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fall home projects

AARP recently posted a blog about fall DIY home projects that can’t wait. They listed items such as cleaning the gutters, checking smoke detectors, hiring a chimney sweep, furnace maintenance, winterizing water pipes, and checking windows and doors for heat loss. All of these items are necessary for your family’s safety.

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return on investment

Many home improvement projects are born from browsing Pinterest or Instagram. You know, you take a quick break to chill and then you suddenly find yourself knee deep in a home improvement project. However, not all home improvement projects are created equal. The best ones not only make you happy but also give you a great return on your investment. Some of the best projects for a great return often are some of the most expensive, so it is important to choose wisely.

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Exterior colors

As we enter the last half of 2021, we start to focus our attention on what the 2022 color trends will be. This past year has seen a continuation of light to white exteriors with more movement towards accents of dark colors combined with stained wood. It’s safe to say that the exterior of your home is the ultimate first impression as many passer-byers that see it will never see the interior.

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leaky window seals

 To replace or not to replace? That is the tough question we ask ourselves when we’re faced with home repairs especially if they are larger maintenance items like windows. One reason that typically results in window replacement is seal failure. When the window seals break down it creates a problem in energy efficiency and moisture resistance.


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insurance premiums

Last month’s blog talked about whether or not your homeowner’s insurance will cover roof damage. This month it seemed appropriate to cover how your roof’s condition affects your insurance premiums. Again, I’m no insurance expert; just passing along helpful information and things you should discuss with your professional insurance agent.

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Homeowner's Insurance

This area has already experienced our fair share of severe weather and there is most likely more to come. Many roofs were damaged in the last storm and, unfortunately, they typically take the brunt of the wind and hail. One common question is, “Will my homeowner’s insurance cover a new roof?” The answer to that question lies in the type of policy you have and the condition of the roof prior to the storm.

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Who is ready for bright sunny days? After researching Pantone’s 2021 Color of the Year, I believe they are too. Actually, they chose two this year – Ultimate Gray and Illuminating.

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Spring is right around the corner and with that comes severe thunderstorms. Your roof is one of the most important components of your home and takes the brunt of wind and whatever is falling from the sky. That is why many people are opting for a metal roof. It is one of the strongest, most long-lasting materials on the market when it comes to roofing materials.

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Effects of snow on your roof

This past week had … dare I say it … “unprecedented” winter weather. It seems as if we have had to use the word “unprecedented” for pretty much everything that has happened this past year. Although we could all use just some plain, old non-precedented times, no one can argue with that crazy winter weather felt over approximately 75% of the country.

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Many products advertise energy efficiency. This all sounds well and good and like something you want,  but how do you know what you are looking for and whether it’s a good rating or not?

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Snow Covered Roof

The cold winter months are on their way. Is your roof ready for the potentially severe winter weather? Here are a few ways to make sure your roof is winter ready:

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Have a nice smooth replacement window install cover small

Replacing house windows is one of the best ways to update a home as well as improve energy efficiency. With that being said, selecting the company and the windows can seem like a daunting task. To have a nice smooth install making your experience a good one, follow these tips:

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"good" and "bad" written on paper

 Making major home improvement decisions such as selecting siding can feel overwhelming and sometimes even impossible. In addition to making the perfect complementary color selection, you need to consider key factors such as energy efficiency, durability, cost, and installation.

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A leaky roof will turn into more than a nuisance and shouldn’t be a home improvement project that is put off taking the highest priority on your list of home maintenance projects. A bad roof can pose not only structural issues but also many safety and health risks.

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5 stars

Quality as defined by Dictionary.com is:

 1“An essential or distinctive characteristic, property, or attribute.  2 Character of nature, as belonging to or distinguishing a thing. 3Character with respect to fineness, or grade of excellence. 4High grade; superiority; excellence.”

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house exterior

Your home is at the top of the investment list for most people and maintaining and updating it are among some of the best ways to protect that investment. When it’s time for some of those bigger and more expensive projects like replacing the roof, windows or siding you want to make sure they are done by a quality and reputable company. How do you know you are hiring the best contractor for the job?

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windows in a bedroom

Choosing the right window for your home can be overwhelming and it is often hard to know if you are making the right choice or not. Windows are a crucial part of any home's appearance and efficiency. Mel Harris Company offers a variety of windows to best suit your tastes and home needs. Double-hung windows are a popular choice for many homeowners as they offer many benefits.

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lightening hitting a house

Storm season is here. Are you ready? How will you know if your roof sustains damage during one of those storms? A storm doesn’t have to produce a tornado or hail to cause damage. Wind alone can cause enough damage to require repair or replacement. In fact, I distinctly remember a time that our home sustained severe enough roof damage from strong winds on a clear day to warrant a new roof. That particular day the Oklahoma winds were stronger than normal, causing damage throughout the town. Keep in mind that you should always check the condition of your roof after a tornado, thunderstorm, hailstorm, or just a windstorm. You can opt to check it yourself or hire a professional to inspect for damage. Personally, I like to hire a professional to look for damage because they not only know what they are looking for, but they also know the proper way to get off and on a roof without injuring themselves. A professional roofer is also able to document any problems and necessary work needed to file a claim for your insurance company.

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woman looking out of window

Who would have thought that when we were making our spring to-do lists that we would have to be making them while quarantined in our homes? Many are not only worried about the spread of the novel coronavirus itself, but also what type of long-term economic impact this will have. In the beginning, many used the sudden time at home to binge Netflix, but as the quarantines are appearing to be lasting longer than hoped and now we’re all binged out on the latest TV series, what should we do now? How about tackling all those long-avoided home projects that never seemed to find themselves in your scheduled to-do list? Here are a few low- to no-cost ideas:

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Spring is knocking on the door and pretty soon, the sun will be shining to offer warmer days allowing us to get on those outdoor chores we have put off all winter. One of those outdoor jobs will most likely be cleaning those windows, especially if you live in an area that received a lot of rain and snow. I like as much natural light as possible in my home, so the only windows I cover in my house are the bedrooms, everything else I leave uncovered. The big windows are stunning … when they are clean. Cleaning the windows can seem like an overwhelming task, but it doesn’t have to be. Here are my simple tips for sparkling clean windows:

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