Make Small Spaces Feel Bigger

If your living area is a little too small for your liking, here are some tricks to fake more space:

  • Plants give lushness and depth to any area. Adding plants throughout your home also holds some pretty cool benefits, such as helping to absorb pollutants and keeping the household air clean
  • Using clear glass or acrylic furniture will make any room feel more open
  • Instead of hanging your curtains directly above the window, use floor-to-ceiling curtains to give the illusion of more height. Or, if you can, forego the curtains altogether
  • Mirrors give the illusion of more space and can brighten up a small room
  • Horizontal stripes (rugs, bedsheets, etc) can help make your rooms feel wider
  • Dark colors tend to absorb light, making a room look smaller. Instead, opt for more neutral colors and soft tones to create the illusion of spaciousness
  • Use a step stool beside your bed instead of a bulky night table
  • Use ottomans instead of a coffee table. It will double as extra seating when you need it
  • Use breezy fabrics like linen to increase the sense of airiness in the room

If these tips aren’t enough to make your space feel as large and open as you’d like, call Snell Construction and let’s talk about a renovation or an addition!

, ,
Deck Out Your Deck

Summer time calls for longer days, warmer nights and amazing outdoor parties. If your deck is the hangout spot in the summer, you want to make sure it’s decorated properly for the occasion.

Image found on

Comfortability is key. Find comfy outdoor furniture with waterproof fabric so your guests will feel at home. Having plenty of pillows will amp up the coziness and adding an outdoor rug will amp it up even more so…and having a hammock is never a bad idea. Make sure you have a table with plenty of space for people to set down their hamburgers and hot dogs! Warm party lights will perfect the night time ambiance, and adding a little fire pit won’t hurt either.

Image found on Pinterest

Add lots of greenery to enhance your outdoor space. Plant a few flower bushes around the outside perimeter of your deck and add some hanging foliage through out. If your space allows and you feel like you need to, cover the sitting area on your deck with a canvas to create the right amount of airy shade.

Image found on

One of our personal favorite ways to take your deck over the top? Outdoor kitchen. Most people consider the kitchen the heart of their home, so why wouldn’t you want to add another one to your deck? Add in a television and a mini fridge and you’ll have no need to go inside!

Image found on

Time to have that perfect backyard barbecue!

Plants that will grow better in your bathroom

Plants can have many different benefits in your home. They purify the air, boost your mood and reduce stress levels. Having plants throughout your home is an awesome idea, and don’t forget about adding a few to your bathroom! This can add a spa-like feel to the space (and who doesn’t want that?) Here are a few plants that will actually grow better in your bathroom.

  • 1.) Orchids – Damp, warm conditions such as your bathroom are a perfect place for orchids to flourish.

Image used from

  • 2.) Blushing Bromeliad – This tropical plant is absolutely gorgeous.

Image used from Pinterest

  • 3.) Tillandsia – The tillandsia plant hardly requires any care at all!

Image used from

  • 4.) Snake Plant – This plant can grow in nearly any condition and will add make a great addition to any bathroom.

Image used from

  • 5.) Heartleaf Philodendron – You can train this plant to vine along a windowsill or shelf. How unique!

Image used from

What to expect when expecting a renovation

If you’ve already chosen your general contractor, you have most likely done so based on their years of knowledge and expertise in the industry, so let them do what they do best so you and your family can start this wonderful new journey. Here are some suggestions on what you can expect during your renovation or addition and how you can help make this process go as smoothly as possible.

1.) Decisions, decisions Your contractor will give you the best options and help you make the best decisions. You will be involved in the decision making process since the renovation is all about you and what you want. Working together as a team will make this process as easy as possible.

2.) Dust in the wind During the renovation process, you can expect dust and debris to flutter through the air. The more you protect your belongings (try putting objects in plastic sealed bins or wrapping them in cloth), the less there will be to clean.

3.) Handle with care Anything fragile should be put away and protected. It’s a good idea to remove all pictures from the walls. Even if you’re only renovating your first floor kitchen, you should still remove anything fragile from the walls on the first floor and second floor as well. There will be a lot of shifting and movement, so better safe than sorry. If this is a big concern for you and you really want to ease your worries, see if a friend or family member can hold your fragile belongings until renovations are completed.

4.) Turn up the volume Noise will be a constant, resulting in little peace or quiet for you. If you’re a fan of a quick mid afternoon nap, it’s probably a good idea to head to a friend’s house and utilize their couch.

5.) Landscape wear and tear Lots of foot traffic and construction vehicles may cause damage to your yard. One option is to move plants from your yard and plant them in a nursery until renovations are complete. If you’re an avid gardener and have any questions or concerns, please voice them to your contractor for help and advice.

6.) Change orders There may be new changes that emerge during your renovations that can cause an increase in costs. A good contractor will talk to you about these changes as they arise and document them to avoid unexpected billing in the mail.

7.) Delays Your contractor will give you a rough estimate of how long your project will take, but you should always prepare for hiccups (order delays, weather delays, etc). Your contractor will do anything and everything in their power to complete your project on schedule, but always anticipate that your renovations may take longer than expected.

8.) Focus on the finish line Living without a completed kitchen or bathroom or whatever it may be that you’re renovating can be painful and stressful. The best advice we can give is to focus on the day that this process is all over, the day your dream home becomes your reality, and it’ll make it that much easier to stick it out. Try to take photos before, during and after your renovation so that if you start to feel overwhelmed mid-reno, you can look back at the before pictures and see just how far you’ve come.

9.) Communication is key We welcome any questions or concerns and will address them promptly. Set up regular meetings with your contractor so that you will have every opportunity to ask questions and give suggestions. Take it upon yourself to inspect the work after any major step in the process so that you may voice any issues before the next major step begins. We are here to help. Not only are we building you a new part of your home, we are also building relationships that we hope will last a lifetime.

10.) Expect a party Once the renovation process is complete, expect to plan a party to show everyone your amazing new home. It’ll be a gratifying experience and you will realize that all was worth it.

Keep your home safe while you’re on vacation!

It’s vacation season!

– Ask a friend to check on your home: Ask your neighbor or friend to drive or walk by your home once every day or so and check on your place. If you have pets, give someone a key to keep while you’re gone so they can feed your cat or walk your dog. Be sure to repay them for their help by leaving some irresistible snacks in the cabinet for them to enjoy.

– Keep social media posts private: We know how tempting it is to post lavish beach pictures and make everyone jealous (we all do it), but try to think before doing so. Facebook does let you control who can and can not see your posts to a certain extent, but sometimes your post reach is larger than you think and may possibly reach someone you don’t know. Your best bet is to wait until you’re home safe and sound to post that picture of your margarita in the sand.

– Unplug appliances: Unplug your television, computer, toaster oven and other appliances to protect them from power surges. This will help you save power as well as many appliances still draw energy even when turned off.

– Remove spare key from under your mat: If a criminal is somehow able to figure out that you’ve gone on vacation, it’s likely that they’ll start checking your porch for a spare key, so be sure to remove it before you leave.

– Store valuables securely: Keep valuables out of view from your windows and away from peeping toms. Having a locked safe is a great way to do this. Store all your valuables inside it and keep it hidden under your bed while you’re away.

– Consider a light switch timer: A light switch timer will turn your lights on and off according to a programmed schedule, and if a criminal is keeping an eye on your house, they will assume someone is home flipping the light switch.

– Invest in a home security system: With many different options to choose from, a home security system is an added level of protection. You can even keep an eye on your home right from your phone!

Preparing for the first night in your new home

The first night in your new home can be a stressful and exciting moment. It can be tough to figure out what you need to bring with you and it’s much easier if you have a game plan. The biggest tip we can give you is to pack all your first night essentials into an overnight bag. Some items will include toothbrushes, toothpaste, toiletries, medications, chargers for your electronics, some clothing/pajamas/underwear, and a first aid kit.

If most of your boxes are going to take a couple days to arrive, pack one box to take to your new home along with your overnight bag. Be sure to include snacks, sheets, pillows, water bottles, bath towels, bedding, toilet paper, paper plates, plastic utensils, batteries and a flashlight. If you have kids and/or pets, be sure to pack the essentials for them. Think diapers, wipes, toys, pet food, water dishes, leashes, poop bags/litter box etc. Also be sure to bring a few board games so you can enjoy some quality time together before you get back to the every day hustle and bustle.

Once you arrive at your new home, unpack only what you will need for the first night. Everything else can wait. Then, pop some bubbly and order takeout. Your first night in your new home calls for a celebration.

Choosing your Custom Design

When working with a custom builder, there are a lot of questions you have to ask yourself before you start working on designs. Here are three questions to get your imagination flowing and to make the process a bit easier.

What qualities of your current home do you like the most?Think of all the qualities of your current home that you want to reflect into your custom built home. Do you enjoy how much storage you have in your current home? Make sure to keep that quality in your new custom built home. Can’t imagine yourself without your mudroom? Make sure to keep a designated mudroom in your new space.

Where do you spend the most time? For example, if your family spends a majority of time in the living room, put some extra thought into designing that area. If you spend a lot of time in the kitchen but feel that your current kitchen is too small, think about creating a larger, more accommodating kitchen space. If you and your family are always fighting over the bathroom, think about adding another custom built bathroom into your new space.

Open or closed concept floor plan? If you are thinking of an open concept floor plan, knock out as many doors and walls as possible to allow your family to feel together, even when in separate rooms. Open floor plans are great for entertaining. If you decide to go with a closed concept floor plan, you will have dedicated spaces for each different room, allowing for more privacy. *Make sure to check out our in depth blog on open vs closed floor plans here.

Be sure to talk to your family about what they’re looking for in your custom built home to get a better idea of the game plan, and then call us at Snell Construction to help make your dream a reality.

How Interior Paint Colors Affect Your Mood

Blue This color will clear your mind and help you feel calm and relaxed. Be sure to stick to light, warm shades of blue as pastel blues can make the room feel cold. Best used in bedrooms, offices and bathrooms.

Purple The historical color of royalty. Deep purples are sophisticated, romantic and luxurious. Best used in bedrooms and dining rooms.

Green Green will reduce anxiety and is known to help clear your mind. Plus, it’s one of the easiest colors on the eyes. Best used in bedrooms, bathrooms, offices and living rooms.

Red Red is the most intense color and is known to help stir up conversation and excitement. Best used in dining rooms and living rooms.

White White will make your home feel more spacious and open and give a feeling of purity and cleanliness. Can be used in any room of your choice but is especially popular in the kitchen as it gives off a more modern feel.

These are just a few of many paint color options. Research some other colors and start to get acquainted with paint!

Work from home…in style!

Having a home office can be extremely convenient. Whether you work from home full time, commute to work all week and occasionally have to bring some paper work home with you to execute over the weekend or sit in the home office once a month just to pay bills, you’ll want to keep the space as organized and stimulating as possible. Snell Construction is here to help you with ways to create a happy and productive home work space!

Not only do you want your brain to stay energized, you want to keep your senses invigorated as well. Place some candles or essential oil diffusors around your office to help keep you motivated. Peppermint scents are extremely refreshing, citrus scents will uplift and destress and cinnamon scents are known to help improve your focus.

Optimizing your lighting will reduce eye strain that comes from trying to read in low light. If your home office isn’t in a well lit area, adding some bright white bulbs will make a huge difference.

Keeping your space organized is essential. Shelving and lots of storage will help keep everything in its place. No more stressing over where you put this paper or where that file went. Designate a shelf or a drawer for each particular item and you’ll be orderly and efficient.

During one home renovation, we added French doors to the home office. This is a great way to make the space feel open, yet private at the same time. You can close the doors to keep the noise out, but the windowed view will still allow you to keep an eye on what’s going on elsewhere.

Adding motivational artwork throughout your home office space can do just that…motivate you! Do some online shopping and find a piece of artwork with a message that speaks to you. Our personal favorite…”Remember why you started.” If you’re having a down day and are starting to feel discouraged, these motivational messages can help you get back on your feet and back to the grind.

Let Snell Construction buckle down and get to work on creating your home office so you can buckle down and get to work…from home!

“What a difference…”

What a difference the new roof and the wood work has made. Plus, it looks fantastic!

—Ed & Mary, Wayland MA