building a home: Alternative Construction Materials - 09/15/07 04:15 PM
Want to build a high efficiency home, don't know where to begin?  How about considering building a home out of ICF's?  What are ICF's?  Insulated Concrete Forms! 
Okay, so what is that?  Well, in the basic form it looks like Styrofoam blocks (large Lego blocks) that you put together then pour concrete in the middle.  You use rebar and must only pour the concrete four feet high at a time before it needs to set, then you can pour more and so on, until you get to the height you need.
When, I worked on the Habitat for Humanity projects, we used … (10 comments)

building a home: Building a New Home: Tile Floors - 05/16/07 04:06 PM
Installing Tile Floors
Here's a great web site for installing ceramic tile floors in your new home or existing home.  Their step by step process provides you with exceptional details on installing ceramic tile floors.
So you want tile floors in your home.  Well, after several home showings and a few large installation of tile floors in homes, I would like to point out some of the most important points about tile floors in a home.
If you are not installing on top of concrete, be sure to prepare the concrete underlayment with screws to secure your floor from as little movement as possible.  This will help … (6 comments)

building a home: Building a New Home: Installing Hardwood Floors - 05/15/07 04:54 PM
How to Install Hardwood Flooring
Installation Tips for installing hardwood flooring.
For me, hardwood floors add that extra beauty in a home that gives the new home a richness and style that never goes out of style.  If installed, sanded and finished properly, hardwoods provide years of beauty and elegance.
You can learn how to install hardwood flooring with the proper tools and techniques.
One of the first tips of how to install hardwood flooring is how to handle your flooring delivery. When your flooring is delivered stack it inside your home and allow it to sit for several days to acclimate the hardwoods to the moisture content of the room.
The next tip … (6 comments)

building a home: Real Estate Tips: Noisy Water Pipes - 05/02/07 02:52 PM
Bang, Bang, clatter, klunk,... Noisy Water Pipes
Ever have that vibrating noise when you flush the toilet, turn off the shower, or use the washing machine?  Noisy pipes are often caused by "water hammer".  Shutting off the flow suddenly sends a pressure or shock wave down the water line through the water shocking the pipes and creating the 'hammer' noise.  Over time, "water hammer" can damage pipes, valves and eventually weaken pipe joints.
So what can you do about it?  Here are a few things you can do.
Use low-flow fixtures.  Restricting water velocity helps reduce water hammer.Install a pressure regulator.  This lessens water hammer … (2 comments)

building a home: Real Estate Tips: Are Termites your Friend? - 05/01/07 03:31 PM
Termites, Ants, Mold and Fungus 
I'm sure most of you have seen a termite sometime in your lifetime.  But what gets me is the extreme scare they put in people when someone mentions the word "Termite" or WDI (wood destroying insects, carpenter ants are also in this category).  Here's a site that will explain the differences in termites vs ants.  There's also another category that can be just as determinal, WDO (wood destorying organisms), which include mold and fungus.
Treatment should be applied as soon as discovered and monitored yearly for reoccurence.  Conditions and areas which are really suspectible to these WDI and … (8 comments)

building a home: Building a New Home: What Windows... - 05/01/07 02:37 PM
Windows are a critical component in building your new home.
One of the things I have observed when selling real estate in previously owned homes, is the quality of the double pane window.  The most important tip on a double pane window in your new home is the space between the two pieces of glass creating the insulation factor.  The thickness between the two pieces of glass should be between 1/2" to 3/4" of an inch. Here's a web site that provides a really good illustration of the window thickness and insulation factors. 
There are other components that provide for higher insulation factors to double pane windows.  The addition of … (2 comments)

building a home: Building a New Home: Trim Secrets - 04/26/07 02:07 PM
Secret Tips when you Trim Windows and Doors
Every want to have a nice tight 45 degree corner with no gaps that creates that perfect fit.  Well you can have it!  Here's a few tips used by the professional trim carpenters who build those beautiful new homes.
Before you measure and cut your trim pieces, use a tri-square and set it at 3/16th of an inch.Lightly take a pencil and the tri-square that has been set at 3/16th of an inch and mark along the side you are placing the trim on all the way around your door or window.  Note: do this very lightly so as not to leave any impressions in … (8 comments)

building a home: Building a New Home: Consolidated List - 04/24/07 04:25 PM
I have had such great comments on my posts for "Building a New Home" here at that I thought I would take a tip from another activerain blogger.  The tip was to go back through all my posts related to building a new home and creating a page listing all the posts.  So, here it is, a quick reference to date of the posts made here at the Kansas City New Homes Blog:
Building a New Home: Roof Pitch...fastball or curve?
Building a New Home: 10 Common Kitchen Mistakes
Building a New Home: Framing, Level and Square
Building a New Home: Structural Floor Supports
Building a New Home: Resources
Building a New Home: Will the … (2 comments)

building a home: Building a New Home: Drive Up not Through! - 04/23/07 04:43 PM
Putting in your driveway.  What will it cost you?
You only need 3-4 inches (thickness) of concrete to put in a good driveway at your new home.  It's really fairly easy to calculate what is will cost you to put in the driveway.  Here's a concrete calculator from that will assist you with the amount of yards of concrete you will need.  Concrete is sold and figured in yards, not feet, so using this calculator breaks this down for you.  For instance, a 9 foot by 9 foot area, 4 inches thick equals 1 yard of concrete.  You will need to call the concrete companies in … (6 comments)

building a home: Building a New Home: Roof Pitch...fastball or curve? - 04/22/07 05:11 PM
Roof Pitch...standing or sliding!
Many popular new home roof designs in the Olathe Kansas area are changing from a steep pitched roof to a roof pitch that is easier to walk rather than slide down!! 
The roof pitch on new homes are known to builders to be a 4/12, 5/12 or 6/12 roof pitch.  Several builders around the Olathe area call these a California Style roof.  They are a lower silhouette design.  Okay, so what does the 4/12 pitch mean?  It means that for every 4 inches of rise (side B) you move vertical 12 inches (side A).  Here's that geometry lesson again for you mathematicians!
If you want to keep the water running down your new home roof, … (16 comments)

building a home: Building a New Home: 10 Common Kitchen Mistakes - 04/15/07 04:08 PM
10 Common Mistakes in Kitchen DesignsOne of the most popular rooms in a new home is the kitchen so it's important to get this one right. Treat yourself to a beautiful kitchen that allows functionality. 1. StorageTry to think of all the items that require extra space.  The good china, containers, food storage, the broom, mop, trash, cleaners and accessories.  Decide what you want to store and where you want to store them. Place storage excessible to the use of it, like the spices by the cooktop. Also, consider the size and type of appliances you will be needing, the range, refrigerator, dishwasher, microwave, etc...
2. … (0 comments)

building a home: Building a New Home: Framing, Level and Square - 04/14/07 04:44 PM
Framing a New Home is one of the critical components of a building a new home. 
If you frame a new home with a simple rule, you will allow the rest of the home building to go much more smoothly and with greater ease.  Keeping the walls level and corners square are very critical to trimming out doorways, setting cabinets, putting counter tops in place, etc...  If you allow the framing to get out of balance, you will create a loss in time and materials later in the construction process.  It will take more time to make the cuts to fit … (0 comments)

building a home: Building a New Home: Structural Floor Supports - 04/10/07 05:45 PM
Traditional Floor Joints versus Wooden I-Beams
Some builders are using this new laminated wooden I-beams for floor joints versus the traditional 2x8, 2x10 or 2x12 floor joints.  Some of the reasons for using these laminated wooden I-beams for floor joists in new home construction is they are lighter, easier to handle and span longer distances than the traditional floor joints.  These 100% fabricated beams use wood chips that are pressed and glued together with not even a 2x4 for a top and bottom plate to create the I-Beam.  They may have an improved stiffness and strength and can span greater distances than regular dimensional lumber of the same size, … (0 comments)

building a home: Building a New Home: Resources - 04/07/07 04:53 PM
I came across three real estate books which provide some excellent new home resources. 
General Home Building Books
Better Houses, Better Living by Myron FergusonWhat to look for in your new home--and mistakes to avoid!
The Well-Built HouseAn insider's guide to construction, written by a professional contractor.
Your New HouseThe alert consumer's guide to buying and building a quality home
Do you know of any other real estate resources which would be of value in new home construction?  Let me hear from you!
David L. BrittKansas City Real EstateOlathe

building a home: Building a New Home: Will the Builder Last? - 04/07/07 02:23 PM
Is your Builder still around?  Did your builder take care of you after the fact? 
I have talked with several real estate buyers and sellers about building a new home and one of the most common questions I get is, where to you find a builder that has a good reputation, builds a quality new home and will backup what they build! 
I recently heard of a builder, or should I say, General Contractor, who was building several new homes. Then in the middle of building the new homes, he ran off with the cash from the custom build jobs and left a couple from another state high … (7 comments)

building a home: Building a New Home: Basement Tips - 04/05/07 06:05 PM
Here in Kansas City, when you build your basement for your new home, you might check with your builder to see if a "Keyway" is used in the basement construction.  Using a "Keyway" provides for a longer life to your new home.
When building a basement for your new home, a footing is poured first with metal rebar proportionally spaced in the footing and extending upward to create a sold attachment of the basement walls and the footing.  This is a common construction practice, however, the creation of a "Keyway" in the footing is sometimes overlooked.  It takes a little more time to place the "Keyway" in the … (4 comments)

building a home: Building a New Home: 3 Critical Construction Components - 03/26/07 03:23 PM
3 Critical Construction Components in Building a New Home 
I was talking to my father this weekend as we were working on my son's home, remodeling his basement with a new bathroom and utility room.  During our casual conversations, I mentioned to my father that I was putting this blog together to share information about new home building and one of the first words out of my father's mouth was the 3 critical construction components of building a new home.  As I was thinking about these 3 components, I had to ask myself, do builders really think about these 3 critical construction components and … (6 comments)

building a home: New Home Statistics: Starts Up, But Still Lag - 03/23/07 05:48 PM
Housing Starts Up 9 Percent, But Still Lag 28.5 Percent
The following article reflects the national average for housing starts.  Here in the Kansas City Metro area, our new home built over the last two quarters of 2006 are down about 14% and the first quarter 2007 is forecast to be down. One point to note in this article is the seems to be a consensus that the market is bottoming.
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Housing starts rebounded 9.0 percent in February following a 14.3 percent drop the month before, according to figures released by the Commerce Department. The pace of construction increased to a seasonally adjusted … (0 comments)

building a home: Protecting your Assets: Advice from an Attorney - 03/20/07 04:26 PM
Although, this information is not directly related to building a new home, it is information you can use to protect your assets and a new home falls into this catergory.  I'm sure there are someone out there that can relate to this experience, hopefully it will benefit more before anything happens to you.
ATTORNEY'S ADVICE -- NO CHARGE Read this and make a copy for your files in case you need to refer to it someday. Great sound advice!A corporate attorney sent the following out to the employees in his company.   1.  The next time you order checks have only your initials … (0 comments)

building a home: Picking a Builder... - 03/19/07 05:24 PM
Okay, you want to build a new home.  Here are some questions you should ask yourself.
Where do you find a builder?  One place is, ask for others?How do you know if this builder is reputable?  Home Builders Association is a start, but there's more. What's this builder's work really like?  Do you really know from what you see, what about the unseen? Can you trust this builder or his representative to represent you?Who is representing you in building your new home?  Who is responsible when something goes wrong?  Ultimately, the general contractor, but has he been around long enough to have reputable sub-contractors?  What's the relationship between the builder … (0 comments)

David L. Britt, MBA (Platinum Realty, LLC) Rainmaker large

David L. Britt


Olathe, KS

More about me…

Platinum Realty, LLC

Address: 9393 W. 110th St, Suite 170, Overland Park, KS, 66210

Office: 888-220-0988

Mobile: (913) 226-5830

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Decided to build a new home? Need answers to difficult questions on building a home? Want to know how to talk to a builder? Just need general information on building a new home or need a consultant to help you with building a new home, you've come to the right place!




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