Cummings Home Improvements

A Blog from our Home Improvement Specialists

Our Latest Project – Portico

In our latest project, we have updated a small portico. A portico is a small porch leading to the entrance of a home which also has a roof structure supported by columns.

The existing portico had masonry steps and landing, with a metal roof attachment that the home owner felt was taking away from the charm of the home. Once we completed the time consuming task of removing all the debris from the existing front entrance, two new footings were dug and filled with concrete to support the new landing. The new landing was then framed and is now approximately 6 feet wide by 4 feet deep to allow from more space when entering the home. A new Gable style roof was also framed and tied into the existing roof line using the same pitched roof as the existing house. Using pvc trim boards, the stairs, landing and roof were trimmed out and vinyl lattice installed on the sides for privacy. PVC trim boards are a low maintenance solution to traditional wood trim and require no painting.

The home owner decided on white pvc beadboard for the interior ceiling, gray composite deck boards for the landing and stairs, and Azek premier composite for the railing. Check out the pictures and let us know what you think!!!

            

 

Cummings Home Improvements provides the following services:

Additions/ Kitchen remodeling/ Bathroom remodeling/ Attic and Basement remodeling/ Window replacement/ Door replacement/ Decks/ Porches/ Siding/ Flooring/ Interior painting/ Insulation

Please also “like” us on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/CummingsHomeImprovements

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Porches and Decks

Do you know the difference between a porch and a deck?

A porch is a structure, with a roof, located at the entrance of a home. They can be enclosed or screened-in to provide protection from insects or weather. Porches serve as an informal extension of the home.

A deck is an open, unroofed porch extending from a home with railings for safety.

We are currently working on both a porch and a deck so come back soon to find out more about each project, and dont forget to check out the before and after pictures too!

 

Cummings Home Improvements provides the following services:

Additions/ Kitchen remodeling/ Bathroom remodeling/ Attic and Basement remodeling/ Window replacement/ Door replacement/ Decks/ Porches/ Siding/ Flooring/ Interior painting/ Insulation

Please also “like” us on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/CummingsHomeImprovements

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Welcome Back!

In our latest project,we have been updating a 1970’s  style tile bathroom. After following the EPA lead safe renovation guidelines and safely gutting the bathroom down to studs and subflooring, we subcontracted electrician Dave Pike from Advanced Electrical Service Co., (* see below) also located in Melrose. Dave removed the old wiring as needed and rewired the new bath with recessed fixtures, a new bath fan, switches, and GFI outlets. The home owner has chosen a Panasonic Whisper Quiet fan, the new fan will be vented to the exterior using insulated 4″ duct.

Prior to subcontracting the plumber, a new wall was built for tub installation. The new bath was then plumbed with all new pvc to stack pipe; the new tub was set; new toilet line with flange, drains and supply lines for double sinks and the new shower valve installed. The plumber also had to reroute a section of heat to make room for the new vanitly.

We were then able to install the new plywood subfloor with 1/4″ cement tile backer,this will help prevent water damage and/or mold if water was to get behind the tiles. The exterior wall was insulated with R15 fiberglass, and the ceiling with R30 fiberglass with plastic vapor barrier.

Next we set the tub, the home owner has chosen an Aker T0 3060 in white. Blueboard was then installed with a skim coat of veneer plaster. Once set the shampoo nook was framed and the 1/2″ cement tile backer installed around the shower walls approximately 60″ up from the tub edge. All seams and corners were taped and cemented.

Finally, we installed the tile to the shower walls and shampoo nook. The tile was then grouted, cleaned, and the tub edge sealed with silicone sealant to match. A new tile floor was also installed with a marble threshold. To finish off the bathroom, the home owner chose 1/4″ mdf wainscoting panels for the wall next to the tub wth a baseboard trim and cap molding and colonial style 2 1/2″ window and door casing to match the existing windows in the home. Check out the pictures below and let us know what you think!

 

     

 

 

* Cummings Home Improvements has a list of trusted contractors in all fields that we we work with regularly and recommend highly. More information on Dave Pike and his company Advanced Electrical Service Co. can be found on his website located at www.hiredependability.com

 

Cummings Home Improvements provides the following services:

Additions/ Kitchen remodeling/ Bathroom remodeling/ Attic and Basement remodeling/ Window replacement/ Door replacement/ Decks/ Porches/ Siding/ Flooring/ Interior painting/ Insulation

Please also “like” us on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/CummingsHomeImprovements

 

 

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Our Latest Project

Bathroom remodeling is often one of the first renovations that you will do to your home. It will provide the most bang for your buck and will add tremendous value to your home thereby making it more of an investment than an expense. Like any investment it needs to be well planned, well managed and well executed. Cummings Home Improvements provides the expertise to take your bathroom remodeling project from your imagination all the way to a luxurious space.

In our latest project we will be updating a 1970’s style tile bathroom. First and foremost, when doing any remodel where lead paint may be involved it is extremely important to follow the EPA lead safe renovation guidelines. It is also important that your contractor pay close attention to what is going on “behind the scenes”. In older homes, it is not uncommon for the plumbing and/or electrical to need to be brought up to code. Therefore, you can be sure that we at Cummings Home Improvements will not only pay close attention to the esthetics of the finished project but also what is going on inside the walls.

After gutting the bathroom down to studs and subflooring, updating the plumbing and electrical as needed, we have a blank slate for the homeowner to bring their vision to life. I will be posting pictures of our progress throughout this project so come back next week and let us know what you think so far!

 

Cummings Home Improvements provides the following services:

Additions/ Kitchen remodeling/ Bathroom remodeling/ Attic and Basement remodeling/ Window replacement/ Door replacement/ Decks/ Porches/ Siding/ Flooring/ Interior painting/ Insulation

Please also “like” us on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/CummingsHomeImprovements

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Kitchen and Bathroom Remodeling

Kitchens and bathrooms are the most exciting and often the first renovation that you will do to your home. They provide the most bang for your buck; they add tremendous value to your home thereby making them more of an investment than an expense. Like any investment they need to be well planned, well managed and well executed. Cummings Home Improvements provides the expertise to take your kitchen or bath project from your imagination all the way to a luxurious space.

Kitchens:

There are a multitude of decisions that need to be made when remodeling your kitchen but perhaps none more daunting than deciding on cabinets, flooring and countertops. Therefore, we have broken down each grouping to the most popular choices to help you make the decision that will best suit your needs.

Stock cabinets offer the most affordability and are available in a variety of styles and colors. Semi-Custom cabinets offer a wider range of styles and colors, as well as custom features with the look and durability of the much higher level cabinetry, while still maintaining an affordable price. Custom cabinets give you unprecedented options, with limitless possibilities in styles, colors and features, for those wanting the best quality and features.

Hardwood floors are made of timber from a variety of trees; maple, oak, walnut, as well as a multitude of others. It is durable and resistant to dents and scratches, however reacts to extreme temperatures or moisture. They can be constructed to be different thicknesses and sizes, and can be sanded and refinished over time. Tile floor comes in stone, ceramic, and porcelain and will enhance your space and withstand whatever your busy kitchen has to offer. Laminate flooring looks great at an affordable price and is extremely durable.

Granite countertops are one of the hardest natural stones available. They are impervious to scratches, resistant to heat and stains and represent the definition of elegance. Quartz countertops are man-made stone contertops of superior strength and durability. They are non-porous, as well as heat and stain resistant. Corian countertops are non-porous, impenetrable to mold, mildew, and bacteria as well as resist burns and scratches. Laminate countertops are affordable without sacrificing beauty. They are made of a non-porous material and extremely wear resistant.

Bathrooms:

When remodeling your bathroom, keep in mind the durability and functionality of the materials you select; such as the best wallpaper or paint for humid applications, tile that can handle heavy daily use, and mirrors that dont attract spots.

Bathrooms are mostly about plumbing and plumbing fixtures; Sinks, tubs, showers, and toilets all need to complement each other, and many new water conserving models will help reduce your utility bills. With the right fixtures, shower doors, bathtub styles and flooring, your bathroom remodel can turn a normally utilitarian room into a peaceful private spa.

Given the amount of time you and your guests spend in these areas of your home, and the increased resale value, kitchens and bathrooms are usually the best invested dollar for any remodeling project. 

Entry Door Replacement

An entry door is literally the introduction to your house, a statement of style, invitation and security. It is a first impression of beauty, thoughtfulness, and value to friends, family, new visitors and even prospective buyers. It should reflect your personal style to outsiders and give you a sense of security. If your entry door is not functioning properly; sticking, not latching properly, damaged or aged beyond repair by weather, it is time to replace it.

Today’s market offers a wide range of styles and materials in storm doors. Storm doors are usually constructed of fiberglass, aluminum, steel, or wood.

  • Fiberglass front doors are known for affordability, low maintenance, and durability in muggy climates where wooden doors often warp. They have the feel of real wood; can be painted like steel; and don’t rot, split, crack, or dent. The slightly higher price of a fiberglass door pays for itself with years of service.
  • Steel entry doors may offer greater security than wooden ones. They come with vinyl coatings or polyester finishes, and some have veneers that resemble a wood finish. They are durable and require little care.

As of 2012, many communities have become “green communities”, which means a building permit will be required. The local building official will be looking closely to make sure the door you have purchased and the installation meet the strict, new and ever changing International Energy Code. A Cummings Home Improvements door project starts by helping you select the best door for your home from one of our top quality, trusted manufacturers. We then acquire the permit and provide a professional installation that will keep your home warm and cozy, satisfying both you and the local building official.

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Our Latest Project

We have just finished a fireplace remodel.  This remodel took just 3 days! The existing fireplace had an old dated feel with a brick facade and a mantle shelf that made it difficult for the homeowner to utilize the wall to its fullest potential.
What we did… The stone hearth and cement base were removed, and the sub floor replaced. Oak flooring was installed on either side of the hearth and a new tile hearth floor installed. Then a new section of the wall above the brick mantel was built to create an even wall surface from floor to ceiling. The new wall was then covered with dry wall, seams taped, primed and painted to match existing walls. Next we installed custom bookcases on either side of the fireplace made of solid maple. Doors were provided on lower portion of each bookcase, adjustable shelves, a center divider and face frames. A base molding and crown molding will finish off each unit at floor and ceiling. Finally, some overhead recessed lighting to show off the new fireplace and wall unit as well as cable outlets and electrical outlets to hide all wires. Let us know what you think!
 

Window Replacement

 

Jeld-wen Premium Aluminum clad wood windows

As the primary source of natural light, windows are an important feature of the home. The style and shape of the windows also add greatly to the overall appearance and feel of the house. Replacing your home’s windows can increase the value of your home as well as improve energy efficiency. Old or poorly installed windows can cost as much over the course of a few years as the cost of installing brand new windows. New windows can lower your monthly heating and cooling bills, increase your home’s resale value and increase the security and safety of your home. Here are a few signs that your home is a good candidate for window replacement:

  • Peeling paint revealing warped or water damaged wood.
  • Nearby carpet and furniture is faded.Drafts near closed windows.
  • Outside noise can be heard strongly inside.
  • Energy bills are high year-round.

Some window manufacturers that we use are:

  • Anderson Windows:  The Low-E glass in Andersen windows works like sunblock to help protect your home and furniture from ultraviolet (UV) light. They have tough protective shells that never need painting, are natural wood to create a timeless combination of beauty and durability, and help keep warm rooms warm and cool rooms cool. Anderson also offers an Owner-2-Owner™ limited warranty which can add resale value to your home.
  • Harvey Window:  Harvey is the leading manufacturer of insulating windows in the Northeast. Whether it be vinyl replacement windows, wood replacement windows, or new construction wood or vinyl windows, they have something that will work for you. Their windows are custom-sized to fit virtually any opening and offer a vast array of options to compliment the style of your home.
  • Jeld-Wen Windows:  JELD-WEN creates a range of window types to meet both your aesthetic and performance needs. Their windows are offered in four materials: wood, clad-wood, vinyl and aluminum. Each type has its own advantages. Their Pine wood windows and components are crafted from AuraLast wood, which has environmentally friendly aspects. They also offer several glass options to ensure our windows are reliably energy efficient and durable. JELD-WEN® vinyl windows offer strong, durable performance, and they’re available in an array of beautiful styles. 

There has never been a better time to upgrade your homes windows. Recently, a new Federal program has been announced which will help homeowners save money on energy bills, and reduce our carbon footprint. Take advantage of this great money saving opportunity and contact us today to get a Free Estimate on energy efficient windows. Improve your homes appearance, save money on energy costs and get a tax rebate for doing it!

Cummings Home Improvements is proud to announce our updated Facebook and Google+ profile pages including updated pictures from our new website. Come and visit our new social networking profiles by clicking on the network below:

Facebook

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Hi and welcome to the new blog for Cummings Home Improvements. Our company based in Melrose, MA provides residential and commercial customers with a variety of construction and improvement solutions.

Today we are celebrating the launch of our companies new and improved website designed to better illustrate the high quality craftsmanship and attention to detail that we provide to each customer on each job. Come visit our new website at: www.cummingshomeimprovements.com.

Along with our new website, we have also updated our logo. Our entire new marketing project was completed by our old friend Adam Parks from Branding Arc, Inc.

We hope you enjoy visiting our new website and we look forward to providing you with helpful home improvement tips and tricks in our upcoming blog posts.

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