Monday 11th December 2017

Handyman Scams Revealed

Handyman Selection – Beware of Craigslist

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First off, I love Craigslist.  I have bought and sold items on the website, so I don't want to appear like I don't like the site.

If you are hiring a handyman in Medford or Ashland, please be careful.  There are many unlicensed contractors posting jobs on Craigslist.  Most likely they are in the trade, but they do not carry insurance because they are out of work or cannot keep up on their premiums. 

Handyman – Why Your Handyman Should Be Licensed

Here are three reasons why you should always have a licensed handyman:

  1. Liability – If an unlicensed handyman gets hurt on your job, they can sue you for lost wages and medical bills.
  2. Standards – A licensed handyman will know when you need the proper permits for your job.  This will give you an additional level of protection on your job.
  3. Recourse – You will have the ability to go after the handyman if something does got wrong on the job.

If you are looking to do a bathroom remodel, a kitchen spruce up, or garage organization project, contact Alex Boutacoff Construction today!

Bathroom Remodeling Tips

Medford Remodeling – How To Research Before A Bathroom Remodeling

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Medford Remodeling – 7 Tips For A Successful Bathroom Make-Over

Your bathroom remodeling game plan should start with a few activities.  Use these 7 tips for your next bathroom remodeling.

Bathroom Remodeling Tip 1

Establish your budget.  You should look at your cash savings and borrowing ability.

Bathroom Remodeling Tip 2

Brainstorm a list of your desired amenities.

Bathroom Remodeling Tip 3

Go through magazines and cut out any pictures of items you like.

Bathroom Remodeling Tip 4

Go to Home Depot and Lowes to look at bathroom fixtures, finishes, etc.  Take very careful notes.

Bathroom Remodeling Tip 5

Draw a rough sketch of the bathroom.  Label where you want things to go.  Please note that moving any plumbing dramatically increases remodeling costs.

Bathroom Remodeling Tip 6

Hire an architect to draw a set of plans for you.

Bathroom Remodeling Tip 7

Interview local contractors to find the right fit.


Alex Boutacoff Construction has been doing Medford remodeling and Ashland remodeling for over 30 years.  When you are ready to transform a bathroom, kitchen, or another part of your home, contact Alex Boutacoff Construction today!

 

Tool Kit Basics

Handyman Insights – What You Need For A Basic Toolkit

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Having a basic toolkit is essential for any homeowner.  As a commercial builder, I have created a list of the items you need for your toolbox.

Handyman Insights – 20 Items You Need For Your Toolkit

  1. Tape measure
  2. Flat head screwdriver
  3. Phillips head screwdriver
  4. Groove pliers
  5. Needle nose pliers
  6. Level
  7. Hammer
  8. Vise grip
  9. Assorted screws
  10. Assorted nails
  11. Wire cutter
  12. Blue painters tape
  13. Metal ruler
  14. Felt dots
  15. Spackle
  16. Putty knife
  17. Super glue
  18. Gorilla glue
  19. Goo gone
  20. Metal or plastic toolbox

We hope you found this resource useful!  If we are missing anything, please let us know.  :)


With over 30 years of experience, Alex Boutacoff Construction is your resource for Medford handyman, Ashland handyman, and southern Oregon handyman projects!

Kitchen Remodeling Checklist

If you are considering a kitchen remodeling project, you should use this checklist in your planning process…

Kitchen Remodeling Checklist

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Kitchen Remodeling General Questions

  • What do you like about your current kitchen?
  • What do you dislike about your current kitchen?
  • Does the kitchen work with the adjacent rooms?
  • Is your style contemporary, formal, traditional, country, or other?
  • What kind of cabinets do you prefer…wood finished, paint finished, or other?

 How Do You Use Your Kitchen?

  • What types of activities do you do in the kitchen?
  • Will your family dine in the kitchen, in a formal dining area, or both?
  • How many people will eat in the kitchen?
  • Do you want your kitchen area to be open or closed to adjacent rooms?
  • Do you entertain?  If so, how?

Cooking Areas

  • Who is the main cook in the family?
  • How many people usually prepare meals?
  • Where do you want the appliances and staging areas?
  • How do you want the kitchen to flow?
  • Do you want appliances on counters or put away?

Storage

  • Do you have a lot of back stock?
  • Do you have a lot of storage items, such as Tupperware?
  • Do you want to showcase any kitchenware or serving items in glass or cabinets?
  • Do you plan on moving items into the kitchen, such as sliver and china?
  • Do you need to child proof?

Lighting

  • Is there ambient lighting?
  • Do you need spot lighting for certain areas of the kitchen?

Other Considerations

  • Do you intent to upgrade your appliances?
  • What type of countertops do you want?
  • Do you have enough electrical outlets?
  • Are the windows in the correct locations?
  • Is there good access to the backyard or utility room?

Alex Boutacoff Construction has been remodeling kitchens, bathrooms and more in Ashland, Medford, and throughout southern Oregon for over 30 years.  If you are looking to turn your existing home into your dream home, contact Alex Boutacoff Construction today!

Residential Construction Insights

Residential Construction Market Insights

If you are considering a residential construction job in the near future, it is wise to understand what is going on in the market. 

Here are some charts showing the price indexes for construction materials:

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residential construction 2

residential construction 3

residential construction 4

Source:http://enr.construction.com/economics/materials_trends/

What does all of this mean for your next residential construction job?

Though supply (housing starts) is down, inflation is causing material costs to go up.  In 3 of the 4 indexes above, prices are increasing. 

Our experience is consistent with this indexes.  In addition, the lumber index is misleading.  Though prices have softened with demand, quality has also decreased, so the effective lumber cost has increased.

Residential Construction Bottom Line

If someone quotes you a rock bottom deal…be careful.  It is not unusual for us to get calls to clean-up the mess created by these "deals."  The problems include shoddy workmanship and poor material selection.  In a few instances the previous contractors have mysteriously disappeared after getting the down payment on the job.

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For an honest, transparent, and ethical approach to your Ashland residential construction or Medford residential construction job, contact Alex Boutacoff Construction today! 

 

Best Remodeling ROI

Who Else Wants Remodeling Projects with the Highest ROI?

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Due to the recession  many homeowners are staying in their homes and remodeling while they wait out the storm. The goal of each project is that the investment will yield a high return , with 80% being ideal) when you sell your home.

You should not expect to recover 100% of your investment right away. Generally you can recover 80% to 90% within the first two years.  If you select the right projects, you can make money on the improvement the longer you stay in the home.  By being in the home longer, you give the real estate market time to improve and you leverage the remodeling investment as property values grow.

The Top 7 ROI Remodeling Projects

  1. The Kitchen – 85%*
  2. The Bathroom – 80%*
  3. Decks – 80%*
  4. Siding – 80%*
  5. Windows – 70%*
  6. Two-story addition – 83%**
  7. Attic bedroom renovation – 80%**

*http://magazine.angieslist.com/remodeling/articles/5-remodeling-projects-with-highest-returns.aspx?cid=ALD20111005&ReflID=EML:998

**http://www.realtor.com/home-garden/remodel/remodeling-projects/top-7-roi.aspx?source=web

Remember, just because we're in a recession, it doesn't mean life is over…it means we have to make smatter choices. 

Make a smart choice, and hire Alex Boutacoff Construction for your Ashland remodeling project or Medford remodeling project today!

 

Organize The Garage

Handyman Tips: Organize The Garage

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Are you sick and tired of your garage mess?  You don't know where your tools are.  You cannot find your baseball glove.  Just looking at your garage give you anxiety.  Enough it enough!

Where Do You Start?

Handyman Tips: 7 Steps To A Clean Garage

1.) Schedule a pick-up from Goodwill or St. Vincent DePaul

Creating a deadline for this project will put the power of intention behind it.

2.)  Create a list of categories for your garage.  These categories could include:

  • Sports gear
  • Lawn and garden
  • Tools
  • Seasonal decorations
  • Cars and car gear

3.)  Pull all of your garage items out of the garage and sort them. 

During the sorting process, if there is an item that you haven't used in 3 years, you probably aren't going to use it.  Place these items in the donation pile.

4.)  Install metro shelving or shelving kits.

You can buy these kits at Home Depot, Lowes, Target, and Walmart.  They are easy to put together.  After assembly mark the items based on the categories you previously created.

5.)  Put your items in containers.

Segregate your items by subcategory.  For example, baseball mitts, balls, and bats should go in the "baseball" bin.  I like the clean plastic containers, but cardboard boxes work as well.  Also, label each container with masking tape.

6.)  Go vertical.

If you have exposed beams in your garage, you can put large items such as carpets and patio umbrellas.  Bicycles can be put up with large screw in hooks.  Getting these off the ground will really help remove clutter.

7.)  If you are struggling, hire a handyman to help.

Often we have an emotional connection to the "stuff" in our garage.  Also, organizing the garage can seem like a huge task, and it a paralyzes us. 

A handyman can help.  They do not have the same emotional attachment to these items.  Rather they are just looking to help you with your goal. 

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Alex Boutacoff Construction has been helping with home projects both large and small for over 30 years.  If you need an Ashland handyman or Medford handyman to assist in your garage clean-up, call Alex Boutacoff Construction today!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bathroom Remodeling

Bathroom Remodeling Tips

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Your bathroom is one of the hardest working rooms in your home.  The sink, shower, and toilet are use by numerous people throughout the day.  After a few years of use and abuse, it starts to look worn out and dirty. 

When you are tired of looking at your old bathroom, consider a bathroom remodeling project. 

7 Tips on Bathroom Remodeling

  1. Budget – Make sure to create a budget first before you start shopping.
  2. Refinishing – Consider refinishing a sink or bathtub instead of replacing.  It is a green solution that can save you money.
  3. Plumbing – If you move your plumbing, it will cost you.  Consider leaving plumbing fixtures as a way to save money.
  4. DIY – You should certainly clear out the space you are going to remodel, but doing it yourself may cost you more than you realize.
  5. Hardware – Changing out the hardware can be one of the least expensive, effective ways to reinvent your space.
  6. Lighting – Updating the lighting can make a huge impact on your bathroom.
  7. Ventilation – Make sure you have a good fan for exhausting the steam created in a bathroom.  It makes a big difference.

When you are looking to reinvent your bathroom, call Alex Boutacoff Construction for a remodeling a bathroom in Ashland, Medford, or throughout southern Oregon.

 

 

Green Building

Residential Construction – Green Building 101

residential construction medford

If you are considering sustainable building practices for your next project, you need to consider the following elements…

  1. sustainable site development
  2. water savings
  3. energy efficiency
  4. materials selection
  5. indoor environmental quality

What Is The Cost Of A Green Residential Construction Project?

When compared to conventional construction, LEED certified projects are 2-3% more expensive on the front-end. 

Much of this can be recovered by lower utility costs and a higher resale value, but you need to know that these projects are more expensive up front.

Does Alex Boutacoff Construction Have Experience In Green Building?

As a Oregon resident, many of our clients want green building practices.  We have worked with solar energy, swapped out leaky windows, and installed tankless water heaters.

Our largest green residential construction project was the Fineman residence…

The Fineman residence is a passive solar design in straw bale construction, comprised of 2 bedrooms,1 office and 2 baths on a single story with 2,300 SF total area; Universal design.  Its Great Room with vaulted ceiling and vented cupola integrates natural heating and cooling with natural lighting. Partial height walls invite circulation of light and air as part of  the passive solar design.  The L-shaped Great Room opens to a generous brick paved courtyard and extends indoor-outdoor living.  

An original small PV solar electric system of 750 watts  (later upgraded to 4 KW grid-tied system) and asolar domestic hot water system are located on the roof of the detached garage and greenhouse. The house is provided with energy efficient lighting and appliances, passive solar heating and radiant floor system; temp-cast enviroheat masonry fireplace/heater. Water conservation strategies include grey-water and rain water harvest system with pond based on Permaculture principles.

For your green residentail construction needs in Ashland, Medford, and throughout southern Oregon, contact Alex Boutacoff Construction today!

 

Handyman Insight

Hiring A Handyman For Small Jobs Is Fantastic!

handyman medford

You may not need a plumber for that kitchen faucet drip. Electrical outet bit too loose? Skip the electrician. For small jobs in your home, consider a handyman.

A Handyman is a perfect option for homeowners who need work done on a variety of small projects.  Contractors, like plumbers and electricians, tend to take on larger jobs that often require a license or special certification. This type of work may take several weeks to finish, whereas typical hanyman project can take a few hours to a day.

Working next to handyman is also a good strategy for budding do-it-yourselfers. If a particular home improvement project gets you stumped, a handyman's broad array of skills can get you back on track. Plus, enlisting the services of handyman will speed up the entire process.

Handyman hiring insight

  • Ask if the handyman charges a flat or hourly rate for the job. Are travel costs included in the charge?
  • Get a sense of the handyman's reputation by calling references.
  • Make sure he or she is qualified. Some states require licensing for handymen, others do not. Check your state's licensing board website to learn more.
  • When you've made the hire, save time and money by doing as much prep work for the job as you can. Having a sink fixed? Make sure the cabinet underneath is clear beforethe handyman arrives.

When you need a Medford handyman or Ashland handyman, contact Alex Boutacoff Construction to get a free estimate!

Testimonials

"When we moved from Los Angeles to Eagle Point, we selected Alex Boutacoff Construction as our builder. He delivered the house of our dreams!"

-Pat & Ron, Eagle Point


"We needed to reinvent our home for our retirement. Alex Boutacoff not only executed our vision, but took it to the next level. Thanks Alex!"

-Barbara, Medford


"After the birth of our second child, we realized we were out of space. Alex Boutacoff construction build the new bedroom, bathroom, and office we needed."

-Karin & Jason, Eagle Point


remodel ashland

Contact Us!

Alex Boutacoff Construction, Inc.

132 High Oak Drive

Medford, OR 97504

541.821.0140

alexb@mind.net