Decking Materials Beyond Basic Lumber


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As you get ready to host an event, be sure you have enough side chairs and dishes for dinner guests, as well as enough bakeware and chopping boards for food preparation.


Adding Curb Appeal to Your Home

Fall is here and it’s usually the second time of year homeowners start thinking of vamping up their home’s exterior. The first home exterior game changer typically occurs in the spring after we have all sat inside all winter and dreamed of the possibilities we wanted to change once the first sign of warm weather occurs. For most home owners, time and money are a huge factor in all that we complete during those few short months of “Spring Cleaning”. Then summer arrives, unseeingly quicker than we would like for it to, and some of our “to dos” get pushed to the curb. Fall is a great time to reexamine what it is we didn’t finish in the beginning of the year. Some people are thinking of the guests they plan to entertain for football games, Thanksgiving, and even the Christmas Holidays. This brings me to my topic: Adding Curb Appeal to Your Home. Whether you are looking to add curb appeal for resale value or just make it more appealing for yourself, family, and friends.
The September 2012 issue of Atlanta Home Improvement Magazine has listed their top five things to add curb appeal to your home. I want to touch on those and elaborate on what I know best; home exterior. In an article written by Alma E Hill, it is noted that these are the five key elements in adding value to your home: remove weeds from planter beds and add new mulch and borders, repaint the house, repair porch railings, repair cracks in the driveway, replace a damaged roof with a new one. I couldn’t agree more. Sometimes the smallest of changes makes a dramatic impact. Just “cleaning” your exterior and minor landscaping can add pizazz to a dull, dirty, dingy outside. I recommend that you pressure wash your home exterior yearly to maintain a radiant look. This also helps prevent from mold and mildew building up on exterior surfaces that do not see very much sunlight. If you roof has stains or mold spots, be careful not to pressure wash your roof. Pressure washing your roof destroys the granules and can lead to major roof shingle damage. If you notice mold spots, you can spray an application of bleach and water on the area and let it sit. Simply wash it off with water from a hose and skip using a pressure washer on your roof altogether.
After your exterior has been cleaned and looks nice and tidy, make your “to do list” based on what you see. Maybe your paint is flaking or chipped? Maybe a few boards need to be replaced here or there. It’s easier to evaluate what is damaged and not just dirty once you have given your exterior a thorough cleaning. Repainting your exterior is a daunting task, but you may only need to touch up the trim. If you are ever in question, it’s always best to seek the advice of a professional. Changing the color of your trim, garage doors, front door, or shutters can create an intense change that is easy and cheap to do. If you are really feeling bold, consider changing colors, patterns, and textures of your home’s exterior for a thrilling transformation. The possibilities are endless as to simple changes you can make for a jaw-dropping effect. There are several free websites that will allow you to create changes to visualize what differences you can make on your home and if you are really considering a major renovation consider an architectural rendering of the changes before you make any commitments. Many companies offer these for little or no charge. There are also many sites available to browse existing homes to seek ideas from such as Pinterest and Houzz. Capture anything that catches your eye or appeals to you. Chances are, others would be taken by the same look if it is on your home.

Lastly, fall is the time to attend home shows to get more ideas and even pricing for professional services if you so desire to seek the help from someone else. Many home shows have companies that set up displays of their actual work so you can see what you would be getting from them if they were to work on your home. Meet their staff, ask for before and after photos and references, and always check reviews from sites such as Kudzu, Angie’s List, and Google Plus to see what their customers thought of their process, products, and pricing.


They don’t call it “Hot Lanta” for nothing… Atlanta, Georgia in early March and temperatures are already flirting with 80 degrees! The trending topic this week for the Atlanta Market on Twitter has included #patios #decks #greenbeer…somehow I believe most of Atlanta found patios and decks all around the city to engage in with cold beverages this week. Aside from the social aspect of the warming temperatures, what other behavior does this weather seem to cause? Most people will tell you that they start thinking or doing house and yard work; inside and out.

I have been with EXOVATIONS® for ten years and I can testify that each Spring we have a rush of calls and inquires about all sorts of Spring projects but our number one project is and always has been decks. These calls range from yearly maintenance calls of pressure washing, painting, and staining to starting over from the ground up. In fact, we spend our Winter like caged animals just waiting on these calls so we can get out and enjoy this sunshine with the rest of you.

Each year new technologies allow for the latest and greatest of anything we can possibly think of. This is also relevant in the decking world. TREX Decking spent nearly four years testing their latest TREX Transcend decking products. They listened to their past customers, current consumers, and potential customers on what it was that mattered most in their deck. Longevity, durability, low to no maintenance, curb appeal, warranty, risk of fading, risk of staining, and overall value were highly taken into consideration. The latest technologies have allowed TREX to present a product with an impeccable warranty to guarantee against fading and staining… so no worries for spilled ketchup, wine, or barbeque sauce during those Summer parties…simply wash the stain off with soap water and it is gone. Never worry about rotting again. Transcend decking is a composite material with an outer shell covering three sides of the board, which is 2 to 3 times thicker than any competitive offerings. The underside of the board breathes to avoid the surface separation some competitors suffer.

Composite decks bring together the best qualities of wood and plastic to create a longer lasting alternative to wood. Plastic shields the wood from moisture and insect damage, preventing rotting and splintering. Wood protects the plastic from UV damage while providing a natural, attractive look and feel. However, not all composite decks are the same. The industry is riddled with inferior product that does not deliver the manufacturers’ durability claims. There is only one brand of engineered decking that EXOVATIONS® has found to have proven product quality and durability backed by a 25-year limited stain and fade warranty. TREX Transcend decking comes in seven beautiful colors and the lighting options are endless.

Don’t wait any longer to get out and enjoy this beautiful weather and the beauty of your home! Let us help you make the most of your outdoor living area this Summer.