6 Outdoor Cooking Products for Your Labor Day Bash

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Labor Day marks the end of summer, but it doesn’t mean that you can’t send the season out with a bang.  In the last few years everything from restaurant quality grills to outdoor pizza ovens have started to make a splash.

Take a look at some of these unique grills that these outdoor cooking companies offer and see if you can find the grill of your dreams.

1. Viking® Professional Outdoor 5 Series Grill

Viking Professional Outdoor 5 Series Grill
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Name Our New House Plan and Win a $100 Home Depot® Gift Card

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We need your help to name a new house plan that will be added to our collection soon. If you have browsed our collections you know that there are a wide variety of styles with a very diverse set of names.

81514 FRONT ELEVATION

Front Elevation

The Game

Today we want you to try to creatively name one of our house plans.  We will give you the specs and features on a house plan from one of our new design partners. Submit a naming suggestion and our designer will pick her favorite.

Rear Elevation

Rear Elevation

This house plan is a two-story, traditional house plan that is built for a modern life style. Perfect for a growing family looking for a home that can grow with them or a professional who works from home, this is a home that is built to mix home, work, and life together.

The large porch opens into a foyer. To the left is a formal dining room and straight ahead is the staircase and the family room.  The heart of this house plan is a large kitchen with a butler’s pantry, a breakfast nook, and an eating bar.  Off the kitchen are two bedrooms that share a bathroom.

Floor Plan--First Floor

Floor Plan–First Floor

Straight ahead from the family room is a screened porch that leads out to a deck. Perfect for summer cookouts or cool fall nights under the stars.

On the other side of the family room is a master suite complete with a sitting area and a separate tub and shower.  Other key features you are sure to love are the dedicated laundry space and the home office on the second floor.

81514 2ND FLOOR(2)

Floor Plan – Second Floor

The Prize

The winner will receive a $100 Home Depot® Gift Card.

Deadline

You have from today until Wednesday September 3, 2014 to enter your name into the comments below. Comments are screened but will be visible after the contest ends. The winner will be announced no later than September 8, 2014.

Have fun and good luck!

5 Gorgeous Walkway Materials To Consider Before Building

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National Curb Appeal Month is coming to a close and we are looking at yet another aspect of a home’s curb appeal, the walkways and driveways. There are a variety of options to choose from and you can be sure that there is something for your project.

Here are some of the most popular walkway materials you can choose from before building your next walkway.

1. Brick

Cambridge Pavers
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TOTO Signs New Distribution Partnership in the Northeast

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Live in the Northeastern and looking to redesign your bathroom with beautiful and energy-efficient products? Today, TOTO®, the largest plumbing manufacturer in the world, announced that the company would be increasing its market reach in the Northeast region of the United States by entering into a distribution agreement with Blackman Plumbing Supply.

Toto Blackman Handshake

David Krakoff (right), President of the Americas Sales Division for TOTO USA, and Robert Mannheimer (left), President and CEO of Blackman Plumbing Supply, ink landmark distribution agreement for the Northeast region of the U.S.

Starting today, TOTO’s® full line of fittings and fixtures will be available at Blackman’s 19 branch locations throughout Long Island, New York, and New Jersey and will be on display at all Blackman showrooms.

Through this partnership, Blackman will be able to able the complete line of TOTO® products to its discerning customers and TOTO® gets increased distribution to their customer base in the Northeast, including retail, wholesale, and commercial customers as well as opportunities to efficiently deliver products where the customers need them.  The added scope of availability is an important addition to TOTO’s® national offering.

“The Northeast region of the U.S. is a high priority for TOTO,” said David Krakoff, President of the Americas Sales Division for TOTO® USA in a press release. “Our ability to partner with an organization of Blackman’s caliber to enhance our coverage of Long Island, New York, and New Jersey is a particularly significant event.”

The two companies are well matched, especially since Blackman embraces TOTO’s® core values—technology and innovation in products that respect the environment while meeting people’s needs for comfort, beauty, performance, and design for people of all ages. Take a look at their line of products on TOTO’s® website or visit a Blackman showroom to see these products in person.

Front Porch Design Ideas To Help You Add Curb Appeal

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Front porch designs are usually modeled after your home’s architectural style — such as Country, Craftsman, Contemporary and Victorian. The style of a porch should fit the architectural style of your home as much as possible otherwise it will look out-of-place and diminish your curb appeal. Just as important as deciding the style of your porch, is deciding the purpose for your porch.

Ask yourself if you plan on using your porch for entertaining or for quiet time? Do you have a view you want to take advantage of or are you looking for privacy?

Take for instance, the Vida Carinosa House Plan.

2552r10
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5 Tips for Selecting Your Exterior Color Scheme

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As the innaugural National Curb Appeal Month continues, we are celebrating by looking at different projects you can do to increase your home’s curb appeal and we are continuing with a simple way to update your home’s exterior: paint.

Your neighborhood, region, and personal tastes, all influence the palette of your home’s exterior, but there are ways that you can make your home stand out even if you stick with neutral colors.

Here are a few tips to keep your home’s paint job looking fresh.

1. Pick Two Hues in Varying Brightness for Accent

Tokalon House Plan
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5 Types of Roofing Materials To Choose From

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When it comes time to choosing a new roof, some key considerations are the type of material, style, color and of course, cost.

There are many different types of roofing materials available now, including a lot of roofing materials that have a variety of green attributes, such as being ENERGY STAR rated or containing recycled content. 

Here are 5 of the most popular roofing materials, including key factors like cost, life span and level of sustainability so you can choose the right roof for your new home: 

Asphalt Shingles

Asphalt Shingles
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National Curb Appeal Month Infographic from Fypon

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National Curb Appeal Month is dedicated to helping homeowners focus on ways to add value and design appeal to their home’s exterior.

During the month of August, Fypon, the creator of National Curb Appeal Month, offers daily curb appeal tips on its Facebook and Twitter pages along with detailed curb appeal information and color advice from national color expert Kate Smith of Sensational Color. 

Below is an infographic all about curb appeal they asked that we share:
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Top 6 Best-Selling House Plans and Why They Have Curb Appeal

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Our collection of house plans spans many different styles with many different features but our best-selling house plans all have one thing in common.

They all have curb appeal.

We are counting down our top 6 house plans and showing you just why these homes will be the envy of any block they happen to appear on.

6. Tres Le Fleur House Plan

Tres Le Fleur
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4 Things You Should Consider Before Planning Your Landscape Lighting

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It’s no secret that lighting is just as important indoors as it is outdoors. While you don’t need as much lighting outdoors, well placed lighting can help improve your safety and show off your yard and garden.

Although the basic principles of lighting remain the same, there are significant differences and concerns that you should consider.

Here are some tips for designing outdoor lighting to accent your space.

theone_lighting
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