Month: April 2016

Rustic Fireplace Design Ideas

Rustic Fireplace Design IdeasOne of the best focal points any room can have is the fireplace.  Homes that feature a rustic interior design should integrate the natural elements of this particular item.  Moreover, the materials as well as the finish selected for the fireplace should create a natural and rustic appearance overall.


Fireplace Mantel Blaine MN experts recommend natural wood for the fireplace mantel as this material is perfect for giving the room a rustic and cozy appearance.  The wood may be stained with a natural hue in order to preserve its beauty.  Dark wood mantels with cherry red finishes are warm and luxurious options to consider.  Moreover, hand-carved wood mantels also give the fireplace a homemade look that integrates well with the rustic interior design. The fireplace surround includes the sides of the fireplace along with the mantel.  Select a hand carved wood surround in order to create that perfect natural look in the room.  For log cabin homes, a log mantel is the ideal choice to integrate that warm and inviting rustic look.

Another option would be to use natural stone such as marble can give any room a contemporary or traditional look.  It is important to note that stone mantels need to maintain a rough look to coincide with the rustic design.

Fronts and Hearth

Stone fireplace fronts feature a natural appealing look that can work well with either a stone or wooden mantel.  Select stones of different sizes can provide the rustic fireplace with that quintessential hand-built look.


According to cabinetmaker Edina Minnesota professionals, the accessories you select for the mantel and hearth can add to the overall rustic appearance of your fireplace. A nice wooden custom cabinet for storage is very typical of this style.  Add wood frames for family photos, wrought iron tools and wood holders along with artwork that feature natural scenes to complete the look.

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Yellow Lawn Causes & Solutions

If you notice your green lawn slowly turning into a bed of yellow grass, it may be doing so for a couple of reasons.  According to turf care company Cologne Minnesota experts, certain nutrient issues and plant disease are the usual suspects.  For instance, a lack of nitrogen and iron could cause that yellow smear as well as fungal infections.  Here are some ways to keep that lawn green and fresh.

Look at Pattern

yellow lawnExamine your lawn and take note if the yellow smear appear in a circular fashion or is it disseminated all over the lawn.  If there is a distinct pattern noted, this may be attributed to a plant disease known as Summer Patch or Rhizoctonia Patch a fungal infection.  Treat the lawn by applying a fungicide to kill the pores.  It is also recommended to water the grass less and ensure there is adequate soil drainage and soil aeration.

Iron Deficiency

In some cases, the cause of yellowing lawn is due to a nutrient deficiency such as lack of iron.  Lawn care service Crystal Bay MN experts recommend chelated iron or iron sulfate to correct the deficiency.  Typically, grass blades streaked with yellowish hue imply lack of iron nutrients. For most cases, just spray the iron directly onto the grass.

Peat Moss

If you want a healthy lawn peat moss can help turn your grass a lushful green in no time. Root rot problems respond very well with peat moss application.  Grass with this problem have both green and yellow grasses mixed together.  To treat it properly, apply one to two bales of peat moss per 1000 square feet of lawn to the affected portions and then water until it is wet.


Do not forget to apply a nitrogen-iron preparation to ensure you got all the bases covered.  Grass blades with this problem have totally yellow blades without any mixture of striping within.

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What You Need to Know about Modern House Design

For people thinking of designing a custom home, the modern house design is one of the popular options that homebuyers choose because of the sleek clean lines and the efficient means of using space balanced with functionality.  There are a lot of influences on the modern design cause ranging from the works of Frank Lloyd Wright and Charles Eames to contemporary eco-design aesthetics that integrate natural finishes and repurposed items.  Here is some important guidelines on modern house design.

Architectural Influences

custom built modern homeAccording to custom homebuilder Plymouth MN specialists, innovative architectural elements are the mainstays of modern home designs.  For example, repurposed industrial buildings, urban high rises, combination of live and work spaces and lofts comprise some of the modern spaces being used today.  Glass walls, skylights, sliding walls and inner courtyards make use of exterior and interior spaces effectively. Ladders and stairwells connect to living areas along with work spaces however, they are located on separate floors.  Open floor spaces that connect the dining room with the living space as well as the kitchen often portray a bay of picture windows or solar tubes for the purpose of allowing natural light to come through the enormous space.

Palette and Finishes

According to custom homebuilder Greenfield Minnesota experts, modern house design is a blend of different palettes and finishes such as the midcentury modern look that includes wood tones, angular lines, metal accents and geometric shapes.  The bohemian modern look features a more art like approach similar to the look of a typical Paris apartment loaded with paintings, bold-colored furniture and lots of antique pieces.  Eco-modern calls for the use of renewal or non-toxic materials like bamboo floors, organic textiles, solid wood furniture and paint sans any volatile organic substances.

Layout and Furniture

Multi-use pieces are very much welcome in open floor plans or loft-style houses. For instance, a Shoji screen could function not just as a window cover but also a piece of artwork or a room divider.  A big bookcase or long bench set with plants can separate the dining from the living room areas. A covered porch or patio can allow gathering to spill out from the interior spaces into the garden.

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Outdoor Party Mosquito Control Methods

outdoor party mosquito controlIf you are planning to have a party in your yard, nothing can ruin the fun and conversation than guests slapping themselves against the bite of a pesky mosquito.  Mosquitoes are normally attracted to areas where there is a high degree of food and in this case, a garden party filled with human guests is like a buffet feast for these pests.  Here are some outdoor party mosquito control measures that you can use to keep your party free of these pests.

Water Control Measures

Insect control service Crystal Minnesota providers recommend that you get rid of mosquito habitats in your yard to instantly reduce the mosquito population by more than 50% instantly.  Look for containers, plant pots and bowls where dirty stagnant water may collect. Fill in any spots in your garden with dirt based sod so as to get rid of standing water. If you have a pond that has live fish, make sure you have Koi or other mosquito fish that eat mosquito eggs, larvae and pupa stages.

Natural Control Approach

For areas of standing water that you cannot eliminate for a variety of reason what you can do is add bacillus thuringiensis into the water. This bacteria is harmless to animals but is quite deadly to mosquito larvae. You can use a blend of neem oil and water to spray bushes and plants. Neem oil is a known natural pesticide that can drive off mosquitoes from areas where it is applied.  You can also burn citronella candles or citronella oil in tiki torches to drive away these pests during your party.

Chemical Approach

If the natural approach fails to curb mosquito populations to the level that is safe for your garden party then mosquito control service St. Louis Park MN recommend that you resort to the chemical approach.  You can use a variety of commercially prepared pest control products both water and oil based which can be sprayed on the ground like grassy areas and bushes or you can hire a professional pest control company to do the heavy lifting for you and effectively prepare your garden to become “mosquito free” in time for your party.

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Guide to Promoting Your Homebuilder Company More Effectively

It is no secret that the homebuilder business is a cutthroat one especially with many competitors around it can be pretty hard to get customers.  This is the reason why you need to devote your time to developing your homebuilder marketing.  Here are some basic tips to consider.

  • Keep it easy to understand. Send a clear message why customers should choose you over others.  It can be company slogan or a call to action message.
  • Try not to sell stuff but instead help people buy. See the difference? When you place the client’s interests above that of yourself, you then become a consultant and partner for that client.
  • Shift the risk. A believable guarantee is always better than something that is just simply outrageous. Moreover, it makes it safe for your customer as well as the company. Very few will exploit a generous guarantee when compared to the extra business it generates.
  • Try not to be everything to everyone. Just as customers see you, you need to determine who you want to work for and what area you specialize in.
  • Work hard for referrals. Nothing is more convincing than other people spreading the word.  It is the lease expensive option and quite effective at getting new business.  This is a sure fire way of increasing your homebuilder sales conversion rates.
  • Be Personal. Nothing turns customer more than a cold, hard and generic approach to selling. In order to build relationships and customers, there needs to be a personal connection involved.
  • Utilize online marketing for you. Methods such as marketing automation for new homebuilders can really help in jumpstarting new business for you.
  • Integrate Marketing Efforts. This means that everything you do needs to convey the same message and represent what your company is all about.

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Designing a Dream House Floor Plan

For homebuyers there are two ways by which you can approach the process. One is to purchase a ready to move-in home or go for a custom home that features all the bells and whistles built according to specifications. If you prefer the latter, one of the ways by which you can save money is to design your very own floor plan.  Here are some ideas on how to design your dream house floor plan.


The first thing that you need to prioritize according to homebuilder Plymouth MN experts is to know what your family needs rather than wants. Satisfying the needs first means you do not overlook important aspects such as room for a future baby or maximizing livable space in the property.  When thinking about this, consider the activities that take place and the number of people participating in said activities when designing your home. Does your family love to stay outdoors? Then make sure there are accessible patios or even space for a firepit.

Consider Shape and Lot Size

custom built home 2Build according to the attributes of the location. Take into consideration the designs of the other homes in the neighborhood, the lot size and shape of your property as well as prevailing climate condition. The kind of floor plans appropriate for your area will vary according to the elevation and climate factors.

Curb Appeal

Determine how you would want the house to look outside by sketching out the shape that you prefer it should have. New home communities Big Lake experts attest that the shape of the house will depend on the lot size and the overall shape of the land it is being built upon.


Map out the main living spaces that you need. If you plan to have regular guest come for dinner then a formal dining room will be a must have. If you live a more casual lifestyle, a room with an adjoining kitchen would be perfect.

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The Advantages of Changing Your Garage Door System

garagedoorGo around your neighborhood and you will notice that the garage door located in front of a property takes up about 20 to 40% of the façade. According to garage door Coon Rapids MN experts, many home buyers notice the garage door first when looking for property.  Here are some of the important benefits of upgrading your garage door system.

Increased Home Value

This is a no brainer, everyone knows that homes with garage doors have higher home values than those that do not.  Increased home value for your property means you can sell it at a higher price.

Lower Maintenance Costs

Ask yourself how many times have you painted and repainted your wooden garage door through the years due to the fact that it fades over time? Metal doors that feature a protective coating of factory baked-on paint will spare you this activity.

Added Security

There is nothing more important than protecting your home from break-ins.  According to garage door Ham Lake MN experts, if your door was made prior to 1993, the signal of the remote transmitter that came with the door can easily be hijacked as it is not yet equipped with modern rolling code systems.  Newer doors today allow you to control your door using your laptop, smart phone or tablet.

Better Insulation

Newer doors means access to better insulating properties. A well-insulated and weather tight garage door prevents the transfer of outdoor cold to the interior parts of your home. The same principle happens during the summer so your door will stay cool even during the hot summer months.

Lower Risk of Injury

Modern doors have a ton of safety features like a photoelectric sensor that detects objects directly in the path of the door. Automatic garage doors have this safety feature that auto reverses the movement of the door when someone or something is detected directly below it.

Quiet Doors

Gone are the days when garage doors were just noisy pieces of equipment.  There are ultra-quiet garage door models out there that feature a belt drive as opposed to a chain drive.

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