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Drought and Your Foundation: Learning About the Cracks in Your Home

Texas is known for its hot summers, and drought can be massively destructive to your lawn, landscaping and your home’s foundation. Foundation issues are costly and can be expensive to repair and potentially damaging to more than just your home. Dry soil and hot conditions can be devastating to your home’s foundation and the signs are times are rather innocuous. The signs of foundation damage include: sloping floors, gaps in door ways, gaps in set in features like fireplaces, cracks in walls and any sticking or gaps in doors.

The causes of foundation issues during the summer heat are not quite as simple as dry soil. Trees and shrubs will try to grab onto any residual moisture from the soil and dry soils makes for shaky foundations. In addition to dry soil, Texas is full of less than ideal soil types: high amounts of clay (almost 50% clay) can be difficult to build a solid foundation on.

There are a few ways to check on your home’s foundation before costly repairs need to be considered. Rolling a marble down a floor to test for slopping can be a simple way to make sure your floors stay level: the faster the roll, the deeper the slope. Check your home’s exterior and interior for cracks. These cracks can start off as hairline and small at first and by the time they are more noticeable serious damage to your foundation may have already occurred. Check the soil around your home: dig about 6 inches down and if the soil is dry water the ground around your home.

If you’re worried about your home’s foundation, contact Liberty Builders. We have plenty of experience dealing with the foundation concerns that are all too familiar to Texas residents and builders. If you suspect your foundation may be in danger, don’t delay: call for a consultation.

 

Sources:

https://www.houselogic.com/organize-maintain/home-maintenance-tips/your-house-sinking-drought-could-be-cause/

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You Can Trust Liberty Builders – A Member of the BBB

Liberty Builders of Texas is honored to be a member of the Better Business Bureau (BBB) since 1992.  The BBB’s mission is to create a marketplace where companies can trust one another.  Not only do they set standards best practices for businesses, but also keep tabs on businesses and the reports they receive from the company’s customers.  The BBB selects and endorses local businesses who make a concerted and meticulous effort to resolve any complaints from their clients or customers.  The two main pillars of the BBB are Integrity and Performance.  These pillars include good ethics and an impeccable track record.  While every business can make mistakes, it’s how those mistakes are handled by the business that makes the difference.

The BBB rating is made after consideration of 13 factors.  They include:

  1. Complaints – How many and how severe?
  2. Unanswered Complaints – did the company respond appropriately and in a timely manner?
  3. Unresolved Complaints – was the complaint addressed or ingnored?
  4. Delays in Resolution – how long did it take to fix the problem?
  5. Pattern of failure to address complaints – What is the track record for the company in this area?
  6. Type of Business – How do they compare?
  7. Time in Business – Are they established?
  8. Transparent Business Practices – Are they employing best practices?
  9. Failure to Honor mediation/arbitration – How do they respond in a client disagreement?
  10. Competency Licensing – They must have all paperwork in order
  11. Government Action – They must follow all laws for their industry
  12. Advertising Review – Do they honor what they offer?
  13. BBB Trademark Infringement – Do they claim membership when they are not members?

Liberty Builders of Texas has an elevated rating of “A+” due to the following:

  • Length of time we have been in business
  • Complaint volume filed with BBB
  • Response to complaint filed against business
  • Resolution of complaint filed against business

It is our mission to listen to the needs of our clients, offer solutions and deliver what we promise.  We are proud to serve the San Antonio area and to be a part of the BBB.  Rest assured, you will be in great hands with Liberty Builders of Texas.

(source: bbb.org)

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Why Your Home Needs a Fiberglass Door

Your front door is likely the cornerstone of your house.  It’s the first thing that guests and family see when they pay you a visit and it can convey your personal style and taste, as well as give great curb appeal to your home.

There are quite a few mainstream choices when it comes to focal entry doors.  From wood and steel to fiberglass, you might be surprised what type of material holds up best and makes the most practical choice.

Fiberglass entry doors have come a long way in the past 20-30 years.  These days, most consumers can’t even feel the difference between fiberglass and wood or steel.  Manufacturers have become good at creating heavy duty, insulated fiberglass that simulates the same look, feel and heaviness as the other competing materials.

These fiberglass doors are made from the same substances as cars, surf boards, and even airplanes.  They are ultra-resilient to staining, weathering, insects and even the force of a good door slam.  Other benefits are that they will not ever rot or shrink.  They are resistant to moisture so that will keep them from separating or cracking.  They can be installed with decorative glass and even matching flanks on their side.

The latest models now come with different “skins” to choose from.  These skins showcase different finishes to fit your style and various types of finishes and insulation that can lower your energy bills.  These improved doors also are a perfect compliment to just about any architectural style or trend.  And the best part?  Fiberglass doors are the most affordable!

If you are looking to update your front door, consider fiberglass.  Rest assured, they can handle the pressure and truly require the least amount of maintenance.

Call Liberty Builders of Texas, we’ll give you a free quote and great financing.

(sources: thisoldhouse.com, consumerreports.org)

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Why Build a Patio?

How often have you told your children to go outside to play?  These days, many kids are glued to the TV, Smart Phone, Tablet or Gaming device.  It is vital to give them a space to play and get fresh air and exercise.  In fact, that’s pretty good advice for the whole family.  An addition to your home can seem like an overwhelming project (and pain and expense) but Liberty Builders of Texas can work closely with you to work within your budget, your timeframe, and to give you just what it is you need.

Did you know a patio or veranda can actually help reduce your energy costs?  It provides shade, much like a tree or a large umbrella.  It can reduce the bright light entering your home by creating a kind of canopy.  Liberty Builders of Texas understands this concept when coming up with designs that meet your needs.  With that beautiful Texas Fall on its way, wouldn’t it be nice to have that kind of area to enjoy with family and friends?

Creating a nice outdoor living area is also a great way to upgrade your home without the expense of a full renovation and certainly without the hassle and stress.  An open-air space can add great value to your home when it comes to resale as well.  Many people are looking for that outdoor space for their family.

Liberty Builders of Texas offers great financing and discounts for senior citizens and military.  Give us a call and let us show you how to really enjoy the great outdoors from the privacy of your own backyard.

(source: morespacepatios.com.au)

radiant barrier

Is Radiant Barrier Right for You?

San Antonians know just how fast the weather can change here in South Texas.  In the spring and fall, you never know if you’ll have a heat wave or surprise cold front.  And the next day you may experience the total opposite conditions!  What we do know for sure is that summer time is HOT and our energy bills will be on the rise until is starts to cool off again later in the fall.  Radiant Barrier can help fight the elements and the bills.

Radiant Barriers are installed in houses, usually in the attic, to primarily reduce summer heat in the home and reduce cooling costs. The barrier itself is made of a highly reflective material that reflects the heat rather than soaking it up. The material used to make the Liberty UV Radiant Barrier is the same material that keeps NASA Astronauts from losing body heat in the intense cold in outer space. Even the Space Shuttle‘s outer tiles and other areas contain similar radiant barrier products to combat intense heat and cold.  Our Radiant Barrier Product line, gives YOU the latest in cutting edge materials.

Radiant Barrier is maintenance and hassle free. Once it is installed, you don’t have to think about it again, just reap the benefits of a home that’s easier and cheaper to keep cool.

Call us for a free estimate and to learn more about how to keep your COOL AIR or HEAT in  your home instead of letting it escape … along with your money . . .

We look forward to helping you!

Our Customers Write the Best Stories

The Kassik Family had such a great experience with their window replacement, they wanted to let us know. At first, they were a little skeptical but when the President of the company came over to discuss their options, they were blown away. The window and installation experience was impressive because of the professional and friendly workers. We are always happy to hear from our customers and glad they are happy with Liberty Builders for their window replacement.

To see more testimonials, check out our testimonial gallery and let our customers tell you what they think.

Kassik-Testimonial

Modern-Vinyl-Siding

Ten Reasons to Invest in Insulated Vinyl Siding

Did you know that twice as many homeowners in the US surface their homes with vinyl siding than any other material out there?  And what’s the most cost effective way to do that?  With Insulated Vinyl Siding.  This product is not only durable and attractive, but can save you money on heating and cooling your home.

Here are some good reasons to choose Insulated Vinyl Siding:

  1. Many options to choose from – the product comes in a variety of textures, fashions and colors so that you can find the style that best suits your tastes
  2. Energy efficient – The product provides the industry best energy savings for homeowners
  3. Less seams – Our long siding panels will show a straighter, cleaner exterior and even reduce wall irregularities
  4. Return on investment – The product can yield  higher than an 80% return on investment due to increased energy efficiency and lower energy bills
  5. Aesthetics – The siding can add beautiful curb appeal and a clean look to your home
  6. Weather durability – Vinyl siding can handle virtually all types of weather including high temperatures like we experience in South Texas.
  7. Maintenance requirements – The product needs little to no maintenance
  8. Quick installation – The product is quick to install, proving a stress-free experience for the homeowner.
  9. Reparability – in the rare case of damage, siding is easily replaced.
  10. Durability – insulated vinyl siding doesn’t rot or become water damaged,  You will not have to deal with mold or long-term sun exposure.

We are here to help.

Give us a call!

210-714-1655

(source: cbs)

San Antonio’s Remodeling Market

There are two key items that affect the home remodeling market: first, the overall stability of the home buying market and secondly, the credit standards banks apply to lending.  We have seen over the last year and a half that our local market in San Antonio continues to be the oddball in comparison to the rest of the country.  This can be attributed to a few things, but most importantly, you can identify our housing stock as stable and not over-valued.  Texas, and San Antonio in particular, have steady home values that reflect strong home ownership and remodeling success.

A homeowner has two choices.  They can either upgrade and buy a new home or remodel and upgrade the home they are currently living in.  The credit crisis over the last few years has really limited the home buying options and made the ability to find good credit and cheap interest rates difficult.  However, we are seeing San Antonio on the home improvement rebound and it is quickly becoming a “buyer’s market“.  Here are a few steps to think about when the time comes to look for your credit options:

  1. Do you have an established, long term relationship with your current banking institution?  If so, what kind of financing products do they offer?  What are their rates and basic terms?
  2. It is always best to examine who a home remodeling company partners with for financing.  At Liberty Builders of Texas, we have a 20 year relationship with San Antonio Federal Credit Union and a strong partnership with Wells Fargo.  Both are trusted names in the lending industry.  If you are shopping and use a contractor’s financing source, always examine who they are and how they treat their customers!
  3. Find lending terms that don’t penalize early payoff and always examine the interest rate and term.  Too often, a customer will be more worried about the rate and pay too much in the longer term financing.  Always look for a good combination that fits your personal financial needs.
  4. Examine the long term cost of credit.  Read the fine print and determine how much it costs over the life of any loan.  While it is a startling number sometimes, it will help you realize that although a payment is low, over the longer term you pay more.  It will also help encourage you to pay off your loan faster!

Buying a home takes a lot of time and paperwork.  If your choice is to purchase a new home, then be prepared for the time and energy input to make it happen.  If you like your home, want to stay, but aren’t sure how you can update or upgrade, reach out to a home improvement specialist and find out how you can “stay home” and upgrade what you currently have.

San Antonio’s Home Remodeling Market On The Rise

Let’s face it, the real estate market hasn’t been very favorable the last few years.  Banks are tightening their credit standards and making it harder to find financing for new home purchases.  Our economy has seen hard times as well and this has affected people’s income and budgets.  In short, buying a home has never been harder.  However, signs are pointing towards a resurgence in lending and a focus on home remodeling has come to the forefront of our housing market.

People get the “itch” to move when their home becomes routine or they outgrow it.  In the past, when their home became impractical or an eyesore, instead of fixing the problem, people would move and “upgrade”.  When banks were giving away loans, this wasn’t a problem.  Nowadays though, families can’t find the financing to buy and upgrade.  So now we are seeing a return to remodeling as the best option to build value in a home.  The ticket prices for a remodel are far smaller, the credit qualification isn’t as rigorous, and people will be able to customize and create a new look they can be proud of.

According to the Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies, the remodeling market is poised for a big rebound.  Click here to view the website and report.  Here is just a small part of the rationale from the JCHS:

“After languishing near the bottom for several years, the remodeling market finally appears to be pulling out of its prolonged downturn, and renewal of the nation’s housing stock is getting underway. Previously foreclosed properties are being rehabilitated. Sustainable home improvements are gaining in popularity. Older homeowners are retrofitting their homes to accommodate their future needs. And the future market potential is immense, as the emerging echo boom generation is projected to be the largest in our nation’s history.”

Families are realizing the investment in their home is an investment in their future.  From energy efficiency upgrades to adding additional square footage, the money invested in a remodel adds value to the home’s appraisal and to the bottom line budget every family lives with.  Homeowners should be very careful to select projects that add value and are cost effective.  For instance, the initial cash outlay for upgrading to energy efficient windows is measurable and quantifiable.  Windows add value and reduce energy consumption.  Replacing the siding and adding square footage also offer greater return on a home’s value than say painting or new carpet.

Bottom line…it all comes down to what matters most to you…the consumer.  If a new coat of paint or a deck makes you happy  and content than do the research and find the best you can afford.  If you shopping for energy efficiency products than some due diligence and research will help you go a long way to finding the right products and the right company to meet your needs.

 

LBOT Launches New Website

Liberty Builders is excited to launch our new website.  With the help of our partners at Public Alliance, we were able to upgrade our site, load more content, and deliver a better message about who we are and what we can offer our clients.

As you go through the site, we would like for you to remember a few key things:

  1. Liberty Builders is family owned and operated for 30 years.
  2. We pride ourselves on offering the best products on the market.
  3. We believe service separates us from our competitors.  We want to take care of you and your family.
  4. We can help you finance your home improvement project with our lending partners and we will help you through the entire process.
  5. We won’t leave a job site until you are 100% satisfied with our work.  We won’t pay our staff until you sign off and say so!

We look forward to the opportunity to discuss your home remodeling ideas.  We promise to be a friend and partner.  We want to do our best to listen to what matters most to you and your family.  We commit to delivering a product and service that will bring you many years of joy and pride in your home!

Thank you for giving us a chance to serve you…