Keep Cozy in the Winters: Explore these Popular RTM Fireplace Options

There is no doubt about it that the prairies have some of the harshest winters out there. But there is a silver lining, and that is keeping cozy by the fire in the bitter cold months in the comfort of your own home.

There is no shortage of different options to customize a fireplace with lots of options available for aesthetic and function. Three popular options for B&B Homes clients are traditional wood burning, gas and electric fireplaces.

RTM fireplace

Wood burning fireplaces are a traditional option that have been heating homes naturally for decades. This tried and true style of fireplace requires a little more upkeep than more modern gas and electric options and is not as efficient at producing heat. But if the scent and ambiance of the burning logs is what you are after, the additional maintenance can be considered a labour of love when maintaining your wood supply and cleaning your chimney seasonally. Want to try something entirely different? Why not consider using Fireglass pebbles.

RTM gas fireplace

Gas fireplaces are a stylish, modern option that provide flexible heat and aesthetic options by efficiently burning natural gas or propane instead of wood. There are a number of options for gas logs that create the ambiance of your flame. Gas fireplaces are also enclosed, providing safety from embers without requiring any chimney maintenance. Gas fireplaces also provide an alternate heat source for the home. If you opt for ethanol, it is imperative that you take ethanol fireplace safety seriously. They are very safe when used correctly.

RTM electric fireplace

Electric fireplaces allow you to have the visual of a fire without having to produce any actual heat allowing for use all year round to create a relaxing ambiance at your leisure. You could even get a tv stand with electric fire place built right into it. This gives an extra level of aesthetic appeal. Most electric models B&B sources do give you the option for both flame and heat or just the flame. An environmentally conscious option, electric fireplaces do not use any gas or produce any emissions.

Do you want to warm up by your own brand new fireplace next winter? Are you ready to start planning your own custom RTM dream home with B&B’s Dream It, Build It, Move It process? Contact Darwin directly at darwin@bbhomes.ca to get started.

How to Manage an RTM Project Remotely.

This year B&B Homes is celebrating a major milestone as we have almost finished building our 100th home! We have been working on the walk-out basement in the Eston area this past week for this home. We wouldn’t have been able to get here without the people, processes, and best practices that we have acquired in project management over the years.

Seven years ago we discovered a tool that would help our clients manage their RTM project remotely while helping us keep all of our communications and decisions in one place for the ultimate transparency from both sides.

Introducing COCONSTRUCT

Whether you are at home, at work, on the road, or on vacation, B&B Homes puts all project information at your fingertips about your selections, financial decisions, questions, documents, photos, and more. So if you are on your family farm or in Mexico, you can be working on your custom home project!

You will monitor the details and stages throughout the project inside COCONSTRUCT remotely until the final walk-through prior to the home leaving our yard.

For more information how it works, click here for a printout.

“We also really loved working with CoConstruct to manage the project. Every decision was at your fingertips and we weren’t stuck with anything that we didn’t want. The tool helped manage the project remotely and for us busy people, it was very handy as we are often running around in lots of directions. Questions were answered almost immediately and there wasn’t any phone tag.”

-Cindy and Trevor Tyson, Harris

COCONSTRUCT

Similar Floorplans, But Different Styles Part II.

In part II of this features comparison series, we continue to highlight the differences that style and selections can make in a home that may otherwise appear the same when analyzing a floorplan drawing. Below highlights a few recent Chesapeake home projects.

The Chesapeake Floor Plan Features Include:

  • 1640 Square Feet
  • 3 Bedrooms
  • 2 Baths
  • Vaulted ceiling in the living room and front entry
  • Main floor laundry
  • Swinging closet doors
  • Walk-through kitchen pantry
  • Island eating ledge
  • Walk-in closet in master bedroom
  • Double sided fireplace

See how one Chesapeake in a modern style with light color tones throughout compares to one in a rustic style with warm earthy tones in these similarly customized floor plans below.

The Chesapeake RTM The Chesapeake RTM

Stone clad wood burning fireplace with a hearth vs a stone and drywalled gas fireplace.

The Cheasapeake RTM

Solid rustic hickory cabinet door style with rough stone backsplash, and a custom wood range hood in the rustic style vs dark, streamlined cabinet door style with a sleek glossy white backsplash, and decorative range hood in a modern style.

The Cheaspeake RTM The Cheaspeake RTM

Oil rubbed bronze fixtures for a rustic, farmhouse ambiance vs smooth chrome fixtures for a sleek, modern feel.

The Chesapeake RTM

Pine ceiling and gel stained wood grain fiberglass front entry door vs painted ceilings and a white, smooth fiberglass front entry door.

The Chesapeake RTM

For more information on the process or to get started planning your own custom floor plan, reach out to B&B at any time. Book a visit for a one-on-one consultation and to tour our current projects.

 

Same Design, Two Totally Different Homes.

The Redburn is one of B&B Homes most popular designs that we have built many variations of over the years. When reviewing floor plans, the colours and features that make a home are not yet quite clear.

In this short series, we want to showcase the differences that style and features can make in a home that may otherwise appear the same when reviewing the floorplan.

The Redburn Floor Plan Features Include:

  • 1668 Square Feet
  • 3 Bedrooms
  • 2 ½ Baths
  • Vaulted ceiling in kitchen, dining, & living room
  • Main floor laundry
  • Swinging closet doors
  • Walk-in kitchen corner pantry
  • Island seating
  • Walk-in closet in master bedroom
  • Front deck overhang

See how one Redburn in a transitional style with light color tones throughout compares to one in a rustic style with warm earthy tones in these similarly customized floor plans below.

Here is an overall view of the open concept living, dining and kitchen areas in each style. Optional features that can be incorporated into any home include fireplaces, window coverings and appliances.

Simple shaker cabinet doors vs rustic hickory cabinetry that were made uniquely for each home.

Simple and elegant materials such as minimal patterned tile with chrome finishes can be found in a transitional style vs dark natural materials such as wood and stone used in a rustic style.

Modifications can be made to any floor plan in a custom RTM project based on each families preferences for storage and natural light.

For more information on the process or to get started planning your own custom floor plan, reach out to B&B at any time. Schedule a site visit for a one-on-one consultation and to tour our current projects.

 

 

Incorporating Concrete Into Your Design Features

Concrete like tile, is a diverse material that can be used in various applications of a home. Not only can concrete be used for foundations and ensuring structural stability, but it can also add modern design elements to suit your style and preferences.

Here are some uses for concrete in a home:

  • Countertops
  • Countertops with integrated sinks
  • Backsplash (either as one ‘piece’ or multiple tile like pieces)
  • Showers (same as backsplash)
  • Fireplace mantles
  • Custom furniture tops – ie. coffee tables, end tables, dining tables, benches

*Please note: Concrete that is used for any surface exposed to liquid would need to be sealed once a year like granite because it’s a naturally porous material. This includes all of the items above except fireplaces, mantles and furniture.

Did you know that concrete can be mixed to create any color? It can also have a smooth, glossy, matte or exposed aggregate finish. It is even possible for concrete to have a wood grain texture.

See these different examples of concrete home finishes from Stoneflow Concrete Designs, a supplier that works with B&B Homes.

For more information on the process or to get started planning feel free to reach out to B&B at any time. Book a site visit for a one-on-one consultation and to tour our current projects.

The RTM Process After You Sign

Once you have signed the contract it is time to start building your home. With design, quoting, and sourcing a mortgage behind you, this is when things start to pick up and get really exciting when the actual build begins. Below are the different stages you will go through when building an RTM home once you have passed through the initial planning and quoting stages:

Selecting the Home Features

Once you have your floor plan finalized, you will have a selection meeting with our onsite designer Katia just before you sign the final contract to start. We like to be as transparent as possible working with clients so that they adjust their home features according to their budget and know their final price before the project starts so there are no surprises later. Prior to this meeting you can share your inspiration images with Katia so she can help guide you through the decision making process to help you create the look and feel you are after, that will suit your preferences for your family’s custom home. You are still able to make adjustments to your home throughout the progress, however, the majority of the decisions are made at this time.

In-Person RTM Project Milestone Site Visits

You will be asked to come to the site at the beginning and again at the end of the project for your final walk-through approvals. At these stages you will release funds from your mortgage provider in parallel. At your first walk-through the framing will be complete  (floor, walls, roof) and you will confirm the electrical and plumbing rough-in locations before the home is insulated. You will monitor the following details and stages of the project in Co-Construct  remotely until the final walk-through prior to the home leaving our yard. You are welcome to come anytime throughout the build to view the progress of your home in person.

Moving Day and Keeping Track of Warranty Items

On this exciting day you are at the site location to confirm any details that the movers may need as your home arrives. Once the home is delivered onto the foundation, you will need to make a note of any warranty work in Co-Construct that needs to be completed. Once you have your mechanical & electrical hook-ups complete, B&B Homes will come to do service work prior to you officially moving in roughly 6 weeks later.

At the One Year Anniversary of Your Project

At the one year anniversary of your home being delivered, B&B Homes will come to your home to do any service work that may have come up in the first year of you living in the home. All B&B Homes new builds are covered by our own guarantee that we will take care of any potential damages or malfunctions that may have happened to the home within the first year.

For more information on the process or to get started planning feel free to reach out to B&B at any time. Book a visit for a one-on-one consultation and to tour our current projects.

RTM project timelines, is now the time to start?

Building an RTM Home usually takes only five months once the agreement is signed but the planning needs to start way before then. If you need to create a floor plan or secure a mortgage from a lender, you will want to allow extra time in pre-planning as these pieces can delay a start by months. Alternatively if you’re wanting an RTM home that could be improved and made into your home by us, you could look into shipping containers for sale for a modern stylish yet still niche style of home.

Working backwards from your ideal move in timeline, you will want to start planning at a minimum of 3-4 months before the actual build will start. At B&B, we encourage anyone to start planning with us anytime they are a year or less out from their desired timeline.

Do not underestimate the time it can take to secure a mortgage or how long it will take for your design and blueprints to completely come together.

Here are a few stages of the RTM planning process broken down.

Design Plan & Project Planning

At this stage, clients collaborate their ideas with our designer and get a plan in place so we can get a budget figure for you to start planning with. Also during this time, clients can source quotes for the foundation from B&B Homes, or their local contractor, This is also the time to get pre approved for your mortgage, if you haven’t already done that.

Making Your Home Selections

Once the design is finalized, you will have a meeting with our designer to select all the features that will go into your home. There may be some personalized features that get added at this time, which we will source for you. Once all selections have been approved, the contract will be signed. Materials are then ordered to start the project officially. If you have previously owned land and gave it up to start this new house, then going online to Amerinote Xchange will help you if you are still in need of selling your land contract to the right buyer.

The Build

Since we plan your entire home before we start building, there is not a whole lot for you to do during the build other then watch the progress. This stage on average takes 4 – 5 months. You can view the progress of the different stages inside CoConstruct, our virtual project management tool, or come out and view it in person at any time.

Moving Day and Onsite Work

The move of your home is usually completed in one day, but this can depend on your location. Once your home is set on the foundation, the onsite work begins. Depending on trade availability in your area and the extent of work your doing (example: garage, decks, basement finish), an average move in date would be 6 – 8 weeks after the home arrives.

Now that you have a sense of what is required for this process, is it time to get started?

Book a site visit to tour our current projects or contact us for more information to get started.

If you have any questions or want to get started with your own RTM project, contact us here to get started.

Planning Artificial and Natural Light Through Design for an RTM Home

When planning a custom RTM, an important component of the overall design is planning for natural and artificial lighting in the home that reflects the lifestyle and personality of your family.

One of the great things about working with B&B Homes on a brand new custom RTM, is that we have an on-site designer to walk you through the planning stages of this process to help you uncover the ambiance you wish to achieve through lighting. Below are the three main types of lighting:

Accent lighting: creates the mood/atmosphere of a room such as these cone pendant lighting.
Task lighting: highlights a specific function of a room (Eg: home office area or in the kitchen)
Ambient lighting: provides the general illumination of a room

Window Positioning With Natural Light Considerations in Mind

For example, the south will allow for the most natural light so you may want to position your living room windows in this direction but perhaps not the bedrooms unless you’re thinking of looking at the likes of Custom Shades or similar that can filter as much light as you desire. Other things to consider include: What kind of lighting do you like and are naturally drawn to? Are you considering using solar energy? What do you want to see when you look out your windows? Have you thought about what window coverings you want? This can make a huge difference to the light in your room. There is a wide variety of options; curtains, blinds, smart glass or shutters for home interiors meaning you have lots of choice to tailor it to your preferred style. Maybe do some research and see what you like the look of in preparation for your home.

Incorporating Contrast Between Rooms

Contrasting light to dark between rooms sets the tone for each transition as you move throughout the home. Do you want more drama between high and low contrast? Or another way of putting it, do you want strong or soft lighting in different rooms? Contrast will set the energy of a space, whether you want it to be more low key or exciting depends on what you plan to do in that area of the home.

Knowing the function and mood you want to create in each room will help you create a lighting scheme you will love over the course of the lifetime of your home.

Work with B&B Home’s designer Katia and plan a lighting scheme within your budget for your once in a lifetime investment to enhance your everyday living. Contact us to get started planning.

Foundation options for an RTM home.

An important decision to make when planning a new home is deciding what type of foundation to place the RTM onto. Whether you want a crawl space to keep the costs down or want to invest in a basement down the road, this decision will impact your budget and project planning. B&B collaborates with third party contractors and also provides foundations services as well. Below are a few considerations for this choice:

*Planning Tip: the foundation needs to be completed three weeks before the RTM move date.

Crawl Space of Full Basement?

An RTM home can be placed on a crawl space or on a full basement. Depending on your budget and needs, a crawl space may be an appropriate choice for you. Consider the soil and lot size. There are a lot of options out there when it comes to planning a basement. You can decide if you want an additional guest room, laundry facilities or another bathroom downstairs. If you are a DIY family, you can plan the development in the future yourself. With enough square footage on the main floor of the home, you may decide that the basement is an unnecessary function for your family’s needs.

Planning Tip: Generally speaking, it is more economical to finish a basement than it is to expand the main floor for materials costs.

Planning a Basement for an RTM Home

Planning a basement for an RTM home requires lifestyle, function and budget considerations. What is the space going to be used for? Home office, kids play room, bar, storage or home theater? The possibilities in this process allow you to customize your home based on your individual requirements. Depending on your land, you may want to invest in a walk-out basement. Knowing the size of home you want to have and your lifestyle preferences will help you navigate this stage of the planning process. Looking into companies such as Sheet Piling (UK) Ltd that can help you build your basement could be a good help.

ICF, Wood or Concrete

The choice is yours. Insulated concrete form (ICF) foundations are common due to their energy saving effencies. B&B Homes recommends ICF as a primary option for this reason and also because we can take this style of basement to dry wall ready. It does cost slightly more than a traditional wood-frame, but the long term return on investment outperforms both concrete and wood in value. ICF material provides good insulation and does not rot or decay and has strong resistance to water.

Contact us today for more information on foundations or to discuss getting a project started.

Planning a Dream Ensuite for an RTM

One of the most popular rooms to design and plan in a custom RTM project is the ensuite. Considering you will be using this space daily, carefully planning what you want for features, function and layout will allow you to create a space made specifically for your lifestyle with a little luxury added in.

Below are a few considerations that will help you decide your ensuite “must haves” for you and your spouse:

Do you like to take baths to unwind after a long day or is a double shower more practical for your daily routine? Heated floors will keep you cosy but may not make the budget, making heated towel racks a great substitute.

Having different low level lighting options is something to think about if you or your partner have different work schedules. Alternatively you can brighten up a designated makeup area if you don’t value the function of having two sinks.

Deciding on a short list of requirements will help you narrow down the endless options of what you will want to incorporate from the wide range of materials at your disposal for this special room. Don’t worry though, you don’t need to figure this all out yourself if you are working with the right design team.

RTM Ensuite

The ensuite is a space you can customize to your preferences with different features and materials to showcase your personal style in a space you will be using every single day.

The Churchbridge RTM

One of the perks of planning a custom RTM over a home that is ready made, are the endless options you have at your disposal to create your own sanctuary made exclusively for you.

RTM Homes Saskatchewan

Custom shelving allows you to make smart use of your space with practical storage for organizing your toiletries and linens.

The Hudson RTM

Working with our on-site designer Katia will help you to discover your style and feature preferences so you end up with a dream ensuite, without the pressure of having to figure it all out on your own, or settle for something you don’t love.

Contact B&B Homes today and start planning your own daily ritual oasis!