Tag Archives: Home Renovation

Bartelt Cover Story in Qualified Remodeler

One of our farmhouse remodels is featured as the cover story in Qualified Remodeler Magazine’s May 2017 issue. Learn more about the project and hear from our very own Rick Bartelt, Matt Retzak, and Heather Scott.

Click on the cover to read the article!

Qualified Remodeler May 2017

Bartelt Named 2017 National Contractor of the Year

NARI National CotY Winner
Bartelt was named the 2017 National Contractor of the Year (CotY) by the National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI) for the Entire House $500,001 – $750,000 category.

Wauwatosa Butler's Pantry“We are honored to be named the 2017 National Contractor of the Year in this category,” said Rick Bartelt, owner. “We would not have achieved such a high honor without the expertise and dedication of the entire team, including our designers, carpenters, production staff, trade partners and customers.”

Contractors from seven regions nationwide vie for the awards on an annual basis. An impartial panel of judges, who are experts within the industry and associated fields, selected winners based on problem solving, functionality, aesthetics, craftsmanship, innovation, degree of difficulty and entry presentation.

Earlier this year, NARI named 172 Regional CotY winners with 27 team members who advanced as finalists to the national level. NARI announced a National winner in each of the 37 categories at its Evening of Excellence reception, held in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Wauwatosa Kitchen RemodelAfter previous remodels, the winning project was dated, and the spaces lacked unity. The homeowners wanted to enhance the home’s original charm, creating a cohesive design throughout the various rooms, while highlighting their eclectic style and accommodating their modern lifestyle. The remodel features a new mudroom, kitchen expansion, family room, butler’s pantry, first floor bathroom, dining room, and master bathroom. Throughout the project, it was important to increase the natural light in the home and make the spaces more conducive to entertaining. Now, the home is a balanced mix of the homeowners’ eclectic taste and more traditional details.  Bartelt worked with interior designer Jeff Wasserman to complete the project.

See the winning project on Houzz.

The Wrong House

Turn that Fixer Upper into Your Dream Home.

You’re ready to make the move. You’ve landed on a budget and researched what you could buy or build for that price point, but the available home inventory is low or lacking those turnkey, ready-to-move-in homes.

Where do you go from here? Do you decide to build? Building is definitely an option, but there can be some trade-offs.

It may be time to consider the “fixer upper.”  What do we mean by “fixer upper?”  It’s the wrong house in the right place at the right price. It’s in an established neighborhood, a desirable location with good schools and tree-lined streets, but it doesn’t quite fit the bill. Perhaps, the previous homeowners have lived there for years. They’re comfortable and think it works, but the home needs updating (sometimes major updating) and a more functional layout.

Maybe choosing that home that’s under your means***, that’s in the right place, but needs some love seems overwhelming. But it can be a fun challenge, and the perfect opportunity to have everything you ever wanted in a home.  Let’s look at the “perks” of choosing a fixer upper.

Location, Location, Location

We all know that location is often king! It’s important to be near parks, shopping, restaurants, and good schools. Beyond your must-have location list, the fixer upper is usually in an established neighborhood, which means mature trees, landscaping, and other amenities.

Not-So-Cookie-Cutter

It may seem appealing to purchase or build a new home (perhaps, it’s the easier option – the work has already been done for you), but customization and character are definitely limited. Think about driving into a new subdivision with freshly built homes.  They’re lovely, but you may notice something – they’re all essentially the same.  Sure, they may have varying color schemes or different window configurations, but they truly lack charm and a unique “personality.”

Remodeling the fixer upper will ensure you don’t end up in that cookie cutter home.  Older homes often have hard-to-replicate architectural details and other charming features.  Plus, once you begin the remodeling process, you’ll realize there is a lot of opportunity to be creative and tailor your home to your preferences (sometimes to an overwhelming extent, which is why hiring professionals to guide you is the best approach).

Quality Over Quantity

Renovating a fixer upper can often cost as much as a building a new home, but there’s an important difference.  In a new home, you’re putting your money towards quantity items – moldings, windows, doors, hardware, flooring, cabinetry, appliances, HVAC systems, plumbing fixtures, landscaping, a driveway.  A new home needs everything!  Remodeling gives homeowners more flexibility to put their money towards quality materials and high-end finishes because there are existing details that can be saved, repurposed, or remain completely untouched.

Now, let’s look at this idea in action. Here is an example of our clients’ fixer upper that was transformed into their dream home!

Check out more photos of this project on Houzz!

***For example, you may have a $450,000 budget for a home, and you decide to purchase a $300,000 home, leaving $150,000 for renovations and an opportunity to truly customize the home to your needs and preferences.

Bartelt Named Best of Houzz 2017

Best Of Houzz 2017Bartelt was awarded Best Of Houzz 2017 in the Design category by Houzz, the leading platform for home remodeling and design. We were chosen by the more than 40 million monthly unique users that comprise the Houzz community.

“We are honored to be named Best Of Houzz 2017 in the Design category,” said Rick Bartelt, owner. “It is the result of our team’s dedication to innovative design and superior craftsmanship.”

The Best Of Houzz is awarded annually in three categories: Design, Customer Service, and Photography. Design award winners’ work was the most popular among the more than 40 million monthly users on Houzz.

Follow Bartelt on Houzz.

Recent Project: Rustic Lower Level Remodel

The homeowners wanted to transform their empty basement into another living space that both the adults and teenagers could enjoy.  It needed to be a comfortable area to watch movies, entertain, and relax.  The remodeled space offers a cozy, rustic aesthetic.

Oconomowoc Lower Level Before

The Bar

Oconomowoc Lower Level Remodel

The lower level bar area is ideal for entertaining!  It features beverage refrigerators, a hammered copper sink, custom, character-grade cherry cabinetry, a stacked stone backsplash, and leathered Juparana Classico Supreme granite.

The Family Room

Oconomowoc Lower Level Remodel

Neighboring the bar area, the family room includes a stacked stone fireplace and weathered beams.  This space also features French doors with views to the screened-in porch.

The Game Area

Oconomowoc Lower Level Remodel

Arched openings and travertine tile run throughout the lower level, adding character to the space. The billiards room has space for numerous games, something that can be enjoyed by both the kids and adults.

The Powder Room

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The powder room features a floating top, a vessel sink made from a boulder, and double arches.

The Three-Season Room

Oconomowoc Walk-Out Before

 

 

 

 

 

Oconomowoc Screened Porch Addition

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A portion of the existing lower level was exposed to create a walk-out with access to a new three-season room that showcases the homeowners’ scenic yard.

Oconomowoc Screened Porch Addition

 

 

 

 

 

The new three-season room allows the homeowners to enjoy their surroundings without having to worry about bugs or the elements.  It features cedar, a reclaimed brick wall, and a stained cement floor.

See this beautiful project on the Metropolitan Builders Association Parade of Remodeled Homes, Sept. 12-13, 2015.  More details, including the address, will be posted on our events page as the date gets closer.

Matt Retzak Interview in Lake Country Publications

Bartelt designer, Matt Retzak, was recently interviewed for a feature in Lake Country Publications.  Check out the article “Home makeover” to learn more about the remodeling process.

Matt Retzak in Lake Country Publications

Bartelt’s Mary Sweet in “Kitchen Musts” in 30West Magazine

What are some products and amenities you can incorporate into your kitchen to create a luxurious space?  Find out in the article “Kitchen Musts” on page 12 of 30West magazine where our designer, Mary Sweet, is quoted.

See the article here.

Bartelt in 30West MagazineBartelt in 30West Magazine

The Remodeling Process

A common remodeling question we get is, “Where do we start?” You have the need to remodel and have ideas for your space, but how do you get the ball rolling? Here is a brief overview of the Bartelt remodeling process to help you understand where to begin and what to expect as your project progresses.

Initial Meeting

After your first phone call, we set up a complimentary meeting with a project designer to discuss your needs, wants, and wishes for your home, helping you define your priorities and budget. Check here for the “Needs, Wants, and Wishes” template to get started.

Design Agreement and Field Measure

Once a fee is paid and a preliminary design agreement is signed, the project designer schedules a second meeting, or a field measure. During the field measure, we review the project goals and measure and photograph the existing conditions of the project site. The design process also includes a mechanical walk-through to coordinate the electric, HVAC, and plumbing systems.

Design Review Meetings

The first design review meeting is scheduled three weeks after the field measure. Over the course of these meetings, your design will evolve from a general concept to specific details. Elevations, hand-drawn perspectives, and a 3D rendering help you visualize your project. We also continue to develop your budget, discuss materials, and revise the design.

Client Full Presentation

After reviewing the specifications and plans, the project designer schedules a client full presentation appointment to review the paperwork. The designer then works on the construction documents, obtaining engineering calculations, municipal design approval, and permits.

Ready to Build

The design team works with the production staff to discuss details and unique challenges. Shortly after signing the construction agreement, you begin meeting with our on-staff interior designer to finalize selections of finishes, products, and materials.

Pre-Construction Meeting

The project designer and production staff walk through the remodel site with you. This meeting is a great time to meet the team and ask any questions you may have regarding the logistics of the project. Our goal is to set up a communication system that will guarantee a smooth, safe, and timely completion of your project.

Construction Phase

Our production team works diligently to keep the lines of communication open. To ensure all of your expectations are met, an on-going relationship with the production administrator and manager is vital. The production administrator handles day-to-day schedules and accounting and coordinates all subcontractors. The production manager and lead carpenter oversee the crew and field work.

On most projects, Rick Bartelt, your designer, and the production manager meet with you onsite on a weekly basis to review progress and discuss the next steps.

Completion

When the project nears completion, the production manager walks through the project with you and forms a “punch list” of items that need to be addressed before we leave the site. The project coordinator makes a final visit to receive feedback, give you warranty and product usage information, and offer operation tips. Then it’s time to enjoy your new space!

Save Money and Energy this Winter

It’s that time of year again. The temperatures are falling, and your energy bills may be rising. Here are some tips to help you achieve better energy efficiency this winter, and, hopefully, save you some money.Hartland Fireplace
  • Maintain the furnace. It’s important to have a professional “check up” every year. Also, make sure to clean or replace the filters monthly.
  • Let the light in. Open your curtains or shades on south-facing windows during the day to allow the sun to naturally heat your home. Close them at night to reduce the chill.
  • Use a programmable thermostat. Set it so the temperature is lower while you’re away or sleeping and warmer when you’re home.
  • Close the fireplace damper (unless you’re burning a fire). A lot of warm air can escape from this area.
  • Use Energy Star® rated appliances. Energy Star appliances, bulbs, electronics, and other equipment meet strict efficiency guidelines set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and U.S. Department of Energy. 
  • Turn the water temperature down. Set the temperature to 120 degrees to save some money.
    • Consider a heat-air exchange system for your fireplace.  This equipment blows warmed air back into the room.
For more energy efficieny tips, visit these links:

http://1.usa.gov/Tnb8zY
http://bit.ly/T7KnBE