company. Discuss your project including the size of the home and the approximate distance from their services. Sometimes there is a charge to make the connection and will need paid prior to hook up. Gas services are buried underground so markings will need located and a call will need made to the company. Ask around and call the local gas company that may service the territory. If no markings are found, natural gas may not be available and liquid propane may need considered. […]

From the Ground up part 2

In continuation of the discussion on building on bare ground, here are some additional items to consider. Typically a property can only have one residence located on the parcel. If a home is currently located on a property and there is space for an additional new home a subdivision will need to be made. One of the key items to consider is whether or not the property currently has a mortgage or lien. Most times this is tied into the legal description of the parcel and if it is subdivided would need a partial release to be sold or gifted. Every county in Indiana is a little different on how they handle the subdivision. Some allow many while others are very fussy and only allow minimal subdivisions. A recommendation would be to contact the local county planning department to discuss the potential new home building site. Many times the other county departments like the Highway, Health, and Surveyor will need to review the subdivision. The County Highway department will assist in the driveway placement onto a county road. They look at the location of where the drive will connect to the road to be sure it has safe sight lines […]

From The Ground Up

Many clients want to live in the country. The confining space of a neighborhood is a bit suffocating for some. It always sounds exciting and pretty cool to have acreage and spread out. The process to turn a bare piece of ground in to a home building site is not complicated but does need well thought out. Most parcels do not have public sewer available, so step one would be to investigate a private sewage disposal system or septic system. Typically the ground would be tested by a soil scientist. This person would either take core samples with a special prod road to a depth of about 5 feet or have a backhoe dig a pit and remove samples from the side of the hole. Once the scientist writes a report on the soil findings it is submitted to the county sanitarian or qualified designer to determine the criteria for the septic system. If the soil types are questionable, very, very high clay content or a very high water table a septic field may not be able to be installed. Another important item is the domestic water supply. In North East Indiana we will drill or pound in a water […]

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