People consider home additions for many reasons, mainly for that extra space that is greatly needed, or simply just to add more value to their home. Whatever the reason is, it is definitely an investment that proves to be a worthy one. Take a look at why home additions are a building trend that you should absolutely consider.

Added Space 

Sometimes just adding a few feet to a room can make a world of a difference. It could seriously open up a cramped kitchen or bedroom and completely transform it. Your home could be lacking that extra bathroom, guest bedroom, or playroom that you have always wanted. Maybe you’re expanding your family, or you just feel like you have made the best possible use out of the space that you have to work with. All of these signs point right to a home addition. That extra space might be just what you need to complete your home.

Added Value

A simple extension can add immense value to your home. It is a surefire way to boost the worth of your entire property. Anything that adds space to your home will add value to it. And if you’re looking to sell your home, added space definitely creates more appeal to potential buyers. Open floor plans and big spaces are all the hype these days when shopping for a new home.

Contact us today at Caldwell & Johnson for more information on why you should consider a home addition. Our knowledge and experience in the industry will make your home addition project one that you will not regret!

Oftentimes, new home builders will focus more on price and location than on one of the most important issues, energy efficiency.

Green home building embraces the idea of building energy efficient homes that will leave smaller carbon thumbprints on the earth and on the environment. This is also an important economic issue that is becoming increasingly important to lawmakers.

Why is Green Home Building so important?

By using a green home builder, the homeowner can live in a home that uses less water and energy. Houses built using green technology are healthier places to live and create less waste.

Unlike conventional building techniques, green home building incorporates techniques that utilize resources in a more efficient manner at every phase of the building cycles. This includes renovation, construction, operation, maintenance and demolition.

What does building green entail?

Green building contractors use aesthetic and technical planning that is focused on nature conservation. It is common for green building designs to reflect their surrounding environments using local, sustainable, natural resources such as straw or bamboo. They often turn to recycled resources as well, which lessen building costs.  By using locally sourced materials, the air pollution associated with hauling building materials across long distances is reduced exponentially.

Caldwell & Johnson

Since 1968, Caldwell & Johnson has been building high quality, energy-efficient homes. However, today, the company has fully embraced green home building techniques that help make the world a safer, better place.  If you are interested in learning more about green building practices, or are considering building a new home, please contact us for further information.

Out of all the places in your home to have fun customizing, the kitchen is probably the most popular, and maybe even the most fun. There are just so many things that you can do to your kitchen during your custom home building process to really add that special and personalized touch that will make cooking and entertaining an extremely enjoyable experience for all. 

Dramatic Lighting 

A great way to really make your kitchen pop is dramatic lighting. The more eloquent and noticeable the better. You can choose from a wide variety of supersized pendants, scones, and chandeliers. The trick is to go big, bold, and bright. 

Lots of Storage 

By lots of storage we mean lots of extra cabinets, drawers, and shelves. You can create tall storage by having the cabinets stacked on top of one another and all the way up to the ceiling. You could even have a rolling ladder installed for easy access. Add over-sized cabinets, giant pull-out drawers, and shelving units for extra storage, or even just for decorative purposes. 

Colorful Contrasts 

Don’t be afraid to add splashes of vibrant colors throughout your kitchen. You can do this by adding an accent wall or a statement wall, splashes of red or aqua, or even playing with the paint colors and the patterns for the ceiling. A few bursts of color can go a very long way. 

Contact us today for more ideas and information on how you can customize your new kitchen exactly to your liking and your taste. Let us help you make your dream kitchen a reality. 

When you’re working with a location as gorgeous as beachfront, customizing your new beach house is both fun and rewarding. Your focus should be taking full advantage of the plentiful sunshine and the cool ocean breezes that your new house will be charmed with. Check out some of the best architectural features that you can choose when it comes to custom beach house building.

Oversized Windows

You’re going to want to let in as much natural light as possible, and not to mention give yourself the greatest view possible, too. The best way to achieve this is to add very large oversized windows. Let the light just pour in, and open your view up enough to almost make it feel like you’re actually standing outside when you look out your windows.

Outdoor Living Space  

Of course when customizing your beach house you’re going to want to spend some time designing the perfect outdoor living space. This could include extensive decks, patios, and/or porches. The bigger the better. Nothing screams tropical oasis like a large outdoor living space for relaxing and unwinding, or for entertaining guests.

Stylish Exterior 

Sometimes simply just the exterior of your home can speak volumes. You can totally maximize your beach house plans by choosing building materials that completely fit the part of being beach-like. Popular beach house materials include stucco shingles and siding, and metal roofs.

There is a beach house plan to match every peaceful vision that you have. Contact us today so we can start helping you make those visions a reality.

Beach houses conjure up images of summers on the beach, sunlight streaming through windows, outdoor showers, relaxed meals on ample decks. And they are all of those things. But there are also structural issues to consider when building a beach house. The windows (for the view), the outdoor shower (to keep sand on the beach and out of the house), and a great deck are all important, but they’re only the tip of the iceberg.

When planning to build a custom beach house, it’s important to remember that the structure itself needs to be fortified for protection against the wind and waves, tropical storms, hurricanes and tidal surges. These realities are the other side of the ‘beach house coin’, so to speak. The sea is amazingly beautiful, but can also be incredibly violent, and a well-built beach house must be able to withstand its unpredictable nature. The Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety (IBHS) created the fortified home program to help protect homes from these and other natural disasters. Since you want your new beach house to be safe above all else, the builder you choose should use IBHS fortified home standards and materials. These standards are broken down into three designations:

  • Bronze addresses roofing system upgrades that guard against water entering the attic through roof coverings and/or vents
  • Silver addresses windows, doors and attached structures as well as the roof
  • Gold ties the whole structure together (roof, windows and doors, walls and foundation as one fortified structure.

The owner can work with the builder and choose the level of fortification desired, depending on personal need, preferences and budget. This ensures that your new beach house will not only be beautiful, but strong enough to withstand the worst that nature can throw at it.

Contact us if you’d like to learn more about building the custom beach house of your dreams!

In April, the US Green Building Council (USGBC) introduced the Alternative Compliance Path (ACP) as a pilot program to eliminate the use of illegal wood in the LEED buildings.

LEED certification has become the worldwide standard in rating the design, construction, and operation of green buildings and projects. Realizing the ability to make a change, USGBC designed the ACP credit to fill a gap in the LEED accreditation. LEED credits are given based on the percentage of wood legally source, instead of all the wood. 

Illegal logging is a worldwide problem that damages our environment, communities, and economy. Illegal wood may come from fragile ecosystems or may be removed from lands without paying the landowner or taxes. Trade in illegally harvested wood is extremely profitable and therefore very hard to prevent.

The new pilot ACP credit program rewards team who take a proactive approach to verifying that wood used in their project is legal. As a pilot program, the ACP credit will help focus attention on the need to improve the verification processes used in identifying legally harvested wood and reward project teams who verify the wood they use is legal. Rick Fedrizzi, the founder and CEO of USGBC, also states:

“With the pilot ACP, we are increasing the scope of LEED related to wood with an eye toward possibly applying what we learn to other industries. Beyond this credit, LEED v4 takes steps to reward progress related to all raw materials sourcing issues and encourage all sectors to continue to improve.” 

To talk more about LEED building construction , or anything else, please contact us

Our kitchens are the center of our homes and the source of pride for many. Is it any wonder that people spend more money on kitchen remodeling than any other home improvement? A kitchen remodel has many choices and decisions, making it one of the most complicated home projects.  

The ideal kitchen provides both comfort and function. It will be both sharp-looking and an efficient workspace. For some, a new kitchen should also cause a little envy from the neighbors. To help you, we have put together this short guide to the best way to plan a kitchen.

Kitchen Remodel Goals

  • Create a personalized area that reflects your lifestyle,
  • Have a design that conforms to your tastes.
  • Creatively increase available storage.
  • Receive the best price without cutting corners.

A kitchen remodel starts with an eye on longevity, efficiency, and function. Remember, your kitchen will be a key area of focus at resale. A recent study by the National Association of Realtors identified kitchen upgrades and complete kitchen renovations as the top two home improvements desired by homebuyers. Your kitchen remodel adds the most dollars to a sale price. It is an investment.

Find the Best Contractor

Contractors receive most of their business from word or mouth and their reputation. Nonetheless, a builder is only as good as their last job. One of the leading consumer complaints is with contractors. Here are a few tips.

  • Ensure you ask for recent references from candidates and follow-up.
  • Ask to see a job in progress to get a sense of work quality.
  • Don’t be in a rush. Good contractors are worth the wait.

Have a Solid Plan

You will save a lot of time and money if you use an experienced designer. They know all the tricks of the trade, and can make an effective use of space while creating a design that reflects your lifestyle and tastes. In order to create a great design, there are some things you will need.

  • A to-scale rendering of your existing kitchen showing all plumbing and wiring.
  • A list of goals. What is your first priority? Space, function, or style?
  • Research modern kitchen remodeling ideas and keep an idea folder.

Get the Biggest Bang

Even when the sky is the limit, we want the best price and value. A luxury kitchen is still a financial decision and an investment. The best way to control costs is understanding how you use your kitchen and organizing it for optimal performance. The second biggest saver is taking the time to get the best price on appliances, cabinets, and countertops. 

Things Not to Do

There are common mistakes that can cause a kitchen nightmare. Here are some things you don’t want to do.

Being your own contractor – There are a lot of moving parts to a kitchen remodel. Trying to do it on your own may be a costly mistake.

Hiring the wrong contractor – You need someone you can trust. No matter how low the price is or how highly recommended they come, if a contractor makes you uncomfortable than walk away.

Becoming distracted – Start with a plan and stick to it. With all the options, it is easy to add things that cause buyer’s remorse after the project is complete. 

Changing your mind – Every change in your plan will cause you time and money. Spend as much time as you need at the beginning to plan and design your dream kitchen. 

If you would like to talk about more ways to plan a kitchen remodel, or need more information, please contact us.

Homebuyers are increasingly demanding green homes, but what are they? Green home building is building houses that are resource-efficient and environmentally responsible. However, what makes a home green does not have universal agreement.

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) states, “Green building means improving the way that homes and homebuilding sites use energy, water, and materials to reduce impacts on human health and the environment. Building a green home means making environmentally-preferable and sustainable decisions throughout the building process-decisions that will minimize the environmental impact of the home while it is being built and over the many years it will be lived in.”

The main focus is with energy efficiency. In many instances, the energy used within a home comes from burning fossil fuels, releasing carbon and other greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere. This pollution affects air quality, is the cause of acid rain, and contributes to climate change. 

When you find an ENERGY STAR certified home, it means the builder has met the very strict guidelines set by the EPA. These homes not only help protect the environment, they also have better indoor air quality and will save you money on utility bills. Some of the characteristics of an  ENERGY STAR certified home are:

  • Superior insulation,
  • High-performance windows,
  • Ultraefficient air ducts,
  • Energy Efficient heating and air, and
  • ENERGY STAR certified appliances and lighting.

The benefit many home buyers focus on is saving money. However, green homes tend to naturally stay cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter. A green home is a more comfortable home. 

Caldwell and Johnson Custom Builders is an ENERGY STAR Partner and Certified Green Professional. If you would like to talk more about what to look for with green home building, or need more information, please contact us.

Nearly every professional person linked to real estate will say the market is better off than it was a year ago. With this improvement has come an increase in the value of many home remodeling projects. There is a demand for bigger home improvements and increased energy efficiency. Kitchen remodels are at the top of the list. 

Houzz, a leading platform bringing homeowners and home professionals together, has targeted some of the hottest remodeling trends. We have compiled a list of what is going on with luxury kitchen remodels.

Two-tone Kitchen Cabinets – The current trend is to keep upper cabinets a neutral color or white, and use deeper and darker colors for the lower cabinets. The style allows you to show off a lot of your personality.

Colored stainless-steel Appliances – As it turns out, black is the new black. Light and dark color options are available and are trending.

Deep Kitchen Drawers – A top priority for any kitchen remodel is easy storage. Deep kitchen drawers have been growing in popularity for a while, but new innovations are making them even better.

Niche Appliances – It is time to get rid of that old microwave. Luxury kitchens now have steam ovens for better, healthier cooking. How about a warming drawer for when the significant other is running late?

Workhorse Islands – Kitchen islands are no longer just about extra counter space. They now have prep sinks, deep storage, seating, and more. Workhorse islands are quickly becoming a must-have feature.

Barely a Kitchen – One interesting trend is the open design kitchen. The kitchen becomes a more fluid space that is fully functioning but with a minimalist looking design. 

Openness & Raw Materials – A feature of the before mentioned barely a kitchen design is the use of open shelves and raw materials. Start here for a great new look.

Backsplash & Countertop Combinations – Today’s kitchen trends are looking for contrasts. Think along the lines of a yellow ceramic tile backsplash with butcher-block countertops or green back-pained glass with a Caesarstone countertop.

Mixing Materials – As with the two-tone cabinets and backsplash/countertop combinations, today’s kitchen trends are about mixing it up. Consider mixing finishes, colors, and materials.

If you would like to talk more about the hottest kitchen remodel trends, or need more information, please contact us

Environmentally friendly homes are not only trendy, but can also save you on energy costs. Why not invest in a green home and use all your extra savings towards making it your dream home. 

Many home owners across the U.S. have already taken an eco-friendly step by adding insulation and HVAC systems that are energy-efficient. The initial cost of green products is outweighed by the overall savings on energy. “The U.S. Department of Energy reports that in 2008, Americans saved over $19 billion by employing energy saving measures and investing in energy efficient homes,” reported

However, there are many other green features available than standard insulation and HVAC installation. Building a green home will help you save more money on water heating and usage, recycling, and electricity. The more green your home is, the more money you will save. 

The savings from monthly energy costs can now be used towards making your green home a dream home. Live comfortably in a stylish home with all of the items on your wish list added, and relax knowing you are protecting the environment while using cost-effective resources. 

If you are interested in a high-end, custom-built or remodeled home in Rhode Island, contact Caldwell & Johnson. Known for building energy-efficient homes with high-quality customization, Caldwell & Johnson are the best choice for your green home. They even offer new homes with the Energy Star label. reported that Energy Star Homes “have met high standards for energy efficiency set by government agencies.” 

Please contact us today for more information on how we can make your home green and stylish. 

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