Category Archives: Lifestyle

New Research Says Homes Need More Sunlight

A healthy traditional sunroom

Are Today’s Homes Bright Enough?
According to new research, they’re not. Psychologist Kenneth Wright and a team of scientists from the University of Colorado, Boulder recently discovered today’s homes don’t include enough sunlight to kickstart the body’s clock. Combined with too much artificial light at night preventing sleep, these scientists argue designers simply don’t respect that humans are light-sensitive animals. Continue reading New Research Says Homes Need More Sunlight

8 Timeless Rules of Affordable Building

An affordable kit home from Sears & Roebuck, circa 1920s.

Today’s regulations, combined with consumer culture make affordable building more difficult than ever. Not only do codes require expensive construction (for noble reasons like safety and energy efficiency). Homeowners consider luxuries standard amenities. “The new refrigerator isn’t wifi enabled – what’s wrong with you?” Continue reading 8 Timeless Rules of Affordable Building

The Not So Clean Home

Kids love dirt. Adults should too!

Can Homes be too Clean for Health?
Yes, a growing body of evidence suggests hyper-clean homes aren’t always healthy. Not only are today’s homes dirt free, energy codes encourage tight building, effectively sealing the environment like Tupperware. Together these trends reveal Westerners live in sterile bubbles. Yet the research is clear, this lifestyle choice is causing a public health crisis. Continue reading The Not So Clean Home

Review: Home Improvements for the Busy & Broke

home-improvement-projectsHome Improvement Projects for the Busy & Broke: How To Get Your $h!t Together and Live Like An Adult, is a book geared towards the young professional finally living in that first apartment or house. If you don’t mind the occasional swearing for emphasis, the text is entertaining and edgy. A writing style undoubtedly appealing to millennials who read sentences between texts and tweets. Chapters begin with the basics of how to live like an adult: Stop partying every night, get motivated, make your bed and clean your room. Advice my teenagers hear daily, usually at high volume. Apparently many kids don’t. Continue reading Review: Home Improvements for the Busy & Broke

Is Self Contracting Reasonable?

Do you know what a good framing job looks like?
Framing under way for a new home.

What is Self Contracting?
Self contracting is the audacious idea that homeowners can manage their own construction projects. By eliminating the general contractor (GC), homeowners accept responsibility for hiring subcontractors, ordering materials, permits and warranty issues – in hopes of big cost savings.

Several popular books on the subject fan the flames, claiming homeowners can save between 25% and 42% while achieving a better project. Are these claims true? Can self contracting dramatically increase both savings and quality? Continue reading Is Self Contracting Reasonable?

Review: SoulSpace

soulspaceWith a name like, SoulSpace: Transform Your Home, Transform Your Life, written by a Los Angeles based interior designer. I naturally assumed this text was “new age” babble. I was wrong. Nor is it your typical photo filled portfolio showcasing the latest, soon to be forgotten, trends. Don’t expect a single image, not one. When opening this cover, you’ll find a refreshing alternative to the consumer oriented interior design industry. A book that’s as much self-help guide as design manual.  Continue reading Review: SoulSpace