With St. Patrick’s Day coming up, what better way to celebrate than with an article on the ways the Irish have influenced American architecture? From the Gothic Revival style of churches to the Victorian-era row houses, Irish architects and builders have left their mark on the American landscape. Even iconic buildings like the Empire State Building and the Chrysler Building were designed by Irish-American architects. The Irish have influenced the United States in so many ways, affecting our politics, industry, organized labor, religion, literature, music, and art. A less-known contribution is their architectural influence.
These five duplexes we are building on Indian Rocks Beach consist of a foundation and first floor made of concrete and masonry, with the second and third stories constructed with wood framing. This is common building practice in Florida.
In most parts of the country, structures are built primarily with wood framing from the foundation to the roof. In Florida, however, it is very common to see homes built with concrete block. It is done minimally on the first floor, but sometimes the entire structure is built out of concrete masonry units (CMU). We are asked often why it is done that way down here. Is it required by law? Do Florida contractors just like to go the extra mile? Is there simply an over-abundance of masons?
The answer is, none of the above. Building code allows for both concrete block and engineered wood framing down here in Florida, as long as they comply with hurricane codes. However, there are many reasons why concrete block is the more popular building choice. We’ll discuss a few of the main ones here.
A custom home built by Nelson Construction and Renovations.
When building a custom home, nearly everything pivots on your relationship with your builder. You need someone who is more than just a contractor or designer – you need someone you can trust. Reversely, your builder will rely on you for many things throughout the course of the project. Understanding the relationship and working together as a team will determine how smoothly your project goes. To help you with this vital aspect of your project, here are five tips for working with a custom home builder.
Show-stopping kitchens are the top amenity asked for by homeowners.
Designing a stunning kitchen is more than just updating an old counter-top and appliances and putting on a fresh coat of paint. To truly create a show-stopping kitchen you need to consider all the details that will help bring everything together to make an aesthetic space both you and your loved ones can enjoy together.
And what are “all the details” that you should consider when wanting to create a show-stopping kitchen? To answer this question, here is a list of some of the top details you can consider adding to your kitchen design.Read More »
When Building or Renovating Your Home in Florida, Consider These 5 tips.
Renovating a house in Florida is not like construction in the rest of the country. Not only do you have to deal with the humidity (hello, mold), there’s also the hurricanes, termites, frequent rainstorms and beating sun (which lead to dry-rot). It’s no wonder the construction industry is so heavily regulated down here.
So what do you need to know to properly navigate the ins and outs of a renovation in Florida? Read on for five important tips.
From the Great Pyramids of Giza to the cathedrals of Europe, construction over the ages has been a source of wonder and amazement. Whether dealing with plumb-bobs and rugged stone or lasers and steel, builders and tradespeople are viewed with a sort of awe, as they carry a wisdom and courage about the material universe that seems several notches above the average person.
Although we are not building cathedrals or pyramids, today’s builder or remodeler is still accomplishing feats that often go un-acknowledged, because all people see is the finished product. Until one experiences or hears the tale of the barriers one had to overcome (and there are many), it seems that building or remodeling is routine and mundane, as if one need only stack up some lumber and slop on some mortar to build a house. The truth is, no one construction project is the same, especially when it comes to custom home building and remodeling, and we’re here to share some stories (and Before and After photos) of construction projects we’ve done that were, each one, an adventure in itself.
Did you know Design-Build can actually save you money? You have probably heard that if you want to build a custom home, the first place to start is with an architect. Even Contractors will refer you to an architect if you don’t have blueprints done, because they need plans in order to give you a proper estimate. The trouble with this is that most architects are going to draw you whatever you want and will not give you much guidance on what things cost. So if you have a budget, you will likely experience sticker-shock when you bring your completed blueprints to your Contractor and find out it will cost you far more than you expected to build what you want.
At our company, we saw many tears and much frustration in our conference room when homeowners discovered that they could not afford to build what their architect had drawn them. Since our purpose is to make the building and renovating process less stressful and more enjoyable for homeowners, we decided there had to be a better way to help our clients create their dream homes within their budgets. Because, let’s face it, not everyone has the cash flow of Warren Buffett – and even Warren runs a tight budget. That is when we discovered Design-Build.
What is Design-Build?
Design-Build is a project delivery system in the construction industry in which one entity handles both the design and the build aspects of a construction project. This means that one company (in our case, the Contractor) runs the design and planning portion of the project in addition to the construction. Not only does this give both the Contractor and the homeowner more control, it saves the homeowner a ton of money.
Every once in a while, we come across a solution for a remodeling historic homes problem that is just too good not to share.
There is a large inventory of older and historic homes in Pinellas County and the greater Tampa Bay area. These historic homes are very desirable and hold tons of appeal – from architectural windows and solid plaster walls to marble windowsills, crown molding, pocket doors, arched doorways and in many cases higher-quality materials and finishing touches than are used today.
A potential drawback to these charming homes is that interior rooms can turn into a sauna with our hot and humid summer days. Older homes often don’t have the space to install ductwork for a conventional central air-conditioning system. Attic space is small, many times there is no basement or crawlspace and there isn’t enough room between the outer and inner walls for ductwork. Window units are loud and unsightly.
In recent years, a solution to air conditioning these historic homes is the ductless mini split system that consists of an indoor unit mounted on a wall or ceiling and an outdoor unit that houses the compressor and condenser. They allow each room to have a different temperature setting.
The mini split ductless system is efficient; however, they are not always considered aesthetically pleasing by homeowners who may not want a conspicuous wall, ceiling or floor unit competing with their décor.
Elegant Marble Tile in This Historic Home Restoration Project
Finding the Right Stone Flooring
Natural Stone flooring is a wonderful choice for Florida homes. Not only is its cool temperature perfect for withstanding the heat and humidity, it also adds a feeling of luxury that’s hard to find in other materials. It is eco-friendly, as it is mined from the earth in various locations around the globe, and today’s selection offers fantastic variations in color and quality. But with so much variety, how do you choose? Where do you even start?
We thought we’d simplify it for you. Read on to learn more about stone flooring and which kind might be right for your home.
This remodel we did in 2017 included a customer fireplace with wood paneling and a large beam to create texture in the room.
We LOVE the current trend toward open-plan living. Who doesn’t want wonderful large gathering spaces in their home? The only downside is that spaces with an open floor plan can typically feel cold and empty. One way to fix this is by adding texture to bring a little interest – and a lot of personality – to the room.
Texture can be added to floors, ceilings, walls, doors and windows. A wide range of materials can be used including reclaimed wood, natural wood, stone, brick, paint, metal, molding and more. Here are a few ways you can add texture to your home.
I would hire Nelson CR again in a heartbeat. No construction new project and/or renovation is without issues. However, if you want a company and a team that will resolve those issues to your satisfaction then NCR is that company. The thoughtfulness, professionalism, quality of work, communication and a resolution oriented team are the best... Read More »
J.I., homeowner – whole home remodel
We would hire Nelson construction again without hesitation. The entire team, from the unseen to the seen, were dedicated, responsive, respectful, and patient while we lived through a beautiful renovation.
V.I., homeowner – whole home remodel
Nelson Construction out of Clearwater/Tampa fully remodeled our 7,900 sq ft home in Clearwater, Florida. To say they did a great job is an understatement. The qualities of this company extend beyond just a nice finish. Road blocks: Near the beginning of the remodel we ran into our first hidden challenge. To modify and create... Read More »
BZ, homeowner – historic home restoration/remodel
The staff at Nelson Construction do a fantastic job of caring for their customers. They care about their work, their products, and the customer’s satisfaction in the final result. I also greatly admire their attention to legal rudiments, which some contractors try to skirt or dodge. Nelson Construction operates within all ethical codes and boundaries,... Read More »
A.O. - American Power and Gas
We were satisfied with the level of service we were given by Nelson Construction and Renovations. The project manager was very communicative. Any time I needed an answer, the Nelson Team was there. Everyone was very professional and courteous, and the end result is beautiful.
“We highly recommend Nelson Construction and Renovation, Inc. We are totally satisfied customers. Nelson Construction will always be our first recommendation to friends who want to build. “Our project was the 2014 renovation and expansion of a 600 square foot 1950’s bungalow in Safety Harbor’s historic district. Our goal was to create a space suitable... Read More »
Ann Morgan & Margo Pfleger, homeowners – home addition and whole home remodel
On behalf of the whole CCHR Clearwater team, we would like to thank you and your company for the stellar work on our new building – which did open on time! Even though we were very pressed for time and things were very hectic, your supervisor remained stable and your work areas somehow remained organized.... Read More »
Jamie Blackstone - Renovations Supervisor – Citizens Commission on Human Rights
Nelson Construction and Renovations exceeded our expectations on our fairly good-sized job (new addition and complete living room and kitchen remodel). I have never worked with a company before that was this intent on making our project a total success AND was so fast and efficient. In addition to that, they routinely went above and... Read More »
Scott and Holly - Clearwater, FL
This letter is to commend Nelson Construction for the excellent job done on our kitchen renovation. When we returned from vacation we were surprised to see the difference and how great it all looked. We expected to see a mess, but everything was cleaned up perfectly; and your company did even more than we expected... Read More »
Thank you for the job well done! I have renovated several houses and know the hassles that often come with these endeavors – dirt, delays, redo’s, cost, contract issues, etc. I was planning to renovate my kitchen for many months, but kept putting it off, simply trying to avoid the expected hassles. Once I finally... Read More »
Mr. Nelson was my contractor for a major house renovation in March 2006 and also my office renovation in June 2006. He is a rare commodity in the construction industry. He is honest, efficient, on time, on schedule and overall a pleasure to deal with. In my area, where real estate values are climbing and... Read More »
Michael Haldane - Managing Partner/Executive Producer – The Radke Film Group
Our school was in great need of a new roof. Sorting through the various types of roofing and installations was very overwhelming, and for such a large project, we needed to be certain we were making the most cost-effect decision we could. So we hired Nelson Construction to be an Owner’s Representative to help navigate... Read More »
Nelson Construction is a valued company, steadfast to a strict, honest and drug-free work environment. The most notable point of Nelson Construction’s service was the quality work and professional integrity. My project met all of my expectations and more. Project Images (*Click image to enlarge)
S.K. - Clearwater, FL
The most notable part of Nelson Construction and Renovations’ service was their attention to detail. Great all around service and finished product!
Thank you for giving us a new home that we love. Every time we look around we are reminded that we made the right decision to go with Nelson. We shall recommend you to anyone who asks and would be happy to serve as references for potential clients.
Margo & Ann
Your Concrete Design Website is very impressive. Beautifully put together and inviting to the design community.
In short, we love our home. It is gorgeous. The counter tops are amazing, the cabinetry is perfect. Overall we are so happy! Project Images (*Click image to enlarge)
We couldn’t be happier and we plan to use your company on any upcoming project that we have. The employees and subcontractors were very professional; it was something we noticed right away. The job site was cleaned every day, and my cleaning lady even noticed and told our friend about it. The level of communication... Read More »
You and your guys are the BEST!!! It is such a pleasure to be able to open my home and leave for the day and know there will not be a problem. Your staff is like family! Project Images (*Click image to enlarge)
Nelson Construction has been the best construction company that I have ever hired. I am sure that they are not the cheapest but they offer an excellent product and are very professional. They stayed in daily communication to let me know the status of the project. Their crew was friendly, courteous and conscientious. They showed... Read More »
Working with Nelson was like no other experience I’ve ever had–and I’ve done a ton of work on my very old house. They’re so professional and stayed in close communication with us. I will NEVER use any other contractor again! I can’t say enough good things!
Joy Gendusa - CEO - PostcardMania
Nelson Construction delivers every time: quality product, on time and in budget, no surprises, no rip-offs, stellar service and product, communication and genuine interest in finishing the product 100% to my satisfaction (and theirs)!
Stacey Tiveron - CEO - Trade Only Design Library (TODL)
I wanted to tell you how pleased I am with the work done by Nelson Construction & Renovations. The external deck and 2 stairways your company recently built at my North Clearwater Beach apartments exceeded my expectations. I was very impressed with every aspect of the operation in the work and the interaction with me... Read More »