Parry Custom Homes Blog

Blog Category - Pittsburgh on your lot builder

Savvy Gardeners Understand Climate and Weather

Categories: Homeowner News, Homeowner Tips, New Homes in Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh on your lot builder | Posted: January 17, 2020 | Comments Off on Savvy Gardeners Understand Climate and Weather

 

Spring Gardening Tips

Spring Gardening Tips

Spring may still be a few months away, but dreaming of warmer temperatures may have you ready to get in your garden. Spend the next few months studying up on what plants will work best in your environment. Savvy gardeners keep one eye on the sky and the other on their plant beds. They give nature a nudge by understanding the climate, learning how to read the weather and then creating a landscape that fits. Parry Custom Homes, a premier Pittsburgh on your lot builder, shares information on how to grow the best garden possible this spring!

It’s good to know what the weather is doing, why it’s doing it and what it will do next. If you go with your climate and soil, your garden will be much more successful and if you choose the appropriate plants and tend to them well, you’ll save money because there’ll be fewer failures.

Learning how to read clues about upcoming weather can result in a more productive garden.

You can predict whether there will be a frost by noting the temperature and the rate it changes at dusk, can predict whether dew will form. Calculate the atmospheric humidity and you’ll know how likely it is to rain or snow. Watch the clouds for approaching weather fronts and gathering storms.

Soil and climate are closely linked. At the extremes, desert soils are sandy while tundra soils are low in nutrients because vegetation is so limited.

The more sand you have, the faster it will drain, so you might need to irrigate. Clay retains water and is very fertile because it stays wet it tends to be cold in spring, so you can’t work it or plant it early in the year.

Silt is very fertile. Loamy soil, which is best of all, has approximately equal parts of clay, sand and silt.

Then there are microclimates, which can vary depending on the size and shape of your property.

Lower terrain may have lower temperatures than higher terrain. Exposure to sun and wind can create a dry microclimate even in areas with adequate rainfall.

When you have a few days of unexpected 65-degree weather come February or March, people may think they can plant. But nature has a way of getting even and it’s best to stay with the tried and true. Things aren’t what they used to be, but nobody can be certain what the weather is moving toward.

 

 

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.

Need to get your home first impression ready for the spring market?

Categories: On Your Lot Builder Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh on your lot builder | Posted: January 10, 2020 | Comments Off on Need to get your home first impression ready for the spring market?

 

Home For Sale in Pittsburgh

Parry Custom Homes

Before you know it spring will be on our doorstep and if you are planning to sell your home this spring, chances are you have been spending the past colder months preparing the inside to be buyer ready. However, everyone knows a first impression is make or break when it comes to shopping for homes. Is your homes exterior ready for its close up? Parry Custom Homes, a premier Pittsburgh on your lot builder, shares tips on how to get your home ready to make the best first impression it can on buyers.

The first step as you might have guessed for getting your home ready for its up close and personal visit with prospective buyers, is to clean, clean, clean. This means, cleaning all of your exterior windows, your front door, giving your deck, driveway and anywhere else that may need it a good power washing as well.

You will also want to do the lawn aesthetic items, such as trimming your bushes, moving your lawn and cleaning up and flower beds that may have gotten ruined from the winter months. You can also use your garden hose as a type of power-washer for your fence, sidewalk, driveway and so on.

Next, if you aren’t going to re-paint your homes exterior as a whole, be sure to give a fresh coat of paint to the accent areas of the home. Focus on your trim, front door, shutters and anywhere else that might need some TLC in the painting department.

Consider adding a touch of new to your front doorway, buy adding some elegant metal door numbers to the front of your home. A nice new front door rug and a seasonal wreath are also great touches that say “welcome home” to buyers.

Another great inexpensive update is to change out and update your light fixtures on the exterior of your home. Most home décor centers have nice light fixtures for around $20 and they can really make a big difference in terms of look and even the light that is given off at the front of your home.

If you have a front porch on your home, be sure to show that off with some great furniture, a rocking chair or seat. This is a great way to show off outdoor living space on the front part of your home.

Lastly, be sure to bring some life to the front of your home by either planting some flowers or placing potted flowers in planters at the front door.  This is a great way to welcome spring and have your home be one of the first to reflect that!

 

 

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.

Home listing photo do’s and don’ts from the experts

Categories: Pittsburgh on your lot builder | Posted: December 27, 2019 | Comments Off on Home listing photo do’s and don’ts from the experts

 

If part of your New Years plans include putting your home on the market, be sure you attract the right attention with your listing photos you place online for your home. If you have bad or non-professional listing photos, you are more than likely to have a lot of your buyers bypass your home as one they want to consider as they are shopping around. On the flipside, if you have great listing photos you can have showings non-stop and a buyer even quicker! Parry Custom Homes, a premier Pittsburgh on your lot homebuilder, showcases nine tips to give your home the best first impression to buyers searching online.

First, be sure the first shot of your home that is on your listing is the exterior of the home. If you place an interior shot as the opening shot, most buyers will assume something is wrong with the exterior of the house and won’t even bother to click on your home to see what it looks like. So be sure to have a curb shot taken that shows the entire home with space around it, and be sure not to have any cars or outside objects in the photo (think trash cans, kids toys, and so on.)

Next, if you are taking the photos yourself be sure that your photos are all perfectly centered and they aren’t taken at any angle making it look like the house is slanted or leaning.

Third, be sure your home entryway is setup and shot to welcome visitors. Take a photo of your entryway and leave the front door open to send a welcoming message to buyers that your door is open and ready for them to see up close and personal.

Fourth, be sure to take down all signage that could scare buyers off. If you have a ‘beware of dog’ sign or security stickers or signs all around your home, that sends the opposite of a welcoming message to your buyers and may worry them that the home is unsafe or has been robbed before.

Fifth, do consider taking a bird’s eye view of your home. This allows them to see the property. Especially if you have land, a pool, lake or waterfront location, you can easily showcase this with an aerial shot.

The sixth thing you will want to be sure and capture in your homes photos, is the selling points of your home and take several photos of them. If you have huge closets, showcase them! If you have a newly updated kitchen with great appliances, be sure to take several photos both far away and up close to highlight those things.

The seventh thing to be sure and not do (and really this should be number one) is be sure not to capture yourself in the reflection of any mirror in your photos! Nothing screams unprofessional photos more than a buyer being caught on photo taking pictures of their bathrooms.

The eighth thing you will want to do, is be sure and stage the rooms of your home before you go through and get room shots. If you still have furniture in your home, it needs to be showcased nicely, neat and tidy. There should be no clutter, trash, or personalized things on the walls that will make it scream “your home” and not someone else’s vision for the home.

Lastly, be sure when you take photos of your home that the only thing in the photos are the rooms themselves. Check to make sure no pets, kids, toys and so on slip into the pictures. If your cat is seen sleeping on the couch, and a buyer shopping doesn’t like cats or is allergic to them, they may not even want to visit your home after seeing your cat in the photos! You might think your pets are adorable, but keep them to family photos and not your homes listing photos.

 

These nine simple tips can have your home looking it’s best and give it the best chance to be sold in no time!

 

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.

A first-time buyer guide to making an offer on a home

Categories: Pittsburgh on your lot builder | Posted: December 20, 2019 | Comments Off on A first-time buyer guide to making an offer on a home

 

 

If a new home is on your Christmas list this season, you have probably been searching online, attending more open-houses than you would like to admit and already been approved for your loan. If Christmas has come early and you found the home that feels like “the one,” you might be ready to make your first offer! Parry Custom Homes, a premier Pittsburgh on your lot builder, shares tips on what you should know when making an offer on a home.

First, have confidence in your search experience. If you have been looking for homes for a while, narrowed down what you want and need in a home and the location in which you want to live, don’t second guess yourself when it comes time to make an offer on a home! Trust the time and effort you have put into the experience will lead you to the right home.

Next, learn everything you can before deciding on your offer. For example, know the story of the listing. Know how long the home has been on the market, if there are other offers on the table, and if there is a certain day or time that the sellers are going to look at the offers. Knowing these things in advance can be crucial in not only what you offer, but when you need to have an offer made by.

Then, you want to review the comps in the area that you are looking to make an offer. Your agent should send you the last six months of recent sales data to review and compare in terms of what is a fair offer for the home your are interested in.

Be sure to look at the most recent pending sales in the area. Those will represent the most recent sales in the market and you can figure out a ballpark selling price.

Next, be sure to give your lender a heads up before you make an official offer. You will need to get a pre-approval letter to go with your offer and you will also want to be sure and have updated mortgage rates since these changes daily.

Then, discuss the terms that you want to plan for such as how long will your inspections take, do you want to close quickly or do you need longer, and so on. Remember that terms can be a make or break deal as well. If the seller wants a quick close, they will most likely go with the buyer that can give them that. If you are competing with an all-cash offer, make sure your loan terms are foolproof.

Lastly, remember that there are indeed other houses out there! Sometimes you don’t get the first home you put an offer on. While it can be disheartening, there are always other homes for sale at any given time.

So, keep on searching for your new home until you find (and close) on the home of your dreams!

 

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.

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.

 

4 simple ways to make your new house feel like home

Categories: Custom Home in Pittsburgh, Homeowner Tips, Pittsburgh on your lot builder | Posted: October 18, 2019 | Comments Off on 4 simple ways to make your new house feel like home

 

House to home

House to home

If you are getting ready to move into your new Parry Custom Home or are currently on the search for a Pittsburgh on your lot builder, turning your new house into a home is always key once you finally move in. An article in The Huffington Post shares four simple tips on how to make your new house feel like home once you move in.

The first way to turn your new house into your new home is to figure out how you can customize the space you have, and optimize it at the same time. Builders do their best to construct homes to have the most livable floor plan that makes sense for everyday life, but until you are actually living in the home it can be hard to determine what works and what doesn’t.

Another great tip to give your house the “homey” feel that you’re after is to incorporate some plants into your home to give it that relaxed and alive feel. If it is hard to keep plants alive in your home, try just adding a nice floral arrangement to the centerpiece of the table to still give off that warm vibe.

Changing aspects of your home to suit your day to day live doesn’t have to mean renovation projects on your brand new home. It can be as simply as changing the color in a room to a brighter shade to help a room out that doesn’t have much natural light. Or if might be nice to divide up your open concept spaces with well-placed shelving that can also add an additional layer or storage or display to your new home.

The third tip to help turn your house into a home is to add some art to your home. Adding artwork to your new house will allow your personality and taste to shine through and immediately give your home another touch of who you are. Different ideas of art to bring in can be paintings, drawings, sculptures, even antique pieces or furniture or accessories that might have been passed down or have importance to you are another great option to add to your home.

Lastly, the quickest and easiest way to make your house feel like home is to represent your family in your new home. Displaying photos of your family and loved ones throughout your home automatically give it the feeling of being yours. You can check out places like Pinterest for ideas on how you can create a gallery wall in your home. This has become a recent trend that incorporates family photos with other décor to add more interest and design appeal.

 

These 4 simple ideas will quickly turn your new house into a home in no time!

 

 

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

Simple ways to refresh your home décor for Fall

Categories: Homeowner Tips, Pittsburgh on your lot builder | Posted: October 10, 2019 | Comments Off on Simple ways to refresh your home décor for Fall

 

Fall Decor for your home

Fall Decor for your home

If you haven’t yet decorated your home the fall season but plan to have get-togethers or even host Thanksgiving this year, you may be tempted to add some fall inspiration into your home before friends and family visit. All of the pumpkin inspired treats and Fall leaves may have you scratching your head for ways you can incorporate Fall décor into your own home. Parry Custom Homes, a premier Pittsburgh on your lot builder, has some home décor tips on simple ways you can bring the essence of Fall and Thanksgiving inside your home.

First, a great simple way to bring Fall into your home is to incorporate Fall colors into your home. Maroon, mulberry, camel, eggplant, navy and olive are wonderful fall shades that will have your home looking like Autumn in no time. If you are not ready to commit to a new paint color, changing up your pallet and adding a fall colored rug in a great deep Fall shade or switching out your standard sofa pillows for some darker ones in cool Fall shades.

Consider adding the “cozy” factor to your home by including some scented candles on your fireplace mantle, stacks of books or fall magazines, and some seasonal botanicals. If you don’t have a fireplace in your home, emulate a cozy space by adding a rug, cozy char and a bookshelf in a corner to create the perfect place to cuddle up with a good book and a warm cup of tea this fall.

Gold always evokes the holiday season and can easily add a Fall flare to your home as well. You don’t need to go crazy when incorporating gold into your home, it can easily be done with accent pieces such as gold candlesticks, lamps with gold bases and silverware. Mixed metals are on-trend this season, so don’t shy away from also incorporating brass or copper metals as well.

Lastly, knits and furs aren’t just a stylish accessory that can be added to any room of your home, they also come in handy once the temperatures drop during the Fall! Try tossing a chunky knit across your bedspread that will look great and come in handy on the chiller evenings.

For your main living areas, toss some shearling throws over living room chairs, couches or dining room chairs. Consider adding some rustic charm with sheepskin rugs that can be easily added in multiple rooms in your home.

Get creative this weekend and see what you can come up with on your own using the ideas shared above. You can have your home looking like Fall in no time!

 

 

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