Featured Projects Blog

November Blog 2020

Posted On: November 07, 2020

       

ELECTION DAY 2020~~/COVID 2020 = Ceiling Trends

In the year 2020 both could be considered a curse word...So let us take a break from both and look up! Look up where? Why to…..

Ceiling Trends!

That’s right!  Believe it or not, ceilings are actually something of a trend in well let’s skip the curse word and refer to it as the present time.

What could possibly go on a ceiling and make it trendy you ask? Well let’s explore the options available~

Flooring, that’s right people are actually turning their rooms upside down with stunning effects! Nailing wood flooring to the ceiling is actually a very popular trend to the boring ceiling.

But...Let’s start with the most fun example and work our way down to basic or not so basic plaster!

  1. Fabric Ceiling….A Stretch Ceiling is a suspended ceiling system consisting of two basic components – a perimeter track and lightweight fabric membrane which stretches and clips into the track. In addition to ceilings the system can be used for wall coverings, light diffusers, floating panels, exhibitions and creative shapes.

            


     2. UPSIDE DOWN CEILING/Flooring for a ceiling…Add architectural interest to a flat drywall ceiling with tongue-and-groove wood floors.

         


     3. Tin Ceiling...while starting to wane in popularity you can still purchase these tiles and create your own look and special design.

        


    4. Coffered Ceiling… more modern design with inlaid lighting.

       


5.  Wood Beam Ceiling..

      


6.  And of course the traditional Plaster ceiling but you can add a modern twist!

        

There now wasn’t that much more entertaining to focus on in November than CoVid and the Election? We can all use a break from them both! Here’s to things looking up!



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October Blog 2020

Posted On: October 02, 2020

OCTOBER BLOG 2020


Now Before It Gets Too Cold...Winterize and Weather Proof

Clean Gutters

Gutters clogged with debris can cause ice damage in the winter! So, make sure to clean them every fall.


Flush Water Heater

It is important to flush the sediment from your water heater before winter comes. Your water heater will run more efficiently if you do this.


Ceiling Fans Clockwise

Simply switching your ceiling fan to run clockwise will help to force the warm air which rises back down into the living quarters of you home requiring less heat.


Window Replacement 

Replacing old drafty windows may seem like an expense at first but you will reap the benefits of a warmer home because heat loss is10-20% from old windows. Furthermore, you will start to save anywhere from $20-$95 each year on your energy bill.


Insulation

By adding additional insulation to the below listed spaces you will help to keep the heat in your home as well as cut your energy cost according to the Department of Energy’s webpage on insulation. The 5 recommended places are, attic walls, exterior walls, floors, crawlspaces, and basements. https://www.energy.gov/energysaver/weatherize/insulation/where-insulate-home


Door Replacement Especially Between Garage and Kitchen Doors

Making sure an energy star rated door is located between your garage and you kitchen will further help to keep the heat in your home.


Programmable Thermostat

Replacing an old thermostat with a new updated programmable thermostat can save 1% on  your energy bill.


Chimney Balloon 

For as little as $25-$60 depending on the size you require, you can literally keep your heat from going up like smoke. An inflated chimney ball will help to keep the warm air in and the cold are out!


Bleed Radiators

Radiators need to have the air removed from them before winter, this process is called bleeding the radiator. The trapped air stops warm water from circulating around your radiator which in turn makes the radiator cold at the top, but warm at the bottom. It means your heating system isn't working efficiently and it can take longer to warm up your room.


Caulking and Weather Stripping

Caulking and weather stripping are effective ways to rid your home of costly drafts.

  

Free window replacement quotes can be found right here! Call us today for a Free Quote. Loebrich Contracting your quality home improvement remodeler.




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Sept.2020 Blog

Posted On: September 04, 2020

LABOR DAY

The first Monday of September is known as Labor Day. We have Labor Day weekend, Labor Day picnics, parties, and weddings! We all embrace the 3 day weekend that is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.

So, I ask you what makes a good laborer? We all have heard about the skilled labor shortage, but what about the companies who employ the laborers? If the company can’t pass muster on a few simple points, rest assured their laborers are not going to be up to the task either.

So many people complain about the remodeling industry’s nationwide reputation. And while we cannot speak as to why so many remodeling contractors are sketchy businessmen at best, and some are outright con artists,  we can help steer you in a direction that will help you to avoid these companies!

  1. If a contractor doesn’t return your call in 24 hours, DON”T HIRE THEM!

  2. If they cannot show you a PA Contracting License and proof of insurance on the spot...DON”T HIRE THEM!

  3. If a contractor cannot supply you with a verifiable abundance of references you can personally contact, DON”T HIRE THEM!

  4. If they are the cheapest quote, ask yourself why. Are they uninsured, unlicensed, or unqualified? Home remodeling is not a bargain business. Very often you get what you pay for. Remember you are not only paying for a product, but the Professional Installation of that product.



  5. If they don’t have an online presence with real testimonials from real customers DON”T HIRE THEM...after all its 2020 and every reputable company is online.

  6. Look at their on-line ratings. Are they A+, 5 *  , or  3’s and 4’s? Compare these ratings to the references you can contact on your own. If they don’t match up, DON”T HIRE THEM!



Always start with step 1. If you call a remodeling company and they return your call and continue to communicate with you on demand, move down this list. In the end you will be led to a reputable company you can place your trust in, with laborers who are skilled and ready to do the work you have requested. 

Loebrich Contracting is proud to be the #2 Remodeling Company in the state of PA based on Top Rated Local® review of our online referrals from real customers. We are here to provide you with great communication right from the start and the skilled professional workmanship our laborers provide. Look at the customer report cards here on our web site and then give us a call because Dan will return that call!

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AUGUST 2020 Blog

Posted On: August 07, 2020

SHIPLAP…. Still a trend for 2020??

Shiplap is a trend which was started or made popular by a home remodeling fixer upper couple out of Texas. Shiplap walls and ceilings were a hot trend as far back as 2016. The decor was rustic and distressed and could be found throughout the home in kitchens, living rooms, bedrooms, and ceilings. Yet some designers feel the white distressed look has reached a saturation point and thus like most trends is now passé. 

A more modern less farm-house friendly version of ship lap is currently trending. This would entail an accent wall of shiplap painted navy or black and mixed with modern textures and elements like glass and steel. This is the 2020 modern trend designers are currently using for shiplap.

     

  

The overused white and quirky while quaint shiplap has set sail for destination outdated in 2020.


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July 2020 Blog

Posted On: June 28, 2020

EMERGING 2020 TRENDS:


Movement away from open concept: Believe it or not people are actually finding they miss a cozy individual space away from disruptions. The open all inclusive floor plan is lacking the cozy private feel and some consumers have begun to reincorporate this into their new home remodeling design. Some just don't like the messiness that can occur with a well used kitchen spilling over into their living space. Many have begun to incorporate archways and other architectural designs to divide the space without completely closing it off. 


Induction Cooking and Hidden Appliances: Induction cooking found in microwaves, stoves, and even toaster ovens is an emerging trend in home appliances as well as hidden appliances like the microwave drawer. Convection ovens are also making the turn from fads to trends. Even cabinets and drawers are mostly soft touch replacing the need for hardware, making every item a little less conspicuous.


Wellness focused improvements: A hot emerging trend is wellness focused improvements like circadian lighting and touch-less faucets as well as advanced air purifiers. Circadian lighting is light that changes color to promote sleep at night and energy during the day. Blue light is necessary during the day and undesirable at night. Sceneswitch- a light bulb that changes the intensity of blue light for day and night is becoming extremely popular. The idea is to emit bright bluish light during the day to suppress the melatonin our brains produce and then in the evening to switch to a dim yellow light prompting the hormone to flow more freely. The touch free faucets are seen as a great way to prevent the spread of germs. And I'm sure we all agree after our start to 2020 with COVID 19 anything that reduces the spread of germs is going to be popular. And water and air purifiers help to promote healthy living by filtering out the pollutants that can cause illness.

   

             

Smart technology using unmonitored security systems: Unimonitored security systems employs cameras, and sirens which alert you but not emergency services that something is wrong. One type links to your mobile device and sends you notifications. Another type records video or sets off a loud siren for an intruder. The unmonitored system is much less expensive than paying for a monitored home security system and is rapidly rising in popularity.

Count on Loebrich Contracting to stay informed and up to date with emerging home trends!

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April 2020 Blog

Posted On: June 12, 2020

Remodeling Industry and Lack of Skilled Labor

85% of Remodelers report shortages of workers able to preform finished or rough carpentry.

The immediate impact is companies having to pay higher wages and benefits to retain skilled workers.

The cost is trickling down to you the homeowner in the renovation price and time of completion.

Lack of skilled workers and applicants unable to pass a drug test have 45% of remodelers classifying the skilled labor shortage for this industry as extremely serious.

 Foundations like Mike Rowe Works Foundation and his Work Ethic Scholarship are trying to educate Americans and reward those looking to learn a trade. The skills gap is wider than it has ever been and according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are more than 7 million jobs available across the country which do not require 4 year degrees.

 Our country has 1.5 trillion in student debt loans. Moreover our media portrays the blue collar worker unflattering in its representation. Yet, who will you call for that new kitchen and bath in the next few years if this trend continues? It may just be that there will be no one on the other end of your call who can help.

Loebrich Contracting has been in business for over 40 years. We can attest to the skilled labor shortage. Rest assured however, the workers who reside under the company name of Loebrich Contracting are top notch in their field. Just look at the comments from our customer surveys to see how our employees possess the necessary skills of the trade and competence to stand out to our customers.

You can be confident a call to Loebrich Contracting will result in a qualified, professional crew prepared to execute your home remodeling project.


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March 2020 BLOG

Posted On: March 06, 2020

March 2020 Blog


MICROWAVE DRAWERS

A hot trend for the kitchen is the microwave drawer. Of course, like any new trend there are pros and cons to be considered. In addition, it is important to keep in mind that all microwave drawers are produced by Sharp regardless of the brand. Sharp supplies all the vital components that other manufacturers use. Also, microwave drawers only come in two sizes, 24 inch and 30 inch.  Make sure to check the specs with a contractor/installer. These can fit into an island peninsula and wall cabinet and can be installed flush. Some even have a Wave to open door model “micro wave pun” intended, and feature Wifi connectivity.

So, let’s examine the pros and con’s of microwave drawers:

  

PROS:    Free up counter space leaving extra space for food prep and entertaining

                Free up room for hood vent over stove

                Looks better

                Easy to clean          

                Child lock to lock out the kiddos

                No crouching over to see food

                Safer heating, cooking, and reheating

                Waste high making it easy to reach controls and has a soft open and close


CONS:      *More costly between $900 $1200

                  

                  *No convection option

                  *No turntable/rotating plate

So, which is right for you, a drawer microwave, or wall or countertop version? Well, consider these factors when deciding, ….price, space, and over all need.  The first two need no explanation. However, to determine your overall need, chronicle your microwave use for two weeks to see what your microwave usage needs are.

   

                                 

Remember here at Loebrich Contracting we are your kitchen specialists. Talk to us about your specific needs and we will help you to determine what is precisely the right product for your home improvement project!

 

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FEB BLOG 2020

Posted On: January 31, 2020

FEBRUARY 2020 BLOG

DIY OR HIRE A PROFESSIONAL 

Home repair, home improvement, and home upkeep are all part of a homeowner’s life. What projects should you tackle on your own and why? What projects should be left for a professional contractor?

Some projects require a certain skillset. For safety reasons these should be left to a licensed professional like an electrician. Other projects require no skillset or knowledge and can save you $ when budgeting for your next home project. One such example almost every homeowner can carry out on their own is painting!

So, when should you DIY and when should you hire a professional?  Most times you can make this choice by considering 3 factors:

  1. Safety   2. Difficulty   3. Time

When considering Safety, look at these 3 major components.      1. Can it kill you?   Think about it, faulty wiring or falling off a roof could be fatal. This is your red flag warning waving at you and telling you to consider a professional.

 

2.Could it destroy your home?   Knocking down a load bearing wall, tearing out bathroom fixtures and reinstalling them improperly both have the potential to destroy your home. While a contractor could do the same, the difference is, he will be culpable for the mistake if you hired a licensed and fully insured contractor.

 3.Does it require a permit? If a permit is required, then that warning red flag  should be waving at you again. If a project requires a building permit, chances are it is not a DIY project. The building permit is required to prove that inspectors have checked the work to make sure it was done safely and to code. This level of home improvement may be out of many homeowner’s skillset.

Knowledge: Mistakes made for lack of knowledge can be costly if you’re not quite sure what you are doing in a project.  You could squander a lot of time, energy and resources, especially if you end up calling in a professional to fix your mistakes. Shoddy work is a turn off for future buyers. Beautiful tile laid out incorrectly is an eyesore no matter how beautiful the pattern.

    

Time:  Sure, the idea behind DIY is saving money. But remember the more a project costs by a professional translates into more of your own personal time to complete the project. If you and/or your partner both work, then your project will be worked on during the evenings and weekends only. A project that could take an electrician a day to complete could potentially turn into weeks or even months with your personal schedule. It may be far more feasible to shell out the 600 bucks for a professional and save yourself the time and energy.

Some great places for the beginner DIY’ers are the beginning and the end of the project. Demolition does not require a skillset. As long as, the contractor has shown you exactly what and where to safely demo, go for it and save yourself some money! Save yourself even more at the end of the project by doing your own clean up and painting. Remember you are paying for these tasks to be accomplished by your contractor and he is charging you by the hour. This is a great place to save some money.

  

The DIY trend is really hot with all the online youtube instructional videos. Just remember when that red flag pops up, pay it heed. And always know when you need a fully licensed, insured contractor with 40+ years’ experience and a 5*online rating, Loebrich Contracting is here for you.




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