The Essential “S’s” of Home Window Selection

We are fortunate to live in an area of the U.S. that offers some of the best views on the Eastern Seaboard. Indeed, life along the Chesapeake comes complete with many visual amenities from our tiny town inlets, to our bucolic farmlands, to our more expansive Bay views. (Photo courtesy of Loewen Windows)

This is one of the reasons why if you are building or buying a residence here, you will want to be certain that the windows you choose meet the criteria for the three essential “S’s” of window selection: Safety, Savings and Style.

Window Primer

Before we get into our three “S’s,” perhaps a brief overview of window basics would be helpful.

First of all, window frames are generally made of wood, aluminum, fiberglass or vinyl. Each coming with their own sets of pros and cons. The most common windows today are made of wood or vinyl. Wood is found especially in older homes and remains a highly desirable choice because most homeowners feel they just look better. With proper installation, they also help insulate the home and perform reasonably well in the long-term, if they are maintained regularly. Vinyl has become the more popular standard for modern homes because it is less expensive than wood. While they are low-to-no maintenance and energy efficient, vinyl does not get high marks in the longevity department, so over the lifetime of a home, you can expect to replace them. Meanwhile, fiberglass windows are super-insulators and have been steadily gaining in popularity in the new-build market over the last decade. Fiberglass is also known for its low thermal expansion rating and its versatility—which allows for more design options. High-performance aluminum is also a contender in the efficiency category as it is said to exceed environmental standards for thermal performance. Like fiberglass it is also, low maintenance, more economical than wood and is highly versatile from a design standpoint offering a wide array of finishes to complement any décor. (Photo courtesy of Loewen Windows)

You will also have options when it comes to glass. Single-pane windows are basically obsolete and should only be used in the most temperate of climates. Double-pane windows are considered standard and feature two sealed panes to reduce heat loss. Variations are available to increase the level of insulation, including a “low-E” glass option that has an invisible metal coating on one surface. Windows that contain inert gases like argon are available in double- and triple-paned styles providing maximum insulation for homes in colder climates.

Safety

While those million-dollar views are highly desirable, they are not worth the price tag if your windows are not structurally sound and built in a manner that has your safety in mind for years to come. We all know the impact an imposing Nor’ Easter can have on properties in vulnerable bayside communities, so safety and protection from the elements is key.

It is wise to provide for any scenario Mother Nature throws out there by investing in impact resistant windows and reinforced storm windows. These types of windows offer reinforced framing and thicker, heavy-duty double-pane glass. Other features of impact-resistant windows include larger window locks for increased strength and durability, interlocking sash and meeting rails and fully extruded lift rails. (Photo courtesy of Loewen Windows)

 

When we think of safety, of course, we are also talking about protection from home invasions and break-ins. Certain window styles, for example, casement windows, have an edge when it comes to security over single and double-hung window styles. Certain window glazes also provide a greater level of security. These important aspects should always be a central part of any window selection discussion with your builder.

Savings

Fortunately, many of the features that make windows safe also make them highly energy efficient, so over the life of your home you are likely to recoup the money spent in investing in the most efficient windows. (Photo courtesy of Loewen Windows)

So how do you know what you are getting when it comes to energy savings? There is a rating system associated with window types; this is called the window’s “R-Value.” This rating runs from an R-1 rating for a clear, single-paned window, to triple-paned windows with an R-Value range of 5 to 7. The higher the rating the better the efficiency factor.

Another variable in the rating system, is the “U-Rating” associated with the rate at which a window conducts non-solar heat flow. In this case, the lower the U-Factor, the more energy efficient the window is. So look for these ratings when shopping or ask when consulting with your builder about your window selections.

When in doubt, always look for or ask whether the product is Energy Star-rated. Tax credits for consumers who purchase Energy Star-rated materials and products remain in effect at least through 2021 under the Bi-Partisan Budget Act of 2018.

Style

Okay, so now we come to what many consider the fun part of selecting their home’s windows—style!

While basic single and double-hung windows will always have a place in home building, adding in some other options, can help turn an ordinary façade into a home with depth and character. (Photo courtesy of Loewen Windows)

Bay, bow, casement, sliding and arched styles are just a few of the ways that homeowners are injecting personality into their abodes with window options. With today’s flexibility in materials, letting the sun shine in can be an opportunity to personalize and customize just the look you’re going for.

Have you traveled abroad and gained inspiration from the Palladian architecture of Italy? This window option helps put the word “great” in great room every time!

Are you fortunate enough to have a Bay view? Well, then a floor-to-ceiling option may be just the way to show it off. (Photo courtesy of Loewen Windows)

Speaking of the Bay, how about a bay window? This charming option that offers a series of three connected panes and sometimes an added inset, helps a smaller room look bigger, lighter and brighter and turns an ordinary eating area or breakfast nook into your own “pride of place” viewing spot. Bow windows offer similar advantages but offer a curved window line. (Photo courtesy of Loewen Windows)

What about making a simple statement using a series of small arched windows for a wonderfully romantic bedroom effect? How dreamy! (Photo copyright Lisa J. Gotto)

Contact Lundberg Builders today and talk to our experts about what the windows of your dream home look like! Call 410-643-3334 or visit lundbergbuilders.com. Lundberg Builders, Inc. is located at 314 Main St., Stevensville, MD.

 

 

 

5 Ways to Bring More Hygge into Your Bedroom This Winter

So, what’s this word “hygge” all about? Hygge refers to a Danish lifestyle concept that dates back to 19th century Scandinavia. Pronounced “hoo-ga,” the Danes believe there is much to be gained by creating cozy living spaces and surroundings that speak to simpler and even smaller creature comforts. Think ski lodge-cool, soft-as-a-cotton-ball socks, and the comfort of warm and steamy beverages on our coldest winter days. These are all elements and examples of living “Hygge”.

Let’s see what happens when we apply this way of thinking to décor and design to our most basic retreat –the bedroom.

Play with Wall Texture

While plain drywall and standard art and shelving is practical,  adding features like wood beams and wood wall accents changes a functional room into a sanctuary space that can transport you to another place. Reset your “head space” button with warm woods interspersed with other textures like stone and toss in a fur throw for a completely enveloping experience and perhaps, a well-earned, long winter’s nap. (Photo credit: Yellowstone Traditions)

Choose a Fireplace as Your Focal Point

Technology and advancements in in-home heating make in-bedroom fireplaces more convenient than ever. It seems a shame NOT to add this feature as a room focal point that can be all at once posh and practical. Be sure to research which heat source is best for you: gas, wood or even electric. Remember, there are varying levels of convenience depending on which energy source you choose—as it can actually mean the difference between “sawing wood” and chopping it. (Photo credit: cornerfireplaceideas.com)

Add a Romantic Seating Area

Create a soothing mood and get comfy before you even hit the sheets, by allowing enough room in your floor plan for a cozy seating area for reading, meditating or just plain conversing—remember conversation? Add books, aroma therapy candles, wine—whatever adds to a relaxing space. The most progressive floor plans even allow space for a wine or mini fridge and wet bar, for those nights when breaking the Zen zone by leaving the room is just not an option. (Photo credit: Inspired By Love)

Layer in Comfort Under Foot

It wasn’t that long ago that bedrooms were bastions of wall-to-wall carpet pile, and with good reason—comfort and warmth. Choosing a warm hardwood for this room can be just as cozy and practical (a great choice for the allergy-prone) when you add the right area rug, and maybe even layer in more texture with a faux animal skin in winter. How deliciously Danish! (Photo credit: New Pacific Direct, Inc.)

Go For Glow

Never underestimate the influence lighting has on a room, especially bedroom lighting. While classic, task lighting is desired for dressing and reading purposes, it’s not the only lighting option you should consider for this room. A bedroom with a Hygge vibe will exude a warm glow. Fortunately, now there are more romantic wall-mounted options than ever—as well as, on-trend, boutique pendant lighting that helps create the ambient environment and feeling of well-being so important for Hygge living. (Photo ©2016 Lisa J. Gotto)

Want to bring that sense of “hygge” into an existing bedroom or have a new one designed with this concept in mind? Lundberg Builders are ready to help you create cozy interiors for the winter and all year-round with the custom touches and timeless details that make a house a home.

Create your wish list and contact Lundberg Builders today at 410-643-3334 or visit lundbergbuilders.com. Lundberg Builders, Inc. is located at 314 Main St., Stevensville, MD.

 

 

 

 

WATERFRONT CUSTOM HOME – QUEENSTOWN

Annapolis-based, Bohl Architects called on Lundberg Builders to provide the building expertise needed to deliver on the promise of the stunning architectural design for their client’s new custom home in Queenstown, Maryland.  At the heart of the design was the homeowner’s desire to maximize and capture the spectacular views of their incredible Wye River front property.

The 7500 square-foot 4-bedroom contemporary home boasts notable custom features that required a remarkable level of craftsmanship and construction precision to execute the project flawlessly like the elliptical transom windows shown here in the front foyer.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

With that goal leading the vision for the project, the home was designed with an open floor plan that seamlessly connects indoor spaces with the outdoors. We imagine it may be a challenge to concentrate with an office view like this!

The waterfront side (rear) of the home overlooks the Wye River.  Screened porches on both the upper floors off the bedrooms and on the 2nd main floor off the kitchen and living rooms are built for maximum enjoyment of the Chesapeake lifestyle.

The elegant and ingenious design of the lift and slide glass panel wall system used on the porch (far right) was a labor of love and great care. The wall tracks are strategically hidden within the ceiling beams to essentially disappear when recessed!

NEW HOUSE

Our sister company, 314 Design Studio Kitchen and Bath Designers, worked with the homeowners to design this exquisite kitchen with extensive custom-built cabinetry meticulously crafted by Lundberg Builders.

 

How to Create an Impressive-Looking Focal Wall For Your Living Room

The living room is perhaps the most important room in your home as this is where you get to relax and spend quality time with your family. Many people spend a lot of time and money to make sure that their living room looks great, and designers often recommend investing in the living room if their client is on a tight decorating budget. One of the best things that you can do to refresh your living room is to create a focal wall, and depending on your preferences, your accent wall can be functional or decorative, or even both. Here are 5 ways that you can create an impressive-looking focal wall for your living room.

Use reclaimed wood15232137_1240942792653022_9031474608958469836_n

Barn walls or reclaimed wood, both real and faux, is immensely popular in home décor. Not only does reclaimed wood give your focal wall a warm and weathered look, but using this material will not harm the environment as it is a sustainable material for construction or remodeling. Have your builder cover your accent wall with reclaimed wood for a rustic look.

Embed a fireplace

Nothing is as luxurious and comforting as a fireplace in a living room. If you don’t care for a wood burning fireplace, consider embedding an ethanol fireplace insert in your living room focal wall. This type of fireplace will bathe your living room in warmth without smoke, bad odors, or particles that can be harmful to your health. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the smoke from wood burning contains particles that can cause health problems such as a runny nose and bronchitis. As an ethanol fireplace only need bio-ethanol fuel to feed the fire, it’s safer for your health than a regular fireplace.GG Gas Fireplace

Built-in shelving

If you want to display your books and collectibles, consider having built-in shelving room as a living room accent wall. You can either paint the accent wall and all the shelving attached to it the same color, or paint the shelving in white and the accent wall a bright color, like yellow, turquoise, or red.

Mirrors

To make a stylish statement, paint your accent wall in a dark color, such as navy blue, then hang a few decorative wall mirrors once the paint dries. Try to find mirrors with golden accents to give your living room a touch of opulence.

These are just a few ways to create an impressive-looking focal wall for your living room. Any of these tips will give your living room that wow factor that your family and friends will surely love.

Wye River Pool House

Pool houses are the ultimate summer retreat for a backyard. They offer shade from the sun and can extend evening fun by bringing it indoors.

This pool house was designed and built by our team with the concept of mirroring the main homes “staycation” vibe. The homeowners wanted the ability to use the space year round for entertaining, and wanted to incorporate the views of the Wye River.  All of the main amenities are positioned for easy access to the pool and terrace and show extensive views of the river. 

Features include a cathedral ceiling, a 7 foot folding glass wall, a fire pit, a fireplace, compact kitchen and exterior cushioned seating.

The folding glass wall allows for the space to be opened, allowing those who wish to be indoor the ability to still be present to those outdoors. As a pool house should be, this space is an extension of the main home and definitely  has all that is needed for entertaining year round,

Click on the photo to enlarge. 

Lundberg Builders, Inc wins What’s Up Magazines Best Of Contest for 7th Consecutive Year

 

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LUNDBERG BUILDERS WINS WHAT’S UP? MAGAZINE’S BEST OF EASTERN SHORE 2017 READER’S POLL FOR ‘Custom HOME DESIGN/BUILDER & REMODELING’ FOR THE 7TH CONSECUTIVE YEAR

June 2, 2017 – Lundberg Builders, Inc., a leading full service design and build firm serving Anne Arundel County, Queen Anne’s County and the Eastern Shore of Maryland has won What’s Up? Magazine’s Best of Eastern Shore 2017 Reader’s Poll for ‘Home Design/Builder & Remodeling/Custom Building Services’. This is the company’s seventh consecutive year as the winner for this category. Lundberg Builders projects have been featured in numerous leading home building and design magazines including, Home and Design, Annapolis Home, Home, Builder/Architect, as well as The Washington Post. They have also recently won Best of Houzz in Design, a recognition from Annapolis Home Magazine and The Capital Readers Choice awards. The company has grown significantly each year—even through a recession when other companies were going out of business.

“We can not thank the community enough for their support and votes. We are both honored and humbled to receive this recognition for the 7th year. Our reputation is largely built on the confidence you place in our company. We strive to not meet your expectations, but to exceed them and being recognized by our local community shows us that we are doing just that.” – Brad

Every year What’s Up magazine asks their readers to cast their votes for the best businesses, law firms, spa services and medical professions by submitting an online ballot on whatsupmag.com or by mail. The winners will be honored at the annual Best Of Party held on June 15 at the Annapolis Lowes Hotel.

About Lundberg Builders
For more than 35 years Lundberg Builders has specialized in the finest quality custom residential work. From large mansions to renovations and home maintenance projects, our name and reputation is synonymous with award-winning designs, exceptional value, quality craftsmanship, and extraordinary customer care.

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What to look for in a home if you want to age in place

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention defines aging in place as “the ability to live in one’s own home and community safely, independently, and comfortably, regardless of age, income, or ability level.” Read on to learn of some ways that can allow you to stay safer in your home as you grow older.

Easier drawer pulls

Lever door handles are easier to turn than knobs. These are among one of the more inexpensive changes that can be added to your home.

Think flooring. Wood, linoleum, cork or even rubber flooring are good options because they are easier on joints and safer if a fall were to occur.

Being able to pull out shelves to reach exactly what you need is necessary especially when things become less accessible as you age. Wide, easy-to-grab cabinet and drawer pulls are essential if you want to age in place. Cabinet knobs and drawer pulls are also a fairly inexpensive change.

Wider hallways and passages to accommodate a wheelchair or walker. In the kitchen, the Americans With Disabilities Act guidelines require at least 60 inches of clearance between opposing cabinets, walls or appliances for U-shaped kitchens; galley or “pass through” kitchens require at least 40 inches of clearance between opposing surfaces.

No-threshold shower. Although these are growing in popularity due to the sleek look they offer, curbless showers are essential in an aging in place home as they are easier and safer to use. Grab bars can also be added for more safety.

Curbless shower
Curbless shower

Atleast one no step entry in to the home that is covered and well lit. This is essential to allow access for wheelchairs and walkers.

Elevator. If the home is more then one level be sure the staircase has secure banisters as well as an elevator. If you are not prepared to install an elevator currently, you can frame in stacked closets on top of each other to use for storage until you are ready to add in the elevator.

Wider doors to allow for walkers and wheelchairs. It is suggested that doorways be atleast 32-inches wide.

Install comfort-height toilets. These are two to three inches higher than traditional toilets, and require less bending to sit on.

In conclusion, addressing flooring issues, installing additional lighting and adding in a curbless showers are all things that may be beneficial to all ages and can be more aesthetically appealing. Are you considering adding any of these features to your home?

Sources houzz.com and The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

 

Veneer and Stone Bi Level Home

Were nearing completion on this bi level home on the South River. The combination of wood and stone veneer siding truly makes this home stand out. Click on each image to see it enlarged.

Have You Heard: Pantones 2017 Color of the year is here

PANTONE-Color-of-the-Year-2017-Greenery-15-0343-leaves-2732x2048-1200x900Have you heard? Pantone recently released it’s choice for Color of the Year for 2017. This symbolic selection is a color snapshot of what we see taking place in our global culture that serves as an expression of a mood and an attitude. This years choice is a vibrant and refreshing color named Greenery. Although inspired by nature, the staff is very specific about the shade describing it as “a fresh and zesty yellow-green shade that evokes the first days of spring when nature’s greens revive, restore and renew.”

“Greenery bursts forth in 2017 to provide us with the reassurance we yearn for amid a tumultuous social and political environment. Satisfying our growing desire to rejuvenate and revitalize, Greenery symbolizes the reconnection we seek with nature, one another and a larger purpose” Leatrice Eiseman

You can easily incorporate this color in your home and life to elevate your mood and to encourage new beginnings. As Pantone states, Greenery is natures neutral color and can be incorporated with many different shades including yellow, melon, purples and blues. Try these tips below to keep you up to date on trends:

  • Painting all four walls may be a bit overwhelming. Try to use it on an accent wall or kitchen back splash to give your room a refreshing look.
  • Often overlooked when trying to incorporate a new hue: add something alive! Bring plants and herbs in this bright color into your home to liven up any room.
  • Rugs, throws, tablecloths and pillows are always an easy way to stay on top of trends. They are also inexpensive and easily changed. This color will stand out even more in a neutral room.

Pantone’s staff around the world spends the year studying trends in fashion, consumer products, social media, art and technology. It looks for influences that best describe the current culture and mood in our society.

“There’s a growing desire to reconnect with Nature and what is real, and find ways to disconnect from technology. We need a break. We need to stop and breathe. “(Greenery) is about unity and community—connecting to oneself and others and a higher purpose, Nature.” Laurie Pressman, Pantone Color Institutes Vice President

Credit: www.pantone.com/color-of-the-year-2017 and CNN.com