Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Kitchen Remodel Receives Recognition

BJ Armstrong Custom Homes recently completed an exciting remodel for homeowners in a historic Normal neighborhood.

The remodel, mainly the kitchen, took several weeks of planning to ensure no detail went unnoticed. The homeowners had a vision for their dream kitchen and it was our job to reference that style and translate it into the designs.

All of this planning, hard work and attention to detail paid off. The homeowners were more than ecstatic with their fresh, new kitchen. In fact, they were so impressed with the quality and design of it, that they thought it should be worthy of some national recognition. They proceeded to submit some pictures to the Reader Remodel Contest offered by This Old House Magazine. Their kitchen turned out to be one of the top picks selected by readers and the This Old House Magazine editors!!

Here is a link to the online article:

This Old House Best Kitchen Before and Afters 2011

I must say, this is by far my favorite part of this job. It is very rewarding to see the smile on our client's faces when they walk into their home. A home where they will be creating memories for years to come.

It feels good to be recognized!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Fiber Optic Ceiling

A few days prior to writing this BJ tells me we are going to be putting a fiber optic ceiling into the movie theater addition were working on. Imagine in your room you look up at the ceiling and it looks like there were stars in the sky. After doing some research on this particular system it starts to look interesting. I have seen pictures of these systems before but never knew how they worked or installed. Little did I know drilling 300 little tiny holes into drywall would be fun, than fishing the lights through the drywall which was similar to fishing line. After about an hour of drilling holes in the drywall, a day full of putting the tiny lights in the drywall my part was done……so far. Next comes the drywall finishing, the drywall should be put on as if it were a regular ceiling, which after the mud is put on I need to go through and pick all the strings out(sounds fun!). Now paint, similar to the drywall the paint need to go on than pick the fiber optic lights out. Last, cut the fiber optic lights as close to the drywall as possible. This system can require a lot of work and time but will be worth the wait.

Monday, September 12, 2011

That's Interesting

I have maintained an active real estate license for about 17 years.  I have also been responsible for the design and construction of new homes for about 17 years.  I love my job, really!   There is nothing else on this planet that I can imagine ejoying quite so much.  I had an experience this weekend that reminded me of how fun it is.

We recently completed a new model home at 3540 Tahoe Blvd in Trails on Sunset Lake subdivision, Normal IL.  This is fun because it is like an unveling.  This is a project that we began planning last year.  We planned the floorplan (from scratch because I am tired of seeing the same old stuff all the time), the structural details, the exterior colors, the floor coverings...basically, all of the things that you have to plan to build a new home.

This is the exciting part.  Our first open house was last weekend.  Now, I have a fair amount of experience with open houses, so I do have fun with them.  I must admit, however, that a "first" for a new plan with new ideas, makes me a little nervous.  Our "new" ideas are a little progressive for the Bloomington/Normal real estate market, so for this one, I was a little more nervous than normal. (If you are wondering what "new" looks like you will have to check out the photos.  You can see them here: 3542 Tahoe.)    One of our open housians on Saturday made a comment to her companion "that's interesting." I couldn't help myself, I had to ask, so I said "is interesting good or bad"?  I think she was a little surprised, maybe embarassed, but I was truly curious.  You see, we used tigerwood flooring for the hardwood selection.  It is, sadly, labeled "interesting" in Blo-No.  Actually this open housian liked it, she was simply trying to understand why anyone would still use oak when they could have tigerwood.  I have to agree.

After a long weekend, our traffic was great and the response to our "new" ideas was overwhelmingly positive. I have decided to stop trying "new" things and focus more on the "interesting."  It is way more fun!

PS - I love honest and candid comments at open houses