New Home Tips, Trends, and Ideas - Raleigh Custom Home Builders

Woodburning or Gas Fireplace? | Custom Homebuilder Questions

Posted by Penn Hull on Tue, Oct 12, 2010 @ 06:10 AM
Custom Homebuilder Tips

Woodburning or Gas Fireplace?

What Kind of Fireplace Should You Choose for Your New Home?

When thFireplace Custom Home Builderse air starts getting crisper, you might find yourself yearning for a woodburning fireplace. But you’ll need to check with your custom homebuilder to see whether they can add a woodburning fireplace to your new home.

Materials, cost, and even where you choose to live could have an impact.

Here’s what you need to know:

Woodburning or Gas Fireplace - Where you choose to live

Some districts no longer allow installation of woodburning fireplaces, due to air pollution issues. Check with your custom homebuilder to find out where they’re allowed, before you choose your lot.

Woodburning or Gas Fireplace - What it costs

A woodburning fireplace usually costs more than a gas fireplace.

The firebox must be built to withstand higher heat: Wood is hotter than gas.

Fireplace Custom HomebuildersCustom homebuilders will make sure that the fireplace vents directly to the roof instead of through the wall, the way a gas fireplace does.  Thus the chimney must be taller – which adds to the cost of building.

Today's woodburning fireplaces usually consist of a woodburning insert with a metal flue that reaches the roof, but this is still more expensive than a gas fireplace.

A traditional masonry or brick chimney or firebox can add considerably to the cost, and are extremely rare in today's new homes.

Woodburning or Gas Fireplace - What you’ll use for fuel

Woodburning fireplaces are intended for the burning of wood – and that can take more effort than you realize.

Fireplace Entertainment Center Custom HomebuildersEven if your property has a lot of trees you’re planning to chop into firewood, you need to make sure your community allows you to do that. If there’s a Homeowners Association, check the rules to make sure you’re allowed to take down the trees.

Woodburning logs are getting harder to find, and when they’re sold by the bundle, they can be expensive. Ask custom homebuilders if they’re aware of local costs and availability for a truckload of wood to be delivered to your home, if you’re unable to get it, yourself.

Woodburning or Gas Fireplace - Where to store wood

Keep in mind that with a woodburning fireplace, you'll need to store wood somewhere.  Storing wood in preparation for burning can attract insects or rodents.  If you store wood too close to the home, those critters can get inside. You’ll also need to protect the wood from the weather – too much rain will make soggy logs difficult to burn.

Woodburning or Gas Fireplace - When you’re not allowed to use your woodburning fireplace

Local restrictions can include special rules for days when air quality is low, due to pollution. When this happens, you may only be allowed to light a fire if you have a gas fireplace – which doesn’t have as many emissions that affect air quality.

Woodburning or Gas Fireplace - Where you can put a woodburning fireplace

Brick Chimney Custom HomebuildersIt isn’t always possible for custom homebuilders to put a woodburning fireplace where you think it might be fun in your new floor plan.

Because a woodburning fireplace has to have a vent that goes straight up, the home needs to be designed with that in mind. Gas burning fireplaces have more options - and have a much lower installation cost when place on an exterior wall.

Due to the extra heat involved in burning wood, you also may not be able to add a recessed entertainment center above a woodburning fireplace, like the one seen here. 

Woodburning or Gas Fireplace - What you need to do

Ask your custom homebuilder what the best option is in your area.   

Give custom homebuilders the floor plan you're considering, and let them know what area you want to live in BEFORE you buy a woodburning fireplace.  

Other Top Custom Homebuilder Questions:

What Ceiling Height Should I Choose?

Formal Dining Room - yes or no?

Article copyright Stanton Homes 2010, all rights reserved.  Provided for informational purposes only, no claims are made by Stanton Homes regarding the validity of any statements. 


Tags: custom homebuilder, fireplaces, woodburning, top questions, new home trends, custom home builder

Types of Roofing - How Much Does it Cost? Custom Homebuilder Tips

Posted by Penn Hull on Mon, Sep 27, 2010 @ 16:09 PM

Custom Homebuilder Tips

Types of Roofing - Compare Shingles, Shakes, Metal and More

What Does Roofing Cost, and What Kind of Roofing is Best? Custom Homebuilder Tips

Considering buying or building a new custom home?  The types of materials used in building your new home can make a major difference in appeal, versatility, maintanence, and cost.  Here are some of the basics:

Asphalt Shingles - Types of Roofing - Custom Homebuilder Tips

Types of Roofing - Shingles Shakes Metal - Custom Homes Raleigh NC - New Home Builders Raleigh NCAsphalt shingles are the most common kind of roofing used today.  This roofing material is durable and affordable.  Asphalt shingles come in different thicknesses, and have different "year" rankings.   Most common are 20 year, 30 year, 40 year, or 50 year shingles.

Many builders use 20 year shingles, but others do not see the initial cost savings or green impact as a worthwhile prospect, and install 30 year shingles.  

The initial savings on materials is very low, compared to the cost of replacing all the roofing, materials and labor, 33% sooner.  Not only that, the longer-lasting shingles are a greener choice, because there is less waste produced over time.

Types of Roofing - Shingles Shakes Metal - Custom Homes Raleigh NC - New Home Builders Raleigh NCLeast common is 50 year shingles, which tend to cost three to four times as much as a typical 20 year shingle. 

There are two basic types of asphalt shingles - three tab and architectural or dimensional.  A dimensional shingle has a lot of color variation, and looks more like a hand-applied individual shingle than a strip shingle. 

Cedar Shakes - Types of Roofing - Custom Homebuilder Tips

Cedar shakes are visually appealing, long lasting, and low maintenance, but also pricey, depending on location.  They are also prohibited in some areas due to fire hazard.

Green builders should purchase only Certified cedar shingles, as noted by the Forest Stewardship Council. 

Cedar roofs can cost two to three times the cost of a 50 year asphalt roof.

Clay Tile Shingles - Types of Roofing - Custom Homebuilder Tips

Clay tile shingles were common at one point in warmer climates like Florida and California. 

A clay tile roof can be overlapping or interlocking, and has a lot of fireproof and durability qualities.  They don't absorb the sun's heat as much as other types of roofing.  However, a tile roof is not as suitable for a climate in the frost zone - they are prone to breaking, and water damage can also occur.  Clay tile has also become more expensive.

Concrete Roofing Tiles - Types of Roofing - Custom Homebuilder Tips

Concrete is very flexible, that is, before it dries!  A concrete roofing tile can be shaped to look like late, wood, or clay.  They last a long time and are good at reducing heat build up.  They do require specialized application, and are more expensive than shingles, but can be another option for a different look. 

Slate Roof Tiles - Types of Roofing - Custom Homebuilder Tips

Slate is a natural stone product, which must be mined and shaped into shingles.  They are often seen in black, gray, red, purple, and green colors.  Slate has a lifespan of 100 or more years with proper application - however, cost for a slate roof can be 10 to 12 times that of a 20 year asphalt roof. 

Types of Roofing - Shingles Shakes Metal - Custom Homes Raleigh NC - New Home Builders Raleigh NCMetal Roofs - Types of Roofing - Custom Homebuilder Tips

Standing seam metal roofs are most commonly seen as accents for porches or overhangs in a home that is otherwise traditionally roofed with asphalt shingles. 

Metal roofing is more expensive than asphalt, and because it is not as commonly used, labor costs can be higher as well. 

However, metal roofs are low maintenance, durable, and highly resistant to fire.  Metal roofs can be a great green building option - most metal roofs have at least some recycled material, and aluminum roofs can be 100% recycled.

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Tags: how much does roofing cost, custom homebuilder, types of roofing