Category

Cost vs. Value

An Extra-Snowy Winter is on the Horizon

By AttiCat Insulation, Certainteed Shingle Roof, Chimney Issues, Cost vs. Value, Cut Energy Costs, Gutter Guards, Hiring a Contractor, Insulation, Insulation Contractors, Roof Repair, Roofing Contractor, Roofing Services, Winterize, Winterize your home Annapolis No Comments

Are You and Your House Ready to Cope?

While sweater weather is in full swing, one reality remains: winter is right around the corner. And, as meteorologists far and wide have already announced, it’s going to be a cold one. Some chilly winter weather is in store for the Northeast and mid-Atlantic, with January threatening to bring the coldest blast of air of the season—and the dip in temperature is predicted to result in about six inches of snowfall, or more, above normal.

Farmer’s Almanac also released a similar prediction for most of the country earlier this year in their annual 2018 winter outlook. The popular guide went as far to earmark certain dates for us to expect heavy rain and snowfall along the Atlantic Seaboard this winter season. According to the Almanac, make sure you have plenty of hot cocoa and a warm blanket on the following dates: January 20-23, February 4-7, February 16-19, March 1-3, and March 20-23.

What’s the takeaway? Enjoy the pretty leaves and relatively mild temperature for now, because before you know it—if the experts know what they’re talking about—you’ll be trading them in for a pair of gloves and a snow shovel.

Anything else you should worry about before the snow and freezing wind makes it your way? Unfortunately, extreme winter weather can do a real number on your home’s exterior. The last thing you want to have to worry about is a leaky roof or drafty window that sends your monthly electric bill through the roof and leaves you freezing, damp and miserable in the meantime.

Make sure you enjoy your snow days this year! If you haven’t had your roof and siding inspected by an expert, the trusted professionals at Fichtner Services can leave you assured that your home is ready to take on the winter onslaught. They’ll provide you with an affordable, reliable, and thorough inspection of your home’s exterior—plus they have the resources to take care of any issues or areas of concern they uncover.

Don’t get stuck behind the eight-ball—resolving these issues now will save you money and prevent the hassle and stress of trying to make unexpected, last-minute repairs in hazardous conditions. The experts at Fichtner Services can survey your roof to prevent devastating ice dams, inspect the foundation for small cracks or openings that can expand in freezing temps and allow mice and other pests to get in, and a laundry list of other essential winter-proofing steps that might have never crossed your mind but will be glad that the Fichtner team has double and triple checked for you.

Clean Out Your Gutters – Not Your Wallet

By Cost vs. Value, Edgewater Roofing, Emergency Repair Service, Gutter Guards, Gutters, Roof Repair, Roofing Contractor, Roofing Contractor Annapolis, Roofing Services, Winterize your home Annapolis No Comments

Problems Caused by Clogged Gutters

Cleaning the gutters is an oft-overlooked item on many a ‘Honey-Do’ list—let Fichtner Services make sure it actually gets done this year. You’ll save yourself some back-breaking, and potentially dangerous work and avoid paying thousands of dollars in damages by trusting our trained professionals to do what they do best: making sure your roof is in tip-top shape.

Why is cleaning out your gutters such an important task? Dry leaves, tree branches, and other debris can accumulate in your gutters both during the dry summer months and when the leaves start to turn in the fall season. You likely won’t notice the problem until your gutters start overflowing during the first major downpour of the season, and by that point, it’ll be too late to prevent lasting damage to your roof and home.

In addition to debris concerns, it’s also a good idea to periodically have your gutters inspected for any damage. Whether it’s a particularly strong gust of wind or a stray football that causes it, a dented or loose gutter can pose serious issues down the road if it isn’t correctly and promptly repaired.

Obstructed or damaged gutters can lead to standing water, which can be filled with harmful mold from decomposing leaves and insects. Mold is common in wet climates and can cause a wide range of health complications if it finds its way inside your home—plus it’s tricky (not to mention expensive) to thoroughly clean up, so it’s best to prevent mold altogether

The overflow can also result in a leaky roof. Water that doesn’t drain to the ground will gather on the roof, soaking through the shingles and causing substantial damage inside. The same threat applies to your basement as well. If your gutter’s downspouts aren’t adequately cleared, water can seep into your basement. This can lead to potential damage to your foundation as well as your furnace, circuit breakers, and other utilities/belongings located in your basement. A cracked foundation is a big headache for any homeowner and is very expensive to resolve.

So exactly how often should you clean your gutters? The answer is: it depends. We would advise consulting our specialists routinely throughout the year—but there are a couple additional factors that could mean you need your gutters cleaned more often. If you have pine trees growing around your house, it is advisable to get your gutters cleaned more often. The pine needles shed year-round and can quickly lead to clogged-up gutters. If you are located at higher elevations or cold climate, you have to consider the threat posed by ice. Ensuring that your gutters are clear during the cold winter months can prevent significant roof damage caused by freezing.

As the old saying goes: ‘an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.’ The experts at Fichtner Services can ensure that your home is protected from the potential side effects of clogged gutters and prevent future damage to your roof. Call today to get a free estimate and put your mind at ease.

To help maintain your gutters and lessen the need to clean, take advantage of our 10% off on Leaf Relief Gutter Protection Special!

James Hardie is #1 for the 7th Year in a Row

By Cost vs. Value, Fiber Cement Siding, James Hardie Siding, Siding, Siding Contractors

For seven consecutive years, fiber cement siding has been ranked as the number one return on investment according to the Remodeling 2011-12 Cost vs. Value Report.

About the Survey

The most recent report was released in November 2011 and marked the 25th anniversary of the report which covers the 35 most popular home remodeling and renovation projects. The report compares construction costs for popular projects against the share of the costs that is recovered in resale. The report includes both national and regional averages.

“Replacement projects are again performing better in resale value than other types of remodeling,” said Sal Alfano, Editorial Director of REMODELING in a press release. “Seven of the 10 top-ranked projects include exterior replacements of siding, windows, and doors. This is partly because they impact curb appeal and also because they are relatively low cost.”

Fiber cement siding replacement is a relatively new addition to the list, added in 2005. Since its addition to the survey, it has ranked first every year for best return on investment showing less than a 0.6% cost increase than the year before.

The Buzz for James Hardie Siding
Siding contractors aren’t the only ones touting the benefits of James Hardie cement fiber siding:

  • Money magazine called HardiPlank® a great value; a smart investment that delivers on durability
  • Smart Money magazine listed James Hardie in its Smart Fiscal Sense feature
  • Called the #1 Quality Exterior Lap Siding Product for the past thirteen years by Builder magazine (1998-2011)
  • James Hardie siding has been featured on over 20 Southern Living, Costal Living, and Sunset magazine Idea Houses
  • Over 50 Houses on ABC’s Extreme Home Makeover have used James Hardie fiber cement siding

Fichtner Services Featured Home with James Hardie Siding, Davidsonville, MD

The Pros Know

There are many projects that you can tackle as a homeowner, but re-siding with fiber cement gives you the best return on investment.

  • Re-siding with fiber cement gives a 27% better return on investment than adding a bathroom and costs $27K less to complete
  • Replacing your roof gives you 22% less return on investment than re-siding with fiber cement
  • Replacing windows nets 9% less return on investment than fiber cement re-siding

Ficthner Services is a James Hardie Preferred Remodeler

For such an important project, trust an authorized James Hardie contractor. James Hardie partners with the best siding contractors from around the country to give homeowners reassurance that their product will be installed correctly. All James Hardie Preferred Remodelers must meet specific requirements prior to gaining membership into the program.

To become a Preferred Remodeler of James Hardie siding, Fichtner Services had to demonstrate compliance with James Hardie Installation Best Practices and show a professional sales approach. James Hardie Preferred Remodelers must have been in business for 4 years as the same company under the same name and hold a satisfactory record with the Better Business Bureau or other accredited rating agency. Fichtner Services fulfilled additional requirements by being state licensed and fully bonded and insured.

If you are interested in learning more about James Hardie fiber cement siding and would like a free estimate for your project, contact Fichtner Services to schedule a consultation.