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Inspiring Examples of Outdoor Living Spaces

Outdoor living spaces are an ideal spot for friends or family gatherings. Whether you want to throw a barbeque party, organize a casual hangout on a cool night around a fireplace, or watch a football match with your buddies, outdoor living space can be the perfect venue.

However, designing an outdoor living can be equally fun and intimidating – especially if you’re doing it for the first time. You want something that is functional and resourceful, but you also want it to be fun and aesthetic. Of course, comfort is often the most important factor.

Finding the sweet spot between all of these can be daunting. Lucky for you, we have some tried and tested outdoor living space ideas that will certainly take your porch to the next level.

1.   Outdoor Fireplace

Perhaps, the best thing you can do to your outdoor living space is turning it into an outdoor fireplace. Who doesn’t like to spend a cool evening curled up next to a fireplace? Having an outdoor fireplace gives you the opportunity to have makeshift camp night basically whenever you want.

You wouldn’t need to go to the woods to enjoy some roasted sausages or marshmallows under the stars – you can just do it on your porch. On cooler nights, you can just go and have some quiet time next to the fire anytime you want. Setting up a fireplace in your outdoor living space is a decision you won’t regret.

2.   Outdoor Kitchen

Love hosting barbeques and outdoor lunches? Why not set up an outdoor kitchen outside your home? Not only will this make it easier for you to host these events, but it will also save you a lot of time from going back and forth to the kitchen for minor errands.

Nowadays, you can easily furnish your outdoor kitchen with a variety of amenities. This means that you can add small refrigerators, a variety of cooktops, a grill, some cabinets, and even a sink in your outdoor kitchen. These outdoor kitchen appliances usually come in stainless steel materials, making them less susceptible to weather damage.

3.   Open-Air Cinema

One key area where outdoor living spaces have drastically evolved is the inclusion of technology outdoors. The modern convenience of flat screens allows you to set up an open-air cinema right in your backyard or your front porch. You could even set up a projector for more convenience.

You wouldn’t have to go to a drive-in cinema to enjoy a movie under the stars anymore. In addition to that, you get a lot more choices on what you want to watch. Whether you want to host a movie night or gather some friends to watch football, you can do whatever you want in your backyard. However, make sure to set any electrical gadgets under a protected shelter to keep them safe against the weather.

 

When it comes to setting up your outdoor living space, the possibilities are endless. And if you need the inspiration to start, you can easily try one of the above ideas.

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4 Reasons Why People Love Open Floor Plans

When it comes to designing your interior, you want something that is modern and chic but also timeless to stand the test of time. While you can theoretically update your interior whenever you want, most people prefer to stick to a design for the long run.

This is one of the main reasons open floor plans are becoming more popular among people nowadays.

Open Floor Plans

Open floor plans refer to two or more traditional spaces – such as the living room and kitchen – being joined together to form a larger space that feels grander. These rooms are typically separated by walls in traditional homes, which can make the space feel smaller and closed off.

Here are a few reasons people love open floors plans over traditional homes.

1.    Better Lighting and Air Flow

Homes built with open-floor plans seem lighter and airier than rooms than homes with separated rooms. Since there is no obstruction, light can easily travel from one room to another. Additionally, the airflow and the temperature of the house also improves due to the lack of obstruction.

2.    Improved Energy Efficiency

Having an open floor plan may actually save you a lot of money in the long run. Wide-open spaces are easier to cool and heat, which can significantly cut down on electricity bills and utilities during extreme temperatures. Additionally, the unobstructed lighting will lead to you turning on your lights less often.

3.    Making Entertaining Enjoyable

Everyone’s been there at least once – you throw a party but then end up spending so much time in the kitchen that you are barely able to host the guests. An open floor can easily solve this issue. The lack of separation between the kitchen and living room can enable you to interact with your guests more freely while also getting last-minute chores done. This may be one of the most important reasons people are starting to appreciate open floor plans.

4.    Improved Real Estate Value

While this may not be an immediate benefit, it is certainly worth considering. Since open floor plans add functional square footage, they appeal to many homebuyers. This means that in case you decide to sell your home down the road, you are most likely to get a better price with your open home plan.

 

If you’re planning on building your dream house or even thinking of buying one, it would certainly be a smart idea to look into open home plans.

Categories News

Beating the Summer Heat – Are your Walls and Floors Insulated?

Summer heat is almost upon us, and Tennessee can get fairly hot and humid during the season. You will probably be turning up your HVACs to keep the house cool during this time, but are you sure your energy is not being wasted? Does your house have the energy insulation needed to avoid wastage?

Why Energy Efficiency Is Important

Energy efficiency involves creating the right insulation at home to avoid energy wastage through the house’s walls and floors. Having an energy-efficient home is beneficial for the following reasons:

  1. Reduced Cost – Energy wastage directly increases energy consumption and its subsequent costs, making it more expensive to keep the house cool against the summer heat.
  2. Environmentally Friendly – Energy efficiency is a sustainable and responsible form of energy consumption as it reduces greenhouse gases and optimizes energy production and distribution.

Therefore, it not only helps the environment but also saves money on utility bills.

How to Achieve Energy Efficiency at Home

There are several ways you can achieve energy efficiency at home, and some of the best techniques are as follows:

1.    Blow-In Insulation

Blow-in insulation is popular in Tennessee and provides a thermal blanket to prevent energy from leaking through several parts of the house. It is one of our most requested services because it has quicker installation and also helps dampen sound transfer from one room to another.

2.    Reflective Insulation

Reflective insulation is an extremely effective method of achieving energy efficiency. Our walls and floors have the potential to absorb heat, resulting in it leaking outside. Reflective insulation adds a surface to homes that reflect back the heat instead of absorbing it, preventing it from leaking outside.

3.    Solar Attic Fans

Using Solar Attic fans is one of the most sustainable methods of achieving energy efficiency because they capitalize on solar energy to maintain desired heat. They have become increasingly popular in Tennessee in recent years due to their advanced ventilation and optimized energy consumption.

They are installed in the attic or rooftops to give them open access to sun rays to power up.

Conclusion

To sum up, energy efficiency has both environmental and cost benefits, making it an attractive home enhancement. You can use blow-in insulation, reflective insulation, or solar attic fan to achieve it to improve your energy consumption during the summer and save on utility bills.

If you want to get any of these three energy insulation systems installed in your home, please contact us. Now is the right time to get it done so you have the system ready right when the heat takes over.

Categories News

Memorial Day Ideas – Paying Respect with Outdoor Activities and Decorations

Memorial Day is one of the most important holidays of the year because it is when we can commemorate our brave fallen soldiers and recognize the ones who continue to fight for our freedoms. Their efforts deserve respect from all of us who live peacefully as a result of the sacrifices they have made.

While there are several ways you can spend the holiday, getting involved in Memorial Day activities or putting up Memorial Day decorations is a great way to celebrate it. Below are a few ideas you can use to remember and celebrate our veterans who keep us all safe.

1.    Decorate a Flag or Wreath Outdoors

One of the best outdoor Memorial Day decorations that pay respect to our veterans is the US flag. Set it up on your window, lawn, or a visible area of your house as a show of solidarity and patriotism. You can also set up a wreath made from the flag colors and hang it up at your door for visitors to see.

2.    Watch a Parade

Memorial Day parades are common in smaller towns and cities, and they are a beautiful way to honor the fallen and the serving soldiers. Going to watch a Memorial Day parade in your area will show support and become a nice Memorial Day activity for you and your family.

3.    Take Flowers to a Veteran’s Grave

Several brave soldiers have given up their lives fighting for the freedom we enjoy in our great country. Although they are gone, you can celebrate their sacrifice by visiting a veteran graveyard near your home. You can take flowers for their graves and say a prayer for them, to thank them for their service.

4.    Grocery Shop for a Local Veteran

The best Memorial Day activities are those that recognize the sacrifices our veterans have made by helping them out as they manage their life back home. If you know a veteran, offer to buy them groceries as a way to pay your respect and to thank them for all they have done.

It’s a small gesture that goes a long way and makes a huge difference for the ones struggling to get accustomed to life outside of the military.

Final Thoughts

We can never repay the sacrifice our soldiers and veterans have made, but we can pay our respects through the right Memorial Day activities. Make time to remember them, say prayers, and support them to properly thank them for their services.

Categories News

Calculate Your Optimal Electricity in 4 Simple Steps

With summer rolling in, your electricity consumption will increase once more, which is a common occurrence. However, do you often spend hours wondering whether your electricity bill is too high based on your usage?

This is an understandable concern, especially with the rising electricity costs around the country. The good news is that you don’t have to make ambiguous guesses. There is a simple way to calculate your electricity bill based on consumption. Once you have the figure, you can compare it with what you get charged and decide the next steps.

How to Calculate your Electricity Bill

To calculate your energy bill, you will only need a pen, paper, and a calculator. Yes, it is that simple! Once you have the materials, simply follow these 4 steps:

Step 1

Determine the wattage of your electrical appliance and multiply it by its daily usage hours. Repeat this process for each electrical appliance.

Step 2:

Add the total figure of all appliances and divide the sum by 1000.

Step 3:

Multiply the result by the kWh rate charged by your electricity provider to get the daily consumption bill.

Step 4:

Multiply this number by the number of days in the month, and you will have your electricity bill.

Following this simple process will give you the electricity bill you can compare to the actual bill.

 

What to Do if Your Electricity Bill Is High

If your actual electricity bill is substantially higher than your calculated bill, it means your house is not properly insulated and energy is leaking out through the walls and floors. To prevent energy wastage and reduce your electricity bill, you can get one of these systems installed in your home:

  1. Blow-in Insulation
  2. Reflective Insulation
  3. Solar Attic Fans

These insulation systems mentioned above are popular in Tennessee for achieving energy efficiency and will help you save costs.

Conclusion

Calculating your electricity bill is a simple 4-step process and extremely helpful. Knowing the calculated electricity bill will help you objectively analyze your energy consumption and determine if your house needs insulation.

If you are looking for energy insulation services and want to get your preferred systems installed, please contact us immediately. Blue Star Construction has been in this business for several years, and our teams will happily provide you with the services you need.