Green home building has come a very long way over the last decade or so and is pretty much just taking over the market. It really is no surprise since not only does it save you money, but you’re doing your part to help the environment at the same time. Check out a few easy green home building ideas. 


You definitely want to consider the size of your home. Bigger is not always better, because no matter how green you build a large home, it will still have a bigger impact on the environment than if you went a little smaller. This absolutely doesn’t mean that you have to build a cottage or anything, it just means that you shouldn’t build too much bigger than you actually need. 

Cool Roof 

Your roof can have a huge impact on the energy efficiency of your home. You’ll definitely want to choose a material that will reflect the sun away from your home rather than absorb it. This can definitely reduce your energy usage and costs. You’re looking at materials like slate, terra-cotta, and metal, just to name a few. The initial cost is a little more, but you will more than make up for it with the energy savings that you will experience.  

Solar Power 

When you’re building a new home you can always decide to use solar power, meaning that you can take advantage of the sun’s energy to power you home. A lot of this has to do with how you position your home and where you place the solar panels in order to take full advantage of the sun’s benefits. 

Contact us today at Caldwell & Johnson to learn more about green home building and what it can do for you, your home, and the environment. 

One of the most important parts of building a beach house is protecting it from the elements. This means waterproofing it and bracing it for strong winds, among other things. When you build by the water, this becomes an essential part of the whole building process. Take a look at some custom beach house building weatherproofing ideas. 

Building Materials 

You can’t just use any old material when building your beach house, or else you are going to deal with deterioration due to the coastal air, unless you feel like dealing with time very time-consuming and tedious upkeep. Your best bet is to go with materials like stucco concrete blocks and cedar shake roofing, both of which will last more than twice as long as something like asphalt. 


Regular windows are not going to hold up well to strong winds and flying debris. It’s important to get windows with an impact-resistant coating that can withstand extreme winds and flying debris without shattering. This will also increase the entire stability of your house. 

Door Handles 

Regular metal door handles will likely rust from the salty air. You will want to go with something that won’t pit or corrode, such as arched handles that have a protective bronze finish on them. 


You should definitely go with vaulted ceilings opposed to regular ceilings since vaulted ceilings will keep your house cooler by pulling the warmer air high above your living area. Regular ceilings will just create more stuffiness. 


Wood floors are a staple in beach houses, but on their own they will not hold up well as they are prone to warping and rotting. The perfect solution to this is to paint the floorboards and add a glossy, oil-based finish for added durability. 

Contact us today at Caldwell & Johnson for more weatherproofing ideas for your custom-built beach house. 

As the years pass by, so do design trends. They are constantly changing and evolving, and this coming year will surely have lots of cool stuff and inspirational ideas in store for you. Check out some custom home building design trends that you will surely love in 2017.

Laundry Room

We’re past the days of just sticking a washer and dryer in the corner or a closet. Laundry is quickly becoming something that is worthy of its own room, and there are many ways to design this room to perfection. You can fully equip your laundry room with storage space and folding space, without forgetting about adequate lighting and fun decor. 

White Kitchen 

White kitchens are pretty much something that comes and goes when you’re talking about trends, but they are definitely on the rise in recent years, and are especially expected to gain more popularity in 2017. There’s nothing better than a crisp, clean white kitchen. Adding some wood accents into the mix will definitely help to keep things from looking too boring. 

Living Area Colors 

When designing your main living area, keep in mind that neutral colors are all the craze. And we don’t just mean one shade of beige, but rather several different shades of beige in one area. And romantic bedroom colors are in demand for 2017. This means colors like deep red, raspberry, caramel, and even black. 

Pendant Lighting 

In the past, pendant lighting was something that people just considered in their kitchen or dining areas, but they are now gaining popularity in other parts of homes as well, including bedrooms. They are practical, playful, and the perfect way to free up some space. 

Contact us today at Caldwell & Johnson for more information on current design trends, and all of your custom home building questions and concerns. Let us help you make your visions a reality. 

The reason that people build green homes is usually an attempt to reduce the harmful impact that home building can have on the environment. But what many people don’t realize is that they can, in fact, disrupt the existing ecosystem by making a few minor mistakes during the building process. It’s important to stay environmentally conscientious the entire time. Take a look at a just a few of the common mistakes to avoid with green home building.

Only Build What You Need

Sometimes people are quick to build overly large houses without considering how much space they are really going to need. The trick is to build a home where the space is just right, and nothing more or less. Too much house equals wasted space and wasted energy, which in turn will increase your heating and cooling costs.

Choose the Right Location 

Location is key when building a home for multiple reasons, and one of them is definitely considering the ecosystem. You will want to carefully select the right lot size and location for your home. Building closer to town is usually a good idea as to not disrupt local wildlife. When you build off the beaten path you are going to create roads, power lines, and utilities where there once wasn’t.

Save Energy 

There are so many ways to save energy. For starters, make sure that all of your equipment is energy-efficient. This means high-efficiency and green appliances. You can even consider a tankless water heater.

Use Environmentally Friendly Products

Make sure that all of the materials that you are using to build your home are environmentally friendly. This includes building materials, roofing materials, insulation, flooring, counters, cabinets, and more. Try to use recycled lumber, recycled glass, and all natural products.

Contact us today at Caldwell & Johnson for more information on green home building and what it can do for you and your home.

There are so many steps and so many things to consider when custom building your home. This gives you the opportunity to build the kitchen of your dreams, the bathroom of your dreams, and everything else in between. But don’t get so caught up with designing and custom building the inside of your home that you forget about the outside. Your outdoor living space can not only add appeal and value to your home, but it can provide you and your family with the perfect place to relax and entertain. Check out just a few of the amazing things that you can do to your outdoor living space.

  • deck
  • patio
  • pool
  • spa
  • structures
  • landscaping
  • kitchen

Depending on how big your outdoor space is and how much time you plan on spending out there, you definitely want to put it a deck or a patio. It’s the perfect way to extend your home. And of course nothing goes better with a deck or a patio than a swimming pool. You have many options when it comes to a pool, like adding a spa to it. Definitely check out your options with outdoor structures. Some popular outdoor structures include gazebos, pergolas, and arbors, and don’t forget about the landscaping that ties into it all. And if you really want to top off your outdoor living space with the best of the best, definitely consider an outdoor kitchen area.

Contact us today at Caldwell & Johnson for more ideas on what you can do with your outdoor living space when custom building your new home.

Don’t Forget About Your Outdoor Living Space When Custom Building Your Home
Earthy, colorful, and eclectic–beach houses always reflect their owner’s personality, and always provide a cozy place to relax after hours walking the beach, riding the waves, or laying out to catch some sun. Interested in building your own beach house? Here are three trends in custom beach houses.

1. The Eclectic Wood Siding Look. Nothing says “beach house” like wood siding. This design brings a great curb appeal and gives the home a woodsy feel. It is classic and can be unfinished or stained in different colors. Here is a great example of a home in the Hamptons on Pinterest.

2. The Tropical Stucco Look. Not all beach houses have to have the northeast shabby look. They can look like a tropical oasis like this stucco paradise from Pinterest and this modern play on a beach house (also from Pinterest). These homes look more like resorts than family vacation homes, and offer more elegance to housing next to the beach.

3. The Porched Mansion Look. This house (feature on Architectural Digest) and this Nantucket beach house from Beautifully Seaside exemplify the importance of porches on a beach house. It is truly an important trend and makes a way for guest to be in the comfort of a home while still looking out at the ocean. There is nothing better than sipping your morning coffee while sitting on a porch overlooking the waves!

Interested in a beach house? Need someone to answer your questions? We would love to help you! Feel free to contact us.

Moving into a new home is exciting. In fact, it’s one of the “biggest” days you’ll experience in life — a day you’ll always remember. The future seems bright and you’re engrossed in the fun of decorating and making your new home an expression of you. But when that initial excitement wears off, you begin to want to change things that you compromised on when you decided to buy. You like the kitchen’s layout but not the floor or the counter tops. You wish there was another bathroom, but because you liked most of the rest of the house, you settled for a full bath and a small powder room. The list goes on. The things that you thought you could live with seem more bothersome once you settle in. Now you need to dig into your bank account or borrow more money to renovate, or just continue to “live with” the things that annoy you.

But it’s a different experience with a home that’s custom-built just for you. From the beginning, you get to decide on the features you want. When the house is finished, and moving day finally arrives, you’re moving into a house that already expresses you and your family’s lifestyle. There’s no need for any cleaning before you move in, and no need to change anything. It’s a great feeling! Everything’s new, energy-efficient, and, well, perfect!

You’ll pay a little more, and you may wait a little longer for a custom-built home, but you won’t have to shell out money or take out a loan to renovate, and your new home will be built with the most up-to-date, low-maintenance materials, energy-efficient systems, windows, roof and more.

If you live in Rhode Island and you’re in the market for a new home, contact us to explore the idea of investing in a custom-built home from Caldwell & Johnson. We’ve been building beautiful, sustainable homes in the area for nearly five decades, and we’d love to be the builders that make your dream home a reality!

A beach house is one of the greatest escapes you can have. Breathtaking views, cool breezes, and your own little slice of paradise. With a project so big, there are definitely some things that you’ll want to consider before you get started. Check out some worthy considerations in custom beach house building.


Of course location can mean everything when building a new house, and this especially holds true with beach houses. You will absolutely have to consider how close you are to the water, as well as local variances and beach erosion tendencies. This should all play an important part in helping you choose a safe location for your house.

Weather Protection

When you live near the coast, you know that your house will be subjected to severe weather from time to time. Some things that you will want to consider in order to protect your home include building your house up on stilts, and installing storm windows and shutters. Keep in mind that having your house set higher up will also give you better views.

Outdoor Living Space 

When you have a beach house, you will likely be spending a lot of time outside. This is all the more reason to want to create an amazing outdoor living space to take full advantage of the beautiful views and weather. You can achieve this by adding a wraparound deck or porch, and even finishing it off with your own outdoor kitchen.

Contact us today at Caldwell & Johnson for more custom beach house building ideas and considerations!

With the environment constantly changing around us, it’s important to remain active and fully aware of what’s going on with it at all times. Creating an environmentally friendly home helps you to have a positive atmosphere to live in, while saving money and energy at the same time. Take a look at some good tips for green home building.


Many people fail to realize that the location of their home can have a huge impact on things. Homes facing towards the west will have more sun exposure, making them harder to keep cool. Also take a look which areas are more prone to things like flooding, hurricanes, earthquakes, etc. before you start building. And the distance that you have to drive to get to stores should also be considered.


If you’re looking to save energy, and money, definitely pay close attention to the type of equipment that you’re putting in your home. Look for ENERGY STAR labels, which means that the EPA has deemed it as energy-efficient. This type of equipment offers big savings in energy and money without compromising performance at all. Get ENERGY STAR windows installed as well, and even consider installing solar panels on your roof.


The materials that you use to build your home can make a big difference. Use eco-friendly materials for everything, including the roof, floors, cabinets, counters, insulation, and just about everything in between. You can use reclaimed lumber and recycled plastic and glass, or you can just go completely natural with bamboo, cork, or linoleum.

There are lots of things that you can do to build a green home, and we are here to help you every step of the way. Contact us today to get started.

Next to your kitchen, your bathroom is one of the most used rooms in your home. This gives you all the more reason to want it just perfect. When it comes to custom home building, you always want to consider your needs first. 


Your focus should always be on functionality. Your bathroom works very hard to please you, which makes it a priority that’s it’s fully functional in every way. Strongly consider this when choosing a toilet, a sink, a tub, and a shower. Think of how you can build these things to your benefit, and how they can make your life a little easier. 


Bathrooms are somewhere that you can go to unwind and relax. On top of being functional, bathrooms are like a sanctuary to de-stress in and wash away all of your cares. Keep this in mind when you choose your colors and your style. Plan for little luxuries and a relaxing motif. 


Sometimes the entire vibe of a bathroom depends on what type of lighting you have. It can directly affect your mood and your appearance in the mirror. The lighting also has to correlate well with the colors of the bathroom. 

Finishing Touches 

The right finishing touches can really make all the difference. Plants and greenery incorporated into your bathroom can do just that. Other touches can include the right towels, shower curtains, wall art, furniture, and more.

Contact us today at Caldwell & Johnson for more information on custom home building and how we can help you to create the bathroom of your dreams. 

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