The Manuel Builders Blog

 


How long before I need to touch up stain or sealer on exterior wood products?

Categories: FAQs, Maintenance | Posted: January 19, 2017

Exterior features such as posts and exterior doors should be re-stained or resealed every 6-12 months.

Tips to remember before re-staining or resealing your exterior wood features.

  • Clean exterior of doors and posts with a damp cloth then come back with a dry cloth to remove any dust and dirt that has accumulated on the surfaces.
  •  If you have glass panes on your doors, be sure to use tape around the edges to protect the glass from the stain or sealer. Blue painters tape is a good tape to use with easy removal. Once you have completed the finish, remove the tape immediately.
  • Do not use razor blades or sharp objects to clean the glass or to remove the tape. These items will scratch the glass.

If the front of your home receives a lot of sun exposure, facing the east or west, the exterior wood features may need to be examined more frequently due to fading from the direct sunlight.

Any changes to the characteristics of your exterior doors and posts are perfectly normal, only reflecting the natural aging process of the wood elements and should not be considered as defects.

 

5 Tips for the First Time Holiday Host

Categories: Lifestyle | Posted: December 20, 2016

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What better way to break in your brand new Manuel Builders home than by inviting your friends and family over to celebrate the season with a wonderful holiday meal?  Now, we know what is going through your head right, but there is no need to panic!  We have five simple tips to keep in mind that will make your first Christmas host experience go off without a hitch.

 

Don’t Attempt to Fly Solo

Every big holiday meal is a group effort and the best ones have multiple people contributing to the success of the event.  So maximize your resources and delegate!  As the host, you will want to take care of the turkey and gravy or whatever your main course may be, but appetizers, sides, and beverages can be brought by others. When everyone pitches in, it takes stress off of you and gives you more time to focus on what’s really important.

Begin Your Food Prep Early

While you may think that the best holiday meal is one that is made fresh the day of, there is something to be said for starting a couple of days in advance.  Items like casseroles, cranberry sauce, and pies can be made a couple of days in advance and still taste amazing on Christmas Day.  In fact, it may even be a good idea to cook the turkey the day before as well!  No one will tell the difference, we promise. By taking these early preparation steps, you will really cut down on your stress.

 

Begin Your Non-Food Prep Early Too

Not only can you get some of the food out the way early, but there are other details that can be done in advance so you won’t have to worry about them on the day of the event.  Table cloths can be ironed, china can be washed, and extra supplies can be bought.  You will want to do this early so you can focus on the food closer to the big day. Don’t forget about the fun too! Fill your home with festivity by adding those staple decorations like a wreath, garland, bows, tinsel, lights, candles and more.

Master To-Do List

Be organized and start early!  Write down all the tasks that need to be accomplished and set aside times to do them.  Crossing things off the list will give you a huge sense of satisfaction and you will feel less stressed if you can see tasks being accomplished.

Have Fun with It

We completely understand that hosting Christmas lunch or dinner can be quite the undertaking and can stress the host out.  But remember that the holidays are meant to be enjoyed with those you love.  Put some music on, grab a tiny helper, and have a little fun!

 


 

Why is my sheetrock cracking?

Categories: FAQs | Posted: December 14, 2016

As you settle into your brand new home, the walls around you will be settling too. You may begin to see thin cracks form on your walls and above door frames. Rest assured that these changes are completely normal in a new build.

Sheetrock cracks are caused by the expansion and contraction of a new home. When lumber is delivered, it needs to acclimate to the temperature of your home. Nail pops and sheetrock cracks will appear as your home is settling.

If you have any questions or concerns about your Manuel Builders home, please call our office to speak to one of our Service Team Members. 337-981-5315

 

How to Prepare for the First Freeze in Louisiana

Categories: Home Safety, Maintenance | Posted: December 8, 2016

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Here in the south, our winter season is quite different from northern states where there are blizzards and a lot of snow. The southern states might get an inch or two of snow every now and then, or maybe freezing temperatures, but we do not have to stock up on groceries every winter!  It is still very important to know helpful tips to prepare you and your household if there might be a cold front or a chance of snow in the upcoming winter months!

 

Check on your heater

It is very important before the winter months to get your heater checked before use.  Inspection of your heater system can ensure that it is clean, in good condition, and does not leak carbon monoxide.  For you as the homeowner, this means assurance that the heater system is in tip-top shape and savings on your energy bill.

 

Make sure there is no damage to your roof

Take notice of any damages, such as loose or missing shingles, that would compromise the insulation of your house.  Not replacing or repairing them can lead to higher energy bills and openings for little critters to get into your warm home.

 

Turn off outside faucets and hoses

Water in pipes can freeze if left on during the winter months.  If you do not own frost-proof faucets, begin to disconnect your hoses and cover the faucet with an insulated covering.

 

Seal exterior windows and doors

Inspect your windows and doors for any drafts or openings before the winter season arrives.  Use weather-stripping for your doors and use caulk to seal your windows.  The benefit for sealing crevices is to maximize on energy savings by preventing cold drafts that might come in.

 

Cover or protect outdoor potted plants

Don’t lose your potted plants to an overnight freeze!  If you have the space, bring the plants into a garage or outdoor shop where they can be removed from outdoor freezing temperatures.  If they cannot be moved, cover them so the freezing winds combined with the humidity do not cut the lifespan of the plant short.

 

With these tips, you can expect to have a warm, cozy winter with your family and friends!

Why do some rooms feel hotter or colder than others?

Categories: FAQs, Maintenance | Posted: November 23, 2016

 

If you’re feeling a drastic temperature change from room to room, this means the damper in the A/C needs to be balanced. This situation requires help from your warranty team or HVAC subcontractor.

 

thermostatPlease note that it is recommended that you do not drop your A/C more than 2 degrees at a time to ensure that your unit does not freeze. In warmer months, consider turning on your ceiling fan to help balance out the change in temperature as you lower the thermostat a little at a time. On the contrary, in colder months, investing in a couple space heaters/towers can easily help warm up your home especially the most used areas; bedrooms, and living spaces. This may help suppress the amount on your utility bill by not messing with the heater too much on thermostat and just using these space heaters instead. Remember to turn them off before you leave the home or some brands even come equipped with timers to help in case you forget. You surely don’t want it to become too stuffy!

*Please adhere to the instructions of the space heaters you purchase on the recommended usage time due to safety hazards for your home.

Why use a Preferred Lender?

Categories: Building Process, FAQs | Posted: November 14, 2016

One of the important steps you make when buying or building a home is finding a lender for your mortgage. Although it’s ultimately your choice on whom you select, many building companies such as Manuel Builders partner with a local mortgage company that they trust to become their Preferred Lender. Choosing your building company’s Preferred Lender can come with many benefits.

 

Up to $2,000 Preferred Lender Incentive

We will give you up to $2,000 towards your closing costs without raising your rate.

Same Day Keys

You get your keys the very same day you sign your closing documents! This may not seem like a big deal, but it can take up to 48 hours to receive your keys if you use a different lender. No need to wait to move into the home of your dreams.

Steller Customer Service

Our preferred lenders are committed to providing a stress-free experience that focuses on communication every step of the way. If you have questions, call or email anytime.

Up Front Approval

Your earnest money and construction deposit are non- refundable. However, our preferred lenders will issue an underwritten approval up front. That means, when you put a down payment on your new home, you can be 100% confident that you can close on your home when it is ready.

Smooth Process

Our lenders are very familiar with the Manuel Builders building process. They strive to make the experience as seamless as possible, so you feel less stress and more excitement about your new home purchase.


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Looking to buy? View our homes available here. For more information on our Preferred Lender, give us a call today 337-981-5315


 

How do I reset my GFCIs?

Categories: FAQs | Posted: November 4, 2016

 

 

Occasionally, an electrical outlet in your home may quit working. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you have a major electrical problem. When this happens, our first recommendation would be to find and reset the GFCI. The GFCI is the outlet that has the reset/test button.

gfciAll GFCIs are designed to protect people from electrocution.  They also reduce the risk of house fires caused by electrical problems, and any damage to your appliances.

All exterior outlets are on the same GFCI. If one exterior outlet trips, they’ll all go out. Locate the GFCI on the circuit and reset it. You’ll normally find the exterior GFCI on the exterior of the home like your porch area(s) or in the garage.

Both the interior and exterior GFCIs can be reset the same way. Simply press in the test button, then press in the reset button. Your outlet should then be back in normal working order.

Live in La Cour Beausoleil!

Categories: Community, Lifestyle | Posted: October 23, 2016

La Cour Beausoleil is a community exclusive to Manuel Builders with homes starting in the $170,000s. Located in the highly sought-after Milton school district, this community features a variety of home sizes and amenities that are sure to impress. It’s all about location with this up and coming subdivision. Simply pick your lot, then pick your plan and get started on building the home of your dreams!

View our plans for La Cour Beausoleil Community here: http://bit.ly/2dPyLFc
Contact Tassie Fonseca for more information: 337-501-5011 – tassie@manuelbuilders.com

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Top Interior Design Trends of 2016!

Categories: Home Design, Lifestyle | Posted: October 21, 2016
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Looking for some new design concepts for the Manuel Builders home you want to build? Take a look at these interior design trends that have really stood out in 2016.

 

Two Tone Kitchen Cabinets

Contrasting two tones really brings out your furniture choices in your kitchen.  Try light colored upper cabinets and dark colored base cabinets!  Or you could also try light colored cabinets with a contrasting dark island.  Make it unique and make it you!

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Deep Kitchen Drawers

These drawers are definitely more than just practical.  Not only are they spacious and accommodate kitchenware of various sizes, but they are also very modern looking!

 

Lighter Color Pallets

While classic and regal, dark reds and gold are no longer the icon in interior design choices.  Stick to light greys and whites to make your room pop with beautiful lighting choices!

 

Dark Appliances

Nothing shouts elegance than matching dark colored appliances!  You can even select a matte finish to keep finger prints and smudges away. Look modern, look clean!101_2320_isadore_mb

 

Statement Bathroom Mirrors

Make a statement with your bathroom and “wow” your guests!  Unique mirrors with features that really pop are sure to leave a good impression.  Also, combine glass front cabinets with mullions to add an extra flair to an already beautiful room.

 

Find more inspiring ideas from our gallery of homes here.

How often should I change my air filter?

Categories: FAQs | Posted: October 20, 2016

All homeowners should check their air filter monthly to ensure there isn’t any build up. Air conditioning filters are needed because they keep dust out of the home and provide clean, cool air. Old and dirty air filters in an air conditioner will have a negative impact on the performance of the system, causing it to cool ineffectively and affect the quality of air inside the room or house. We suggest to buy filters in bulk to save time, cost and effort. This way you have your new filter easily accessible to replace every month. Tip: Set a calendar reminder in your phone the 1st of every month to stay on top of this important task!