eichler homes

Guidelines for Eichler Homes in Palo Alto

Expert Advice from a Trusted, Local Home Improvement Contractor

Guidelines to Preserve Your Palo Alto Eichler Home

eichler homes

Undertaking maintenance or remodeling of your aging Palo Alto Eichler home? The Eichler Neighborhood Design Guidelines, issued by the Palo Alto City Council, are a good starting point. Whether you are replacing expired materials, or adding lifestyle-enhancing elements, these guidelines will help you retain the characteristic features of your Eichler home.

Key Suggestions for Maintaining and Repairing Palo Alto Eichler Homes

The extensive guidelines issued by the Palo Alto City Council cover a variety of aspects important for preserving the design and ethos of Eichler communities. These include:

  • Recommendations on placement and design of doors, windows, roof forms and chimneys.
  • Advice on cladding materials, form and massing, and other exterior materials.
  • Suggestions for constructing basements, first-story additions, carports or garages, in keeping with the privacy requirements of the community.
  • Visible impact of upgrades related to mechanical systems, ducting, plumbing, and more.

Here are a few key maintenance tips to help preserve and maintain the characteristic features of your Eichler home.

  1. Fenestration: Doors and windows are among the most noticeable features of any home. While the guidelines encourage homeowners to improve energy efficiency, they recommend treating or repairing the original windows and doors in place, if possible.
  • Consider options, such as adding high-quality clear films, or changing the weather stripping to reduce air infiltration and heat gain.
  • If you are replacing a deteriorating window trim or swapping out your single-pane windows for insulated ones, try to maintain the same size, profile and configuration as the original window.
  • While replacing entry doors or garage doors, opt for simple, flat appearances and minimal to no glazing, in order to blend into the signature Eichler community look.
  • Roof Repairs and Maintenance: The characteristic patterns of fascia, slopes and rafter ends give Eichler home roofs a degree of visual variety while retaining their modernist architectural style. If you are replacing your roof:
  • Try to retain the original design, height and profile of the roof, along with a relatively plain appearance.
  • Use roofing materials like single ply, foam, tar and gravel, or composite shingles.
  • Try to retain the overhanging eaves, exposed beams and soffits or the fascia boards, all of which are defining elements of Eichler homes.
  • If you are installing skylights or solar panels on the roof, try to minimize the visual impact of these features to preserve the Eichler look.
  • Replacing Exterior Cladding Materials or Paint: While repairing or replacing the existing cladding materials, maintain the vertical wood board or plywood siding. Avoid adding other materials, such as brick, stone, shingles, or vinyl to the exterior walls, as these are not in line with the typical look of Eichler homes. To repaint your home’s exterior, select colors that support the broad, mid-century modern characteristics of Eichler neighborhoods. As far as possible, use only one primary color, along with an additional trim / accent color.

While these are only guidelines, they can help you make informed decisions when you undertake repairs, maintenance or upgrades for your Palo Alto Eichler home.

Hire Palo Alto’s Trusted Construction Contractor for your Eichler Home Repairs or Remodeling

As Palo Alto’s premier home improvement contractors, the team at Flegel’s is well-acquainted with the guidelines for preserving and maintaining Eichler communities. We have extensive experience in repairing and reviving Eichler homes, without detracting from their overall character. With creative designs and skilled craftsmanship, we can transform your Eichler home into a more attractive, functional space that is better suited to your lifestyle and preferences.

Check out our many Eichler home remodeling projects across the Bay Area, including Palo Alto, Mountain View and Sunnyvale, CA. A growing base of happy customers vouches for our consistent service and superior finishes.

Need repairs, upgrades or remodeling for your Palo Alto Eichler home? Set up a consultation with one of the experts at Flegel’s Construction. Call 408-269-1101 or contact us online.

Palo Alto Home Renovation

Building a Home in California is Expensive – Part 3

You Ask: “Why is Building a Home in California so Expensive?”

We Answer: “Housing Permits Play a Big Role”

new home building

Can’t wait to customize your personal haven in the Golden State? Need insights on why building a home in California is so expensive? Between the availability of land, labor and resources, to weather conditions, permits and taxes, several local factors will influence your construction costs.

As Silicon Valley’s premier construction experts, we closely monitor the housing market, and understand the industry’s dynamics inside and out. In our 3-part series on factors that magnify construction costs in California, we shared our insights on (1) rising costs of labor and (2) escalating material costs.

In this concluding page, our experts shed light on how housing permits can make building a home in California so expensive.

Part 3: Housing Permits May Hinder Your California Custom Home Build

As one of the top 3 most expensive states in which to build a custom home, California’s average construction cost of $439k is 40% higher than other, less expensive states. Building costs in our sprawling state vary by city and location, with certain pockets being far more expensive than others.

Moreover, land development fees and building permits are costly, and the process of getting approvals is extremely tedious and time-consuming. This is particularly true in a highly regulated state, such as California, where there are multiple conditional reviews to determine allotment of permits.

  • Many review committees: In addition to two distinct entities, the zoning commission and the environmental review board, you need permits and approvals from several other government agencies. These include the building department, fire department, health department, city council and more.
  • Density control regulations: For the purpose of density control, in some communities there are stringent lot size restrictions, such as the ownership of a minimum one or one-half acre plot. The bigger the minimum lot size, the higher the upfront costs of land acquisition.
  • Environmental regulations: The California Environment Quality Act (CEQA) has several strict conditions that consider the environmental impact of new home construction. However, many approvers misquote or misuse this law, causing a 2-2.5 year  delay in housing permits for even those projects that comply with environment protection regulations. Additionally, starting in 2020, all newly built homes in the state must be solar-powered. According to the Energy Commission, this will lead to an upfront cost of $8,400 for installing solar panels for a single family home.
  • Political and community involvement: The higher the state regulations, the more intense the community and political involvement in land use and control processes. For residents who fear that new construction will change the character of their neighborhoods or hurt their property values, there are plenty of avenues to express opposition. This can lead to expensive delays in permits, inspections and approvals.

There is no specific research study showing exactly how much delayed building permits adds to housing costs. However, the typical approval time for new projects in the Bay Area is 12 months, whereas, in Los Angeles, it is 8 months. This excludes the time it takes to rezone land for residential use.

Hire a Dependable Contractor to Build Your California Dream Home

At Flegel’s Construction Co., we specialize in building attractive, functional, high-quality custom homes. Our new home construction team includes experts who can navigate the permits and approvals process to minimize your wait times and building costs. You can count on us for superior craftsmanship, honest communication and timely completion of projects.

We continue to build and deliver stylish, comfortable dream homes to happy customers in and around the Bay Area.  

Building a home in California is expensive, but isn’t your dream home worth it? Call 408-269-1101 to set up a consultation or contact us online to discuss your project.

Earthquake Protection for New Home Builds

Why It’s Important to Get Earthquake Protection for Your New Home Build

new home builds

Expert Advice for California Homeowners

While earthquakes can occur anywhere in the world, California is more prone to this natural phenomenon and has experienced numerous devastating tremors in the past. If you are exploring the idea of a custom home in the Bay Area, you’d be wise to consider getting earthquake protection for your new home build. Ensure a strong structure that keeps you and your family safe.  

Building Earthquake-Resistant Custom Homes

At Flegel’s, we know that building earthquake-resistant homes is not just a cosmetic enhancement. It involves drawing up the right structural design, laying the correct foundation and choosing appropriate building materials that can withstand the stresses of a seismic event. Our engineers and architects follow the structural building practices and regulations defined by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), in conjunction with the National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP).

Here are some aspects that we consider while designing and building a custom, earthquake-resistant home:

  • Vertical and lateral stiffness: The directional forces of earthquakes may shake your home not just vertically, but also horizontally. We design a structure with the right amount of vertical and lateral stiffness to ensure minimal damage when a quake occurs.
  • Building regularity: Regularity is the movement of the building when pushed laterally by the forces of an earthquake. In our quake-resistant designs, the building sways along with the push, to dissipate the energy and prevent any compromise to the structure.
  • Redundancy: A critical safety characteristic, redundancy is the fail-safe feature of your home’s foundation. By creating an equal distribution of mass and strength, we ensure that there are multiple strategies in place. If one fails, the next one auto-activates to protect your home against the forces of tremors and aftershocks.
  • Foundation: Deep, connected foundations and driven piles are essential for any home to withstand violent earthquakes. Our experts study ground reactions and movements before drawing up plans for a strong, stable foundation.
  • Continuous load paths: Properly interconnected structural and non-structural building components create multiple points of strength and redundancies. These put up a united front to dissipate inertial forces and protect the foundation of your home. By ensuring that the components do not move independently, we help in maintaining the same lateral and vertical path as the quake. Achieving this continuous load path goes a long way in protecting the structural integrity of your home.

Hire the Bay Area’s Top Contractor for Earthquake-Resistant New Builds

At Flegel’s Construction Co., we have extensive experience in earthquake protection for new home builds. We create quake-resistant structures with attractive, functional spaces, personalized to your lifestyle and budget. Our superior design capabilities, unmatched craftsmanship and quality touches will make your home truly one-of-a-kind.

You can check out our many successful projects across the Bay Area, including Palo Alto, Mountain View, San Jose and Redwood City, CA.

Interested to learn more about earthquake protection for your custom new build in the Bay Area? Call 408-269-1101 to set up a consultation or contact us online.

Building a Home in California is Expensive – Part 2

Building a Home in California Has Many Expensive Obstacles

Cost of Materials is a Key Factor

home building

If you are exploring the idea of a personal haven in the Golden State, you’re probably wondering why building a home in California is so expensive. Creating your dream abode is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. However, the continually increasing cost of labor, materials and permits can make building a home in California very expensive.

As Silicon Valley’s premier construction experts, we are well-versed with the factors that impede new construction in this region. In the first of our 3-part series on this subject, we shared the issues that contribute to rising labor costs. We now investigate the second barrier: the escalating cost of materials.

Part 2: Expensive Materials Making Your California Dream Home Project Challenging?

Almost everything in California is more expensive than the rest of the country. The same holds true for labor, construction materials, permits and government fees for building a home. A study by Terner Center for Housing Innovation suggests that overall construction costs across the U.S. increased by 11.8% from 2011 to 2016. However, during the same period, construction costs in San Francisco grew by 12.6% and in Los Angeles by 13.6%.

Here are some factors that impact material costs in California.

  • Basic price fluctuations: Many commonly used construction materials have seen a significant price rise in recent years. According to the Associated Builders and Contractors, Inc. (ABC) analysis of U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, April 2019 release, overall construction input prices are up by 2.5% in the twelve months from March 2018 to March 2019. This includes:
    • 5.9% increase in fabricated structures and metal products
    • 4.7% increase in iron and steel
    • 4.5% increase in plumbing fixtures and fittings
    • 8.4% increase in asphalt, tar roofing and siding products
    • While softwood lumber showed a marginal increase during this period, it had a price escalation of 23% between June 2017 and June 2018.
  • Tariffs and trade policies: The imposition of tariffs and possibility of trade wars, combined with rising interest rates is a potent combination that causes construction material costs to skyrocket. For example, the trade policies of the current government have put a hefty price tag on steel, aluminum and lumber. As per the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), after the levy of tariffs on Canadian softwood lumber, supply falls short of the demand. A tight inventory leads to steep prices. They estimate that rising lumber prices alone contribute to a $4,000 increase in the cost of building a single-family home. While talks of trade deals for steel and aluminum are still underway with the European Union, California’s building material costs have yet to see their impact.
  • Prescriptive building standards: California’s building standards and codes are stringent. Contractors must use a specific quality of building materials for windows, heating or cooling systems and insulation, in keeping with the state’s energy efficiency goals. Meeting these standards and codes means sourcing higher quality, usually more expensive materials.

Hire an Experienced Contractor to Build Your Dream Home

At Flegel’s Construction Co., we specialize in constructing new homes that are attractive, functional, and most importantly, built with high quality materials. We are aware that several builders use sub-standard or replacement materials to help clients save thousands of dollars in upfront construction costs. However, in our experience, such homes face several long-term issues, including warped walls, cracked plaster on internal and external walls, warped decks and uneven floors.

Our skilled team works to your exact specifications to deliver your dream home with speed, efficiency and quality. Happy customers in and around the Bay Area are enjoying stylish, comfortable spaces, suited to their lifestyle. Now, it’s your turn!  

Building a home in California is expensive, but isn’t that true of any dream home? Don’t give up on your dream. Call 408-269-1101 or contact us online to discuss your project.

Six Tips to Select Custom Home Builder

Qualities to Look for in a Custom Home Builder

How to Separate the Best from the Rest

When you’re looking for a custom home builder for your new construction, there are thousands of contractors to choose from in San Jose and Palo Alto. How will you narrow down your options? The experienced team at Flegel’s Construction Co. offers six points to look for in a custom home builder. These factors will help you identify the best match for your new home construction project.

Tips to Select the Ideal Custom Home Builder

  1. Local knowledge and experience: Building a home in California can be both tricky and expensive. Hence, it is important to find a contractor who has expertise in managing local requirements, such as:
    • Land acquisition costs, taxation, building permits and government fees
      Structure and construction materials that are best suited to Californian weather conditions and the topography of your building site
      Compliance with local construction codes and standards
      Sourcing quality materials, arranging timely and cost-efficient labor and obtaining the required building permits
  2. Design ideas: Check out the range of design ideas in the contractor’s completed projects. Are their plans in keeping with the general look and feel of the area? Do they maximize the benefits of the natural surroundings? Have they used custom products and fittings that cater to the owners’ lifestyle requirements?
  3. Project track record: Assess the reliability of potential builders by evaluating their track record. Did they deliver past projects on time and within the agreed budget? Did they make detailed plans and organize the labor and materials in a timely manner? Have they built quality homes that offer design as well as functionality?
  4. Service quality: When you are researching potential builders, look for aspects related to service quality. Do they present detailed construction plans? Are they transparent in their dealings? Do they offer diligent, periodic project status with detailed explanation of any delays or cost increases? Are they prompt in responding to your queries and open to undertaking modifications during the course of the project?
  5. Warranties: Most reputed custom home builders are confident of the quality of their work and offer upfront warranties to protect your investment. For example, many contractors offer ten years of structural coverage on the foundation of your home, load bearing walls, beams, girders and such.
  6. Communication: When you interact with potential builders, think about ongoing interaction. After all, you will be working closely with them for the period of your project. Based on the way they communicate with you from the start, you will know which contractors you feel comfortable working with.

While looking for a custom home builder that best meets your requirements, don’t skimp on the research.

  • Read their online testimonials, and speak to friends, relatives or local real estate agents for recommendations.
  • Interview potential builders to your satisfaction. Request them to organize site walk-throughs and interaction with past clients.
  • While visiting their completed projects, pay attention to construction features and the quality of materials and finish.
  • While talking to past clients, don’t hesitate to ask them about problem areas to watch out for.

Hire a Reliable Custom Home Builder for a Stress-Free Experience

Building a custom home can be stressful on your wallet and your emotions. At Flegel’s Construction Co., we help you to truly enjoy the process of new home construction. Whether you are planning to rebuild an existing home, extend the current structure, or start a completely new construction, we offer consultation on a range of new-build projects. Our skilled team will design the home of your dreams and impeccably execute the job, in-time and on-budget.

Check out what our past clients have to say about our many successful projects in and around the Bay Area.

For reliable, stress-free new home construction, count on the experts at Flegel’s. Call us at 408-269-1101 to discuss your requirements or contact us online.

The Role of Landscaping in New Home Construction

Landscaping Plays an Important Role in New Home Construction

Bring in a Trusted and Experienced Contractor for Your Project

Landscaping in New Home Construction

Your yard is an extension of your home, and the role of landscaping in your new home construction is far more important than you may have imagined. A well-designed landscape that considers the location, lot size, elevation and foundation of your property will add tremendous value, now and into the future.

Take Your New Build from Good to Great with Efficient Landscaping

When it comes to a custom-built home, you must not only plan the interior structure and layout, but also think of the aesthetics and functionality of the space outside. An experienced contractor will conduct a site inventory and prepare the blueprints for planning and executing a landscape of your dreams.

Here are some of the advantages of planned landscaping for new home construction:

  • A thorough analysis of the topography, soil type and micro-climate will help in determining which trees, plants and shrubs will thrive in your yard.
  • A comprehensive site inventory will help generate an accurate blueprint showing power lines, underground utilities, septic tanks, or roof overhangs. This will serve as the foundation for spatial planning while planting trees, creating vegetation beds or hardscaping elements such as driveways, sidewalks and patios.
  • An assessment of your lifestyle and needs will go a long way in designing an aesthetically pleasing and functional landscape. For example:
    • The size of your family, presence of pets and frequency of visitors will help determine a practical layout with easy access to all elements of the yard. It will also allow for better planning of entries and exits for your front and back yard.
    • Based on the age of your children and your entertaining requirements, you could incorporate several additional elements. A pool, a soft-sand play area, a water feature or an outdoor kitchen, these are some options to consider.
    • Do you prefer a hands-on or hands-off style of yard maintenance? This is an important consideration when deciding the amount of turf, type of vegetation, irrigation system, and other aspects of your landscape plan.
  • A well-contoured landscape will have a proper gradient and drainage system that prevents basement flooding or muddy rainwater pools in your yard.

Landscaping for New Home Construction is an Art—Bring in the Experts!

At Flegel’s Construction Co., we have decades of experience in building new homes. We believe in a holistic approach to construction and focus on landscaping just as much as we do on building the house. Our landscaping specialists will consider your design aspirations, budget, and current and future needs. These factors will form the basis for planning your yard’s overall style, theme, the link spaces and hardscaping elements. 

Don’t ignore the role of landscaping in new home construction. Our delighted customers across the Bay Area are already experiencing the benefits of planned landscaping.

Want scenic vistas, land contours, lush vegetation and a range of functional landscaping features in your new Bay Area home? Call 408-269-1101 to set up a consultation or contact us online.

Building a Home in California is Expensive – Part 1

Building a Home in California is as Expensive as Gold!

Factors Affecting Construction in the Golden State

Building a Home in California

Is your dream of a custom-built home facing an unsurmountable cost barrier? Not sure what makes building a home in California so expensive? As premier construction experts in this market, we know that a custom home is a much sought-after opportunity to personalize your living space.

However, the three primary reasons for the high cost of new construction in California are:

  • Labor: Availability and cost, depending on the size and complexity of your project
  • Materials: Your design preferences will define the cost of construction materials
  • Permits: Prices vary by location and the volume / type of work involved

In this 3-part series, we’ll help you understand each cost barrier that stands in the way of building your dream home in California.

Part 1: Insights into Labor Costs for Building a Home in California

Labor is the most significant component of any home building project, and the related costs begin from day zero of commissioning your new construction. Here is a breakdown of the various labor costs that you are likely to incur:

  • Consultation Fees: For the services rendered by the land surveyor, the architect, the construction engineer, and their teams.
  • Foundation and Framing: To cover activities related to excavating, pouring, backfilling, landscaping and setting up the structure’s frame, trusses and metalwork.
  • Exterior Finishing: Building the walls and inserting the doors, windows and roof.
  • Interior finishing: Completing the insulation, drywall, trim, painting, flooring, plumbing, electrical connections and other such sub-projects.
  • Finer Details: Preparing the driveway and patio, building the deck, adding a pool, installing the home’s heating, cooling and ventilation.

Factors that Impact Labor Costs in California

As per the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average cost of construction labor in California is approximately $37.59 per hour, which is 12% higher than the U.S. national average of $33.52 per hour. In addition to costly manpower, there are a few other factors that may influence labor cost:

  • The size and design of your home: The greater the square footage, the higher the costs. Also, complex architectural details, unusual shapes, or an exceptionally high number of corners or rounded edges will add to the scope. Greater effort means higher labor costs. Similarly, features such as a deck, a pool, or an outdoor kitchen will increase the number of man-hours and consequently, your cost.
  • Number of stories: The higher you wish to build, the more design work, excavation, and construction expenses are involved. You may also have to pay a premium for additional construction equipment and the safety of the laborers on site.
  • Materials and systems: If the materials or systems that you select require specialized skills or equipment for installation, that will add to your cost of labor.

Hire a Trusted Contractor to Build Your Dream Home

At Flegel’s Construction Co., we have extensive experience in constructing new homes to your exact specifications. Our team of qualified architects and master craftsmen will deliver your new home, on-time and on-budget. You can count on us for stylish, comfortable spaces created with quality materials and flawless execution.

We continue to serve a growing base of happy customers in and around the Bay Area.

Stop wondering why building a home in California is so expensive! Call 408-269-1101 to set up a consultation or contact us online.

How to Integrate Exterior Remodeling as Part of a Home Renovation

Important Advice from an Experienced Home Improvement Contractor

Exterior Renovation

New floors and stylish lighting in your foyer will look great but how about adding a new flagstone driveway or redesigning your landscape? Increasingly, homeowners are realizing the value of ensuring their properties look attractive inside and out. The home improvement experts at Flegel’s share the why and how of making exterior remodeling part of your home renovation project.

3 Important Reasons to Renovate Your Home’s Exterior

While the focus of your project may be on the kitchen and bathrooms, or perhaps the living and dining rooms, don’t ignore the benefits of achieving an attractive “street view” of your Bay Area home.

Not convinced? Consider these benefits: 

  1. Property appeal and value: Industry studies indicate that greater curb appeal can increase your home’s value by more than 10%. First impressions make a huge difference in a competitive real estate market.While it may not be the first thing a potential buyer might look for, there is no denying that a visually-appealing exterior is what attracts prospects to your property.

Investing in a stylish front door, installing a stamped concrete or flagstone driveway, dressing up your cobbled pathway with colorful flowerbeds or planters and adding a variety of lighting options, are some ideas to enhance your home’s street view.

A professionally-landscaped backyard with designated relaxation and entertainment areas (an outdoor kitchen, perhaps?) and serene water features also add appeal to your home.

Whether you plan to sell in the near future or not, an attractive exterior is always inviting and welcoming. When you come home after a tiring day or your guests and neighbors admire your impeccable property, the satisfaction is worth it.

  • Energy-efficiency: Energy saving is a hidden benefit of exterior upgrades. Air leaks from windows and doors are a common cause of high energy bills. New windows and siding can reduce heating and cooling costs by 20 to 30%. Further savings are possible with strategic placement of trees around your home. You may also consider a new roof with better insulation.

Additionally, these upgrades give you the opportunity to change the look of your home. There are many different textures in shingles, siding and stucco, for instance, that can make your house stand out. 

  • Reduced maintenance: Exterior repairs for older homes can be time consuming and costly. New roofing and siding that will last for 20 to 30 years is well worth the investment. Many of the latest windows on the market do not require painting and caulking. Overall, newer materials require less maintenance and efficient designs make them easier to clean. It’s a win-win!

Tip: When selecting trim for your front door, windows or patio, remember to choose low maintenance material and finishes, and a style that complements the architecture of the house.

Hire a Trusted Bay Area Contractor for Quality Exterior Renovations

At Flegel’s Construction Co., we have extensive experience with interior and exterior home renovations. Count on our skilled team to make your property the envy of the neighborhood. Get ready to fall in love with your home all over again.

With exceptional craftsmanship and quality, we continue to serve a growing roster of happy customers across the Bay Area. You can see many of our successful projects in Palo Alto, San Jose, Los Altos, Sunnyvale, Mountain View and Cupertino, CA.

Discover how to make exterior remodeling part of your Bay Area home renovation project. Give us a call at 408-269-1101 to set up a consultation or contact us online.

Explore 2019’s New Home and Renovation Trends

Hire an Experienced Remodeling Contractor for Your Project

remodeling contractor

Remodeling your home or designing a new one can be exciting. You started with an exhaustive wish list and have taken the time to separate the must-haves from the would-be-nice. Did you check out what styles are ‘in’ this year?

For instance, experts say that while grey and beige will still be around, a warmer palette with more vibrant accent colors is trending in 2019. With more homeowners looking to express their unique personalities through home décor, you can also explore your colorful, whimsical side, and have fun with your remodel or home design.

Not sure how or where to begin? Our home improvement contractors have listed the top new home and renovation trends in 2019 to help guide your decisions.

10 Home Design Trends to Transform Your Space

  1. Bold flooring with bigger tiles: Update your home, starting with the flooring. In 2019, you will see large tiles replicating the rich and warm wood look taking center stage. Eye-catching patterns, shapes like fish scales and designs such as herringbone, will gain popularity. This year, it’s all about getting creative and having fun.
  2. Warm paint colors: Spicier and warmer colors are set to rule. With Living Coral being the Pantone color of the year, rich and lively shades of orange and pink will energize home décor. Millennial pink, a hit in 2018, continues to gain attention in creative ways. Tonal reds are a great way to make your home more warm and inviting. You can also opt for bold and burnt yellows or organic greens to give previously muted furnishings and accents a new pop.
  3. Matte finishes: From cars to furniture, kitchen appliances and bath accessories, matte finishes are here to stay. Warmer tones and their ability to hide dirt and water spots might have something to do with it. Those shiny surfaces, they are passé!
  4. Automated kitchens: Appliances with touch and swipe controls are hot. Bluetooth technology is also gaining popularity. It allows you to synchronize cooking times for the microwave, range and oven so that all your dishes are ready at the same time. Would you like to automatically turn on the lights and vents when cooking? You can! Black, white, dark blue and even gold (with matte finish) are trending colors for appliances. 
  5. Statement quartz countertops: Move over granite, quartz is taking over. It is hardier and easier to maintain. The latter’s resemblance to natural stone and availability in several colors also account for its growing popularity. Opt for warm and energetic tones like terracotta for a rich look. If there is one thing to splurge on, it is your kitchen and bathroom countertops.
  6. Impressive bathrooms: We’re not talking size but attitude. From small powder rooms to master baths and guest washrooms, it is all about making a big style statement. And bathtubs are making a huge comeback with many homeowners expanding the size of the room to accommodate it. Despite the preference for a warmer palette, bold black bathrooms are all the rage. Another trend is statement walls with vibrant geometric and floral patterns that add drama to the space. Add a sophisticated piece of fine art to create a focal point in your personal spa if you don’t want to go all out.
  7. Natural elements: Wood, stone, copper, concrete and granite replace the tech-obsessed décor that was a shout-out to the Jetsons in 2018. Geometric concrete tiles will be a hot trend as will copper and brass accents. Say goodbye to rose gold.
  8. 70’s décor: Warm palettes, velvet furnishings, funky textures and floral and geometric patterns all give a nod to the 70’s décor. Four-poster or canopy beds bring a sense of comfort and coziness to your bedroom and are also in demand.
  9. Glass and steel room dividers: Open floor plans will continue to be popular but with glass and metal divisions that provide light and an illusion of space. Both materials are favored because they add visual interest and define space without making it feel cramped.
  10. Dream outdoor spaces: With homeowners looking to spend more time outdoors, many are focusing on their backyards first. Expanding your living space out into your patio or garden means decorating it with comfortable and stylish furnishings, just as you would indoors. Natural materials like wood, stone and concrete and nature-inspired tones will dominate the outdoor retreat. Metal-inspired styles will contrast the natural backyard scenery.

Hire the Bay Area’s Top Contractor for Quality Home Renovations  

At Flegel’s Construction Co., we have extensive experience with remodeling and new home construction. Count on us to create stylish and comfortable personalized spaces in which you can relax with family and enjoy entertaining friends. Our quality touches will make your home truly one of a kind. With unmatched craftsmanship and consistent customer service, we continue to serve a growing roster of delighted customers in Palo Alto and across the Bay Area.

home remodel

Criteria for Evaluating a Quality Home Improvement Contractor in the Bay Area

Key Criteria for Evaluating a Bay Area Home Improvement Contractor

Experience and Quality Are Critical Considerations

Home Improvement Contractor

Planning a room addition to expand your space? Eager to modernize your Eichler but keep its’ classic style intact? Dreaming of your dream home right where you live? Hiring the right remodeling company can mean the difference between money well spent and many sleepless nights. Before you begin tearing down walls, learn about important criteria for evaluating a home improvement contractor in the Bay Area.  

5 Tips for Selecting the Right Remodeling Company

  1. Arrange a face-to-face meeting: After you have your initial shortlist of contractors, schedule an in-person appointment with each to determine how well they communicate. Being on the same page is essential to realizing your vision. Ask how you will keep in touch throughout the project. Check if they will provide you with regular progress updates rather than only reporting when there are problems during the project.
  2. Examine their credentials: Always select a licensed, bonded and insured contractor. This will protect you from liabilities such as crew members getting injured on the job. In addition to their credentials, ask how long they have been in business. A company that has stood the test of time for decades has a reputation to maintain. You can expect a high quality of service and workmanship.
  3. Look for relevant experience: A contractor who upgraded your neighbor’s bathroom may not be equipped to remodel your Eichler. The right company is the one with sufficient experience handling the type of project you want done.
  4. Do not be afraid to ask questions: Educate yourself about the scope of your home improvement job. Understand what it might require in terms of permits and who is responsible for obtaining them. If you run into surprises like needing a new foundation to support a second floor or having to replace old wiring, for example, these can increase your project’s cost and extend the timeline.
  5. Understand what the quote includes: Examine the proposal closely to understand what you are paying for, such as specific products and materials.Make sure it lists all the details of your project including the start and completion dates. Get everything in writing, especially any fee waivers and discounts you are promised verbally. Miscommunication and hidden costs can significantly increase the final amount you have to pay.Be aware that the lowest bid is not necessarily the best choice. Some contractors may use inferior materials or take other short cuts.Ask for and check references for customer satisfaction before making a decision on whom to hire.

Finally, do not sign off on the project as “complete” until you are fully satisfied.

Hire a Trusted Bay Area Contractor for Quality Renovations to Your Home

At Flegel’s Construction Co., we have extensive experience with remodeling and new home construction. We offer something else that’s unique—a 12-month post-build support plan. This ensures we will return in a timely manner to make any adjustments required as you settle into your updated home. Count on our dedicated team of designers, construction experts and home building consultants to make you fall in love with your home all over again.

With outstanding craftsmanship and quality, we continue to serve a growing roster of happy customers across the Bay Area. You can see many of our successful projects in Palo Alto, San Jose, Los Altos, Sunnyvale, Mountain View and Cupertino, CA.

Discover more ways to evaluate a quality home improvement contractor in the Bay Area. Give us a call at 408-269-1101 to set up a consultation or contact us online.