Lively Home Improvement, LLC: Trenton, Michigan Contractor Quick Quote

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Planning for home repairs, remodeling and home improvement can be overwhelming and leave homeowners with a lot of questions. We've compiled answers to many of the common questions we hear from our customers. 

  • Roofing

    • What are my options for a new roof?

      When it's time for a new roof, you can install a completely new roof, which involves tear-off of the old roof, replacing any bad roof boards and then installing a brand new set of shingles. Or, if your original roof has never been covered over, sometimes, it works just to add a new roof over the old roof. This is a question for a professional roofing company. A professional roofer, will inspect the roof, to determine the condition of your roof and work with you to decide if this method is a good fit for your home.

    • How would I know if my roof is failing?

      Typically, a roof problem only gets noticed once water is already leaking into the house. Inspecting the roof twice a year (like changing your smoke detector batteries) will let you know if your shingles are wearing out. Cracked shingles, missing shingles, even warped shingles are noticeable during a roof inspection. A roof inspection will also determine if you have loose seams or problems with flashings. Excessive surface granules building up in your gutters and downspouts are other tangible signs of roof problems. Without ever setting foot on a ladder, you can check the interior of the house: look for paint cracks, discolored plaster, or wallpaper that is peeling. These can be signs that the roof is failing to keep out the elements.

    • Oh no! My roof is leaking! Do I need a whole new roof?

      A leak doesn’t always mean a whole new roof. Loose flashings or minor damage to a specific area can cause a leak. This type of problem can usually be resolved with a repair to the existing roof. If your roof is truly failing a new roof may be the only option. This is generally the result of age or severe weather. Although occasionally a roof fails because of problems with the previously installed roof (materials, installation method, etc.). If you’re concerned, the best way to know what’s really going on is to set up a roof inspection.

    • What if I just do the work myself?

      Most of the time, homeowners are generally better off leaving the roofing jobs to the professionals. Professional roofers have training and experience to help them safely repair or replace a roof. DIY is great for some things, but it is not worth the trouble of an injury or the possibility of further damaging your home in the process of an attempt to repair or replace the roof. Homeowners should limit themselves to the twice a year roof inspections. Check for broken and missing shingles, clean your gutters, but leave the roofing to the roofers

    • How long can I expect my roof to last?

      Your roof’s longevity can be affected by storms, local weather conditions over time, and maintenance. Generally you can expect your asphalt shingles to last 15-20 years; wood and shake shingles might last 10-40 years; concrete tiles and clay tiles could last more than 20 years; a slate roof 30-100 years and metal roofing, 15-40+years. The other major factor in how long a roof lasts is the quality of the original materials and installation.

    • How much should a new roof cost?

      Several factors come into play when determining the cost of a roof. The type of materials used, which contractor is doing the work, the architecture of the home itself, the price of labor, seasonal fluctuations and more. It’s best to get three of four roof repair or replacement estimates from contractors with good reviews in your area. Cost, of course, is only one consideration, and should be part of a more comprehensive assessment of the contractor that includes the quality of the materials and workmanship.

    • What are some things to watch for with my roof?

      You may need a new roof or roof repairs if you notice any of the following: Granules: missing granules from your shingles Curling: If there is noticeable curling up on the sides of the shingles Lifting: If wind has lifted your shingles and they aren’t laying flat, Cracking; Surface cracking Missing: Areas with shingles missing altogether, Soft Spots: Any areas of plywood that feel soft or look bowed, Moisture: Ventilation or moisture problems in the attic Leaks: Water leaking into your house anywhere is immediate cause for concern.

  • Wind & Hail Damage

    • How do I know if I need a roof inspection?

      As part of your scheduled home maintenance, it is good practice to have a roof inspection every 3 years or so, and again after any major storm with high winds or hail.

  • Miscellaneous

    • How can I make sure my home improvement project stays within budget?

      Shop around. With all due respect to your buddy Jake or cousin Al, shopping around for a good contractor is a good idea. The best way to ensure your home improvement project will stay under budget is finding the right person to do the work the first time. When you solicit estimates, ask not only about price but qualifications. A major kitchen remodel may require a carpenter, a plumber and an engineer—make sure the company you hire can do it all. Also, cheaper is not necessarily better. Ask anyone in municipal service—there are plenty of contractors out there who will provide a lowball bid and make up for it through added expenses.

    • Should I try to fix it myself?

      You may consider yourself handy and you may have several kickin’ YouTube videos to help you along, but you may be better off letting a professional handle your project. If you attempt your project on your own, the labor may be free but other expenses can add up. Professionals will know exactly what to expect during any project—from handling permits to coordinating subcontractors—as well as how to deal with the unexpected challenges that inevitably crop up. How many times have you had to take a second—or even a third—trip to the home improvement store because you purchased the wrong part? Professionals will get it done right the first time.

  • Remodeling

    • How Can I Develop at Budget for my Remodeling Project?

      It’s a good idea to keep track of expenses while a project is under way and develop a list of ‘musts’ and ‘extras.’ By prioritizing the features of your project that are most important to you, you can develop a list of things to cut if expenses rise too rapidly. If you’re remodeling your kitchen, is cupboard space a priority, or the quality of the cabinet doors? If you’re redoing your bathroom, do you need six showerheads with jet propulsion technology, or are you just looking for more space and a shelf for your soap? By planning ahead, you can let your priorities set your budget, not the other way around.

  • Windows

    • What are signs that my windows need repair or replacement?

      Watch your windows. Your windows are vulnerable to changes in temperature, exposure to the elements and the inevitable progress of father time. On your annual maintenance check, make sure you don’t see any splits in the caulking around your windows, or any signs or warping in the frames themselves. Check for drafts, and fogging too, that may indicate a blown seal.

  • Siding

    • Why are there stains on the exterior walls of my house?

      Watch your walls. Water stains on your exterior walls could mean that your masonry is not longer repelling water, or that your gutters are not working effectively. If you have wood siding, look for any type of holes or splintering; it could mean you have termites or other pests, or that it’s time to replace it.

  • Attic Inspection

    • How often should I be inspecting my attic? What do I look for?

      You may not like going up there, but checking out your attic is a necessity. A spring maintenance check of your attic can tell you a lot about how your home weathered the winter. Look for signs of mold, either gray or black patches, as well as any indication of insects or rodents. While you’re up there, check out the insulation, too. If it’s not at least as deep as your floor joists, you’re throwing money out the window.