3 or 4 Season Porch – Knowing the Difference Will Help You Decide

When considering the differences between a 3 season porch and a 4 season porch and deciding which type of addition you want for your home, you first need to decide what is your main objective; is resale a reason, how much will it be used, do you plan on eating dinner in there or is it where your entertainment center will be placed, or will this be a room where you want to feel a breeze and look out at your yard? All these things need to be taken into consideration when choosing between a 3 season and 4 season porch.

A 3 season porch is often just a 1 season porch in Minnesota! These porches are built to enjoy when the temperature is nice. 3 season porches are built with storm windows or 1 pane sashes. Insulation is rarely used and the floor can be decking material or outdoor carpet.

3 season porches can be planned out very well so that when finished, they can be easily converted to a 4 season porch in the future. The conversion is inexpensive AND less work. What you can do to make the conversion easier is, insulate the ceilings, floors, and half walls; as well as installing proper footings (these will be inspected by the city to ensure correct installation). A 3 season porch can be a great investment.

A 4 season porch can be a great addition to your home. This room, when completed, is used more than any other type of addition; and, with good design, will give you 85% return on your investment. Designing this type of room with tongue and groove, faux paint, wood, or stone can bring your addition to life.

4 season porches are fully insulated with R-19 walls, R-38 ceilings, and R-30 Floors. Most of the time they are built on 6×6 post with footings, however, a foundation with a slab is also an option but may be more expensive because anytime you attach anything to a structure (your home) you need footings, so a concrete slab requires a full foundation.

Check out this before and after!

2007-06-10 08.36.41-1

2007-06-21 16.02.19

 Give Advanced Home Improvements a call for a FREE estimate on your porch, or any upcoming projects you may have!!

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A Haven for Relaxation

As the chill of winter has arrived; we spend more time in the warm comfort of our home…so why not make your home even more comfortable with a remodel!

It may be a running joke that there are two seasons in Minnesota, construction and winter; but construction is not just for the warmer seasons. Winter is the prime time for Advanced Home Improvements to give your home a little spruce. So what does this mean for you? A quicker start date for your project, as well as a faster completion time!

A small remodel of your bathroom can make your home even more aesthetically pleasing to you and the loved ones you invite over for a visit.

Often times we disregard the decor of our bathroom; they tend to be the smallest room in our homes, as well as the room that we spend the least amount of time in. However, your bathroom can become the room you go to when you need to relax. A long luxurious soak in a bath tub can be just the fix you need after a long day at the office.  But your bathtub might be small and outdated, and not pleasing to soak in at all! Homeowners are now updated their bathrooms with ammenities such as soaking tubs, privatized toilets and heated floors.

These few improvements can not only turn your bathroom into your relaxation room, but add value to your home and even help it sell!








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Storm season is upon us

Here in Minnesota we see a lot of rain, wind and hail. Be sure to keep an eye out for damage to your home that these types of storms can cause.

If gone untreated, damage to the exterior of your home can cause a lot of problems for the interior of your home as well.

Contact Advanced Home Improvements to find out how we can assist you if your home has suffered storm damage!

Dealing with your insurance company? We can help take that stress off your shoulders!

Let us give you peace of mind a receive a courtesy inspection from Advanced Home Improvements TODAY!!!

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Give Your Home a Facelift!

Whether you’re selling your home or just want a spruce to add curb appeal; now is the best time to reside your home!

Check out this home that we resided in St. Louis Park, MN.

Here are the before pictures:Siding - St. Louis Park, MN - Before (2)

Siding - St. Louis Park, MN - Before

As you can see, this home needed a little spruce and update!

Here are the after pictures:

Siding - St. Louis Park, MN - After

With the use of modern colors, and the addition of the stone, we have greatly enhanced the curb appeal of this home!

Let your current home become the home of your dreams! Call us for a free estimate to see how we can help you enhance the look of your home!

Siding - St. Louis Park, MN - After (2)

Posted in Maple Grove Siding, Minnesota Exterior Remodeling, Minnesota Remodeling Company, Mn Siding Installation, Osseo Remodeling Contractors, Plymouth Siding, Plymouth Siding Company, Remodeling Projects, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

There’s still time to protect your roof before winter hits!!

Temperatures are dropping in the State of Minnesota…but fear not homeowners!!! There is still time to ensure your roof is protected when winter hits!

Many residents of of Minnesota have already contacted Advanced Home Improvements to come out to inspect their roof or siding for damage from the storms this year We have helped them with their insurance claims, and repaired or re-roofed their home in preparation for the cold weather that will soon be upon us.

We can help you too!

There is still time to have us out to inspect your home and ensure that your roof will do it’s job…protect your family and your assets from the elements.

Give us a call to have us out for a FREE consultation, and give yourself peace of mind, that you are prepared for winter.

Posted in Maple Grove Remodeling Company, Maple Grove Roofing Company, Minnesota Exterior Remodeling, Minnesota Remodeling Company, Minnesota Roofing Company, MN Storm Damage, Safety, Storm Damage, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Worried about storm damage?


With winter just around the corner, now is the perfect time to ensure your home is protected from the unpredictable Minnesota weather!

Dealing with your insurance company? We can help take that stress off your shoulders!

Let us give you peace of mind a recieve a courtesy inspection from Advanced Home Improvements TODAY!!!



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Ice Dams: Facts and Prevention

The winter season will soon be upon us; here are a few things you should know about ice dams before the snow and cold hits!!

If your home has asphalt shingles (which most do), then you are at a significant risk for developing ice dams.

What are ice dams?

If you let snow build up on your roof, you are putting yourself at risk for ice dams developing. When snow on your roof melts and runs down the roof to the edge/ eaves (which are not insulated) it will freeze again. As more and more snow melts, the ice builds up, creating an ice dam.

If gone untreated, the water will back up into the shingles, creating a potentially bigger problem – roof leaks.

This illustration shows how ice dams develope.

(-photo credit http://www.roofcalc.org/top-10-ice-dams-prevention-products/)

What are some ways to prevent these ice dams from forming?

For more information about ice dams, visit our website! www.advancedhomeimprovement.com

If you suspect that ice dams have ruined your roof, call us for a FREE roof estimate!!

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Humidity…Healthy or Hazardous?

Ever notice the drops of water that form on your glass when you’re sitting outside enjoying a cold beverage on a hot day?

Window condensation is just that…moisture from warm air collecting on a cool glass surface. Condensating windows doesn’t necessarily mean they are defective; this is more of an indication that your home is too humid, isn’t ventilating correctly, or both.

Fortunately, there are a few small things you can do to reduce the moisture in your home.

  1. Vent stove range hoods and dishwashers to the outside and cover your pots while you are cooking; this reduces the moisture in your kitchen.
  2. In your bathroom, make sure exhaust fans are vented to the outside, and you use the fans regularly.
  3. If you have indoor plants; use small fans to circulate the air.
  4. If you must store firewood, do so in a storage shed or garage; not in your home.
  5. Run a dehumidifier in the basement; this will also reduce any musty odors.

 If the necessary steps to controll moisture in your home are not taken; serious consequences can occur:

  1. Mold & Mildew
  2. Rotting & Warping of your Wood
  3. Ice Build-Up on your Roof
  4. Ineffective Insulation
  5. Paint discoloration
  6. Damage to inside walls and in attics

For more information about window condensation, or to get an estimate for new windows, contact Advanced Home Improvements, your window experts!

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How to Know When it’s Time for a New Roof

As a homeowner, you may wonder, when is it time for me to get a new roof?

Curling Shingles on Roof

There are a few things to take into consideration; the age of your roof, are you selling your home in the next few years, do you notice any leaks, and has there been any potential for storm damage recently.

If you notice that your roof is just plain looking old and worn out, or if your neighbors happen to be replacing their roofs (and your homes were built around the same time), it may be time to replace your roof. Some signs to look out for are: curling shingles, cracked shingles, and bald spots where granules are missing.

Are you planning on moving in the near future? If so, and your roof is looking old and outdated, a new roof can give your home just the right amount of curb appeal it may need in order to sell. Remember, the first impression is the most important, and one of the first things a potential home buyer will see is the roof.

Have you noticed any areas in your ceiling that appear to be getting wet? Then you may want to have your roof looked at. Water leaks left untreated by roof damage can cause a whole lot more problems, and may end up costing you more money in the future.

With the terrible weather we have had in Minnesota the past few years, our homes have taken a beating. You may even have damage that you don’t even realize because it hasn’t become a problem yet. Let us give you peace of mind and come inspect your roof for you. Hail or wind damage gone untreated can lead to many more problems in the future; especially with winter coming.

If you suspect that you may have storm damage, don’t wait! Call us for a complimentary inspection!

Posted in Maple Grove Remodeling Company, Maple Grove Roofing Company, Minnesota Exterior Remodeling, Minnesota Remodeling Company, Minnesota Roofing Company, MN Storm Damage, Osseo Remodeling Contractors, Storm Damage | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Do you need your siding replaced? Answer these questions to find out!

- How old is your home/ siding?

If your home was built before 1978, you will need to have it tested for lead. The test is very simple, if lead is found, the tearing off and disposal of the siding will need to be done a bit more carefully.

- Have there been any bad storms recently in your area?

Hail and wind can wreak havoc on your home. Let us come inspect your siding to give you peace of mind that the exterior of your home is doing its’ job! We are experienced in handling insurance claims and will make sure your home is restored to its’ previous condition!

- Have you ever had any water problems?

Water leaks coming in through the walls could be a sign that your siding has been damaged and isn’t protecting your home as well as it could be.

- Do you have any area’s around your home that may allow for any critters to get in (birds, mice, bats, ants, termites, etc.)? These area’s could be as small as a quarter, and can be located in your soffits, fascia, or siding.

- What type of neighborhood do you live in? What type of siding do the other homes predominately have?

In 2009 we sided a home in Maple Grove, MN, in a very nice neighborhood. A block away, there are 1 million dollar homes; a block in the other direction, the homes value around $250,000. This home was right smack in between the two. We could have put up vinyl siding, but after looking at the surrounding areas, and being in a neighborhood that would yield a higher dollar amount in a few years, we researched the best value for this customer and went with a fiber cement board to give the front of the home more value. This type of face lift will position your home to sell and to be envied.

- What type of house wrap do you currently have?

Tyvek is the pioneer, and ultimately created housing wrap. House wrap needs to breath…a great test is to hold the product face out, it should hold water; when you turn it around, water should drip through.

- Do you also require new windows?

If so, you will want the windows installed prior to the installation of your new siding. It will make the installation of the windows more airtight, and the flashing will be better because a window tape will be used to the house and the house wrap. However, if new windows are not in your budget, then using a bit more care, and aluminum flashing, we can still do the job right.

- What type of siding do you currently have? What type of siding is best?

As mentioned earlier, your neighborhood can help you out with that answer. There are a few different types: vinyl and steel siding are very popular.

Vinyl siding has gotten a bad reputation in the past due to bad seams, bubbling, wind tearing it off, cracking in the winter time, and fading; but it has come a long way in the past 10 years. Here is a little advice coming from 20 years in business and the process of trial and error:

Bad seams – bad seams, more often than not, stem from a poorly made product. Another cause of this is poor installation, as vinyl siding is known to expand and contract.

Bubbling – this comes from poor installation; not hitting studs, nailing tight, or using a staple gun and not hitting a stud. It is important to have installers who are certified in the product being installed. Every manufacturer has certain ways they want their siding product installed; using a professional who will follow those guidelines will allow you to get your full warranty. If a company is certified, that means their installers will be as well.

Wind damage – again, this is an issue of installation gone wrong. Simply using the incorrect size nails can cause this and will void your warranty…this is why it is so important to have ANY product on your home installed by someone following the manufacturers specifications. Neglecting those specifications can end up costing you more money, as your product will not be in compliance with the warranty.

Cracking and Fading – these are manufacturer issues; consult your warranty information. If you have misplaced it, you can find it easily online by going to the manufacturers website. If you are unsure of the type of product that was used, consult your installer if you did not do it yourself.

All this information should give you a little insight into your siding. Vinyl siding seems like it comes with a lot of issues, but as you can see, the majority of the issues are caused by POOR INSTALLATION!  These companies have spent millions of dollars on research on how to make these products better, and over time, they have improved. However, don’t take a chance and lose your warranty by having an uncertified installer working on your home.

Steel siding has always been a great option. Unlike vinyl siding, it contracts and expands very little, and maintains its look for a long period of time.

Here are some pros and cons to steel siding:

- If you dent your steel siding, you’re pretty much stuck with the dent…your contractor can replace it, but it cannot be easily done without residual damage to the surrounding pieces. Though it may contract and expand very little, with seamless steel siding in the colder months you can literally hear it contracting and expanding; and it is very loud.

- Rusting can happen, though it is a rarity.

- You can never get a real wood look with steel siding, as the enamel paint has a sheer look to it, and a matte finish is impossible – unlike vinyl siding where this look can be achieved.

- Steel siding is very durable, and along with correct installation, can last a lifetime with very few issues.

- It is nailed tight so it hardly ever blows off, even with poor installation (missing a stud here and there) the ones they hit will hold the product on.

- Edco makes a great product that you can literally bury in the ground and the warranty will still remain! That is impressive!

There are many factors to take into consideration when you decide to replace your siding, and choosing which product to use. We can help you decide!

Call Advanced Home Improvements for a FREE estimate today!


Posted in Maple Grove Remodeling Company, Maple Grove Siding, Minnesota Exterior Remodeling, Minnesota Remodeling Company, Minnesota Windows, Mn Siding Installation, MN Storm Damage, Plymouth Siding, Plymouth Siding Company, Storm Damage | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment