Lancaster PA Remodeling Tips & Tricks

December 30, 2010

New Year’s Resolutions for Your Home

As the end of the year rapidly approaches, many of us focus on our list of resolutions for the New Year. Often times, personal improvements such as healthier diet and a routine exercise plan are at the top of the list. We recognize that we have neglected ourselves, but what about our homes?

When evaluating your possibilities for home improvement, take a moment to think about creating a more efficient and healthier atmosphere. Jump-start your creativity by considering not only cosmetic changes, but also renovations that would pay off years to come. Remodeling Project Cost vs Value is a very important consideration. However, do not underestimate your family’s value; unless you’re flipping houses, investing in your home to better your family’s situation should always be the driving force. Mainly, it’s important to consider how to increase your home’s efficiency and make your home work better to meet your needs.

Here are ten do-able home resolutions for 2011:

Go GREEN! By updating your furnace, water heater, installing or updating your air conditioning system and updating your appliances with energy efficient options, you’ll save on your monthly bills and add to your homes value. An energy assessment of your home is a smart way to find out if updating your home systems is right for you.

Go Healthy by installing a home air filtration system to eliminate allergens and pollutions in your home air. This can generally be installed within one day in most homes.

Get Organized! Are your closets in need of an overhaul? Do you need additional closets added to your home? We’re experienced in maximizing space and adding closet organizational systems in homes of all sizes. Often times our clients remark they are able to eliminate the costly storage units they have been maintaining when their home storage space is maximized and updated.

Curb Appeal Plus! Just as an energy efficient furnace helps your home to run more smoothly and cost-effectively, a well-designed landscape can save to time and money, while adding to the value of your home. Proper placement of trees and shrubbery can save on the cost to cool your home. Ornamental grasses and other perennial plantings are easy maintenance alternatives to annual flowerbeds. Time-saving, automatic watering system can also be installed to take the worry out of hydrating your plantings and lawn.

Get a Face Lift for your Kitchen and Bath! Remodeling your kitchen and bath are two of the best ways to increase the value of your home. We specialize in remodels for all budgets and can work with you on how to maximize your remodel dollars.

Stop the Draft! Whether it’s the heat or the cold, energy may be seeping out around your windows and doors. Proper installation of fiberglass doors and replacement windows will help keep your home more comfortable and at a noticeable savings.

Protect your Foundation by assuring your gutters and downspouts are carrying moisture away from your home. It’s also important to have a well functioning water evacuation system in your basement to prevent mold, mildew and damage to your home’s foundation.

Add a little Color to your Life! Paint is associated with personal energy levels and may help to add a warm and inviting feel to your home. This is a relatively inexpensive way to update your space and bring a fresh look to your home.

Protect your Investment with a Home Security System. The most effective deterrent against criminal invasion of your home is an electric security system. A wide variety of home security options are available to protect your home and your family.

Create a space to help you carry out your personal New Year’s resolutions. Chances are if you have space within your home designated to assist you with achieving your goals, you are more likely to do so. A home office addition may allow you more time with your family. A new work out area will make it much more likely you’ll find the time to get started with your new exercise routine. Make it happen!

Please give MBC a call [717.371.5136] when it’s time to make your home improvement resolutions a reality. Happy New Year!


Matt & Mike Blank
MBC Building & Remodeling, LLC
(717) 371-5136

December 9, 2010

(our very first!) Project Spotlight

Filed under: Bathroom Remodeling & Renovation — Tags: , , , , — MBCremodeling @ 12:54 pm

Well it’s the Lancaster PA Remodeling Tips & Tricks moment you’ve all been waiting for… our very first Project Spotlight blog! And don’t worry, we’ll have plenty more for you in 2011.

THANK YOU to Doug Vogel & his family for letting us spotlight their project, and extra big ups for supplying the pictures and answering all my questions!

Now, sit back, relax, and let’s close our eyes and drift off to Before-the-project land… (hint: make sure you open your eyes again to read the Q&A):

what was your project?
Remodeling our backroom and bathroom. The shower was only a stall, and the bathroom itself was very tiny.

before 1

how long have you lived in the house?
We have been in the house for a little over 6 years.

had you ever done a major remodel before?
No, this was our first one.

how long had you been wanting to do it?
Ever since we moved in.

before 2

why did you decide to do it?
We were trying to sell the house, then I lost my job. So we had to take the house off the market. We then decided we were going to be in this house a little longer so why not have a bathroom we actually liked and could use without bumping into the wall.

before 3

Now, in this During section, I’m hoping to portray a real, honest perspective of the remodeling process. Homeowners who have never done a major project before are often surprised at how ‘routine-changing’ they can be.

how did the process go?
The process went very well.

was it easy choosing the color/flooring/etc or did you consider a lot of options?
For the most part, seemed like Lowe’s was switching items when we were looking for them. So that made it a little difficult.

was the remodeling process more or less difficult than you expected? The remodeling was fine, except for that the floor we wanted had like a 14-day wait on it. Had we known that about the floor we would have had that ordered before it was needed to go in. That held up the remodel.

pros and cons of the remodeling experience?
Pros – new bathroom, large shower/tub downstairs/more room to move around/backroom doesn’t feel cavernous
Cons – having to take a bath for over a month and not a shower

So, is all well that ends well? After:

after 1

after 2

after 3

after 4

how did it turn out?
I thought it turned out great.

are you happy you did it?
Yes. Taking a shower in a stall everyday is slightly better than taking a bath on a daily basis.

how often do you use the room?
It’s a bathroom/laundry room, so just about every day.

do you think you’ll remodel in the future?
Someday, but hopefully not in this house.

is mbc the raddest lancaster county remodeling company on twitter? _X__YES ___ NO

Hope you enjoyed our Project Spotlight. I can’t say THANK YOU enough to Doug & the Vogels for choosing us to do their project, then helping so much with this blog. Please check out Doug’s design company Get Fresh Designs.

If you’re considering a bathroom remodeling project of your own near Lancaster County, PA, please give Mike Blank, CGR CAPS, a call @ (717) 371.5136 to set up a free appointment!

Thank you for reading!

Matt Blank

December 1, 2010

Give Your Child’s Room A Makeover

Parents know that they rarely have the same ideas and opinions as their children, and this is never more evident when it comes to do give their room a new look – you might want one design while your 8-year-old daughter has a completely different concept in mind. Here are a few helpful decorating tips that aim to please the whole family.

First of all, talk to your child and understand his or her vision for the room and incorporate some of those ideas in the design. Keep in mind your daughter or son are the ones living in the room, so even if it is hard for you to do, compromising with them on what they want and what you’ll allow will yield the greatest results for both of you. If you don’t want to get too crazy with painting, use a neutral wall color in the room; add punch and color with accessories and accents.

Here’s a look at some of the hottest trends for children’s bedrooms:

For Both: Functionality is important in a child’s room. Adding items like a desk or table to work on is a great idea. Try and set up cubbies or shelves to store supplies and help keep things in order. Organizational tools like these will help maximize space, which is especially important in smaller rooms. That way, you can (hopefully) keep things off the floor!

As for decoration, educational letters and images capture the imagination. Many online retailers have inspirational and motivational posters, which can help instill focus, drive and passion in your little one’s as the dream big. You can also simplify painting by choosing colors to match the bedspread you have going, to connect the room together without going overboard.

For Girls: It’s all about bright colors for girls, from purple to lime green to the ever-popular pink. Think personalized sweetheart pillows and throws. Adding items that can be personalized are a great way to make your child feel like the room truly is her own special place. If you’re handy with fabric, you could create her very own canopy bed, perfect for your little princess!

Having an area for dolls and reading on the floor, such as a small toy shelf and bean bag chairs, can give your little lady and her friends a nice comfy spot to explore their imaginations!

For Boys: Color wise, boys usually like blues and greens, but talk with him to see what his thoughts are – he may surprise you! Does your little guy love sports? Choose accessories that have his favorite professional logo on them, such as a bedspread or poster. You could also visit a used sporting goods store for various gloves and bats to hang on the wall without breaking the bank.

If your son isn’t a sports nut, you can incorporate any interest into affordable decor that will personalize the room. Consider using a corner for trumpet practice, with a music stand and shelving for books and accessories. By painting some music notes on the wall, you’ll have a brand new music studio! For younger boys, a “Road” rug will give them the perfect spot for playing with all those cars they have.



Are those ‘practical’ ideas too BORING for your kids?!? How about these then? (thank you to CalFinder for the pictures!)

If you have more home remodeling or bedroom design questions in Lancaster County, PA, drop me an e-line (electronic line… get it?): matt[at]

-Matt Blank

The Shocking Blue Green Theme. Blog at


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