Hey Mr. Contractor, I have some questions

As the weather starts to cool off, many homeowners are looking at their houses and thinking about making some changes. If new siding is on your to-do list – now or in the future – there are some things you should know before you commit to an installer.
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To help you plan, here are eight questions you should ask your siding contractor.

  1. Does your company have insurance?

You want the company you do business with to carry both comprehensive general liability insurance, which protects you from damage caused to your home or property, and workers’ compensation insurance, which protects you if a worker is injured on your property. Some contractors will say they carry insurance but unless they have these two types specifically, you could be at risk if anything unexpected happens. Ask for proof.

  1. What is the company’s workmanship warranty? 

There are two different types of warranties. The manufacturer’s warranty covers the siding material against defects in manufacturing. In addition, the contractor should guarantee his workmanship for a year or more. Get a copy of the manufacturer’s warranty.

  1. Does the company employ its own installers or rely on subcontractors? 

Using subcontractors isn’t necessarily a bad thing for a company to do, you just want to know how the company handles it and find out how the workers are supervised. If your installer has worked with his subcontractors for years, for example, and trusts them completely, that’s a good thing. As the homeowner, you need to know who will be doing the work on your home and how those people will be managed by the company you’re hiring.

  1. How long as your company been in business?

There can be a big difference between a company that’s been in business just a short time and someone who’s been doing siding installation for many years. New companies can be great, but you want to know what you’re getting before you commit so you can make the best decision for your home.

  1. Do you have referrals or references?

Ask for a list of several names – five is a good number – and phone numbers of former customers. Don’t feel like you have to do exhaustive interviews with all of them, but a few calls to past customers will give you a good idea of the contractor’s reputation. Don’t be shy about asking for this, and if the contractor balks, that tells you something about them.

  1. Does your estimate cover all costs?

You want to be sure the estimate includes labor, materials, waste removal, permits and any other contractor incidentals. As in any remodeling job, unexpected problems can crop up while the work is being done but you want to try to get as complete an estimate as possible.

  1. Can extra insulation be added when the siding is replaced?

If additional siding is something you’re interested in, having it done while siding is being replaced is a good time to do it. The contractor should be able to take you through the different options for insulation and give you a complete estimate of the cost involved in adding this to your siding project.

  1. How long will the project take?

Like any other construction or remodeling project, weather can be a major factor. What you’re looking for is a commitment to start your project and stay with it until it’s complete – not including weather delays. Avoid anyone who will start your project and leave it partially done while they go do other projects. (This is another reason checking references is important). Make sure your contractor will commit to working on your project continuously until it’s finished.

 

 

 

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Get outside! Inside Out Underdecking makes it easy

If you’re like the majority of homeowners in the United States, you have a deck, balcony or porch. Think about yours for a moment. What are you doing with the space underneath?

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According to one study, 107 million out of 128 million homes in the U.S. have one of those three features, leaving a lot of square footage down below unused. One way to make that space usable is with Inside Out Underdecking.

A specially designed and pre-engineered ceiling system, InsideOut transforms the  underside of your deck into a desirable outdoor living space by managing rainwater. How does it work? Water-carrying panels hang from specially designed brackets and usher water to gutters either to the front or rear of the space.

Think about how nice it would be to use that space under second-floor balcony or porch without worrying about rainwater collecting and messing up your deck furniture and shooing you back indoors.

InsideOut Underdecking is available for installation on homes by Nyhof Custom Gutter & Aluminum and also by United Building Supply for contractors whose clients are looking for a beautiful addition to their outdoor space.

It’s an idea whose time has come. According to the Back Yard Idea Book, “the most frequently used spaces are those that visually and physically bridge the gap between indoors and out. These spaces are seen through interior windows and doors.”

That means a product like Inside Out can make your home look better both inside and out and also create an environment that draws you out.

The titanium-aluminum alloy under decking from Inside Out is maintenance free and durable in all kinds of weather — and a big step up from the vinyl under deck drain systems also on the market.

 With woodgrain and solid color finishes, you’ll be able to create an outdoor living space that reflects and expresses your personality.

Don’t leave that space under your deck to the mosquitos! Give Nyhof or United Building Supply a call and transform that space into an extension of your home. Inside Out 5Inside Out 1

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Home begins at the door

When it comes to the first impression your home gives, almost nothing is a bigger star than the front door.

Door2The door is the focal point if your home, the entrance through which you greet friends and loved ones, and the first thing people notice when they look at your house. In addition to being beautiful and functional, doors have to be safe and affordable. Nyhof Custom Gutter & Aluminum stocks and installs a wide range of doors that meet all those criteria.

As you might expect, the sky is the limit on door styles. Do you like rustic solid wood-look doors? Decorative glass? Contemporary steel or fiberglass? Something no one else has thought of yet? Whatever your taste or your home’s style, there’s a door that matches.

Most doors now are made of either fiberglass or steel, and can be made to look like wood. Real all-wood doors have become prohibitively expensive for most homeowners, and they don’t offer the same level of efficiency or safety.

One of the fiberglass door brands we carry is Therma-Tru, which offers a panoramic range of styles from contemporary to classic and has a very easy-to-use online ordering system that ensures we are ordering absolutely everything you are looking for down to the smallest trim or hardware parts.

If you’re thinking about a new door, Therma-Tru is the place to start. It’s not, however, the only place to look. True-Tech and Masonite are two more brands popular with both homeowners and contractors because of their selection and quality of fiberglass doors.

Both True-Tech and Masonite also offer steel doors that come pre-finished in white. That is a big advantage for homeowners who want a white door, because other companies ship steel doors in primer, which means either the homeowner or the contractor has to finish it. If you want a white steel door – which is a very popular choice among homeowners – True-Tech and Masonite make it easy.

If you’re looking for something a notch or two up the food chain, take a look at the selection from Waudena. If the door you’re looking for isn’t available anywhere else, you’ll probably find it there.

One of the most popular items in the Waudena catalog is a wood-look steel door, which looks exactly like a stained, woodgrain door. The range of options – steel, stainable steel, wood, smooth or textured fiberglass – ensures you’ll find what you’re looking for.

One of the biggest advantages of both fiberglass and steel doors, no matter what brand or model you choose, is color. Unlike old-fashioned wood doors, steel and fiberglass doors come in a rainbow of colors designed to match or contrast with your home and create the entry you want.

Lately, some of the hottest colors are grays and blues, and that goes for doors as well as shingles and siding on homes with white trim. Darker colors are gaining in popularity, so if a rich, dark color is what you need for your entry way, let us help you pick the color, style and material that is just right for you.

At Nyhof Custom Gutter & Aluminum, we are experts at helping you decide on the right product for your house and installing it promptly. Is it time for a new door? Give us a call. We can help make your home the beautiful, welcoming retreat you want it to be.

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