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Category Archives: Ottawa

Flat Roofing

5 Reasons to Choose Renovations over Moving

By | Blog, Home Renovations, Ottawa | No Comments

Is your home cramped? Are you tired of staring at lime green kitchen tiles, you’re your home had a bathroom on the main floor, or terrified to go into your musty, unfinished basement? You have three options – live miserably in the status quo, renovate, or move.

If you are considering moving to a new home in your Ottawa, then you should take a moment to reconsider. Every year, millions of Canadians needlessly move in an attempt to find something better in their area, only to find themselves stressed financially and emotionally, regretting the decision. Before you close on a new home, let’s take a moment to review five reasons to choose renovations over moving.

The Financial Impact

Moving is an expensive proposition. Between real estate commission, lawyers’ fees, and any new furniture, appliances, décor, or random home supplies you need to buy, it gets expensive fast. Add in buying boxes and packing supplies, paying for movers and or renting a moving truck…it’s expensive. Now imagine you move in and discover the deck is structurally unsound and needs to be replaced. The roof has a leak. There’s mould growth in the basement. Dollars just pouring out of your pocket. Yes, renovations won’t be cheap, but they are worth every penny and every dollar goes to improving the look, feel, and value of your home.

The “Grass Is Greener” Phenomenon

It is not uncommon for people to see only the bad and none of the good when it comes to their current property. Frequent issues can sour us to home repair and the costs that come with it. Before moving, be aware of the “grass is greener” phenomenon. This is where we see something else as better, because we register only the good and the possible without fully acknowledging the challenges that will come with a new property.

A Lot Can Be Done With Your Existing Home

You can place an addition on the exterior of your home. You can consider an interior decorator to do a makeover on your home. You can turn spaces into livable spaces like a basement or an attic. You can knock down walls for an open concept renovation. You can create an income suite in the basement, a master retreat in the attic, or a charming coach house in the backyard. You can go modern, go retro, and let your personality shine. There are countless ways to improve your existing home and put in it the things you want from the house you are considering buying. A professional renovator can help make a lot of these changes possible.

Chance Of Being Burned (Existing Problems)

We skimmed over this in #1. There is a chance that you will face unexpected problems with the new home that the current owner is less than forthcoming with. Be aware that just because it looks good before purchase it does not mean that there are not serious things that may need to be addressed by you once you buy.

Moving May Not Satisfy The Underlying Issue

People sometimes move because they are dissatisfied with their current point in life and are looking for a change. Rather than spending a lot of money on a new home, consider instead the benefits of investing in what you have. Whether the investment is in the home or in you, saving money is guaranteed.

Consider Hiring A Professional

The secret to a successful home renovation is hiring a professional home renovation contractor that you can trust. With years of experience providing practical solutions to the problems you currently face, you will find the assistance of a professional to be invaluable. Whether they are simply providing guidance or doing the work they, you have a lot to gain by hiring their services.

 

custom-home

Planning a Custom Home Build in Ottawa

By | Blog, Custom Built Homes, Ottawa | No Comments

If you’re getting ready to build a custom home in Ottawa, or even just want to tackle some major home renovations to update and even overhaul your current home, you’re going to want to understand every little detail involved in the planning process.

This will guarantee that you move through the process efficiently, that you save money whenever possible, and that you complete your home renovations or your custom-built home on time and on budget.

Let’s dive into a couple of critical things you need to focus on when you’re getting ready to tackle this kind of project!

Outline your goals and expectations ahead of time

Just as you wouldn’t leave on a road trip without a destination in mind (just as your GPS would be useless on that road trip without a destination in mind) you cannot tackle home renovations or a custom home build in Ottawa without understanding EXACTLY what you want the finished project to look like.

Ask yourself questions like:

  • What does your new home/renovation have to feature?
  • What are you priorities (eco-friendliness? uniqueness?)
  • What problems are you trying to solve in your current home?
  • Is this a home for life or do you foresee selling in the not-too-distant future?
  • When do you want everything completed?
  • What kind of inspiration can you show your designer and builder so that your dreams come true?

Cover all of those bases and you’ll find this process goes a lot smoother.

Get concrete when it comes to your budget

Even though there are probably haven’t been any home renovation or custom home build projects that have EVER been completed without the budget adjusting at least a little bit, you’re going to want to get as concrete as humanly possible about the amount of money you’re willing to spend on this work ahead of time.

There is a big problem with going to architects and builders with an idea of the work you do like to have done without a budget. These professionals can create amazing designs or concepts, but if they aren’t aware of your budget there will be a problem.

Naturally they are going to go big with these designs, and when you get hit in the gut with the projected total expense that they report back to you, you’re going to feel awful about all of the things you “lose” when you pare things back.

If, instead, you provide these designers and architects with a concrete budget to begin with they’ll understand their constraints right out of the gate – and create for you an amazing custom home or home renovation project that fits your financial reality.

Choose the Right Contractor

Though there are a lot of designer and builder operations out there that do fantastic work when it comes to custom homes and home renovations, you’re going to want to think about assembling your own “dream team” of professionals to make sure that you get exactly the kind of results you’re after. That all starts with choosing the right custom home contractor.

If you don’t want a cookie-cutter home from the major home builders in Ottawa, consider choosing a custom home built by Lucas Contracting. You get to choose very detail of your home. If there is a decision to be made, you will be the one to make it – though the design and building professionals at Lucas Contracting are of course happy to provide their expert guidance.

Contact the Lucas Contracting team to set up a free consultation or start the home building process. Your dream of a custom home in Ottawa starts with a phone call!

steel roofing ottawa

Why You Should Choose Steel Roofing

By | Metal Roofing, Ottawa, Roofing | No Comments

If you’re interested in obtaining new roofing for your home in the Ottawa area, you should consider steel roofing. Metal roofs have a lot of advantages, one of which is their durability. These roofs are built to last and some metal roofs continue to deliver exceptional performance and protection after a century or more. This is in contrast to roofs made from other materials. For example, if you opt for asphalt shingles, your new roof may not last for more three decades even with optimal care.

Steel Roofing Facts

Steel roofs are strong, aesthetically appealing, and affordable. While they may cost more than comparable roof materials, their ruggedness and durability make them a good investment over the long term. Also, some roof materials are more expensive than steel roofing, including clay, cedar, and slate. So, opting for steel doesn’t mean that you’ll be spending an exorbitant amount on new roofing.

Your steel roof should have two to three times the longevity of roofs which are crafted from other materials. Since steel isn’t organic, it won’t biodegrade and it will resist UV light. As long as a steel roof is installed perfectly by an Ottawa roofing company, it will remain securely in place. The wind won’t carry away steel panels, whereas the wind is a significant concern for homeowners with asphalt shingle roofs.

Steel roofs are also advantageous because they resist fire. When fires break out, houses may be destroyed or damaged. Steel won’t burn. It’s not a combustible material and it is rated Class A for fire safety.

Metal roofs are also more lightweight than most people realize. In fact, they weigh less than roofs crafted from asphalt. Unlike other types of roofing, steel won’t get heavier when it’s wet, so the weight of a steel roof will remain consistent over time.

Why a Steel Roof Is Your Best Choice

Hopefully, our guide to the hard facts about steel roofs will help you to move closer to a decision about what to buy. The truth is that steel roofs have very few drawbacks. Let’s explore the possible downsides of option for a metal roof, and why they shouldn’t be seen as a big concern:

  • Steel is susceptible to dents caused by hail, ice, and debris hitting the roof. Still, dents in steel are typically easy to repair.
  • One fear people have about choosing a steel roof is that the material might be noisy. Think of the sound of raindrops pinging off a metal barn roof – not exactly quiet. When your metal roof is installed with a solid sheathing, however, it dampens the sound of rain and hail even more effectively than other roofing products.
  • Finally, it is true that upon initial installation steel roofing is more expensive than some roofing products. However, it is still more affordable than clay or slate, and considering its longevity and the fact that metal roofing is virtually maintenance-free, it is a smart investment.

The key to minimizing the drawbacks is choosing installation by a quality roofing company in Ottawa like Lucas Contracting. We have years of experience with steel roof installation and have installed, maintained, and inspected metal roofs on homes and properties all throughout the Ottawa area including Barrhaven, Kanata, and Orleans.

At Lucas Contracting, we carry the best metal roofing products on the market. Decra Roof Systems products come in a wide range of colours, textures, and styles including tile, shake, and shingle. We also carry Wakefield Bridge shingles, produced by Ottawa’s own Ideal Roofing. Give us a call and we’ll evaluate your roof and help you choose the best steel roofing product for your needs, tastes, and budget. Make your home look its best in 2016!

How to Choose a Home Addition Contractor

By | Blog, Ottawa | No Comments

If you’re interested in opening up more space in your family home, you may be curious about the benefits of building a home addition. This type of home renovation is a great way to enjoy more room at home, while also increasing the value of a home.

The key to boosting home value and getting great results from this type of add-on is choosing a home addition contractor with years of experience and expertise. It’s all about comparison-shopping for a contractor with a strong and positive reputation. This type of professional will be able to give you guidance as to how big your addition should be, as well as which materials to choose, how it is constructed and so on.

If you want a home addition which is well-made and designed to help you sell your home for a higher price at a later date, vetting contractors will be the key to getting the high-caliber home improvement that you’re looking for. When you choose the right contractor, you’ll access quality workmanship. Once you’ve done your research, you’ll understand why Lucas Contracting a leading contractor in Ottawa for home construction, interior renovation, and exterior renovation projects.

How to Select a Home Addition Contractor in Ottawa

Finding the best contractor is easy – you can even do it from the comfort of your home. Using online search engines will help you to streamline the selection process. Just add the keywords, “Ottawa interior renovations” and jot down the names of the first few results that pop up.

Once you have these results, check out the websites of these contractors. You will typically find photos of home additions and other buildings that a contractor has constructed. Looking at these photos should give you a sense of a contractor’s style. Also, look for information about the company in order to check credentials and experience levels. Checking out two or three companies in-depth is recommended. What warranties do they offer? Do they show their insurance certificates and professional certifications online?

Next, consider customer reviews. These days, most contractors have a lot of feedback about their companies on the internet. Reading reviews and checking BBB rankings will help you to establish whether or not a company is good to hire. A great company should get very few negative reviews. It should also have a BBB ranking of B+ or higher. Check their Yelp, Google+, and HomeStars reviews to get a feel for the experience of real customers.

How to Reach Out

Once you’ve found a good company, connect with its service representatives by calling or emailing. You should be able to find full contact details on the Contact Us page. Contact Us information typically include a phone number, email, and local address, or a convenient contact form to fill out.

When you reach out via your preferred method of communication, you’ll be able to explain what you need and ask for assistance. In most cases, you’ll need to schedule a consultation. This means that a contractor will drop by your house, check it out and then put together a quotation for a home addition. The contractor will want to meet your needs with regard to size and budget. This is your opportunity to communicate your vision and get an understanding of the cost and scope of this undertaking. For example, a bare-bones garage addition will carry a very different cost than a complete second storey addition with high-end fixtures and fittings at every turn.

Are You Ready for a Home Addition?

Now that you have the inside scoop on home additions, you’ll be ready to decide whether or not a home addition is right for you. The key to deciding is considering your finances, the interruption which will be caused by construction and the benefits and drawbacks. Taking care to explore all of the variables will help you to make a wiser decision.

A home addition can be anything, from a family room to a second bathroom to a sunroom and beyond. To find out more, connect with a great home addition contractor in Ottawa today. When you do, you’ll get the expert advice and services that you need.

Damaged roof

What Will Damage Your Roof?

By | Blog, Ottawa, Professional Tips, Roofing | No Comments

Your roof is what protects your home from these weather conditions, animals, other things – but it can take a lot of damage as a result. Staying vigilant about the status of your roof and hiring Ottawa roofers to repair the situation will prevent your home from experiencing leaks, moisture damage, or worse. Here are some common things that are known to cause damage to roofs:

Wind

Wind can lift shingles, which is bad enough. But if accompanied by rain, water can seep through and lead to leaks inside the home. Take a quick peek at your roof from across the street after a big windstorm to see if there’s any noticeable damage.

Ice

The heavy weight of ice on your roof may be a problem. If it freezes along the eaves, snow can get backed up on the roof itself. Once ice starts to thaw, it can lift shingles and cause leakage.

Animals

Animals like raccoons, squirrels, and birds can wreak havoc on your roof. They tear off shingles, rip off vent covers, and peck at wood trying to find food or find a way inside the home.

Tree Limbs

Tree limbs can snap off in a strong wind storm or break under pressure from heavy snow and land on your roof. Tree limbs weigh quite a bit, and they can cause damage when they land. To prevent tree limbs from falling on your roof, hire a company to trim branches that might present a risk in the future.

Tree Debris

Trees seem to shed something all year long, from leaves and pine needles to little twigs. You couldn’t imagine this lightweight debris causing much trouble, but it can pile up as a wet mass on your roof and actually cause some shingles to rot.

Gutters & Downspouts

Gutters and downspouts are supposed to carry water safely away from your roof. If they are clogged or damaged, water can back up and wear away at the edges of your roof, leading to rot.

Hail

Asphalt shingles have a protective coating that can be damaged by hail, which makes the shingles vulnerable to other kinds of damage mentioned in this list.

The Sun

The heat of the sun can cause shingles to dry out over time, eventually cracking and falling off the room. Combined with UV damage which reduces the lifespan of the roof, the sun can do a lot of damage.

If your roof has suffered any of this damage, contact Ottawa roofers to repair or replace your roof to ensure decades of durable protection on your home.

New roof or roof repair

Roof Repair vs. Roof Replacement

By | Blog, Ottawa, Roofing | No Comments

If you notice signs of a roof problem on your property, how can you tell if you should repair the roof or replace it? Follow these diagnostic steps and you’ll probably have your answer.

Roof Repair

A roof repair is (as you might expect) needed for less serious instances of roof problems. Usually, there is one small section of the roof that needs to be repaired, but the rest of it is in good shape. In such instances, the most cost-effective option is to patch the problem instead of going with the “nuclear option.” Here are some examples of instances where a roof repair is the best option:

  • There is a roof leak, but it is only the first or second time this has ever happened in the lifespan of the roof.
  • You notice water spots on a single ceiling tile inside the home.
  • You notice a leak after a heavy rain, but the leak is limited to one area.
  • Taking a look at your roof, you can visibly see that a couple shingles are missing.
  • There is some minor damage to shingles as a result of a recent windstorm.
  • There are financial limitations which mean you can only afford roof repair right now, but plan a full replacement down the road.

If any of these situations applies, contact an Ottawa roofing company to repair your roof and nip these problems in the bud.

Roof Replacement

A roof replacement is a more intensive project, but may be necessary if the problem is more serious than the instances noted above. You might need a roof replacement if:

  • You have recently experienced a leak and this is a recurring problem.
  • You notice multiple water stains on ceiling tiles inside the home, in different areas and rooms.
  • There are leaks after rainstorms that are not contained to a single area.
  • You see many missing or loose singles following a windstorm.
  • Many shingles are in rough shape, with curling corners or bubbliness.
  • Roofing materials are cracked, chipped, or otherwise damaged.
  • If your insurance policy covers roof replacement following storm damage.
  • You want to increase the value of your property with an upgraded roof.

Contact Lucas Contracting for all your roof repair and replacement needs. No matter your situation, their professional team of highly qualified roofers will restore or replace your roof using the best materials and latest installation techniques.

Custom Home

The Beauty of a Custom Home

By | Custom Built Homes, Design Inspiration, Ottawa, Professional Tips | No Comments

Are you left feeling cold by row upon rows of cookie cutters homes in your neighbourhood? Do you have a creative spark that you’d like to see reflected in your home? If so, a custom home from Lucas Contracting might be right for you. Let’s explore the beauty of designing and building a custom home:

Your Dream, Your Home

When you choose to build a custom home, you have complete and total control over every aspect of your home, from the dimensions of each room to the slope of the roof to the tile width in the bathroom. Our talented design team can offer plenty of guidance or recommendations if you need some design inspiration, but you have final say over every specification of your brand new custom home. This is your chance to combine all of your favourite elements into a home that is entirely unique, and entirely yours.

Plumbing

When you are renovating an existing home, you are limited by the existing layout of the plumbing systems, unless you want to spend a lot of money rearranging the system. Likewise, in cookie-cutter new builds, you are restricted in this regard. Not so with a custom home from Lucas Contracting. You get to choose where each and every plumbing element is installed, including sinks, toilets, tubs, and showers. Combine the best of form and function without being limited by an existing arrangement.

Flooring

It can be frustrating purchasing a “used” home and having to pay for costly renovations to make the home your own. Pulling up carpet, resanding old floors, trying to live in a home where 50-year old dust is being kicked up. With a custom home, you get to treat yourself. Choose whatever modern flooring option you like (warm and natural red oak? eco-friendly light bamboo?) and sit back while our hard-working team brings it all together.

Never Settle

In “used” homes and model new build homes alike, you are limited by others in terms of size and style. Not so with a custom home. You never again have to settle for living in a home built according to someone else’s vision or style. Purchasing a home is expensive enough as it is, and renovations are costly and take a while. With that much investment on the line, you may as well fully commit to the process with a stunning custom home.

Contact our team to start the process of turning your dream home into a reality. Give us your “wish list” and we’ll get started on building a gorgeous custom home with every detail built according to your exact specifications.

Roof inpection

Why You Should Schedule a Roof Inspection

By | Ottawa, Professional Tips, Roofing | No Comments

Whether you are a homeowner or manage a large-scale commercial or industrial project, roof inspections are tremendously important. Not only can our roofing inspectors diagnose and solve current issues, they can prevent future problems from developing and costing you more money for repair and replacement down the road.

When to Schedule an Inspection

Home and business owners should have their asphalt roofs inspected every three years, while metal roofs should be professionally inspected every five years. Additionally, you should schedule an inspection if you are in the processing of buying a new property. You can make sure there are no hidden problems with the roof that could affect your bottom line once the sale is completed. Also schedule an inspection if you are planning on selling your home. Minor repairs taken before you list your home or commercial building could improve the value of your property.

Exterior Inspection

Our professional team of Ottawa roof inspectors will assess all elements of your roof for damage and warning signs of vulnerabilities. We take many things into account when making our recommendations, like the age of the roof, overall condition, and estimated remaining lifespan. We check the waterproof status of the roof, make sure there are no punctures in the roofing materials and water can properly drain.

We do a physical and visual inspection of the area and conduct thermal readings for signs of damage. We look for common indicators of damage, like cracking, “alligatoring,” blisters, “fishmouths,” ponding, deformed edges, moisture, and corrosion (on metal roofs). Finally, we inspect all associated systems – eavestroughs, fasteners, drains, skylights, flashing, and chimney.

Interior Inspection

Many indicators of issues with the roof are only noticeable on the inside of the home. That is why our Ottawa roof inspectors look for cracked ceilings and water stains on the ceiling. We also inspect the walls for deformity (bowing, warping), cracks, and water stains. We inspect for cracks and leaks around windows. We check the condition of the attic as well. Finally, we inspect the alignment of doors and windows. If they stick or are otherwise warped, it could be a sign of a roof leak.

Based on this thorough inspection, we will make professional recommendations to fix your roof and safeguard the structural integrity of your home or business. Save money in the long run and protect the value of your home or building. Contact Lucas Roofing today for more information or to schedule an inspection from our Ottawa roof inspectors.

ottawa roofing

Why Does Your Home Need Proper Gutters?

By | Metal Roofing, Ottawa | No Comments

If you dread seeing a single raindrop because you know it means trouble for your foundation, deck, or garden beds, it’s time to invest in proper gutters. If your home’s gutters are broken, warped, clogged, or otherwise inefficient, you’re putting your home at risk. Here are some important reasons to invest in proper gutters for your home:

Protect Your Foundation

If you do not have proper functioning gutters, heavy rainwater can leak down the side of your home and pool around your foundation. If your foundation is not properly sealed, water could leak into your basement. Water in the basement can lead to a whole bunch of huge problems – dampness, mould, foul odours, health problems, the list goes on. We can install seamless aluminum gutters which safely direct water away from the structure of your home. This ensures that both your foundation and basement are protected against the consequences of water damage.

Protect Wood Decking

If you have wood decking or decorative wood features on the outside of your home, they can be vulnerable to warping and rotting if they experience direct rainwater downpour. These problems are entirely preventable with the installation of seamless gutters which safely direct water away from these sensitive materials. If the wood in your deck starts to rot, it could be dangerous and make your deck hazardous to walk on.

Save Your Landscaping

When heavy rain is allowed to fall directly on your meticulously landscaped gardens, it can sweep them away. Your beautiful flowers can become oversaturated and die, and your landscaping can be destroyed by heavy rain. Even worse, if your garden butts up against the side of your home, the heavy water load can leak down to the foundation and possibly cause water to leak into the basement if there are any cracks. Proper gutters can direct rainwater away from your landscaped gardens, keeping them vibrant all season long.

Why Aluminum Gutters?

Aluminum gutters do not rust and have a long lifespan of more than thirty years. Aluminum gutters are the durable and cost-effective choice for any home gutter systems. They are a low-maintenance option, designed to divert debris and stay clear of clogging, in even the most inclement weather. Whether you need to have the entire gutter system reinstalled or simply need damaged, sagging, loose, or missing gutters to be replaced, we can perform any job to the highest satisfaction.

Protect your foundation, basement, gardens, and overall property by investing in proper gutters.

home renovations ottawa

Pros and Cons of Open Concept Designs

By | Blog, Ottawa, Professional Tips, Renovations | No Comments

There is something very appealing about the idea of knocking down walls and creating an open concept living space. With your kitchen, living, and dining room areas combined in one bright and inviting space, homes can instantly feel larger. Yet, there are also a few drawbacks that might turn some people away. Ottawa contractors advise you to consider these pros and cons before making a decision:

Pro: Keep an Eye on the Kids

An open concept design that merges the kitchen and living room space allows you to watch the kids easily and ensure they play safely while you are preparing dinner. Homemade meals are a good way to gather the family together every night, but in a closed concept kitchen, you are walled off from the family while you prepare meals. The open concept design lets you interact with your kids and still have time for delicious home cooking.

Con: Noises

Walls don’t just separate space; they also help to dampen sound. While open concept designs can look extraordinary, sometimes they show their flaws when it actually comes time live in wide open space without noise dividers. Some people might be annoyed by the sound of the dishwasher running or meals sizzling on the stove.

Pro: Entertain While Cooking

An open concept design is great for entertaining guests. There’s nothing worse than hosting a dinner party yet being separated from the conversation when you’re in the kitchen cooking. This issue is eliminated, and you can join in the fun social talk while preparing amazing hors d’oeuvres and entrées for your guests.

Cons: Visible Mess

On the other hand, untidiness or messiness is easily visible from all vantage points in an open concept design. While you can hide away pots and pans in an enclosed kitchen, not so with an open concept design. Ottawa contractors can minimize this a bit thanks to great shelving options or a breakfast bar that can block the view of the sink, but it’s still something to consider.

Con: Less Effective Cooling/Heating

As visually attractive as open concept designs can be, the larger space means it takes longer for the room to heat in the winter and cool in the summer. Smaller rooms can circulate air more efficiently and more speedily heat or cool the space.

Pro: Natural Light

One amazing benefit to open concept designs is the increased amount of natural light. Without walls to block light from outdoors, your living room, dining room, and kitchen instantly feel brighter and airier.

Whether you choose an open concept design or wish to remain with a traditional closed concept, you can have an incredible home renovation built by professional Ottawa contractors.