Joe’s Blog

Category Archive for "Aged Home Upgrades"

What do we do with the big corner tub in the master?

When remodeling master bathrooms I have discovered a common theme; we are addressing repeatedly: what to do with the big soaker tub? For a while in the 70s and 80s, builders got the idea that a corner soaker tub would be just the ticket to create a spa-like feel in every master bedroom. Nothing could...

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My Mother is moving in, now what?

I often see trends in my practice. A recurrent one, and one worthy of talking about, is multigenerational living. Grandma “Tuni” As a kid, I recall my Grandma Fortune Levitch moving in for some rehabilitation of yet another hip replacement. After eons of being wheelchair bound, she was a pioneer in hip replacement techniques and materials. She...

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Laundry Chutes Anyone?

I love laundry chutes. I’m not entirely sure why, I did not have one in my childhood home. Perhaps it is the efficiency factor. Whenever I am involved in a remodeling project that has the laundry below the living space, I look for an opportunity to “shoot” the laundry down the chute. We have to...

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Curbless, Barrier Free Showers in Turmoil

“Curbless Showers” AKA “Barrier Free Showers” or “Zero Entry Showers” or “Freedom Showers”, are a hot topic in Idaho right now. It all started when the Idaho association of building officials realized that every municipality is handling them differently. Some allow curbless showers and others forbid them. I have written about them in the past...

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Aged home interior makeover

The Challenge: This home was built in 1955 it had good bones. The kitchen had been remodeled by a previous owner and half of the garage had been converted into a den/laundry room. The clients wanted to open up the kitchen, add another bathroom, and make the home flow better. The Idea: reshape the kitchen,...

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There Are Riches Hidden in Your Home

I have discovered a secret few people understand about their homes and affording remodeling projects. The wealthy are not the only ones remodeling these days. Not everyone “thinks they have” the financial resources to afford a remodeling project they desperately want/need. I’ve got some good news for you. Odds are good that through clever design...

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What’s a Plumbing Trap ?

All plumbing fixtures have some sort of trap, otherwise they will permit foul odors to return back into the home. Traps are what made indoor plumbing possible. In order for water to move through your drain side of the plumbing system toward the sewage treatment plant, air is  needed. This is why you’ll see pipes...

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Let’s Play “Stump the Plumber”

I love to play “stump the plumber”.  There are a gazillion things that have been made over the years for solving plumbing problems. My specialty is working on vintage homes and we see some real Rube Goldberg esk contraptions in some homes. In some of the homes, indoor plumbing was a newfangled thing. The odds...

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Residential Electrical Switchology

I often refer to electrical switchology in my description of work, and I realized it is a word that I invented. It refers to the study of electrical switching. In a home that Levco remodels, it is a big deal. As mentioned in my pet peeves blog, having switches in unintuitive locations is on the short...

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Curbless Showers in Boise

After taking my UDCP training through NARI, I realized that curbless showers were going to be a great addition for anyone and everyone who wanted us to remodel their bathroom. Reflecting on my past experience, I recall having a plumbing inspector refuse to allow us to create one and citing a plumbing code that prohibited...

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