Residential Blog

The Seattle Home Show February 18th-26th

Check out the February edition of the Seattle Home Show at Centurylink Field Events Center. The 68th annual housing extravaganza, America’s Biggest Open House™, will have over 500 home and garden displays, daily “Meet the Experts” seminars, New Products Pavilion area, Made in America feature and wine tasting presented by Lulu Boutique of Lake Chelan. Show exhibits will feature model kitchens and bath vignettes, the newest in building products and materials, landscape displays, living green, arts & crafts and home decorating ideas. Details at

Top 5 Requests for Home Design

Richard Taylor, a contributor to the Zillow Blog, has taken it upon himself to do a little research in the home design arena.  He found that there are a few requests from homeowners that pop up more than the others.  Here are the top five requests.

1) Remodel

2) Keep it under 3,000 square feet

3) Lots of light and windows

4) No wasted space

5) Energy efficient

Ten Ways to Winterize Your Home


As the temperature drops, it is very important to winterize your home.  According to Paul Bianchina of Inman News, there are ten necessary items on the winter checklist in order to prepare your home for the season.

1) Check smoke detectors:
Take time to count your smoke detectors and to change the batteries.

2) Install a carbon-monoxide detector:
Chances for carbon-monoxide poisoning increases during the winter months as houses are kept closed.

3) Service your heating system:
You should perform a complete system check annually looking for worn belts or other servicing needs.

4) Upgrade your thermostat:
If your current thermostat is off by even a couple of degrees, it could result in substantial wasted energy.

5) Trim trees:
Winter is prime time for wind storms.  Have a professional tree-trimming service inspect the condition of overhanging limbs and safely cut them back as needed.

6) Check the gutters:
Clear gutters of leaf and pine needle debris and make sure the opening from the gutter to the downspout is unobstructed.

7) Break out the caulk:
Caulking around windows, doors, pipes and exterior outlets can make a huge difference in your heating bills.

8 ) Drain Sprinkler systems:
This is also time to shut off outdoor faucets and install freeze-proof faucet covers.

9) Adjust exterior grade:
Make sure that everything slopes away from your home’s foundation to avoid problems with groundwater.

10) Change light timers:
If you have exterior lights with timer settings, adjust the times to account for winter darkness.

New HGTV Magazine

The brand new HGTV magazine launched its first test issue yesterday with a small batch of 350,000.  According to Sarah Firshein of, “all 144 pages of issue one have something to do with the home: maintaining it, decorating it, improving it, updating it, arguing about it, fixing it, asking questions about it, and even starting at the very beginning and buying it.” This is the second TV- network turned magazine that Hearst as taken on.  The Food Network Magazine and all of its success, may be an indicator of the future of the Home and Garden publication.

For more on the magazine and an interview with the editor in chief Sara Peterson check out the entire article on

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation’s Seattle Campus: Greenest Non-Profit in the World

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation‘s new Seattle Campus was recently awarded a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design for New Construction (LEED) Platinum certification for energy conservation and environmental design, the highest level of green certification.

The new campus includes 2 acres of “living roofs”, a 1 million gallon rain storage tank, and a solar array made of 47 evacuated tube collectors which provides energy for roughly 36 percent of the domestic hot water use on the foundation campus.  The NBBJ architecture and design firm reported that the campus uses 40% less energy that it would use without the energy saving features.  Check out the entire slide show on the Puget Sound Business Journal’s Website.