7 Maintenance Tips for Fall

Texas Fall

Fall is in full force here in North Texas! As the weather starts to cool down it is the perfect time to get things done around the house before the winter weather hits. We want to make sure that our home owners are prepared for it by sharing some tips that will help keep each home running as it should.

1. Check your fireplace.

Wood burning and gas fireplaces are commonly used during the winter. Make sure that you do a visual inspection of your fireplace to assure that it is in good working order. We also recommend doing a test run during the fall, before it gets too cold, to make sure that it works properly and will keep you warm during the winter.

2. Clean your water heater.

Cleaning your water heater is simple and easy! You can clean it by draining it, allowing all of the water to come out. This gets rid of any build up and will prevent it from building up during the winter. It is recommended to clean it every 1-3 years, but because it is so easy it does not hurt cleaning it every year! Follow these links for a step by step how to on draining your water heater.

How to Flush Your Hot Water Heater

How To Clean and Flush a Water Heater

3. Clean your heating and air conditioning.

We recommend having your air conditioning and heating units cleaned twice a year, during spring and fall. This will help your family stay healthy and increase the life of your units. Getting it professionally cleaned is inexpensive and takes a short amount of time.

4. Check your roof.

When checking your home for maintenance, it is important to start from the bottom up. Take a look at your roof, starting on the ground, and see if there are any missing shingles or holes in the roof. And of course make sure that your gutters are clear of leaves and debris!

5. Check windows and doors.

Check all windows and doors to make sure that there are no cracks, leaks or air coming through the window sills or door frames. This is the easiest way to save on winter energy bills and keep your house nice and warm during winter.

6. Protect your hose.

To keep your hose from cracking, freezing and getting destroyed by the colder temperatures, make sure you completely empty and disconnect the hose from the spigot. If you choose, you can also bring the hose inside to keep it in pristine condition.

7. Clean out the garage.

Lastly, make sure that all unused gas in any equipment (lawn mowers, leaf blowers, edgers, etc) is removed and stored properly. This is something that can be easily forgotten, but by allowing the gas to sit in the fuel tanks, sediment can occur in the tank and potentially ruin it. Since it will not be used for months, fall is the best time to do this.


We hope that you have learned something new from these tips. Enjoy the brisk fall weather and stay warm this winter!

Seasonal Allergies? There’s Hope.

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Your Seasonal Allergies Checklist

Suffering from seasonal allergies? You definitely aren’t alone. Spring and fall are beautiful. But if you have hay fever, all the pollen in the air can make you want to stay inside until you can go out without the sneezing, runny nose, and itchiness in your nose, throat, and eyes.

Even when the pollen count is high, you can still take steps to curb the symptoms of your seasonal allergies.

Start with these nine simple tips we found on WebMD.

1. Go shoeless at home.

After you’ve been outside, take your shoes off at the door so you track less pollen in. Got a dog? Wipe down his coat before he comes inside, too, because those allergens cling to fur.

2. Wash your hair before bed.

That way, pollen that collected on your ‘do during the day won’t rub off on your pillow.

3. Close up.

The fresh air feels great. But it carries in the sneezy, yellow stuff you’re trying to avoid. So close windows and outside doors, especially on high-pollen days, and turn on the heat or the air-conditioning.

4. “Recirculate” in the car.

Keep the windows and sunroofs closed, and recirculate the air instead of using the vent, which lets in pollen. Use the air conditioner and adjust the temperature to your comfort.

5. Switch out filters in your furnace and air conditioner.

Change them as often as the maker recommends, or more often if it seems to help.

6. Adjust your indoor humidity level.

If spores from mold cause your allergies, aim for a humidity level of less than 60%. Consider buying a digital thermometer with a humidity gauge, available for about $20 or less.

You may need a dehumidifier to get a level lower than 50%. Set it up on the main living level of your home if it’s got more than one story.

7. Check the pollen count and plan your day accordingly.

You’ll probably hear it on your forecast. Or you can check the website of the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology’s National Allergy Bureau. You can sign up to get daily emails with that info, too.

the predicted pollen count is high, try to plan your schedule around it. Delay errands and outdoor exercise until later in the day if possible, when pollen counts are often lower. Wear sunglasses, which can help keep the yellow stuff out of your eyes.

Pollen counts are usually highest between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.

Weather conditions also play a role. Pollen sticks around in moderate temperatures with low humidity and a gentle breeze. Rain washes it away.

The wind carries pollen, so a still day will usually have lower airborne levels.

8. Manage your plants.

If you know the exact tree, grass, and weed pollens that affect you, you can try to remove them and replant types that you don’t react to. But it’s not a perfect fix, because airborne pollens can travel hundreds of miles from where they came from.

If you can get someone else to mow the lawn or hire it out, do so. It stirs up pollens. And don’t sit outdoors around freshly cut grass.

9. Dry your clothes inside.

Pollen can collect easily on clothing or bed linens left outside.

Hopefully these ideas help reduce your allergy troubles this spring. They are worth a shot, at least!


New Year’s Eve Fun Facts


As you are preparing for your NYE festivities, we thought we’d share some fun facts through numbers about New Year’s Eve that were compiled from a study conducted by WalletHub.com.

    • About 83 percent of Americans spend less than $200 on NYE celebrations.
    • The average cost for a couple to enjoy dinner and a show in New York on NYE is $1,160 or more.
    • About 48 percent of Americans plan to celebrate NYE at home, about 20 percent plan to celebrate at a friend’s house and about 22 percent don’t plan to celebrate at all.
    • About 30 percent of American fall asleep before midnight on NYE.
    • About 20 percent of all charitable donations are made in the final 48 hours of the year.
    • About 61 percent of Americans say a prayer on New Year’s Eve.
    • The most popular NYE destinations are Orlando, Florida; New York City, New York; and Honolulu, Hawaii.
    • More than 100.5 million people will travel at least 30 miles from home for New Year’s.
    • More than one million people attend the NYE celebration in Times Square of New York City.
    • 175 million people in U.S. watch the ball drop on television; more than one billion worldwide.
    • One ton of confetti is dropped in Time Square on NYE.
    • There will be 360 million glasses of sparkling wine consumed on NYE.

We hope you have a fabulous New Year’s Eve and a happy and prosperous 2017. Be safe out there!

New Year’s Resolutions 101


As the dawn of 2017 is upon us, it is time to start making those annual new year’s resolutions we tend to make at the start of each new year.

But if you’re having trouble deciding what to select as a New Year’s resolution, an article by Daring to Live Fully entitled “29 New Year’s Resolutions Ideas” includes a range of resolution ideas ranging from simple to more involved.

Some of these ideas include: Learn something new each day, pick up a hobby, write a business plan, read more books, spend more time in nature, start doing planks every day (core strengthening), become more confident, keep a journal, travel, volunteer and much more.

Once you’ve picked that resolution it can be difficult to stick with it, in fact, about half of American will make a resolution but only about eight percent will actually succeed in meeting their goals.

A study done by WalletHub showed that 49 percent of people will make weight loss/more exercise resolutions, 33 percent financial resolutions, 26 percent education/career goal resolutions and 16 percent habit changing (stop smoking, drink less) resolutions.

According to psychology professor Peter Herman – in an article Psychology Today – one reason behind failure to achieve is what they’ve identified as “false hope syndrome.”

“Which means their resolution is significantly unrealistic and out of alignment with their internal view of themselves,” the article states. “When you make positive affirmations about yourself that you don’t really believe, the positive affirmations not only don’t work, they can be damaging to your self-worth.”

So here are some helpful tips from Psychology Today on making your resolutions a success.

1. Focus on one resolution, rather than several, and set realistic, specific goals. Losing weight is not a specific goal. Losing 10 pounds in 90 days would be.

2. Take small steps. Many people quit because the goal is too big requiring too much effort and action all at once.

3. Have an accountability buddy. Someone who can help you on your journey.

4. Celebrate your success between milestones and don’t wait until the end result.

5. Focus on the present. Something you can achieve today towards your goal.

6. Focus on new behaviors and thought patterns.

7. Be mindful. Become physically, emotionally and mentally aware of your inner state as each external event happens, rather than living in the past or future.

8. Don’t take yourself so seriously.

“Have fun and laugh at yourself when you slip, but don’t let the slip hold you back from working at your goal,” the article states.

Good luck making (and sticking to) those new year’s resolutions for 2017!

Thanksgiving Traditions


Traditions are what Thanksgiving is all about. Source

With Thanksgiving upon us, we scoured the web to come up with a few fun Thanksgiving Traditions we thought would be fun to give a try. Here’s what we came up with:

  1. Take time for yourself to reflect and meditate before spending time with the family.
  2. Start the day with an indulgent and relaxing breakfast.
  3. Watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in the morning.
  4. Make sure to include family recipes in the dinner, and explain the history and significance of the dishes to those who may not know.
  5. Have a butcher paper tablecloth as part of your spread and have everyone cover it with their thanks.
  6. Have a Thanksgiving book of thanks and have your guests write their thanks inside each year.
  7. Stay connected with family members far away by doing a video call during the dinner and/or for the giving thanks portion of the evening.
  8. Let everyone make a toast at the dinner, even the littles!
  9. Take a long walk together after dinner and before dessert.
  10. Have the kids serve dessert.
  11. Clean up the kitchen and dining room together as a family so no one has to do it all alone.
  12. Play a game together as a family after all the food is eaten and the kitchen cleaned up.

What are your Thanksgiving day traditions? What traditions have you kept from your own upbringing? What traditions have you started? We hope you have the happiest of Thanksgivings, surrounded by those you love most.



Just a friendly reminder to make sure to take a break from your duties today to go #VOTE! We are so grateful for this country and for the freedoms we enjoy, which includes this right to vote. No matter your political leanings, please get out there to make your voice heard.

Here are a few suggestions on the best way to to vote today:

Find out if you’re eligible to vote:

The first question you should ask yourself before heading to the polls: Can I vote?

There are at least 4 requirements you need to follow in order to vote:

  1. You have to be a U.S. citizen
  2. You have to meet your state’s residency requirements
  3. You must be 18 years or older on Election Day
  4. You must register to vote by your state’s voter registration deadline

To find out if you’re registered, go online and click on “check your registration info,” select your state and plug in the required information. If the site can’t find any matches based on your information, contact your local board of elections.

Where to vote on Election Day:

Polling locations are assigned according to your residential address. If you’ve moved recently, you may want to double check that the address change has been updated on your voter registration.

To find out your assigned polling place, check online through USA.gov or through local officials.

Through the Voting Info Project website, residents are able to plug in their registered voting address in a search bar to determine the location and hours of their assigned polling location.

When to vote on Election Day:

The opening and closing times of polling places vary from state to state.

Polls in most areas open at either 6 a.m. or 7 a.m., while poll closing times range from 6 p.m. to as late as 9 p.m. local time.

Check the polling place hours in your home state to make sure you’re in line in time.

How to vote:

Once you know you assigned polling location, what time it’s open, and whether you’re registered to vote, you’re ready to head to the polls, but before you walk out the door, make sure you have proper identification.

Go online to see voter ID requirements by state.

At your polling station, there will be poll workers to assist you with the process. They will direct you to the check-in counters and point out which booth to enter once you’re checked in.

Do some research ahead of time. Vote.org can give you a peek at your ballot so you know what to expect before you go behind the curtain.

Get out there and make a difference today!



Welcome to our blog. We are a family-owned and operated custom home builder in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. We have been in business since 2004 and are passionate about building our buyers the home of their dreams.

We are starting this blog to provide design inspiration, home maintenance tips, and anything else we find interesting or timely. If you have feedback of things you would like to know more about or see more of, please don’t hesitate to leave us a comment letting us know. Happy home ownership!