- If you’ve been working from home and ready to get out of the spare bedroom, basement or carved-out closet you call an office, we’re going to walk you through everything you need to know to set up a productive, comfortable outdoor home office OUTSIDE that it’ll keep you close to nature and the comforts of home at the same time.
- Spring may have sent a lot of rain your way…but if you have a rainwater collection system at your house… you can use those downpours to keep your lawn and garden happily hydrated well into summer’s dry spells. We show you how!
- If you’re thinking about buying a home this Spring, you might be interested to know that home buyer interests are changing in a very big way. We’ll break it down with tips on how to make sure your home brings the highest value in this new market.
Plus, answers to your home improvement questions, about replacing a shingle roof with a metal roof, how to clean a granite countertop, insulating attic space, best product to paint a dock, eliminating drafty windows, repairing a leaky chimney, rules for updating electrical panels.
Tom: Coast to coast and floorboards to shingles, this is The Money Pit Home Improvement Show. I’m Tom Kraeutler.
Leslie: And I’m Leslie Segrete.
Tom: And we are here to help you get the home improvement repairs or renos and decorating projects done around your home. We are enjoying the beautiful spring weather in our part of the country. And for us, that means it’s time to get outside and take on some projects. Maybe it’s landscaping.
You know, for me, I’ve actually been working on updating some landscaping, because every year we have these mulch beds at the perimeter of the yard. And when we put mulch in, we kind of make them a little wider and wider. So I kind of drew the line in the sand, so to speak, and I cut them back 2 feet all the way around and put topsoil in. I did this in the fall. So, now, I’m kind of looking about what took and what didn’t. And I actually did pretty good, because I got it in early. But we’re going to do another shot of seed just to kind of fill in the blank spots.
But whatever you’re working on around your house, we would love to help. We’ve been doing this for many, many years. We grew up in the trays. We know which end of the hammer to hold and we know how to read a tape measure. And we know how to keep you out of trouble when it comes to getting done projects around your house. Whether you’re doing it yourself, whether you’re hiring a pro or something in between, give us a call with those questions.
A couple of ways to get in touch with us. You can pick up the phone and call us anytime at 888-MONEY-PIT, 888-666-3974 or you can post your questions at MoneyPit.com.
Coming up on today’s show, if you’ve been working from home but you’re ready to get out of that spare bedroom, basement or maybe even the carved-out closet you call a “home office,” we’re going to walk you through everything you need to know to set up a productive, comfortable home office space outside your house that’ll keep you close to nature and the comforts of home at the same time.
Leslie: And spring may have sent a lot of rain your way. But if you have a rainwater-collection system at your house, you can use those downpours to keep your lawn and garden happily hydrated well into summer’s dry spells. We’ll show you how.
Tom: And if you’re thinking about buying a home this spring or maybe even selling a home, you might be interested to know that home buyer interests are changing in a very big way. We’re going to break it down with tips on how to make sure your home brings the highest value in this new market.
Leslie: But first, if you need help with a renovation, a repair or a décor project, we’re ready to lend a hand with expert tips, ideas and inspiration to help you avoid the perspiration when it comes to improving your spaces.
Tom: So, once again, post your questions to MoneyPit.com or call us at 1-888-MONEY-PIT. From bathrooms to basements or demolition, which is one of my favorite projects, to décor, which is one of Leslie’s favorite projects, we are here to help you tackle your to-dos with confidence.
Leslie: Hey, I also like breaking things. I mean who doesn’t? But you’ve got to do it the right way so you’re not making more work for yourself.
Tom: Fair point. So give us a call. We’re ready to help. The number, again: 1-888-MONEY-PIT.
Leslie: We’ve got Amy from South Dakota on the line with a window question. What’s going on?
AMY: We have crank-out windows. There’s three windows in a set and the outside two crank out. And I’ve noticed some discoloration, mostly along the bottom, a little bit up the side in the window. And I’m thinking it’s maybe some water damage from maybe the windows were out and it rained. But I’m also seeing it on the middle window, so that has me …
Tom: OK. Questioning your water-damage analysis?
So, Amy, is the stain sort of like a gray-ish color on the wood?
Tom: So, I think what you’re seeing is normal oxidation. And the reason that happens is because the sun and the rain, of course, have some contributing factors here. But mostly, the sun hits those lower edges and it tends to kind of break down the finish and then it starts to fade the wood or turn the wood color.
Tom: The same thing happens if you were to leave raw lumber outside for a long time. It starts out nice and bright and sort of yellow-ish and then it gets dark, darker and grayer as time goes on as it’s exposed to water and to the sun.
So, I think it’s just saying that these areas that you’re seeing may need to be refinished. It’s not a major problem – it’s really a cosmetic one – and it could become structural at some point. But you might want to explore the idea of sanding those areas. And what you’ll find is that when you sand them, you tend to take away that gray and you get down to some of the raw wood that’s just underneath the surface. So if you sand them and then refinish those with an exterior-grade urethane – and that’s important. I would use an oil-based exterior grade, because it has more UV protection in it. Then you’re going to find that it will last a lot longer.
And in terms of those metal windows, a little confused about that. It could be that sometimes when the water dries off – it dries out – it leaves behind mineral salts. And that can look kind of discolored. One thing you could try – a little test for that – is to wipe it down with white vinegar, because vinegar will melt those salts. And see if that goes away. And if not, I think my fallback would be it’s probably just discoloration of the paint. And again, repainting them this time with a primer first and then a topcoat of paint will restore the finish.
AMY: OK. Very good. Thank you.
Tom: You’re welcome, Amy. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.
Leslie: Mark in West Virginia is on the line with a roofing question. How can we help you today?
MARK: I was just wondering if I could put a metal roof over top a shingle roof without removing the shingled roof.
Tom: Well, you can but why do you want to do that, Mark? It’s kind of sloppy.
MARK: I just – I’ve never worked with metal and I didn’t know if you could do it that way. Because you can shingle over an old asphalt shingle; you can put another – a layer over top of it. Just getting rid of them – the hassle of getting rid of them in a landfill.
Tom: Technically, you can but I just think it’s going to be a neater, cleaner, more professional job if you take off the asphalt shingles. And they’re not that hard to remove.
Leslie: Yeah. And you don’t know how many layers are underneath your existing roof. Plus, I don’t know, really, but I’m imagining that a metal roof is going to have some weight to it. And why put that extra stress on the structure? And it’s a lifetime roof; you know, you’re looking at 50 years on a metal roof, so …
MARK: How about cutting it? Any special tools? You have any idea?
Tom: Yeah, it’s all done with shears.
Tom: And you can use hand shears and you can use power shears. But when you work with that stuff all the time, you have the tools that you need to do that. But that’s what you’re going to have to cut it with.
MARK: Well, hey – well, thanks – thank you for being so – and I appreciate it.
Tom: You’re very welcome. Good luck with that project. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.
Leslie: Next up, we’ve got Pat in Georgia who needs some help with a cleaning project. What’s going on?
PAT: I have granite countertops. And I am wondering if there is an advantage to using the store-bought cleaners versus a homemade cleaner. And what would the homemade cleaner be?
Tom: So I guess you don’t have a recipe for a homemade cleaner. Is that what you’re saying?
PAT: No, I don’t.
Tom: If you happen to run across one that you like, tell us about it because I have not found one. But I will say that the commercial cleaners are usually very well-developed and are designed to give you a longer-term protection than you can probably get out of anything that you could mix up on your own countertop.
There’s a website called StoneCare.com that specializes in these types of products. And our listeners have always had good success with them, so I would take a look at that website.
But the thing about granite tops is a lot of folks buy them and think, “Well, it’s stone. I’m not going to have to do much work to the top.” But the truth is it’s a lot of work, isn’t it, Pat?
PAT: It very certainly is.
Tom: It really is. And if you don’t stay on top of it, it gets pretty nasty-looking. So, you are going to have to invest in some regular cleaning and I would just buy a good-quality product from a good brand manufacturer and just accept it as reality, OK?
PAT: Thank you so very much.
Tom: Good luck with that project. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.
Leslie: Working from home has become more the norm than the exception over the last year. And this trend is very likely here to stay. I mean it’s a great place to work, right? The commute’s awesome and you’re familiar with all the surroundings.
Tom: Doesn’t get any better.
Leslie: It really doesn’t.
But working from home doesn’t need to mean that you’re working in a spare bedroom, a basement or maybe you turned a closet into a work area. But now that the weather is warming, with a few simple additions you can move that office outside to your deck, your patio, even your porch.
Tom: Well, that’s right. And for ideas on how to bring your home office outdoors, we turn to the experts at Riverbend Home for tips to make you productive outside.
So, first up, let’s talk connectivity. You’ve got to be connected. And if your home’s Wi-Fi signal doesn’t quite make it to your outdoor workspace, you may need to add a Wi-Fi extender. Now, I’ve added several of these around my home because I’ve got the north office and the south office, which is the front porch and the back porch. And they really help.
They’re widely available online. They’re inexpensive. They’re easy to install. And they instantly create an extended Wi-Fi band that can help handle large parts of your outdoor spaces.
And speaking of spaces, you’ve got to make sure that your space is dedicated, it’s quiet and it’s private for those phone and Zoom calls. So, if your outdoor office is on your deck or patio, an easy way to do that is to add privacy screening or add planters to create a physical and a sound barrier between you and that noise.
Leslie: Yeah. Now, next, you’re going to have to think about ergonomics and comfort. Working from a hammock might sound great. It’s definitely not going to be good for your back or maybe your productivity. You might fall asleep. But you can consider it.
Your better bet, though, is to set up shop on your patio table, have a comfortable chair. A patio set, like the ones made by POLYWOOD, are a great choice. They’re available at RiverbendHome.com and they’re also made from sustainable materials that are easy to maintain and incredibly durable.
Tom: Now, shade is also going to be key for both your comfort and preventing that glare on your laptops. So, invest in a good patio umbrella, preferably one with Sunbrella fabric.
Leslie, I know that’s a fabric that you have advocated for years, because it’s so super durable and it really stands up to the UV rays of the sun.
You want to take a look at the line of SimplyShade Patio Umbrellas at Riverbend Home. You’re going to find a perfect one for your space. They feature Sunbrella and they come in a wide range of sizes and styles.
Leslie: Yeah. They really are fantastic umbrellas and they are going to last.
Now, lastly, you’ve got to plan for the change in climate with ways to keep your space cool or warm, depending on what the weather is outside. A patio fan, an outdoor ceiling fan that can be hung from a porch ceiling, that’ll definitely help with a cool breeze on those more stuffy days. Or if you’ve got a smaller space, you can use a tabletop or even a standing fan. And if you’ve got chillier days – say you’re just getting out of the spring into summer, where it’s still a little cool or even returning back to the fall days – you can actually pick up an outdoor-patio heater. And you’ll be all set to be both productive and comfortable in your new outdoor home office.
So, for more tips, unique finds for the inspired home and everything you need to create your outdoor oasis, visit RiverbendHome.com.
Leslie: Richard in Ohio is living in a pretty drafty house. Join the club. Tell me what’s going on.
RICHARD: Insulation contractor came and blew cellulose insulation in the walls. Left a lot of voids in it, which caused forced drafts. I had infrared-camera work done and the floors are like 31 degrees and about 45 degrees waist-high. And I can’t seem to figure out what’s going on here or what to do about it. However, I found a physics teacher that restores old homes. She told me that if you leave a void in an insulation – insulated wall – it will cause a forced draft. [Be creating] (ph) quite a few forced drafts in here.
Tom: Well, maybe, maybe not but here’s the thing. First of all, you had blown-in insulation done and you followed that up with an infrared-camera inspection. I’m guessing you didn’t do that right after the installer was done, correct? You did this later on to try to figure out why it was still cold in the house?
Tom: Yeah. And it’s very difficult to install blown-in insulation in a wall and do it correctly, so we’ve heard this before. The best installers will take a long time to make sure it gets in just right. They put in just the right amount and they knew how to get it in every bay and then they use an infrared camera to figure out if they’ve missed anything. So it sounds to me like now we’ve got a real mess in the outside wall. We don’t know what’s insulated, what’s not insulated.
Let’s set that aside for right now and cover two other very important basics. Number one is the attic. You want to make sure that you have enough insulation in your attic because if you can trap the heat from escaping from the attic, which is where most of the heat leaves the house, you may find that it’s going to make you more comfortable.
In the attics of Ohio, where you’re located, you’re going to need at least 15 to 20 inches of fiberglass insulation. Most people don’t have that much. But that is what the Department of Energy would recommend. So if you don’t have that much insulation, the first thing I want you to do is add insulation to your attic.
The second thing – you mentioned you’re on a crawlspace. Your floor has got to be insulated. Again, unfaced fiberglass batts. If it’s a standard 2×10 floor joist, you want to fill that up with a full 10 inches of insulation. If you can insulate the floor and the attic – two areas that are accessible and easy to access – you’re kind of halfway there.
Now, what are we going to do about the exterior wall? Well, short of taking it apart, we’re not going to easily solve this problem with a blown-in. If you had an insulation company that could work with the camera and add additional blown-in, they might be able to fill it in. But that’s going to be expensive and I don’t know that you’re going to get a good return on investment.
So what I would suggest you do is everything else that you can do to stop the drafts. So that means sealing around windows and doors and outlets and light switches, especially, to make sure that we get as many of those gaps closed as possible.
And then from a decorating perspective, very often – Leslie, you jump right in because I’ve heard you recommend heavy drapes over these windows, too, to try to short-circuit those drafts that are sort of falling around the windows.
Leslie: Yeah. And you can do it sort of two-fold. You know, we have drafty windows. Unfortunately, the previous owners installed not the greatest of windows and they were poorly installed. So, short of doing a major project here, I’ve gotten creative. I’ve done a sort of double-lined fabric shade that’s up against the glass portion of the window itself. And I’ll draw those down during the colder times. And then I have a heavier drape that I use in the winter, as well, that’s lined that I will just close up to make sure that I’m keeping those drafts out.
Also, if you’ve got baseboard heating in that room, you want to make sure that nothing is blocking those baseboards. Your furniture – you’ve got to pull away from the walls. Think about giving it some air, just sort of circulate the heat around the room a little bit better. But really, heavy fabrics, heavy draperies, that really does make a huge difference.
Tom: Richard, I hope that advice helps you out. Thanks so much for calling us at 1-888-MONEY-PIT.
Leslie: Alright. Colleen in Texas, you’ve got The Money Pit. How can we help you today?
COLLEEN: Yes, I was wondering about a product called Restore. It’s called Liquid Armor Resurfacer and I have a dock that I wanted to put it on.
Tom: Alright. I’m familiar with those Restore products. I’ve not used them but I know what they’re supposed to do. One thing I would tell you is – I don’t know about the brand you mentioned. I would make sure it’s a brand that’s been around for a long time. Because we’ve seen some of those thick-paint products do more damage than good.
I know, for example, that Rust-Oleum, which is a good brand, makes a product called Restore. It works on concrete and decks, as well as vertical siding. So I might start by taking a look at the Rust-Oleum product. Just make sure you stick with a name brand that’s been around a long time so that you know that you’ve got a really good product that you’re putting on the deck.
And I would also make sure that you tested it in an area, maybe on a couple of deck boards, to make sure you’re completely happy with it before going all-in on the entire deck or dock.
COLLEEN: And is it harder to use this type of product versus just a regular paint?
Tom: Yeah. It’s going to be more difficult because it’s about 10 times thicker than paint. So the application has got to be done right. You’re going to use similar tools but it’s just going to be slow.
COLLEEN: OK. Well, thank you so much.
Leslie: Well, spring may have sent a lot of rain our way but if you’ve got a rainwater-collection system at your house, you can use those downpours to keep your lawn and garden happily hydrated well into the summer’s dry spells.
Now, Tom, this really is a great way to save water but you have to make sure that your garden is getting the right amount of water that it needs so that you don’t really ever have to turn that hose on, right?
Tom: Yeah. In the best possible scenario, that’s the goal. And you can actually get pretty close, depending on how big that rain barrel is. And it’s not hard to install, so I’ll kind of try to outline the steps.
First of all, remember, water is super heavy. So you want to put three solid, concrete, barrel-styled blocks – those are the round ones – in the garden beside the downspout. And you want to check and make sure they’re level. So don’t put them on muddy soil. Make sure it’s good and solid. Because when you put that rain barrel on top of the blocks, it’s going to get heavy once it’s all filled up. Rain and water weigh 8 pounds per gallon, so just think about it. It’s going to be pretty heavy, so make sure it’s solid.
Then you put the barrel on top of those blocks. And you want to make sure the spigot faces the garden. And attach a water diverter to the downspout below.
These are pretty cool. You can see them online, the diverters for the downspouts. They basically go in the middle of a downspout and they kind of allow some water to spill out of the downspout and then trickle into the rain barrel through a hose. So it’s not like the downspout is sticking in the middle of the barrel, because then you’d have this big, open barrel of water and that would attract mosquitoes. This does everything sort of internal and it works really, really well through a small, rubber hose that goes between the diverter and the barrel itself.
Now, once the barrel is filled up, you’re going to attach a soaker hose to the spigot on the barrel and then run that hose around each plant in the garden. You can cover it with a thick layer of mulch. And then you can either operate it manually by opening it when it’s time to water the garden or you can even use a timer on it. There are lots of different rain barrels available. They come in all sorts of sizes and shapes and colors, so you’ll find one that’s a perfect fit for your space.
Leslie: Now, a rain barrel, it can hold about 50 gallons or so. But what if your property needs more water during that dry spell?
Tom: Well, that’s true. If you have a traditional barrel size, it may be limited to 50. But if you really want to collect a lot of water, there are lots of collapsible types that are large and flat. And in fact, they can fit under a deck or even a crawlspace.
I looked up one before the show that can hold 700 to 800 gallons of water. And they come even bigger than that. So, it depends on how far you want to take this but there’s definitely a way to collect that rainwater and use it in those dry summer periods. I mean we have sprinklers at our home but there are weeks during the summer when we can’t use them, because there’s just not enough water. So, they have limitations.
So, this is a great way to make sure you can water those lawns and water those gardens, even when there’s a drought.
Leslie: Christine in Washington is on the line with a leaky chimney. Tell us what’s going on at your money pit.
CHRISTINE: I have a chimney that’s for a wood or a pellet stove. And the former owners put duct-taped cardboard in the opening. And it leaks when I have heavy rain and winds.
Tom: I bet it does.
CHRISTINE: Yeah. How do I close off the opening so it doesn’t leak?
Tom: So, first of all, we’re talking about a wood-stove chimney that’s been sealed up with cardboard and duct taped. Does anyone think there’s something wrong with this picture? Just maybe, right?
Tom: So, are we still using the wood stove, Christine?
CHRISTINE: No. It’s empty and I put a table and lamp under it.
Tom: So you’re not using the wood stove at all. You don’t want to use it? Why not just take it out?
CHRISTINE: There’s no wood stove there; it’s just an empty space. That’s why I put a table …
Tom: Oh, OK. So the chimney is left over from the wood stove.
Tom: Then take the chimney out.
CHRISTINE: Oh, really?
Tom: The chimney is a hole in your roof. If you’re not using it for the wood stove, then you don’t need it, right? There’s nothing else that uses the same chimney? Is it a metal pipe?
CHRISTINE: Yeah. But the – inside the house, it’s part of the design of the living room. It looks like a space for a fireplace. So that’s why it’s all bricked in and that’s why I put a table and chair in it and made it sort of decorative.
Tom: Right. But if you’re never going to use it. OK, I don’t really care what it looks like inside your house; I care about the penetration where it goes through the roof, because that’s where the leak is. And your options are either to properly flash the chimney, whatever that takes – which is not going to include duct tape and cardboard, by the way – but to have it professionally flashed so that it seals the intersection between the roofing shingle and the chimney or vent pipe.
But if you’re not using it, just remove it and you’re taking that headache away. You can patch the roof and you’ll never have to worry about leaks in that area again.
CHRISTINE: Thank you very much.
Tom: You’re welcome, Christine. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.
Leslie: Dennis in Wyoming is on the line and has a question about a backer board. What can we do for you?
DENNIS: Yes. I just wondered your opinion on the greenboard being used behind a thermoplastic shower wall. I’m installing a shower in an alcove and they sent me the base.
DENNIS: And then I’ve got these three walls that I have to glue …
Tom: Usually, it’s – that kind of a liner usually goes on top of tile. Can you put it over greenboard? Well, the problem with greenboard is it’s not very water-resistant. It’s more water-resistant than regular drywall but it’s not terribly water-resistant. It’s designed to be a tile backer.
So I would say if you’re going to do it, it’s probably OK but just don’t kid yourself into thinking this is something that’s going to last for more than a few years or maybe 10 years max. But I would be very careful to silicone-seal all of the seams so that you don’t have water that goes through the seams of that shower enclosure and saturate through the greenboard. Because it will sort of soften up and rot out.
DENNIS: OK. Well, thank you very much.
Tom: You’re welcome, Dennis. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.
Leslie: Well, if you’re thinking about selling a home this spring, you might be interested to know that 52 percent of home buyers say that the types of homes and the locations have changed as a direct result of the pandemic. And that’s according to a recent survey by ImproveNet.
Tom: That’s right. And the top priority for home buyers today are access to nature, proximity to family, indoor space, outdoor space and of course, home location.
But on the bright side, 54 percent of millennials and Gen Zers also report being more motivated than ever to become homeowners as a direct result of the pandemic. So, lots of younger buyers are getting into the market but they know what they want. And if you want to sell your home for the best possible price, you should accent all of those elements when you put your home up for sale.
Leslie: Heidi in North Carolina is on the line with an electrical problem. How can we help you today?
HEIDI: Well, I have kind of a two-part question. I have an older home. It’s about 68 years old. We paid an electrician to come in when we converted over to a heat pump, from an oil furnace, to up our service. And we have an old fuse box that are the screw-in type fuses. And when he put the system in – the new electrical box – he was supposed to convert everything over into the new electrical box and he left the little electrical box – the little fuse box – in my kitchen.
And unfortunately, he put the new electrical box on the outside of my house. That would be OK, except I’m a single woman and I don’t – safety reasons. I don’t think it’s really smart considering I have a full-size basement it could easily be put in.
HEIDI: So do I need to – I would never call this guy again, for lots of reasons. But do I need to pay somebody else to come in and convert that last part of my home into this other fuse box or – you know, these little fuses are hard to find and when they blow …
Tom: So, it’s definitely an active panel, right? The fuse panel?
HEIDI: Oh, it’s active. Yes, sir.
Tom: OK. So that’s called a “sub-panel” and that’s going to be a sub-panel from the main panel. You said the main panel is now in the basement or the main panel is outside?
HEIDI: It’s outside. We have a full basement and why he put it outside, I have no clue. But he put the main panel …
Tom: Yeah, that makes no sense. Because the only time you usually see full panels outside is maybe a condominium situation and then they’re in utility closets. So I can’t imagine why that was done that way. It doesn’t make sense. It sounds to me like you do need a better electrician to come in and take care of this.
If it makes you feel any better, the fact that you have a fuse box does not mean that it’s unsafe. Fuses are actually quite safe if it’s the right-size fuse matched against the wire that’s hooked up to that circuit.
And so, to know if that’s the case, somebody has to open the panel and say, “OK, this is Number 14 wire, so it’s a 15-amp fuse. And this is Number 12 wire, so it’s a 20-amp fuse,” and so on and physically write that right above the fuse on the panel so you know what size to put in there. Because it’s too easy, with a fuse box, to put in a 20-amp fuse on a wire that’s only rated for 15 amps. Then, of course, that’s potentially unsafe.
So, it does sound like you need another electrician. It’s obviously not a do-it-yourself project. And unless there’s some compelling code reason in your part of the country to put that outside, I don’t understand why they would have done that. And you could consider rerunning it back to the inside and unfortunately, that’s kind of where we’re at. It’s not an easy fix; it’s one that’s going to require the investment of a good electrician.
HEIDI: Alright. Well, thank you very much.
Leslie: Melinda wrote and she’s saying that she’d like to change the look of her brick house and wants to know the pros and cons of stain versus painting the brick.
Tom: Well, I mean first up, we always joke that what comes after paint is repaint. But in terms of stain, I don’t know – unless you have a really light-colored brick house, like the light sort of tannish-yellow bricks – you can’t really stain the dark ones. They’re only going to get darker. You’re not going to change a red brick to a lighter-color brick, so you really would have to paint it.
But look, it’s a permanent change that you’re making here and it’s going to force you to have to restain or repaint as the years go on. So, I would prefer that you try everything else except for the brick.
You know, Leslie, so many houses that are brick, they’re only partially brick, right? Like the front’s brick or maybe it’s halfway up and then has regular siding. I would love to see them try some other things to try to focus on the brick and work around it with different colors and textures, rather than actually change it, because it’s just so much work when you paint or stain brick. Because it’s just going to have be done every few years after that, right?
Leslie: Yeah. It could be something as simple as – say the brick is on all sides of the house and adding a different type of siding might be more work than hoping for. You could add shutters. Maybe adding the shutters in a different color and style is enough to change that look for you. Adding some décor around the door, above the door so that the trimming is a little bit more expansive and interesting.
All of those things will help definitely minimize the appearance of the brick but also help enhance its look, as well. A brick home is lovely and a painted-brick home is not everybody’s favorite thing.
I will say I love the look of a white-brick house. I think it’s lovely. It is a lot of work, though. And if anybody ever wants to go back, it’s incredibly difficult to do so.
Tom: Yeah. And then, also, you could think about landscaping around the house. And how about landscape lighting? It can really change the dynamic of the house. And then you mentioned shutters. Also, the trim, right? The fascia and the soffits. If you replace those with lighter colors, it can frame it nicely.
Leslie: Yeah, it could really look crisp.
Tom: Let’s go to Jackie now. She is dealing with a driveway that’s past its prime. She’s got a long driveway that’s 28 years old, showing signs of cracks across sections. She was told by one company it can’t be resurfaced. Probably because it’s the company that wants to tear it out and replace it. But what are the options?
So, I’m thinking about Re-Cap right now, which is a product made by QUIKRETE, that you basically can put on yourself and follow the instructions. You wet the surface down. You apply this Re-Cap product and it completely restores the surface.
Now, if it’s cracked so badly that the sections are shifting, that’s another thing. But if it’s just the surface cracks and they haven’t moved much, that Re-Cap product looks fantastic and will allow you to completely restore that driveway.
Leslie: Alright, Jackie. I hope that helps. I hope it saves you a ton of money and that driveway looks awesome for the summer.
Tom: You are listening to The Money Pit Home Improvement Show. Do you have a question about your money pit? Then call us now at 888-MONEY-PIT presented by Angi, where you’ll find expert pros available for hundreds of projects, up-front pricing, plus the ability to book and pay right from your phone. Download the app today.
This is The Money Pit Home Improvement Show. If you guys are ready to spring into some home improvement projects, we hope that we’ve given you some tips and ideas that can help you do just that. Remember, if you couldn’t get through to us, you can call, 24/7, to 888-MONEY-PIT or again, post those questions online at MoneyPit.com.
We’ve got so many people also reaching out to us on social media and we do our best to answer each and every question. So you can also reach us through Instagram or Facebook and that’s Facebook.com/TheMoneyPit. And the same thing for Instangram.com/TheMoneyPit. Get in touch with us any way that’s convenient for you.
We love what we do. We love helping you guys with your projects. It is spring again. We all can’t wait to get outside and enjoy our homes more than ever before. We certainly have a better appreciation of them than ever before and we’re so happy to be able to help you guys do just that.
I’m Tom Kraeutler.
Leslie: And I’m Leslie Segrete.
Tom: Remember, you can do it yourself …
Leslie: But you don’t have to do it alone.
(Copyright 2021 Squeaky Door Productions, Inc. No portion of this transcript or audio file may be reproduced in any format without the express written permission of Squeaky Door Productions, Inc.)