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Choosing and designing your kitchen for your new home or major addition is simple, easy and fun…with Paramount Construction.

See what you think:

Even the neighbors love us:

Anyone read the article in the Washington Post about Case Design Build?
I think they are wrong about the housing market in the DC area.

May I suggest an article idea?

We are home builders and architects and we have more business than we have had in two years.

There are many owners that realize that rates are low and construction costs are flat, and that real estate is a long term investment, not something that bounces daily like the stock market.

We are selectively pursuing many home building opportunities in this market place. This is a great time to be building as a builder because we are taking advantage of the cost of construction to maintain our profit margins and pass on the greatest value to clients since the late 1980’s and the early 1990’s (the last recession). This is a great time to build homes.

Washington DC real estate and home real estate in particular, is the best real estate on earth.

Tell me what you think?

New Home builders, big and small, would be among the winners if the $838 billion stimulus measure the U.S. Senate passes today.

The Senate bill seems to be more generous to home builders than the House was in the $819 billion measure it passed last month.

President Barack Obama, who spoke to the nation last night, has said he wants stimulus legislation signed by this weekend. President Obama is counting on the plan to help revive the economy. The economy has lost 3.6 million jobs since December 2007. This has caused the unemployment rate to soar to the highest level since 1992.

To quote a Bloomberg wire: “In a bill this big, there are countless private-sector winners and losers,” Rogan Kersh, associate dean of New York University’s Wagner School of Public Service was quoted as saying.

The Senate cleared the stimulus proposal yesterday by a vote of 61 to 36. There were three Republicans siding with Democrats.

It’s quite possible that U.S. home builders could see sales increase if consumers tap into the planned tax credit of $15,000, or 10 percent of the purchase price, whichever is less, under the Senate legislation.

Morningstar analyst, Eric Landry said “If someone’s going to give you $15,000 in free money it has to be stimulative”.

The proposed new tax credit does not have to be repaid. And it appears that all home buyers are eligible for the home purchase tax credit. This proposed home tax credit would replace the $7,500 tax credit for first-time home buyers that was passed sometime last year. In addition to the amount of the proposed home purchase tax credit, another difference is that the $7,500 home tax credit had to be repaid over 15 years.

Jerry Howard, president and chief executive officer of the National Association of Home Builders stated, “We’re pretty happy with the way the Senate bill is shaping up. We think it will entice a lot of those people sitting on the sidelines into the marketplace.”

As a home builder building new homes in the Washington D.C. area, I feel lucky because our area inside the Washington D.C. beltway is relatively strong. Values have held up and business is steady. So I can see real benefits to home builders, subcontractors and home building and remodeling vendors.

We also work with a large number of families and individuals that are just starting out and are looking for their first home to purchase. So it will be a huge benefit to individuals and families like that. But I’m not sure it is the best thing in the long run for our economy.

What do you think? Let me know your thoughts and comments.

As of January 1, 2009, the federal government is making available up to $500 in federal tax credits for homeowners making improvements to replacement windows. insulation, non-solar water heaters, and certain high efficiency heating and cooling equipment. For more details and forms needed go to http://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=products.pr_tax_credits.

This past Thursday was a whirlwind day for us. HGTV ended up filming three of our projects under construction. Originally they were going to film just two, but we mentioned that in addition to two new custom homes under construction n Bethesda, we had another large home addition starting up right around the corner.

The footage will probably be used at the Builders Show in Las Vegas this week. We’ll let you know if and when it is used for HGTV shows on cable.

Their coming back Monday to finish up filming…so I’ll keep you posted.

Elizabeth Razzi, a writer for the Washington Post Real Estate section, wrote on October 19, 2008:

“There will be some attractive federal tax credits …. you can research them at www.Energystar.gov  ”

Here is a partial list from her article:

  1. for qualifying exterior doors, storm doors, metal roofs, insulation the tax credit will be 10% of the cost, up to a $500 credit
  2. Windows, skylights, storm windows will qualify for 10% of the cost, with a credit capped at $200
  3. Central AC and heat pumps will qualify for $300 credits
  4. Top efficiency furnaces or boilers that go beyond the government’s Energy Star standard will qualify for a $150 tax credit. Some super efficient tankless or electric heat pump water heaters will qualify for a $300 credit
  5. for solar water heaters (except those used for swimming pools) homeowners can get a tax credit covering 30% of the cost, up to $2000

Leave me a comment and let me know what you think.

Renovation financing gives you:

* More money to work with. The amount you can borrow is based on the expected increased value of your home, after improvements are made.
* Less Strain on Your Budget. You can pay for your renovation gradually and affordably, over the loan term of your mortgage.
* Less to Pay at Tax Time. Unlike other credit options, the interest you pay on funds used for a renovation may be tax deductible.
* Less Hassle. You’ll have one loan to apply for, one set of fees, one closing to attend, and one monthly payment to make.

Is Renovation Financing for You?
It is, if you have any plans for minor or major renovations to your home in the next six to 24 months. If you’re buying a house today and considering some home improvements next year, you may find it’s cheaper and easier to have the renovations done now with your financing for the purchase and the renovation all handled in one transaction.
All Kinds of Needs Covered
You should be able to finance any kind of improvement or repair to eligible properties.

By building an addition, you can make your home more livable, while increasing its value. It also allows you to stay in a home and neighborhood you like without incurring the expenses and inconvenience of moving. But before you start, there are many things you should know.

Find out about building restrictions

While you are still in the thinking stage for your home addition, find out from city hall if there are any local zoning ordinances that could affect your project, such as lot setbacks (i.e. the minimum distance required from the adjacent property lines or public right of way to the outermost portion of the structure) and height restrictions.

Additions come in all shapes and sizes

Home additions are becoming increasingly popular across the U.S. to accommodate aging parents (and, unfortunately, in-laws), or even as rental units to generate a monthly income. These additions can include a bedroom, bathroom, sitting room and a private entrance, although the most popular home additions involve adding an extra room onto an exterior wall. Sun rooms, garages and extra bedrooms are common additions, as well as living rooms, dining rooms and home offices.

You may want to consider building up instead of losing lawn and garden space, or building a two-story addition that will accommodate an office or bedroom on top of the garage to maximize space. Other additions, such as carports, porches and decks often require less disruption of your home, yet will still increase its functionality and value.

If you’re adding indoor space, make sure a heating and air conditioning (HVAC) professional is brought in to assess the increased demand on the present system.

Continuity works best

Something to think about with a home addition (and something we specialize in) is consistency – within your own home and with the neighborhood. First, you want your addition to “fit in” with the rest of the house, both inside and out. That is, you don’t want the addition to look like an “add-on,” either structurally or in terms of decor. Similarly, a huge addition to a house in a modest neighborhood will surely give you more space, but when it comes time to sell you may not get the return on your investment you were hoping for, as those who can afford a bigger house will likely look in a more expensive neighborhood.

Consider the costs

When planning your addition, remember that the less impact there is on your present structure, the more cost-effective the addition will be. For example, moving plumbing walls, radically altering the floor plan and making changes to the roof line will all increase your costs significantly.

Assess impact for heating and air conditioning

We will bring in subcontractors for specialized jobs, like electrical and plumbing. If you’re adding indoor space, we’ll make sure that a heating and air conditioning (HVAC) professional is brought in to assess the increased demand that the addition will place on the present system.

  1. Does building an addition to a house cost the same, per square foot, as building a new house?
    No. On a square foot basis, adding on usually costs considerably more.
    There are several reasons for this.

    • Adding on involves demolition, removal, and disposal of existing materials.
    • Existing spaces must be secured and protected from construction and from the elements.
    • A remodel may include a greater proportion of high-cost space (such as kitchens, bathrooms, and rooms with fireplaces or windows) than would a new house
    • While the overall scope of a remodeling project is smaller, the details may not be any fewer. Utilities must be both disconnected and reconnected. Permits still must be obtained. The same materials must be ordered and delivered, only in smaller quantities. The same subcontractors may visit the site the same number of times, only to perform fewer tasks per visit.
    • In new construction, everything is new. The only surprises on a new home site are under the ground. In a remodel, the builder never knows what he will discover when he dismantles an existing structure. There may be rotten wood, something built not-to-code, faulty wiring, plumbing or heating. Repairing these add to the cost.
  2. Is it better to remodel an old house or build a brand new one in a different location?
    There are pros and cons to each, and much depends on your individual situation.
    Some things to take into consideration are:

    • If you want to remain in your current location, or if you want to move to a neighborhood where there are no vacant lots for sale, it may be better to remodel, even if that requires tearing down an old house.
    • If the existing house has wiring, heating, plumbing systems or a foundation in poor condition, or if there is extensive dry rot, pest, water, or other damage, the house may not be worth remodeling.
    • If the existing structure is not big enough and there is not enough room on the lot to expand, remodeling may not be feasible.

    What are the difference in cost? Remodeling may or may not be cheaper overall than building new, depending on the situation.

  3. How can I decide whether to remodel an old house or tear it down and build new on the same lot?
    Compare the costs.
    For a remodel, the first phase of the project will be to remove all unwanted material, so that everything you have left will be part of the final house. This may involve removing just a few interior walls and stripping some old flooring, or it may involve removing everything but the bare bones of the frame and foundation. There could be so little debris that could haul it to the dump yourself, or so much that your need to rent a whole series of thirty-yard containers.
    For the tear-down alternative, compare the cost of demolishing the whole house and then building newly as much as is necessary to get to the same stage of construction as above.