Lancaster PA Remodeling Tips & Tricks

February 22, 2011

On a Budget? 5 tips to lower your costs when remodeling.

A lot of prospective home remodeling customers are worried that they will not be able to afford their project. Here are 5 tips for helping work with your budget when it’s time for your remodel:

-buying materials yourself. See exactly what you want at some discount store? Grab it! While your contractor most often can get better prices (due to larger purchase volume), sometimes you really see a deal that is unbeatable. Just make sure you check with your contractor to make sure the product will work for what you were planning.

-painting. Got a free weekend? Why not get the family together to paint that new addition. Most contractors will leave drywall finished and ready to be painted. This is an easy thing to do if you have the time.

-keep existing cabinets, countertops, etc. Are your cabinets in need of some minor work? Consider repainting or staining them to make them look fresh and help cut costs on a bath or kitchen remodel.

-don’t just take lowest bid. Wait, you got that backwards don’t you? No, actually I’m serious. The lowest price is always intriguing, but make sure this prospective contractor has experience in the type of work you’re looking for. Lack of estimating experience can lead to much more costs down the road when the contractor realizes he completely underestimated his time on the job. Having a new contractor come and fix the old ones’ mistakes is never cheaper.

-make a list in 3 categories ‘must have/wants/dreams’ and plug and play to find what fits in your budget. Want your cake and eat it too? You’re not alone, but when you are working on a budget lists like these help you prioritize function over form. Plus, you could always use your list to help you plan the projects you want done in phases over several months or years.

I hope these tips help! When you’re considering a home remodel in the Lancaster County, PA area, please give MBC Building & Remodeling, LLC a call at [717] 371_5136!

Mike Blank, CGR CAPS

February 7, 2011

Top Remodeling Projects for 2011

As the new year is picking up steam, I thought it would be a good time to share my views on the future… the future of home remodeling that is. I present to you the top remodeling trends for 2011.

This year has been challenging for homeowners and remodelers alike. The good news is that although progress is slow, remodelers across Lancaster County, PA say that things are looking up.

Many homeowners are looking to 2011 with a renewed sense of optimism about remodeling their homes. Home prices have stabilized and the economy is moving in a positive direction. Astute remodeling contractors have found ways interesting ways to help homeowners stay within their budget. Many people think that 2011 will the best time we have seen in years to remodel.

The focus will be on creative use of existing space and moderate sized additions. The use of color as a way to define space and bring out architectural features will continue to gain popularity.

Kitchens will be made over to be brighter, open and less formal. Granite and quartz continue to be the countertops of choice, but soapstone is emerging as a unique alternative for an earthier feel in a solid surface countertop.


Many kitchen and bathroom remodels will include cost effective techniques to recycle or renovate features rather than replacing everything.


There has been great interest in renewing fireplaces to create a family centered area. The stacked stone fireplace continues to be a favorite. Creating open floor plans will be one of the leading home improvements this year it seems. Formal spaces in the home will be repurposed by opening up existing walls and creating more usable family centered space. Many people will find that their home can take on a whole new feel and function by reorganizing the seldom used formal living and dining rooms.


Master suites and bathrooms will also be designed around how we live our lives, with less focus on over the top extravagance. By focusing more on function and reasonable scale over flash, home remodels will have the feel and features we want without unsustainable budgets.

Lastly, home energy performance improvements with various types of remodeling projects will continue to grow in popularity due to their positive return on investment. Homeowners are discovering that advances in building science have illustrated that there are numerous cost effective adjustments that can be made to their homes. These adjustments and repairs will improve energy bills and make homes more comfortable at the same time.

When it’s time to think renovations and remodeling in Lancaster County, PA, please think MBC Building & Remodeling, LLC.

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