Parry Custom Homes Blog

Blog Archive for November, 2019

Considering the switch to LED bulbs?

Categories: Custom Home Builders in Pittsburgh, Homeowner Tips, Pittsburgh on your lot builder | Posted: November 27, 2019 | Comments Off on Considering the switch to LED bulbs?
LED lights in your home

LED lights in your home

If you have begun putting up your holiday decorations, you may have switched over your holiday decor lighting to an LED option, to prevent having to re-string your garland so often. Over the past couple of years, LED bulbs have been the all of the rage when it comes to home lighting. Known for their versatility, long life and cost effectiveness, it is easy to see why they would be an attractive option to switch to in your home. However, all LED lights are not created equal. Parry Custom Homes, a premier Pittsburgh on your lot builder, has what you need to know before you head out to the store to buy new lights for your entire house.

A common misconception when it comes to wattage is that the number of watts will determine how bright the bulb is. This is actually false. The number of watts refers to how much energy the bulb draws. For incandescent lights, this is an accepted correlation between watts and the brightness of the bulbs. However, LED lights are much different. A 60-watt incandescent light would be comparable to an LED light that is just 8 to 12 watts.

Because there are so many varieties of LED lights, it will not be the same as going to the store and picking up an incandescent light like you have been use to in the past. When shopping for new LED bulbs, you will no longer be looking at the watts of the bulb, like you are accustomed too.

However, don’t worry about having to go into a light store and do the math. There is a uniform way to convert incandescent watts to LED watts. Lumens is the new form of measurement for LED lights.

The Lumen (lm) is the true measurement of brightness provided by a light bulb and this is the number you will want to look for when you go out shopping for your LED lights. An incandescent light can draw up to five times as many watts for the same number of lumens.

LED lights also come in a wide variety of colors. A traditional iridescent light has a warm, yellowish hue. However, when you switch over to LED bulbs, you will have a choice in what color you prefer.  The most popular colors of LED bulbs are warm white, soft white or bright white.

The warm white and soft white LED bulbs will be the most comparable in color to your traditional incandescent bulbs, while the bright white color option will produce a brighter light that will be similar to daytime light or the light you see in retail stores.

If you want to get really specific with the color, the color of an LED light (which is actually the temperature) is measured in kelvins. The lower the number, the more yellow the light will be. A typical incandescent light is between 2,700 and 3,500k in comparison.

These simple tips will make selecting the new LED lights in your home a breeze!

 

 

 

Parry Custom Homes is an established homebuilder in the Pittsburgh area.  Call or contact us today for more information about this floor plan option, or to view other homes in our portfolio that may suit your new home needs.

 Winter is Coming! Home Heating Tips For Your Home

Categories: Custom Home Builders in Pittsburgh, Custom Home in Pittsburgh, New Homes in Pittsburgh, On Your Lot Builder Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh on your lot builder | Posted: November 22, 2019 | Comments Off on  Winter is Coming! Home Heating Tips For Your Home
Home Heating Tips

Home Heating Tips

As the winter season approaches this holiday season, you may feel like the furnace in your home never stops running. Did you know there are common mistakes many homeowners make when it comes to heating their home? Who knew there were so many common faux pas to home heating? Parry Custom Homes, a premier Pittsburgh on your lot builder, shares the top five heating mistakes you might be making in your home that can be costing you more money than you realize.

First, be sure not to abuse your thermostat. If you come in from outdoors and you’re chilled and want to warm up fast, the key is not to crank up your thermostat. In fact, no matter how high your temperature is set on your furnace, the heat isn’t going to come out any faster or warm you up any quicker. So, keep your heat at it’s normally temperature and just warm up with an extra blanket or sweatshirt until your body catches up!

Second, don’t let your windows leak! If a drafty window is left alone it can consume up to 30 percent of your home’s energy usage! If you have older windows and feel like your energy bill is higher each year, this is the culprit. Check your windows by putting your hand around the perimeter of each window. If you can feel cold air seeping in, it means that your heat is leaking out! If locking your windows doesn’t stop the draft, seal the leaks with caulk along your window’s seal.

The next is to not leave your bathroom air exhaust fan on for too long. Leaving this fan on for too long will take the warm hair from inside and pump it outside. Not what you want in the middle of winter! The best use for your exhaust fans is best to use them after a steamy shower to prevent mold and mildew growth.

The fourth tip for your home (and commonly made) mistake many homeowners make, is closing vents in unused rooms. It may seem like a logical thing to do, but blocking heat access by closing vents is actually less efficient than heating unused rooms and won’t save you any money. To add to it, doing this can actually imbalance your home’s energy system which intern, strains your furnace and creates the cold room effect. The best rule of thumb is to leave vents and doors open and allow your homes HVAC system to circulate evenly.

Lastly, using a dirty air filter will be a major no-no you’ll want to correct. Dirty air filters reduce the airflow in your home, forcing your furnace to work harder. Plus, it creates more dust and increases the air pollution in your home. Check and replace your air filters on a regular basis so you can help the heat in your home run as efficiently as possible.

These simple tips will not only keep your home energy running efficiently but keep you warm no matter the time of year you need it!

 

 

Parry Custom Homes is an established homebuilder in the Pittsburgh area.  Call or contact us today for more information about this floor plan option, or to view other homes in our portfolio that may suit your new home needs.

How to give your home more curb appeal on a budget

Categories: Pittsburgh on your lot builder | Posted: November 15, 2019 | Comments Off on How to give your home more curb appeal on a budget

If you have plans to sell your home this holiday season or after the New Year, you may think you need to break the bank when it comes to updating your homes exterior. However, there are ways to get the most curb appeal for the least amount of money. Parry Custom Homes, a premier Pittsburgh on your lot builder, shares some ways to dramatically increase the look of your homes exterior on a budget.

The first and most important way to increase the aesthetic of your homes exterior is to simply spend a weekend cleaning it up. From Trimming your bushes, mowing your lawn, planting some new flowers and washing your driveway, windows and fence, a little elbow grease can go a long way in taking your home up a notch on the appealing scale.

It is a good idea to rent a power-washer to do the heavy-duty cleaning if needed or if it’s been a while since your windows, driveway and fence have had a good cleaning. It typically only costs about $50-$75 per day to rent a power washer and the result is worth the time and money. The one thing you won’t want to power-wash however is the roof. That can damage the shingles and end up costing you money, which you are trying to avoid.

Be sure to clean not only the outside of your windows, but the inside as well. A better cleaning solution that glass cleaner is a mix of detergent diluted in warm water.

Next, an addition to the exterior of your home that can accentuate the size of your windows will be to add shutters. It will make them look larger and add visual interest to the front of your home. It can also add more curb appeal, especially if your homes exterior is bland or boring in color or style.

Painting accent areas is another feature you could add to your homes exterior to enhance appeal. You don’t have to paint the entire exterior of your home to enhance it. Try painting your trim, door or shutters (or all three) to add a nice highlight of elegance to update your home. A fresh coat of paint on any of these areas can go along way for a small amount of money.

If you have a boring front door or just one you are not in love with, instead of just painting it to try and make it look better consider adding molding to it to offer a more decorative touch. You can also add metal house numbers to your doorway which can cost as little as $5 per number. Top if off with a wreath or seasonal decorations and you will have your front door standing out in no time!

Lastly, updating your light fixtures is an inexpensive and immediate way to not only add to the curb appeal of your home, but also make your home look richer. Outdoor sconces can be found for as little as $20 at your local home improvement stores. If you don’t mind the outdoor lighting you have but it looks outdated or faded, consider spray painting them a different color to bring them back to life.

These simple exterior updates will keep your wallet happy and dramatically improve the exterior appeal of your home at the same time. It is a win-win scenario that is well worth the time and effort!

 

 

Parry Custom Homes is an established homebuilder in the Pittsburgh area.  Call or contact us today for more information about this floor plan option, or to view other homes in our portfolio that may suit your new home needs.

Buying new construction? Questions to ask

Categories: Buying a Home, Pittsburgh on your lot builder | Posted: November 8, 2019 | Comments Off on Buying new construction? Questions to ask

 

If you are currently one of the many in the market for a new construction home, you have plenty of options at your fingertips compared to buying a resale home. Sales of new homes surged over the past 5 years and it doesn’t seem to be slowing down headed into the end of this year. Higher demand has also risen the prices of new homes over the past couple of years, but there are still ways you can save when purchasing a new home. Parry Custom Homes, a premier Pittsburgh on your lot builder,  shares tips on what to ask when buying a new construction home.

The first question you can ask when purchasing a new home is if there are any financial incentives that are offered if you use the builders preferred lender and title company. Not all builders will be open to negotiating sales prices, but it doesn’t hurt to check especially if you are working with a production builder.

You may be able to save money on the cost of the home or possibly get some negotiated prices on finishes like upgraded flooring. However, be sure to still shop around to other lenders and check on what they are offering and keep interest rates in mind during your decision.

The next question to ask your builder are what are the standard finishes, if there are different versions of the home plan you are interested in or upgrades that you have the option of making. If you are needing to save money but want several upgrades, an option you have would be to buy the standard model of that home and then do the upgrades over time with a contractor on your own. This can save you money and allow you to break the projects out over time, if needed.

Next, be sure to ask what the plans of the community are. Especially if it is a new development, you will want to know where the community currently stands and what the future plans are. If the community you are looking in is brand new, you will want to consider the noise of construction that could be around you for several months, if not years. Also, see how many builders are in the development and what might happen if one builder loses funding and must opt-out. You could be stuck next to lesser-quality homes or homes that are a different style to yours that may not be as desirable.

You will also want to ask what warranties are provided for the home. Most builders will provide a one-year workmanship warranty and then a 10-year structural warranty. You will want to make sure the warranty strictly states what is and isn’t covered so you know what the limitations are for any damages. Also, don’t forget to see about getting manufacturer’s warranties on your household appliances like washer, dryer, hot water heater and so on.

Then, be sure to ask about any HOA fees or Covenants that you will need to be aware of before moving in. Depending on the neighborhood, you may need to take a list of the rules that you have to abide by. Some neighborhoods don’t allow for sheds, in the backyard, private fences or basketball goals in the driveway. If any of the rules that neighborhood has are deal breakers for you, it is something you will want to check-out before moving in.  Also, check to see when HOA dues will kick in if you purchase the home. Some builders cover the fees until the development is close to being completed or fully completed and running.

Lastly, it doesn’t hurt to ask for references of past clients that you can talk with about their experience. It isn’t a bad idea to check Angie’s list or a third-party source, as sometimes the only reviews that you might be given are glowing reviews.

 

If you take the time to ask these questions, you will be sure to make the best decision and cover the critical bases you will want too before signing on the dotted line for your new home.

 

 

 

Parry Custom Homes is an established homebuilder in the Pittsburgh area.  Call or contact us today for more information.

 

Need To Sell Your Home This Winter?

Categories: Homeowner News, Homeowner Tips, Pittsburgh custom homes | Posted: November 1, 2019 | Comments Off on Need To Sell Your Home This Winter?
Winter Home Sales

Winter Home Sales

If you are currently in the market for a Pittsburgh custom home or know that is on the horizon for you this upcoming winter season, many homeowners hesitate to list their current home for sale during the winter months. The winter season is typically looked down upon for putting homes on the market and most realtors may even recommend you wait until spring. However, Parry Custom Homes shares why a study by Redfin indicates that selling your home in the winter months might actually be to your benefit.

While spring may be the home-shopping season for many, listing your home for sale in the winter can give you the upper hand in a lot of cases. When buyers are shopping for homes in the winter, they tend to have more of a sense of urgency. Redfin, an online brokerage, found that the average seller nets more than asking price during the months of December through March, than they do from June through November. Homes listed in winter also sold faster than homes listed in the spring, surprisingly enough.

These findings may have many people in a rush to put their home up for sale before spring, but timing for home sales is always based on supply and demand. The best way to determine this is to check your area to see when might be the best time for you to sell your home, if you aren’t on a time crunch.

Check the number of days on the market for your city and the recently sold listings. If most homes are sitting for more than 60 days, it will be safer to hold off until spring when more buyers enter the market. However, if properties are selling quickly, then you can take that as a green light to list your home.

A few tips to help your home sell fast are:

1.) Schedule a tune-up. Be sure the main issues buyers look at like heating and maintenance are up to speed, as well as clean gutters, air filters, and clean windows are in place. A well kept home is a home that will sell much faster.

2.) Price Your Home Right. If homes are going on the market as quick as they are going off, then you have the flexibility to test the market and price it higher. However, if it is the dead of winter and the market is not as bust, it’s best to price it reasonable to draw in buyers.

3.) Brighten your home. Often times, the winter months are gray and gloomy. Be sure to make your home warm and inviting from the minute the buyer drives up. Warm up your curb appeal with clean landscaping and cool-weather plants, and make sure chipped paint and cracked window seals are taken care of. A welcoming house will sell, even in the winter months.

Putting this knowledge to use when listing your home this winter may have you selling your home quicker than you imagined, especially if inventory in your area is already low this winter season!

 

 

Parry Custom Homes is an established homebuilder in the Pittsburgh area.  Call or contact us today for more information about this floor plan option, or to view other homes in our portfolio that may suit your new home needs.