Clay Construction Inc. has been recognized in the Greater Vancouver area as a highly acclaimed custom home builder with a proven track record of creating exceptionally crafted luxury homes. Follow this blog to learn the first steps to a successful custom home build or home renovation to the high standards of Clay Construction.
Thank you so much to everyone who came out and toured our parade home yesterday. We enjoyed seeing so many familiar faces along with meeting some of you for the first time. For those of you who missed Larry and Cathy from Phase One Design’s Facebook Live, you can watch it here. And for those of you who were unable to make it out but are considering a project, you can tell us a bit more here. We’re already looking forward to next years parade!
We are excited to invite you to the 26th annual Home Builders Association Vancouver (HAVAN) Parade of Homes! This annual event showcases an exclusive collection of professionally custom-built and renovated homes in Metro Vancouver. This year Clay Construction has a relatable renovation in Port Moody on display. If you’re considering a new home or renovation we encourage you to visit our parade location to view our craftsmanship up close and to meet our team. We hope to see you June 9th!
To register for HAVAN’S entire parade, click here. To RSVP for Clay’s parade location only, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
ABOUT THE PROJECT
This main floor and master suite renovation is a relatable must-see! When these homeowners purchased this house in Port Moody, they were buying it for the location. With dated design and a non-functional floorplan, they knew they would renovate, it was just a matter of when. Now, this house boasts a modern front door, open concept modern kitchen, an 11ft island with a secondary sink and wine fridge, and a two-sided corner gas fireplace. In the master you can find an ensuite with a his and hers vanity, a private water closet, and an enclosed glass shower complete with a bench and rain-head. And although we can’t take credit for it, the house has an unobstructed view of Burrard Inlet – making this home truly special.
To view this parade location in Google Maps, click here.
We hope to see you there! In the meantime, stay in touch…
If you are
considering undertaking a home renovation project, now might be the perfect
opportunity to make your home greener. There are many modern upgrades and
technologies that can make your home more energy efficient. Here are some
suggestions of what you could do during your renovation.
If you are
taking on a massive renovation, you may already have your walls open. This may
be the perfect time to give your insulation a check and make sure it is
adequate. Insulation helps to keep heat in during the cold months, and out
during warmer months. You should also check to make sure the insulation in your
attic is adequate.
also be the perfect time to replace those old windows with new ones. Windows
are the places where most of your heat is lost, and older, single pane windows
do a poor job of retaining heat. This means your furnace or baseboards must
work harder and longer. There are double or even triple pane options that are
much more efficient. You may also want to add new window coverings as part of
your renovation, especially ones that can reflect the sun and keep the room
cooler in those hot summer days.
Smart Home Technologies
many new smart home devices which can help to save energy and make homes more
green. These can be added near the end of your renovation and options include
smart thermostats, smart light switches, and even automated window shades.
Efficient Appliances and Heating
renovation is also the best time to upgrade your old appliances and get newer,
energy efficient ones. Not only will new appliances look great, but they will
also reduce your home’s environmental footprint and save you money in energy
costs. You may also consider upgrading your furnace to a high efficiency model
and hot water tank to a tankless option to further make your home greener.
renovation is the perfect time to consider the ways that you could make your
home more environmentally friendly – not only reducing energy, but saving you
You probably do not often think about how the materials your
home is built from may be detrimental to your health. Many homeowners are
unaware that certain building materials can contain VOCs, or volatile organic
compounds. When custom home building, consider using low VOC materials that
will result in a healthier home environment.
Paint is not all made the same. When choosing paints, there
are many varieties, brands and types available. Paint is perhaps the biggest
and most immediate culprit for releasing VOCs, as it covers much of the surface
area of a home. The highest risk for VOC emissions with paint tend to be while
the paint is being applied and drying, with gradual reduction over time. When
choosing paint, look for low-VOC options with less than 50 grams per liter of
When deciding on flooring for your custom home, you may
decide to stain and finish hardwood flooring. Similar to wall paint, stains and
wood finishes can also contain a high amount of VOCs, which can slowly emit
over time. Thankfully, there are options and products available with low VOC
Another consideration with flooring is with the use of vinyl.
Make sure the vinyl flooring you choose is phthalate free, as well as to use a
glue that is low VOC or VOC free.
Adhesives and Caulk
Adhesives and caulking used for finishing various aspects of
your custom home may also contain high levels of volatile organic compounds.
When choosing these materials, make sure that they contain 70 grams of VOC per
liter or less. If you are putting any tile products, make sure that any grout,
mortar and sealant products are also low VOC or VOC free.
Following these suggestions and being aware of building
material choices can help to make your custom home a happier, and healthier
Being one of the best cities in the world has a price. Real
estate is always a hot topic in Vancouver. Over the last couple years, new
regulations, taxes & fee changes have ben put in place to regulate the
The real estate market is much more than a few extra
projects coming onto the market. What is
in store for 2019 is very difficult to predict.
Supply & demand are affected by interest rates, world market
conditions, local market conditions, government regulations and general overall
Even amongst authorities in the real estate market, there
are conflicting views with regards to the Vancouver real estate market. The
Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation has gone on record and predicted a
stronger sales year for 2019 when compared to that of 2018. In contrast to
this, the Canadian Real Estate Association has forecasted an even further drop
in sales, building on the drop in 2018.
Is there a housing bubble?
Bearish individuals may say yes. Many
media outlets disagree, and insist we will not see a massive crash that some
have predicted to be coming for years. Maybe it’s a great time to buy. A softened market in 2019, thanks to the
sales declines of 2018, may be the perfect time to buy that piece of land,
contact Clay Construction, and build the custom luxury home you have always
dreamed about. Get that land now.
Besides Hawaiian volcanoes and a few dump trucks, the world isn’t making
any more of it.
Not all homes are designed with accessibility in mind. In fact, few homes are wheelchair ready. When considering your design for your custom home, it might be important to talk to your home builder about how to make an accessible home. Here are some tips for custom designing your accessible home.
Many homes are built slightly elevated, and have front steps to enter the main door. When designing your home, make sure that the entrance is built to be accessible, and that if the house is elevated, enough room for a ramp is given. In addition, the exterior and interior doors should all be wide enough for wheelchair access. This might mean making doorways and openings at least 36” wide.
Switches, Outlets and Other Features
An often-overlooked feature of a home is the height that light switches, thermostats, alarm control panels and other features are placed at. These controls should be placed at heights that allow easy access. If this is not possible, using Wi-fi switches and other smart home devices may be a suitable substitute.
The kitchen is often the most inaccessible feature of any home. When designing an accessible home, it is important to consider factors such as lowering the height of the sinks and countertops and giving lots of ground-level cupboard access.
The bathroom is another feature to really consider making accessible changes to. Similar to the kitchen, accessible bathrooms should have lowered countertops and sinks. A roll-in shower is also an excellent feature to include. Any bathtubs should also have grab bars.
Accessible homes are not always readily available, so if you are considering building your own dream home, it may be best to consider a custom home, and talk to your home builder about these tips, and more.
Well you’ve moved in to your brand new, custom built home just in time for the Christmas holidays. Now you need to get ready for Christmas and you are starting to panic! Construction is complete and your home looks beautiful, but you are feeling the pressure to make your everything perfect for family arriving sooner than you’d like.
Your family is not going to care whether you’ve decked the
halls to the nth degree and you know it.
But you care, so here are a few tips to get your new home prepared for
With a new home, especially a custom home with high peaks that seem to touch the sky, you likely won’t have time to illuminate the roofline with the latest strings of Christmas lights. Save those eaves for next year. A few strings of lights on a front yard tree or two and maybe lights along the lower level of the house would do it. Add a fresh wreath to the front door and some fir boughs to up the Christmas cheer level. Then spice up the inside entrance –candles and string lights can look elegant and welcoming in a foyer. If you do have a bit of extra time, do some Christmas crafts with your kids. Here is a link for 70 Christmas Decorating Ideas if you get stuck.
It’s a new home. Your guests know that and understand that you have been frantically unpacking boxes and setting up house. Throughout the home construction and moving in process, you have lost track of where all the decorations went to. For the last several months, your life was build, build, build. There was no thought of Christmas. Now you are supposed to be settled and you need to get ready, and fast! So in the house, you need focus on the areas where everyone is going to be – probably the living room. Number 1 priority is to get your tree up and decorated. Spend sometime on the mantle. Make sure there is enough seating areas for all your guests. Consider a Christmas scented candle or two around the house – it’s easy and adds a nice touch.
If you have the time to get to your guest rooms, you could
incorporate a simple garland with lights across the dresser, or holiday themed
throw pillow on the bed. You will need
fresh linens and somewhere to put their luggage and gifts.
If baking defines you, then maybe you want to stay up late
at night for a baking marathon like my mom used to do. If you aren’t particularly known for your
Christmas baking, then skip it. Use that
time to find that missing Christmas box in storage. And no baking means you won’t have to worry
about getting used to a new stove. There
are lots of bake sales this time of year.
Failing that, the local grocery stores usually have a pretty good bakery
Being in a lovely new custom home is great and enjoy
it. And the holiday season isn’t meant
to be stressful time. You may not be
able to do absolutely everything you want to be prepared for your Christmas
guests, so prioritize. Do the easy
stuff. Get help. Buy some baking. Remember to relax. Enjoy your family. Drink some egg nog.
Heat loss is a very important factor when looking at any home to purchase. In an un-insulated home, about 30% of the heat loss occurs through the roof, 13% through doors and windows, 16% through walls and 16% through the floor. Those numbers are all huge, especially when you think of the money being wasted as you’re heating your home and it’s all going to waste.
A thermal bridge can account for heat loss up to 30 percent in an insulated home. Basically, a thermal bridge can almost render your insulation nearly ineffective, especially if there are large amounts of thermal bridging. Careful planning and design when starting to build a new home, or renovating an existing home, are essential to preventing or limiting thermal bridges.
But what is a thermal bridge? It happens when there is a path within the home construction that allows heat to pass through and escape. Bridges occur when materials that don’t provide insulation come in contact with each other and allow the heat to bypass the insulating materials around it. These commonly occur at junctions between walls, roofs, and floors, holes cut for pipes and cables, window and door reveals, and wall ties used in masonry.
Homes with lots of thermal bridging will find that their home isn’t as energy efficient as they were hoping. More electricity/gas is used to heat the home since the insulation just isn’t as effective as it should be. Also, the cold surfaces will lead to condensation providing a propensity for mould growth and rot.
How do you prevent thermal bridging? Exterior rigid insulation and insulated foundations are two ways to minimize thermal bridging. Wall assemblies must be carefully considered to prevent the bridging that occurs at the junctions between walls, floors, and roofs. Proper planning, design and an experienced construction team are very important.
This is another reason Clay Construction is the best company to contact about custom built homes. We understand the best techniques to reduce thermal bridging to ensure your home is as energy efficient, healthy and comfortable as possible.
According to a recently released study, Metro Vancouver is the most expensive city in Canada to build a new single-detached home. Toronto-based C.D. Howe Institute released a study in August 2018, that outlined the cost of building a single-detached home in metropolitan regions across the country.
By calculating the costs of building a new home compared to buying one, they estimated that a home in Greater Vancouver cost $644,000 more. The second-most expensive metropolitan area is Abbotsford-Mission, which cost $311,000 more.
So why is this so much more expensive? The report cited the following reasons:
Land accessibility. In Metro Vancouver, it’s much more difficult to get access to land to build on. There are very few spaces that are available, which drives up the prices, and that is included into the final price of the home.
Protection of Agricultural Land. BC protects agricultural land and severely restricts any development on this land deemed for farming. This reduces the amount of accessible land and in cities with large farming areas, such as Abbotsford, leads to higher land prices elsewhere.
Non-resident demand. Non-resident buyers drive up the costs of property and tend to own houses and condos that are far more valuable than that which is owned by residents. According to StatsCan data, non-resident buyers own as much as 19 percent of the condos built between 2016 and 2017 in the City of Vancouver. Again, more demand leads to higher costs.
But when you look at the high costs a little closer, it’s obvious that it’s the price of the land, not the price of building a home that’s driving prices up. These high costs affect both new homes and old homes. Having a company like Clay Construction build your dream home won’t cost you dramatically more than in other cities if you already own your land. If you’re looking for a way to increase the value of your property and live in a home that fits your family perfectly, Clay Construction can deliver everything you’re looking for.
In 2017, the city of Vancouver announced their Renewable Action Plan, a multi-sector strategy to ensure that Vancouver derives all of its energy from renewable sources by 2050. This plan has set an interim target for 2030 to see carbon pollution reduced by 50% below 2007 levels and to derive 55% of the energy used in Vancouver from renewable sources.
According to the city’s Action Plan, 55% of the carbon pollution in the city comes from buildings (residential, commercial, and industrial) with another 41% coming from transportation. The remaining 4 percent comes from solid waste.
Because of this huge amount of carbon pollution coming from buildings, the city is targeting new outcomes that are expected in the coming decades. Such outcomes include new and existing buildings containing more energy-efficient walls and windows, insulation and heating equipment will be upgraded, and buildings will be more comfortable and healthier.
There will also be an increased push to encourage residents to choose healthy forms of transportation, such as transit, car-sharing, and more electric and hydrogen-powered vehicles. To reduce the solid waste, recycling and composting will become much more commonplace.
So how does this affect new homes built in the coming years? Very simply, home builders will have to become much more energy efficient in their planning and execution of any new houses and will have to keep these outcomes and goals in mind when talking with home buyers about what they will want and need in the new buildings.
Finding a home builder with experience designing and building energy-efficient homes will ensure that your dream home can meet and exceed these new guidelines. Clay Construction averages an 85 in the Energuide rating for the new homes they’re building, far exceeding what most home builders can achieve. They are a Net Zero Home Builder, so they build homes that produce as much energy as they consume. They are also a certified R2000 builder, which means they are experienced building homes that have superior energy efficiency, indoor air quality, and use environmentally responsible products and materials. If you want your new home exceeding Vancouver’s guidelines, contact Clay Construction.