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Bricks and Construction in Minneapolis, 20 Feb 2015
20 Feb 2015

With over a month spent on how different types of siding affect construction in Minneapolis, as well as the value of your home, you would think that we were just about finished. The fact of the matter: We are. From the wonders of composite siding to the issues regarding vinyl, we have talked about every type of exterior wall there is… except one. We have saved the most distinctive siding material to the very end, the one which people instantly look at for some great aesthetic appeal. Of course, we refer to brick and masonry.

Some Wonderful Benefits

The very first thing people notice about brick is its look. Brick has a most distinct aesthetic which is appealing to a wide number of people. There’s just something about red brick which makes a house instantly appealing. But brick has more advantages than just visual appeal. Brick is also quite strong. It is actually the strongest of the siding materials, to be exact. It is fireproof, moisture-proof, and requires no painting. In short, you put it down, you mortar properly, and you never have to touch it again. Brick is also quite effective at holding back temperatures of all kinds, meaning that your home will be toasty warm in the frigid Minnesota winters. From a construction in Minneapolis aspect, brick is a quality material in that it supports the weight of a house most easily, making it easy to work with.

A Few Troubling Deficiencies

Brick is not perfect, however. For starters, you cannot replace siding with it unless you want to get rid of the whole wall. Couple that with the fact that you need an expert mason rather than a standard contractor and you are looking at some hefty installation prices. In addition, it might support the ceiling well enough, but it also puts a lot of strain on your foundation.

But the real problems when it comes to building with brick are in the substance itself. Brick is a porous material unlike wood, composite, or even vinyl. This means that not only does it allow radon inside the house in greater quantities, but it is also susceptible to damage from vines and moisture. Mold can start growing which you need to periodically check for. Replacing damaged bricks also entail the replacement of that entire section of wall, once again making it costly.

Count on Coty

But the appeal of brick is understandable and everybody loves it. It is timeless, easy to work with, and a great option for construction in Minneapolis. If you want to find out more information on bricklaying and how to take care of it, feel free to contact Coty Construction or check out our eBook, which should have all the information you are looking for.

Making Smart Choices for Winter Roofing in Minneapolis, 18 Feb 2015
18 Feb 2015

All this bad winter weather going on on the Atlantic coast got us thinking about our own weather situation. Minnesota annually gets some terrific snowfall which surely wreaks havoc on roofing in Minneapolis. So we wanted to look into how custom homeowners should be able to combat this problem and make the most out of their roof against the snow and ice. During our research, we actually came across this Forbes article which addresses specifically this problem and boy, did it make a lot of sense. Let’s look into what they said.

Don’t be Too Complex

Their first tip was use a simple gable. Now, a gable, in layman’s terms, is the point from which a roof declines. If roofing is an arrow, the gable is the arrowhead. But when you build a house with seven gables, you wind up taking away from its overall stability. Ice dams will form much easier. So if you want to avoid that, go with just a single gable. They are in style, anyways.

Avoid Skylights

Openings in the roof apply to two things: holes and leaks, obviously; and skylights. Roofing in Minneapolis should not use skylights as these also weaken the integrity of the roof. Many disasters have occurred because snow shatters a skylight and floods the house. Instead, use large windows along the sides to bring in sunlight, as these are more easily protected against the rigors of the Minnesota winter.

Keep Obstacles Out of the Way

Most houses nowadays have a chimney. Chimneys lead to fireplaces, which provide a tremendous amount of warmth and class to a room. But if a chimney is located near the edge or in the middle of a roof, that causes yet another impediment against snow rolling off of the side. Of course, this contributes the formation of ice dams. If you want to avoid this, instead position the chimney at the highest point, along the ridge. This will limit obstacles and make it easier to shovel the roof clean.

Know Your Materials

Roofing in Minneapolis usually comes in basic asphalt. However, asphalt is not a good material to use to prevent ice dams from forming. Leaks will happen almost every season if you use asphalt shingles. Instead, look to some of the alternative materials. Wood shingles do a great job of managing snow. But the best material is easily metal, which is turning into a more popular roof type as folks look for easier ways to keep their roofs clear. It is also a recyclable resource, making it great for environmentally aware homeowners.

Count on Coty

Here at Coty Construction, we have a great deal of experience handling and installing metal roofing in Minneapolis. We want to help you make the transition easily and at an affordable cost. Contact us for more information.

An Introduction to Green Construction in Minneapolis, 16 Feb 2015
16 Feb 2015

Our post about wood shingles and wood siding last week got us thinking: There is a lot more to be said about energy efficient construction in Minneapolis than just what materials you use. There is a massive demand for extra care to be taken when it comes to energy efficiency and people love hearing about how homes and buildings are set up in ways that are friendly to the environment. So, because we are always looking for ways to help people save money on their home while also being friendly to our Minnesota environment, we are starting this series on green building techniques.

Green Building is King Here

Energy efficiency is one of the key issues with many Americans these days. Where it was once something of an ambiguous topic, now people are looking for better ways to build homes without it impacting their environment badly. This focus is especially evident in in Minneapolis construction projects. According to the Minnesota Center for Energy and Environment, “more than 10,000 businesses and 50,000 Minnesota families” have adopted energy efficient techniques on a personal level to help lower their energy bills.

Why We Should be Green (From a Building Point of View)

But there is still so much more to be done! Yes, recycling helps tremendously. But we can’t just be content with setting out bins full of plastic and cardboard every few weeks. We also need to adopt new techniques with how we approach construction in Minneapolis. Many programs are out there right now which provide the tools and drive we, as contractors, need to clean up our buildings and make them limit their carbon footprint even more.

The LEED Program.For starters, there is the LEED program. The LEED program is run by the U.S. Green Building Council, an agency under the jurisdiction of the Department of Energy. When a contractor or architect applies for the program, the DoE sends an agent down to the site to closely observe everything going on at the site. Nothing is left unobserved—even the trucks are looked at to determine how much gas they used to transport materials, what kind of gas they use, and their impact on the environment.

When the building is complete, the agent presents a scorecard to the building owner’s telling them how impactful their project has been on the environment. There are three different levels: Bronze, Silver, and Gold. It is a tremendous achievement to be given even the Bronze certification for Minneapolis construction. These are techniques which could prove hugely beneficial to the Minneapolis homeowner.

Count on Coty

This is why we are starting this series here on our blog. We want to know more about how to be cleaner and we want to help you feel cleaner as well. Contact Coty to find out more information about our techniques and the materials we use. We are more than happy to answer your questions.

Fiber-Cement: Best Material for Construction in Minneapolis, 13 Feb 2015
13 Feb 2015

Over the past few weeks, we have been talking about different materials and how they can help you put up your dream home. But construction in Minneapolis, for the most part, is hampered by the difficult winters we endure up here and the effect the elements have against certain types of roofs and siding. Asphalt shingles, we all know, do not last very long up here. Neither does vinyl siding. In fact, there are only a few materials which actually work for years upon years despite the heavy snow. The siding we are talking about today is one of those and it truly stands as possibly the best siding material you can use in Minnesota.

Many Benefits for You and the Building

Fiber-cement siding is a relatively new material, in use only for the past twenty years or so. However, it is possibly one of the greatest things to be invented in the construction industry since the bulldozer. Fiber-cement siding, to put it simply, takes the best of all your classic siding materials, such as wood which we have discussed already, and puts them together into a seamless unit which is appealing to the eye. It possesses the durability of masonry with the classic look of wood, making it an outstanding material to be used during construction in Minneapolis. It is fireproof, termite-proof, and rot-proof. It doesn’t weigh a great deal and can be painted over easily like vinyl. It maintains a nice aesthetic to your custom home. Even better, especially for Minnesotans, it is quite effective at thermoregulation so you never feel any temperature extremes.

The benefits don’t end there, however. Oh no—just because it carries a tremendous number of benefits doesn’t mean that it has a tremendous price tag. Fiber-cement is almost as cheap as vinyl, making it one of the best deals on siding you could possibly ask for. This is possibly primarily for two reasons: First, it is as easy to install as wood or vinyl; and second, it requires only four ingredients to make: water, wood fiber, Portland cement, and fly ash.

Is There Anything Bad to Say?

So what are the disadvantages? Of course, there are a few. Labor is going to be your biggest cost because fiber-cement is brittle and can break fairly easily. Because it requires specialized knowledge for proper installation and sealing, you do need to hire a professional who knows what they are doing regarding construction in Minneapolis. Fiber-cement can also dry out if it is left unsealed, so you need to keep an eye out for bubbling or decay as the years go by.

Count on Coty

But if you are building a custom home, you couldn’t ask for a better material. Coty Construction is quite knowledgeable with many of these materials, including fiber-cement, and are more than happy to answer any of your questions. Contact us to find out more.