By Altmann Pfeiffer. Home Decoration. Published at Saturday, April 13th, 2019 - 10:52:34 AM.
Why its happening: With reports of contaminants in drinking water, toxic levels of formaldehyde being released from laminate flooring, and other home health scares, consumers are increasingly concerned about how their home may affect their health. But rather than compromising health and wellness, homes can provide an opportunity to enhance lives. Building experts await the U.S. debut of the DARWIN Home Wellness Intelligence platform at the January 2019 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. The platform focuses on air filtration, water purification, circadian lighting, and comfort-focused technologies, all to simulate the natural outdoor environment. “We wanted to get rid of stagnant air thats two to five times worse than outdoor air, contaminated water that runs through old corroded pipes, synthetic materials that offgas, and artificial light that disrupts natural circadian rhythms,” says Paul Scialla, founder and CEO of Delos, DARWINs developer. “It also responds to changes it detects, such as pollutants coming in on the bottom of our shoes.” The first fully integrated DARWIN home was launched two months ago in Australia, with the platform adding only $2,000 to the cost of the project, he says. Eventually, Delos plans to make the technology available for retrofits of existing single-family homes.
Emphasize other, non-vehicular storage options. Many buyers put almost as much stock in a garage for storing possessions as they do for parking their cars. If a sellers home doesnt have a garage, ask what other storage exists within the house—in a basement, attic, or closets—and tout these in your marketing. For houses that dont have impressive storage options, you may want to research nearby off-site storage facilities. Converting back. The price to return a garage to its original status will depend on its size and quality, how elaborate its become, and the areas labor costs. For downtown Albuquerques smaller garages, Beecher estimates a cost of $3. But in more expensive markets such as Chicago, the cost could run 20 times that. “Youd have to gut the room, remove any overlaid floor structure to get back to the concrete, and reframe the front wall to accommodate a new overhead garage door,” says Klein. For buyers—and even some sellers reluctant to “undo” finished interior square footage—Roach suggests a compromise: Convert half the garage for a single car and leave the rest for residential use.
More attention is being paid to using all outdoor areas, including urban rooftops. But working on outdoor spaces that are high up adds additional challenges. Make sure your clients consult a structural engineer to determine how much furniture, decking, and soil a terrace, balcony, or roof can support and how to transport those items up top. Where an elevator may not be large enough, a crane is required, which increases costs, says landscape architect Marc Nissim, owner of the Harmony Design Group in Westfield, N.J. Landscape designer Amber Freda, whose eponymous firm is based in New York, helped clients with a garden in that citys West Village neighborhood where restrictions limited them to 35 pounds per square foot. The building also didnt have an elevator. Her solution: lightweight potting soil and custom red cedar planters.
As more research emerged that nature can boost healthfulness, the idea of having a therapy garden at home has gained traction. How they look, smell, sound, and feel, and what theyre called beyond the umbrella “therapy” term—healing, meditative, spiritual, sensory, sanctuary, or pain management—varies to reflect specific client goals. But a universal goal unites them, according to Carole Aine Langrall, a Baltimore and Santa Fe–based master gardener whos designed many therapy gardens, including one for herself: “Frustration and fear can be replaced by tranquility and hope.”
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