2024 Northwest Green Home Tour

2024 Northwest Green Home Tour

2024 Northwest Green Home Tour
Saturday, April 27, 2024 from 11:00am-5:00pm

The Northwest Green Home Tour is gearing up for another great year! Check out this FREE tour of sustainable green homes, remodels, and energy retrofits throughout the PNW. Get your free tickets now.

Make sure to put our co-hosted MHC/Workshop 315 site, first on your list!, See how we transformed this 1947 home into a more efficient, functional, and fun space for their family to live, grow, and play (all of which turned out to be lovely, too!).

Sometimes, knowing where to start is the biggest obstacle.

Sometimes, knowing where to start is the biggest obstacle.

It can be challenging to translate your dream vision into a tangible, realistic project with so many different avenues to start at; it can all be very confusing. And resources like HGTV don’t help clarify as much as it just adds to the information overload. One of our favorite services of MH is being able to put people on the right path to make their residential dreams a reality.

We don’t have to be the contractor to build your project. [We wish to be because we know we can do good work for you!] However, our ultimate wish is for you to get the project you’re dreaming of and to meet your goals with as much ease and clarity as possible in the construction world. Whether you reach out to us for a free 15-minute consult or an ongoing paid consulting role for a local or out of region project, we can help guide you through your project(s) and bring clarity and organization to the craziness of building.

Our end goal is that you have a healthy, sustainable homes that will make a difference in how you live, work, and play in their homes.  Reach out to us today!

Spring into the New Year!

Spring into the New Year!

Spring is just around the corner, and we are excited about what is blooming in the coming days. We hope this letter finds you in good health, well rested from the holidays, and looking forward to all that 2024 has in store. It is in times like these that we can step back and truly show gratitude for our clients, vendors, associates, family, and friends like you who make our jobs enjoyable and impactful – every single day. We would like to extend thanks to you who have worked with us and made our lives so fulfilling over the last 15 years of business (TODAY). It is this level of community collaboration that makes us so successful.

Happy Anniversary to Us!

Keep your energy use from spiking while things heat up this winter.

Keep your energy use from spiking while things heat up this winter.

Winter is a great time to spread (clean energy) cheer with friends and family. Whether you host people for the holidays or travel to see friends and family, it’s a special time of year – even when it comes to your energy use.

For most of us, our energy consumption increases dramatically during the winter season, most of which is attributed to increased kitchen use. Wondering what you can do to keep your energy use from spiking while things heat up in the kitchen this holiday season? Consider upgrading to an Induction Stove.

Induction’s efficiency, cleanliness, functionality, and growing market make it a good option for households to consider. Here are a few of the benefits of Induction Cooking:

Energy Efficient.
Because induction appliances only create heat through pots and pans on their surfaces, they are much more efficient than traditional cooktop appliances. Induction appliances are up to three times more efficient than gas stoves and up to 10% more efficient than conventional smooth top electric ranges. Induction also runs cooler and cleaner than gas, lowering the load on ventilation and on heating and cooling systems in your home.

Food Cooks Faster.
Induction stoves eliminate the intermediate step of heating an element and transferring the heat to the pot. Compared with electric or gas stoves, they cook more quickly when you turn up the heat and respond faster when you dial it back down.

Easier to Clean.
Induction cooktops are easy to clean because their radius of heat is much smaller than that of gas or electric cooktops. If something spills over, it’s less likely to melt and stick to the surface.

Safer Cooking.
Induction cooktops and ranges are inherently safer than gas or radiant-electric models because they don’t involve flames or direct heat. Only your pots heat up when you cook—the surface of the stovetop remains cool.

Precision Temperature Control.
Induction cooktops can boil water 20-40% faster than tested gas and traditional electric cooktops. The electromagnetic field also provides more precise, even heating compared to traditional cooktops.

Improved Indoor Air Quality.
Induction stoves are also free of the indoor air pollutants that come from gas stoves: burning gas for cooking produces nitrous oxides (NOX), carbon monoxide (CO), and formaldehyde (HCHO), which can have negative health effects and exacerbate respiratory conditions.

Aging-in-Place and ADA Compliant.
Because the surface of an induction appliance doesn’t heat up without a pan, it’s safer for those who have issues with hearing, vision, or mobility.

Back To School Fall Maintenance Tips

Back To School Fall Maintenance Tips

Shorter days and cooler nights bring forth sweaters and pumpkin-spice lattes. All indicators that it’s time to prep your home for the coming stormier seasons.

Too often we meet someone excited about a remodel only to discover that deferred maintenance is going to evaporate the larger chunk of there. Budget. Keeping atop these annual maintenance tips (and more!), will help make your bigger ideas become a reality.

Inspect your roof. Replace missing, worn, loose, shingles. Gently clean mildew and moss to allow free flow of water off your roof shingles. If you aren’t sure how to properly clean your roof that is safe for it’s longevity and the health of your surrounding yard and ground/stormwater, please ask us for a referral to someone who does. [ProTip: YouTubers don’t all have it right! Some suggestions will harm your roof’s longevity.]

Clean gutters and downspouts. Clear leaves, twigs, and other items out from your gutters. Afterwards, run water through them to ensure water is draining properly to, down, and out of the downspouts. [ProTip: Avoid calling us for an unplanned basement remodel by ensuring ALL water drains away from your home’s foundation (and not towards your neighbor’s foundation either!).]

Prepare your fireplace. Have your chimney thoroughly cleaned and inspected by a professional each year. Not only will it help your indoor air quality and ensure your fire burns efficiently, but having your chimney and fireplace maintained also ensures you equipment is discharging the least amount of particulates possible. Even new, efficient fireplaces only stay as such if maintained properly. [ProTip: if you don’t use your fireplace but aren’t ready to remove it, use a chimney balloon to seal up the flue.]

Batten down the hatches. Reduce air leaks and potential water intrusion by weather stripping or caulking the doors and windows. While you are poking around, check that your siding joints are also properly caulked and that there is a solid 6”-12” of space between the ground and your siding around your entire home. [ProTip: Not all caulks are appropriate for all situations/materials. Do your research.]

Schedule an HVAC system checkup. Maintaining your heat pump or furnace ensures your system stays as efficient as possible. Gas furnace inspections often include a carbon monoxide test as well. [ProTip: recent years building codes have required a carbon monoxide detector – if you have lived in your home a long time, you might check that you have one and that it is functioning – there are easy plug-in options if needed.]

Detector Tests. While you are testing your carbon monoxide detector, check on your smoke detectors too. Smoke detectors can last up to 10 years, while carbon monoxide detectors usually last about six. [ProTip: write the date of installation on your detector so that you don’t have to remember if you installed it the year your son broke his arm or your niece won the state championship.]

Feed your garden. Apply compost and natural fertilizer to your grass and gardens in the fall to prevent winter damage.

Protect outdoor furniture. Yes, outdoor furniture is built to be outdoors. However, our winter rain, wind, and freeze can be really harsh and cause your furniture to loose it’s luster sooner than you’d like. Protect your furniture by placing it under a covered patio or underneath a sturdy waterproof cover.  [ProTip: If you use a waterproof cover, ensure it has vents so that condensation and moisture will evaporate]

Create a clean energy plan. In the Northwest, our biggest consumption is energy. Insulation is your first line of defense against high energy consumption. When the power goes out, it will help keep your home warm longer by creating a barrier against the cold elements outside and keeping the warm air inside – inside!. It also happens to keep the hot days of summer weather out, reducing the need (or desire) for air conditioning. We have solutions for all styles and conditions of homes – so don’t listen to the naysayers – reach out to us! If you can’t change out your heating system to a high efficiency one or offset with solar panels – at minimum, create a family plan for how to keep your energy needs as lite as possible. [ProTip: also plan for what heating system or hot water heater will be your next best step – that way if/when one falls, you will have a better system conceptualized to implement at your fingertips rather than making a knee-jerk decision in the moment.]