Do Home Renovation and Remodel Mean the Same Thing?

When you wish to remodel or renovate your house, the objectives behind the decision can be many. In the first place, a well-planned and cleverly executed home renovation or remodeling project can enhance the comforts, looks and utility features and the resale value of the property. Nevertheless, you must approach the home renovation or remodeling in the right way to get the desired results and not lose your hard earned money unnecessarily during the process. Home renovation and remodeling are two popular terms we come across in a lot of articles, discussions and blogs on the internet. Strangely enough most people confuse these terms with each other and think they both mean the same thing. Here we try to understand the difference between the terms renovation and remodel.

What is common between them?
Both remodeling and renovation mean making some improvements over the existing property. Nevertheless, they are slightly different from each other in terms of what they imply.

Understanding home renovation
The term home renovation refers to restoring the home to a good state by attempting some repairs and rectifications. Poorly maintained buildings and dilapidated constructions will need renovation. Hence we might say renovation will mean resurrect a structure from its deteriorated state to a state of disrepair. There’s no better way to maintain and enhance the value of your home than by a renovation.

Often renovations can be subtle. They might mean either improving upon or repairing on the existing building or house. Sometimes, they can also be drastic or elaborate like a remodel. A project involving renovation will always refer to restoring or repairing a structure that is already existing. It means replacing the old one with a new one better in many regards.

Understanding home remodeling
Remodel will plainly mean changing the existing structure of something. When you look forward to embark on a custom home remodeling Boone IA, you are attempting to change the structure of the property. In case of a bathroom remodel Ames Iowa project, remodeling will mean repairing or updating it to enhance the functionality, features, comfort aspects or looks. Such a project will mean repairing or updating it. Remodels generally involve changing the appearance, function or structure of a segment or the whole of the given property. Remodeling in other terms will mean transforming a building or home.

Why must you know the difference?
When you embark on a home renovation or remodeling project, you must know the difference between these terms so that you have a good sense of clarity while approaching the various aspects of the project. When you interact with the addition contractor Boone IA, you will be able to communicate your expectations without any ambiguity. The costs associated with each type of construction are different. The knowledge about the difference between remodeling and renovation can help approach the home selling in the right way by phrasing your advertisement with the right words to attract the buyer.

Approach the home renovation or remodeling project in the right way
Search for the best home remodeling companies near me on the internet to find the right firm who will do a great job on your home renovation or remodeling project. Communicate what you look for from the project and get multiple quotes to be able to choose the right one for your needs. Remember to let Addition Doctors help you with your next home remodeling project!

Home improvement tools

Home improvement is an exciting as well as challenging mission. When you are set to renovate your home, you will have to first plan well and find out a general remodeling contractor Boone IA. This first step is crucial because the choice of the remodeling contractors Ames Iowa can impact the outcome you can expect from the project.

Make a thorough search
When you look for home remodeling companies near me, you will find a lot of options to narrow down your search. The different sources to choose your best custom home remodeling Boone IA company are online search, referrals from your friends and contacts, and some offline ads. Irrespective of how you find your contractor, you must make sure by working from several angles that the company you choose can do a great job on your home renovation project giving you the desired outcome within your set budget.

Home renovation made easy
Some of the factors that decide on the success of a home remodeling project include a planned approach, deciding well on the goals of the home renovation that will help achieve the desired outcome, a coordinated working between you and the Addition contractor Boone IA, the expertise and experience level of the bathroom improvement contractor and the tools you use for the bathroom remodel Ames Iowa. Here we discuss some of the most wonderful tools available for your home renovation project.

The Ram Rod
Before you install a new item during your home improvement project, you have to take out the old stuff. This is a non-electric tool that can let you break up the old floor tile, brick veneer and concrete patios even without swinging a sledge. The Ram Rod features a spring-powered weight for driving a chisel tip into the tough surface you are required to remove.

Flat Pry Bar
Crescent’s Code Red indexing flat pry bar comes with a pivoting head that can lock into different positions so that you can approach your job from the perfect angle. This will help provide the maximum leverage to you. Also, the adjustable pry bar manufactured by the same company features a sliding jaw that can lock onto the framing components that are stubborn. It can also help in slip-proof wrenching while working with pipes. The equipment has a traditional pry claw for removing bigger nails.

The plier’s wrench
The Pliers Wrench XL is a great tool to avoid the guesswork you might engage in while adjusting the jaws of the tool to fit around an object or a nut. You just have to simply get the jaws closer to the nut or object that you need to work on and squeeze the handles so that the equipment locks around the object with the best pressure. As against the traditional pliers and vise-grips, the jaws of the XL can stay parallel when you operate them for opening or closing. This will rule out the menace of stripped nuts and marred fittings.

Here you go
Approaching your home renovation project like a pro is the best way to get what you want from the project. Though you might not be experienced in this segment, do the right research to find the best home renovation contractors, do the right kind of planning and use the best home improvement tools to succeed in your mission.

Anatomy of Home Remodeling

Approaching your home remodel project in a systematic, planned and structured way is the best way to get the results you expect out of the project. Home remodeling Ames Iowa is exciting as well as the tricky subject. Here are the different steps to go about your home remodeling mission.

  • Step-1
    Hiring the right contractor for your home remodeling is the first step. The important aspects to note here is whether the contractor you choose is bonded and licensed. Go through some customer reviews to ascertain the satisfaction levels they have guaranteed in their earlier works. Studying a handful of options and landing on the bet one is the right way out.
  • Step-2
    Once the room layout and design are completed, the next step is to obtain the necessary permits from the concerned authorities. Building permit and electrical permit are essential. Usually, a good contractor will take care of obtaining them on your behalf.
  • Step-3
    Protect the job site with plastic sheets hung and the floors covered. This is necessary to prevent any damages during demolition if there are any. The materials accumulated during deconstruction can be used once again or sold or donated to good causes.
  • Step-4
    Gather together all the products that the structure demands including framing for new walls, decorative hardware, a new shower as in the case of residential bathroom remodeling Ames Iowa, a toilet, doors, windows, skylights and other fittings and additions as necessary.
  • Step-5
    This stage involves plumbing works, laying new drains, water pipes, and water lines, laying new wires for additional outlets necessary, and installing lights, switches, lighting fixtures, accessories and other appliances as per the plans.
  • Step-6
    A request is submitted for plumbing, electrical and framing inspection. This is done by the concerned local government authorities.
  • Step-7
    Once the inspection gives a green signal, insulations are installed if any are necessary. In some jurisdictions, you are required to submit the photographs of the insulations for the installations to be passed.
  • Step-8
    During this stage, you can plan the painting if there are no other works pending that can cause some scratches on the paintings. You can either do the painting now and carry out the touch-ups if required later or choose to paint at a later stage.
  • Step-9
    Install the flooring. Depending on what type of floor you go for, it can take varying timelines to complete. Install them to a point that the new floor can be walked on without any damages to them. Around this time, you can also install the wainscoting and tile shower surrounds. After curing the floors, protect them by placing a Ram Board for instance.
  • Step-10
    During this stage, you can install the cabinetry and countertops and other appliances you have planned. However, once the countertops are installed, give not less than 12 hours before installing the appliances so that the adhesive is cured well.
  • Step-11
    This is the time to finish the plumbing and electrical works and faucets, hot-water dispensers, decorative lightings, cover plates, and others.
  • Step-12
    Once all the works mentioned above are completed as per your plans, you can call for final inspection. You can allow four working days for the inspector to carry out the inspection. When the project has received the final inspection signoff, you can remove the job site protection and clean up the site.
  • Step-13
    Ask the contractor to give you a walk-through of the entire project to identify issues that concern you and correct them before they commission the project to you. Make a thorough inspection personally spending enough time so that any major and minor rectifications necessary are done before you make the final payment.

4 Types Of Home Renovation: Which Ones Boost the Home Value?

Home renovation is not simply an add-on to your loving home—it actually means a higher value for your property when it comes time to sell it. Now selling your house probably isn’t on your mine right now, but you always want to remember, “A House Is An Investment” so you have the opportunity to improve your investment as you renovate it. A renovated property, devoid of smudge marks on the wall, broken shelves and mould problem will fetch you a higher price when you sell it, right? Well, truly speaking, it depends. Suppose you are living in Iowa and engaged the finest home remodeling service Ames IA, still there is no guarantee that if you spent a fortune on renovating your house, you will end up getting a treasure in return. There is a strategic way of adding value to your house and you need to understand what type of renovation will get you more rewards.

Search on Google for “Professional remodeling contractor Boone IA” and talk to any one of them, you will get different opinions. However, industry standards put four different names to the types of renovation one can do. These are called the Basics, Curb Appeal, Value Added, and Personal Preference. There is a need to understand and categorize all type of renovation tasks in these four categories and choose accordingly.

Now, in this blog, we will understand which one will boost the home value if you are looking to sell your property.

  • The Basics: The basics include basic features of a house that anybody and everybody will look for. Talk about properly functioning plumbing, non-leaky roof, solid floors, and even a working HVAC system. All these can be maintained with small repair jobs and you need not spend exorbitant amount of money to increase the value because they might not get the returns.

  • Curb Appeal: These features, as you work on them, don’t always get too much of monetary value but they help the selling process becoming faster. As clear from the name itself, these features increase the appeal of the property and help in making the decision quicker for a prospective buyer. Things in this type of renovation will include well-maintained lawn, carpets that are clean, fresh paint and even nice-looking fixtures.

    A lot of homeowners add LED lights to make it more design-featured, and some very advanced gadgetry which turns the property into a smart home may also be included in this section.

  • Value Added: Value added features or projects that give you maximum returns include kitchen renovations, new windows and new siding. At the same time, if you have searched on Google for “bathroom remodel Ames Iowa” and find somebody really good to work on your bathroom, it will most likely give you good dividends, along with energy saving features.

  • Personal Preferences: As clear from the name itself, personal preferences are items that you have installed because of your own liking or need. Think of a swimming pool, a wine cellar, ponds, game room, and the likes. Though there is no harm if you have these things in your house but you can expect others to pay for these items separately because they might not like them or need them. So, if you are thinking of spending money to renovate these features, consider carefully.

  • Of Those Four Types of Renovation: Coming from years of living breathing and working in a home remodeling business, there are 4 areas of the house that the general public look for when they’re looking for a house to live in. A nice kitchen is always the most popular. Also a functional and nice clean working bathroom ranks right up there with the kitchen. An attached garage is almost always a must for 95% of the American public. Then windows siding and insulation are critical and important to just about every homeowner and perspective homeowner. These are areas that Addition Doctors focus on because they’re so important to you the home owner. Because we’ve spent so much time improving these areas for our customers, you can trust we’ll continue to make your home addition very comfortable for you. Your home will become hard to separate with until you see the added value you’ve actually built into it when you start talking numbers with a realtor.

    Conclusion: It does not matter what you add to the house unless it has a value for a home—a home needs amenities that will be used by family members and guests and relatives. If you are adding features that are suitable for a guest-house or a hotel, you are actually spending money on a property that may not get the value back because a homeowner will not like to buy a hotel. That’s a separate market there is hardly any need to take up home remodeling projects in that stride.

Finding the Best Remodeling Contractor in Ames, Iowa

Buying a home today is quite expensive considering the increasing cost of homes in the country. Instead of spending a lot of money on a new home, you can always improve what you have. You also increase the value of your home substantially through remodeling and make part of it or all of it more functional. Remodeling a home comes with a lot of benefits including:

  • Significant saving on your money
  • It can be done fast when compared to building a new home
  • Remodeling materials are easy to get today and are affordable
  • Getting a remodeling contractor is accessible and affordable
  • You get a chance to make it right

Getting a right remodeling contractor is not easy though; this is because not all contractors who claim to get the job done will meet the end of their bargain. Here are some of the qualities you should be on the lookout for when hiring one:

  • Expertise: do not settle for a contractor who is just competent in his job but one who is an expert. Competency comes through training, but expertise comes from experience. A right contractor is one who has been doing home remodeling for years. He should be able to prove this by a show of the many projects he has already completed.

  • Reputation: a service provider’s status is everything. Do not settle for what the contractor says but seek to find out what other people say about him or his company. This should be easy to find through reviews and testimonials he has received from his previous customers.

  • Brands: the brand-name of the products that the contractor uses is essential too as this will determine the quality of services you will receive. Check out the list of brands of products, materials, and suppliers the contractor uses, and you will know what to expect in the end.

  • How then do you settle for the best remodeling contractors Ames Iowa?

  • Get recommendations: your friends and family might know of a right contractor you can hire. If not, the National Association of the Remodelling Industry can provide a list of the best contractors in this area. You can talk to a building inspector too. Such inspectors will know the contractors who use quality materials and those who routinely meet the area requirements.

  • Check online: there is a good chance to improve it whether it’s major or minor renovation. These days, many service providers market their products online. You can quickly get a few contractors with a good reputation and strong reviews on the internet. Expert tips that will help you plan, budget and rebuild with the precise implementation of ideas.

  • Conduct interviews: once you have gathered a list, call the prospective contractors and ask specific questions relating to the kind of project you have. Find out if they take your type and size of the project, if they can provide a list of their previous clients, how long they have been in the industry and if they can start right away among other things. Ensure that you investigate the facts.
    Call for a face to face meeting with the best three, and then make plans.

  • There are different kinds of remodeling contractors in Ames, Iowa. You have to dig deeper to find the right one.

5 Good Reasons to Hire a General Contractor For Your Home Remodeling Service Ames IA Area

Whether you are sick of looking at your worn out kitchen laminate countertop or want to have a completely new look in your kitchen, it is vital to hire the best home remodeling service Ames IA area contractor. In any case, at times it may appear like there are more alternatives out there than you imagine. While some homeowners prefer hiring project-specific contractors, there are several advantages you get when you hire a general contractor. If you have been hesitant about hiring a general contractor, here are some reasons why you should hire one.

Home remodeling service ames IA
Remodel with Addition Doctors
  1. You Will Enjoy Better Supervision and Control of your ProjectWhen it comes to remodeling, general contractors are your best bet because they manage and take control of your remodeling project. They supervise how subcontractors complete their work and do all they can to ensure deadlines are met. Though you may consider your remodeling project a small task and don’t need much assistance, a simple kitchen remodel might need more than plumbing and electrical work. Hiring the best general contractor may help take control and supervise the timing, materials cost and everything else.
  2. Broad Understanding of Your Project With Excelent ExperienceIf you are looking for a trustworthy contractor for home remodeling service Ames IA, think about skills and knowledge.  This is one of the qualities you’ll find and enjoy with the Addition Doctors company. While you might consider working with a subcontractor, you are likely to fail to notice some simple mistakes. Hiring a general contractor (GC) can help lower the risk of calamities happening on your property as GCs can identify safety and structural issues even ahead of the project kick off. General contractors are experienced and work with reliable subcontractors who have the necessary skills for your remodeling project.
  3. Customer focusedEvery homeowner planning to hire a contractor for their bathroom remodel Ames Iowa will certainly have a successful remodeling project. Communication is critical to the realization of every project. That is why hiring general contractors make remodeling task successful. More massive projects such as a bathroom remodel, you would require the services of quite a few contractors and this can be stressful to manage. General contractors prioritize your needs and let you focus on other essential things. With the knack to relax and see your project go on, general contractors offer efficient services to clients. They assist you to realize your home remodel dreams while taking the home refashioning stressing off your shoulder.
  4. One contact personSome remodeling projects require you to hire several contractors. This can be stressful regarding supervision if you do not have one contact person to handle all the communication. With general contractors, you have got one contact person who manages the entire job with all and sundry and all services. This eliminates the stress of handling the project alone such as dealing with electricians and plumbers while you’re trying to do your own job at your workplace. It makes it hard to notice any mistakes that most likely will go  unnoticed.
  5. Bottom lineHome remodeling is one of the complicated tasks many homeowners face. But if you are looking to hire a remodeling contractor in central Iowa, consider choosing Addition Doctors as your contractor. Your work will get done in a timely manner, and there is accountability and responsibility throughout the process. It is vital that you also ensure that you hire a licensed and insured contractor regardless of the type of job you want to be done. This is what you will find when you’re working with the Addition Doctors contracting company.

    general contractors ames iowa
    We do porches you’ll love!
bathroom remodel ames iowa
Before and After the Ball

Creek Landscaping

There are so many ways you can do creek landscaping to update the look to the entrance, backyard, or garden area of your home.  Addition Doctors has had some experience dealing with various landscaping ideas.  The website has some great ideas for landscaping.  The most difficult part is finding the right person/people to put everything together.  We have given advise to certain ones about how we set up our own creek landscaping.  Here are some Ideas on how to get started with your dry creek bed.

First try to imagine which way you want the creek to follow down the slope of your hill.. Mark the 2 edges of that course with spray paint. It looks a lot better when you let your course zig-zag back and forth rather than just straight down. You should make sure you have enough slope to make sure water drains properly instead of just pooling up in certain places.  Generally you want 1-2 inches of slope per 10-15 ft.  Always add a few water-falls along the way.

Disguise your creek by hiding it behind boulders or landscaping  and make it wind under a bridge.  When the source of a stream is mysterious, viewers have to use their imagination. And what we construct with our hands is rarely as pleasing as what we construct with our minds
Where and how should I make my creek landscaping end?  Direct your creek towards a pond or let it drain out into a street for the best results!

So much for the course. What about its depth and width? These dimensions don’t have to conform to any rule exactly. Look at dry creek beds in nature: they’re obviously not all of the same depth and width. But there’s a general rule you can follow: dry creek beds tend to be wider than they are deep, which is good news for you.


As your moving along with your project make sure the dirt you are excavating is mounded up in a pile so you can use it later when you need it to fill in around rocks or you need it for planting trees, flowers, or ground cover.  You will need to trench your creek in a way so that you can lay out a rubber or plastic seal so water doesn’t drain out of  your creek and so weeds don’t try to penetrate up throughout your landscaping.

Use mortar to firmly set rocks in place.  It is also important to have a layer of crushed rock underneath your rubber or plastic ground cover so that when the frost comes, it won’t disrupt your mortar very much!   Moving along slowly is better as long as your mortar doesn’t dry up on your too quickly.  When placing rocks, place some vertically along your creek to direct the water down the slope along your path.

After you build dry creek beds, you can dress them up a bit. Plants will soften the edges, for instance. If you’re more ambitious, you can install a landscape bridge over the feature and plant tall ornamental grasses to serve as “bookends” at both entrances to the landscape bridge. Adorn the landscape bridge with hanging container gardens to create a knockout focal point for your yard.

Good luck with your project ahead and give Addition Doctors a call is you would like something like this installed in your front yard, back yard, or landscaping area!

How to Talk to Your Remodeling Contractor Even After Awkward Moments

Beginning a house remodeling project is sometimes like signing up for a new roommate, albeit one you do not know very well. Your family and the construction crew will become intimately familiar with each other over the duration of the remodeling job. This can sometimes produce hilarious results with some awkward moments thrown in as well. Knowing this fact right from the very beginning, even before you sign that contract for the home remodeler, can help you realize that these incidents are almost inevitable. The best way to deal with them is with open communication.

Your home remodeler is going to be in your home for a specified time frame, though this time frame is subject to change. Before choosing the remodel contractors, you likely completed a great deal of research on items based such as their experience, their previous remodeling jobs, and their references. There is one more aspect that you need to make a note of, as well, though. You need to determine if the remodeler is a good communicator.

Sunroom Kitchen By Remodeling Contractor
Sunroom Kitchen Shelving Natural Light

Chances are you have already determined this, at least on some level, as you move through the process of speaking with them about your remodeling project. In order for your residential remodeling project to go as smoothly as possible, and whether the inevitable bumps that are bound to occur, though, you need to note how those sticky questions are answered as you discuss your plans. If the contractor really listens to your concerns and has concrete, actionable ways to address them, then you can be sure that there is the foundation for a good contractor-client relationship.

If, on the other hand, the contractor does not seem to want to address your concerns, such as while you two are completing a walk-through of your home during the consultation phase, or he seems to want to lay the responsibility for those concerns elsewhere, you might want to think twice before using that company. The best way to handle those awkward moments that tend to crop up when people who are practically strangers set up camp in your home for days, or even weeks, on end is to meet them head-on. Bringing the issue up as soon as possible, in a tactful and objective way, helps open the door for further communication. By doing so, the hurt feelings that can fester and grow, resulting in a souring of the contractor-client relationship that is not beneficial to anyone, can often be avoided.

Contractor Shares Once in a Lifetime Photo – Bear Quints

This came over the wire a while back so I have to share it – You should enjoy it too!

Black bears typically have two cubs; rarely, one or three. In 2007, in northern New Hampshire , a black bear sow gave birth to five
Healthy young. There were two or three reports of sows with as many as 4 cubs, but five was, and is, very extraordinary. The photographer learned of them shortly after they emerged from their den and set a goal of photographing all five cubs with their mom – no matter how much time and effort was involved. He knew the trail they followed on a fairly regular basis, usually shortly before dark. After spending nearly four hours a day, seven days a week, for more than six weeks, he had that once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and photographed them. He used the equivalent of a very fast film speed on his digital camera. The print is properly focused and well exposed, with all six bears posing as if they were in a studio for a family portrait.


Contractor enjoys life of the bear quints

The photographer stayed in touch with other people who saw the bears during the summer and into the fall hunting season. All six bears continued to thrive. As time for hibernation approached, he found still more folks who had seen them, and everything remained OK. The photographer stayed away from the bears because he was concerned that they might become habituated to him, or to people in general, and treat them as approachable friends. This could easily become dangerous for both man and animal.

After Halloween, no further reports and could only hope the bears survived until they hibernated. This spring, just before the snow disappeared, all six bears came out of their den and wandered all over the same familiar territory they trekked in the spring of 2007.

The photographer saw them before mid-April and dreamed nightly of taking another family portrait, a highly improbable second once-in-a-lifetime photograph.

On 25 April 2008, he achieved his dream

Bear quints enjoyed by contractor
Second Year Out and Running Strong

When something as magical as this happens between man and animal, Native

Americans say, “We have walked together in the shadow of a rainbow.” And
so it is with humility and great pleasure that I share these
exhilarating photos with you.

The “Elephant in the Unfinished Room:” Dealing With Unscrupulous Contractors

There are horror stories of people hiring a remodeling contractor to do their remodeling who didn’t complete the work according to standards. Sometimes, due to various complaints from the customer or other issues of discontent, the job was left undone, leaving a “gaping hole” in the work (at times, literally). Now because of the work being unfinished or not up to the customer’s satisfaction, the situation begins to stink on both sides, creating the metaphoric Elephant in the Room. All parties recognize the ugly problem, but no one knows exactly what to do about it.

Remodel Contractors Unfinished Room
The Remodeling Contractors Elephant in the Room

So if you’re thinking about construction remodeling and are looking to hire a home remodeler, you just might be at the right place. Before you take that giant leap, there are some factors you should consider before hiring remodel contractors who will give you anything but satisfactory results. After all, you do not want to be left with an elephant stampeding around in an unfinished room because it can’t find its way out. You want to be able to address any potential issues concerning your house remodeling with your potential contractor. Here are some questions you may want to ask previous homeowners to avoid a nasty “jungle beast” situation.

  • Is the potential contractor certified to the work in the state in which the work is to be done? Just because he or she wrote on a website about themselves, or worked in the trade for a while does not mean anything. You will want to check with state contractor regulating agencies to verify this. Usually banks wont even loan money for a project if it isn’t a State licensed contractor doing your work.


  • Has the potential contractor ever had a complaint filed against his or her business? Check with the homeowners to see if they have filed such a complaint. Check with agencies like the Better Business Bureau or Angie’s List to see if any complaints has been lodged against the contractor. While you’re on Angie’s List see what kind of recent reviews they might have.


  • How well does the potential contractor’s past/recent customer satisfaction stand? Ask the contractor if they have a list of some of their recent customers contact information so you can talk to the customer about how well the project experience went for them. Was there any unfinished business that didn’t get answered? This is something you will definitely want to know that you might avoid potential liens against your property if you should refuse to pay because of unsatisfactory or incomplete work.


  • Last but not least, this comes out because I’m a contractor myself and I know from experience that (let’s get the great big elephant out here) MISTAKES DO HAPPEN, or snags come along that hamper the progress – probably more that we want to admit! So ask the home owner how well did that particular contractor handle these situations. Quite often if this is not handled very well, that can make things go sour real fast.


Now that you are aware of some potential circumstances that may arise from dealing with an unscrupulous contractor or home remodeler, you are better equipped to make informed decisions about who to hire. After all, you do NOT want an uncomfortable situation arising during the remodeling that is there, but neither you nor the contractor want to address it. You want to make your contractor remodeling experience a healthy one, and we do also! We can answer any questions you might have about your next remodeling project.

Really the whole idea for doing a remodel addition is to make your life better so why not get somebody that knows how to do it right!