Natelli Homes Blog
Wed 15 October 2014

Custom Homes for Small Lots: The Four Square Resurgence | Mclean VA Email Print

Written by Bob. Categories: Design Tags: custom homes, McLean VA, custom homes Mclean VA

6bccd565-592d-4e9d-e867-ff095d2db089-thumbHomeowners who want to build custom homes on their small lots in the Maryland and Virginia area often gravitate to modern-day versions of the American Four Square. Prairie architecture pioneered by Frank Lloyd Wright is making a reappearance as homeowners desire the luxury of a new construction home but the space offered by the four-square design. According to a recent report by the National Association of Home Builders, custom home building recorded growth this year. Many homebuyers today want homes that have the character of the past. The American Four Square or Prairie Box was popular in the mid-1890s to the late 1930s as a reaction to the ornate Victorian style.

Going beyond four rooms

The old four-square homes typically had four large boxy rooms to each floor. Today’s four-square custom homes may open to a foyer with a dining room on one side and an office on the other side. The middle of the home often has a stair hall that leads up to the second level as well as breakfast room and open kitchen. The other section of the main floor often has a covered terrace and family room. On the upper level, homeowners may have two smaller bedrooms on one side and a master suite with walk-in closets on the other side. Going beyond the “four squares,” custom homes today may include a mudroom on the lower level and an upstairs loft and additional bedroom over the garage.

Enjoying the outdoors

Being outside was important to people who owned an American Four Square before the advent of air-conditioning. Today, custom homes often come with covered flagstone porches and other outdoor amenities. While most four square homes are built on smaller lots, it’s also fun to build a Four Square custom home on a larger lot to allow for an outdoor kitchen area, pool, gazebo, gardens and other landscaping.

Some of the popular interior characteristics and materials used in custom homes with historical character include solid hardwood flooring and solid staircases. Coffered beamed ceilings may be constructed in the family room on the main level.

Natelli Homes Architectural Design and Construction Services is an experienced builder who builds an enhanced version of the basic four square as well as other custom homes. For more information about having an American Four Square home built for your family in the Washington DC area as well as Northern Virginia and Maryland, please contact us.

Wed 08 October 2014

Home Remodeling for a Signature Foyer | Potomac MD Email Print

Written by Bob. Categories: Remodeling Tags: Potomac MD, home remodeling, foyer remodeling, remodeling potomac md

b6c9a815-72a7-4a44-8137-6e3255cf7e1dYour home’s entryway or foyer is not just what your guests first see when they enter your home, but it’s the space that greets you at the end of a hard day. When planning a home renovation, the foyer is a key area of the home that can make you feel excited about where you live. Before hiring an architectural design firm for a home remodeling project, consider the statement you want to make with your foyer. Lighting, flooring, art niches, the doorway and a staircase are a few of the design elements to include. According to a recent article by HouseBeautiful, a foyer can be dramatic with the right choices for paint, furniture and art. But whether you want design touches such as wainscoting, tone-on-tone striped wallpaper or a new front door with translucent glass, a foyer renovation can improve first impressions.

Fabulous flooring

One of the major considerations when home remodeling is the flooring. Some people use a different flooring material for the foyer so it stands out. One option is to put down a mosaic floor medallion in either marble or ceramic. Another possibility is to select custom oval, round, square or other custom wood medallions or borders for hardwood flooring.

A stunning staircase

A stunning staircase is another major component of a home remodeling  project if you have a two-story home. Some creative ideas include installing a water feature with plants at the base of the stairways using a decorative stone surround. Different styles of staircases today include contemporary, traditional, modern, eclectic and Asian.

Other home remodeling possibilities for a gorgeous foyer include art niches in which you can hang favorite art pieces. Lighting is also a major consideration. Hanging a contemporary chandelier versus a traditional lighting fixture will foreshadow what’s in store for the rest of the home. Replace the existing door with a new one that is crafted with safety and style in mind.

At Natelli Homes Architectural Design and Construction Services, we can help you renovate your entire home, construct additions or redesign or renovate your foyer, entrances, porches, kitchens, bathrooms or other zones in the home. We provide construction and design services to the Washington DC area as well as Northern Virginia and Maryland. For more information, please contact us.

Mon 29 September 2014

Kitchen Remodeling Trends to Avoid or Embrace | Arlington VA Email Print

Written by Bob. Categories: Uncategorised Tags: kitchen remodeling, Arlington VA, kitchen remodeling arlington, 2014 remodeling trends

de3c1082-3c45-4211-c839-f42cd84552b9-thumbKitchen remodeling is hot. With so many options, it’s important to distinguish between what’s a fleeting trend and what’s going to make you happy for decades to come. According to a recent Forbes article, there are several kitchen remodel trends that homeowners should avoid. Of course, embrace a trend if you personally love a particular style or kitchen design feature for your Virginia or Maryland home. Not everyone is concerned about resale value, but about having the kitchen of their dreams. According to Forbes, the average cost of a kitchen remodel is now more than $50,000.

Parking your appliances

People used to park their appliances in appliance garages, but appliance garages take up a lot of counter space. A design expert can help you choose cabinets that open up to store pots and pans, spices and fine china. Illuminated kitchen cupboards are especially helpful. Cabinet drawers may be used to file papers. Trash and recycling cans can slide in and out of cabinetry as well.

Using updated backsplashes

Another important kitchen remodeling tip is to select a backsplash that fits the overall style of your home whether it’s country, contemporary or transitional. According to Forbes, the 4-inch backsplash trend has been replaced by porcelain, ceramic or glass tile that covers walls instead of just a few inches.

A kitchen island as a focal point

Kitchen islands are both practical and attractive. Ceiling-mounted racks to hang pots used to be popular, but can also be an eyesore. Many kitchen islands have built-in storage and see-through compartments. In a smaller kitchen, you may opt for a mobile kitchen cart to dress up your kitchen.

Other kitchen remodeling considerations include whether to choose stainless steel or the new colorful appliances. Should you pick the popular granite or choose something else? According to a piece by Houzz, popular countertop materials includes soapstone, copper, engineered quartz, tile, recycled glass, marble, concrete and stainless steel. A professional designer can help you with a kitchen palette that matches the overall style of your home.

At Natelli Homes Architectural Design and Construction Services, we help homeowners transform their kitchens. For help in renovating your kitchen or any other space in your Virginia or Maryland home, please contact us.

Tue 23 September 2014

Architectural Design Elements Trending: Grand Spaces | Bethesda MD Email Print

Written by Bob. Categories: Design Tags: Architectural Design Bethesda Maryland, Bethesda MD, architectural design, Architectural design trending
c6c3736e-fe3b-4efc-c04c-379807d83c77Upper-end new homes are increasing in size, while home additions increase livable space in homes. According to an article by the American Institute of Architects (AIA), some of the architectural design trends include bigger, more accessible homes as well as property enhancements such as decks and porches. When house hunting in Maryland and Virginia, you may feel claustrophobic in older bungalow and ranch-style homes. Most Marylanders and Virginians want larger homes with decks, porches or windows overlooking the landscape that changes with each of the four seasons.
  • Living in larger homes

As reported by the AIA, the size of homes has been trending up since 2010. Residential architects say there is a demand for two-story entryways and high ceilings as well as more square footage. Upper-end homes are much more likely to be spacious compared to the starter homes. Benefits of living in larger homes include the fact that the home can accommodate a growing family and more guests.

  • Creating accessible living

Another architectural design trend is accessibility. With baby boomers retiring, more people want wider hallways, fewer steps, ramps and door handles instead of knobs that are difficult to grab. People from the younger generations like “flex rooms” and other spaces that can be defined as they wish. The open-space concept layout continues to be popular with family rooms and kitchens that flow. Casual eat-in kitchen areas, dens and niche flex rooms replace the old formal living and dining rooms.

  • Blending indoor and outdoor spaces

From decks, porches, sunrooms to outdoor kitchens, gazebos and pools, more people are making outdoor improvements a priority. Seven out of 10 residential architects surveyed for a Home Design Trends Survey by the AIA said outdoor living is increasing in popularity. Some architectural design ideas include building a stone paver patio with decorative stone fence and stairs leading up to a steep backyard. A new pool and patio or porch and lanai can bring stylish architectural to the back of a home.

Natelli Homes Architectural Design and Construction Services offers unparalleled service. For help in learning about the latest architectural design choices available to you when having a custom home built or when renovating your existing home in Virginia or Maryland, please contact us.

Wed 17 September 2014

Home Additions for the Multi-Generational Household | Chevy Chase MD Email Print

Written by Bob. Categories: Additions Tags: additions, Chevy Chase MD, home additions chevy chase md, home additions
f9d16740-b3f3-49e6-dd13-9547a5544baeIf you are part of the “sandwich generation” with aging parents and children, you may want to consider home additions for a multi-generational household. According to an article by RealtorMag, the recession set off a wave of multi-generational households. But now, experts believe the trend is here to stay. In fact, a survey by the National Association of Realtors found more people are willing to pay extra for an in-law suite. When it comes to accommodating boomerang children and aging parents, there are several home additions that make the most sense.
  • New second floor

Many older homes in the Maryland/Virginia are single-story or ranch-style homes. Building a new second floor can expand space to accommodate a young adult child who returns to live at home after graduating from college. If you are caring for aging parents, you may use the second floor master suite and living space for the younger family members while reserving the first floor bedroom for the older adults who can’t climb stairs as easily.

  • In-law suite with kitchenette

Other great home additions involve adding a second master bedroom suite with sitting area and kitchenette. The space could be used on the first floor for older family members or on the second floor for young adult children. It’s not uncommon for homeowners today to host siblings who need a place to live while job searching or waiting for a home to be built.

  • Garage over-builds

Easy home additions for large extended families also include garage over-builds, which involves using space found above a garage. The space can be used to create bedrooms, bathrooms or a game room and wet bar. An experienced builder can make architectural improvements to the front of the home while adding space above the garage.

Natelli Homes leads the industry in home renovations and remodeling. For more information about home additions to solve space challenges in our Virginia or Maryland home, please contact us.

Wed 10 September 2014

Best Home Remodeling Projects Before Listing Your Home | Great Falls VA Email Print

Written by Bob. Categories: Additions Tags: remodeling, home remodeling, 2014 remodeling trends, remodeling projects
b69efdd5-a831-4bb4-94bc-2b60ac8057ffIf you own a starter home in Maryland or Virginia, you may wonder if now is the time to list your home so you can afford a step-up home of your dreams. Certainly homes are selling, but other homeowners are raising the bar with stunning home remodeling projects. According to a realtor.com study cited by one MNS Real Estate article, two-thirds of consumers plan to remodel their homes in the next six months. Thirty-two percent of homeowners have a budget of $10,000 or more for home improvements. Thirty-two percent are engaged in home remodeling to improve the appearance of their homes for their own satisfaction, while 22 percent plan to sell their homes. Before listing your home, consult with a company that provides cost-effective renovations and home remodeling services. Some of the areas of the home to concentrate on for resale purposes include the entryway, kitchen and spa bathroom.

Signature curb appeal

The first goal of a home remodeling project is to improve curb appeal so that drive-by house hunters aren’t turned off. A signature entrance such as a portico can help sell a home. Perhaps as a backlash to the frugality of the Great Recession, home homebuyers want to feel as though their home is more of a castle.

Masterpiece kitchen

Kitchen home remodeling projects are also trending toward luxury and excess. According to one article by Freshome, kitchens are seen as the hub of the home. Even if no one is actually cooking in their kitchens, they want a place to study, work, talk, think and watch television. Most people spend their home remodeling dollars in the kitchen. Before listing your home to sell, it may be wise to update kitchen cabinets and countertops.

Bathroom retreat

A recent RealtyTimes article cited a Hanley Wood survey that revealed 58 percent of people taking on home remodeling projects plan bathroom updates. Bathrooms today are spa-like retreats that include futuristic bath fixtures and trends such as heated floors, waterfall showers and modern touch faucets. Depending on your budget, you may select marble or granite, custom tiles and elegant fixtures.

After renovating your home, you may be fortunate enough to receive multiple offers. But it may be difficult to sell your home when you realize how beautiful it has become. At Natelli Homes, we help our clients renovate their existing homes in Maryland and Virginia as well as build lovely custom homes. For more information, please contact us.

Wed 03 September 2014

Bathroom Remodeling: Things to Consider During Your Bathroom Remodel | Mclean VA Email Print

Written by Bob. Categories: Bathrooms Tags: Bathroom remodeling, home remodeling, bathroom design, bathroom remodeling mclean, bathroom design mclean, bathroom renovation mclean

735166b7-3ebe-499b-f33b-055a02ad0bdcWhen prioritizing the list of remodels they want to do in their home, many homeowners put their bathroom at the top of their list. This decision is generally driven by the amount of time individuals spend in their bathroom each day, and the amount to which the use of this room could be improved by remodeling it. This can be a smart decision for homeowners to make as bathroom remodels can go a long way in adding to the value of a home. However, before you begin renovating your bathroom, here are a few things you should take into consideration before you begin your bathroom remodel.

Do you need a bathtub?

Many homeowners feel as if they are supposed to have a bathtub in their home. However, if you are trying to customize your bathroom, you should consider your bathroom routine when deciding what you will include in your renovation. If you are the type of person who does not take baths, it may not be necessary to include a bathtub in your remodel. Removing the bathtub from your bathroom could free up space in during the renovation for other add-ons.

Shower Options

Today, the options for what you can include in your shower are almost endless. From various heads, sprays, and nozzles, to different lighting options, you have the ability to create a shower that would outshine anything from even the fanciest resort. Thusly, before you begin your remodel, you should decide what type of shower you would like. Is a traditional showerhead fine, or would you like to have a rain shower put in? You could even choose to have a steam shower in your bathroom.


Just as the possibilities are endless for how you can customize your shower, there are even more options available for amenities you can add to your bathroom to add to its spa feel. Whether you would like to add heated towel racks and floors, or a sophisticated sound system, your bathroom can be as simple or as extravagant as you choose it to be. Many homeowners are even choosing to have a TV installed in their renovated bathroom.

As you can see, there are many decisions you will have to make before you begin your bathroom remodel. This can often leave homeowners feeling overwhelmed by the decisions, as well as the amount of work, that lies ahead of them. Thusly, it could be advantages for you to hire a professional to take care of the remodel process for you, as you will have enough to take care of making choices for your bathroom remodel.



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Wed 27 August 2014

5 Cost-Effective and Efficient Bathroom Remodeling Tips to Save You Money | Potomac MD Email Print

Written by Bob. Categories: Bathrooms Tags: Bathroom remodeling, bathroom renovations potomac md, home remodeling, bathroom design, bathroom design potomac

cfb661bf-8c7b-4e50-a4ad-0dfec89d3d21 1

It's no hidden secret in the renovation and rehabilitation world, bathroom remodeling jobs are incredibly expensive and, what's worse, this often prevents people from completing even the smallest of jobs in fear that they simply don't have enough capital to do it right.

Well, we're here to tell you that remodeling your bathroom doesn't have to cost five figures. It is very possible to make vast improvements to your space without taking out a second mortgage.

Here are five cost-effective, and simple to apply, tips to help you remodel your bathroom while increasing your return on investment (ROI).

Size Matters Not

A highly effective bathroom that functions in an efficient manner can be just as useful as increasing the square footage of a bathroom (but cost thousands less). Reorganize and re-equip where it fits best; remove things that limit room; modify for maximum space. The reward will pay for itself.

Natural Light Pleases

If your bathroom doesn't have a window, but you wish it did, then consider adding natural light before you take to cutting a hole in a wall. Products that simulate light from out-of-doors can fool our brain, and cost far less than a new window.

Demolition is Rehabilitation

By far the most cathartic (plus simplest and cheapest!) way to save on a bathroom remodel is to do your own demo. All you really need is a quality reciprocating saw, a sledge hammer, and a "proceed with care" attitude, and you can save thousands not hiring it out.

Repurposing Goods

To save big, ask your contractor or sub-contractor if they know of any sources where there was leftover goods for you to use. Many times on larger jobs resources are over-bought. This is a great way for you to get some quality, unused hardwoods and fixturing for cheap.

Save on the Back-end

Just like saving money on demo, you can apply the same methodology to finish work as well. No need to hire someone to insulate, clean-up, or paint, those types of jobs can be completed in mere hours, but can save you hundreds if not thousands when your "DIY it." Pitch in and save big!


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Wed 20 August 2014

Tear Down that Wall Theory in Home Remodeling | Arlington VA Email Print

Written by Bob. Categories: Remodeling Tags: home remodeling arlington va, home remodeling, de-construstion, de-construction arlington


A 1940s bungalow can be the perfect way to feel comfortable with a solid structure filled with character, plus affordable mortgage payments.  One drawback to older dwellings, however, is the lack of space.  Small rooms and low ceilings can cause a claustrophobic atmosphere that no amount of decorating can solve.  Discover how home remodeling can address these issues by removing walls and expanding space.

Many walls are merely a partition that offers privacy and separation.  Unless a vertical beam supports the structure, it can be removed.  For example, a galley kitchen can instantly find light from an adjoining dining room by removing a wall and allowing extra room and light.  This type of move opens up all types of possibilities of rearranging cabinets and  appliances, blending the two areas into one.

Exterior walls always possess load bearing beams.  These should never be removed without first consulting a contractor.  Interior walls may have beams that support the integrity of the home from roof to foundation and also need to be left in place.  These supports can be found by following beams from the roof to the basement, or crawl space.  Remember, unless your home remodeling project includes adding an additional room, steer clear of expansion with an exterior wall and never compromise a supporting interior beam.

Focus on the surrounding rooms of the kitchen.  Perhaps there is a utility room or pantry on the opposite side of a kitchen wall.  By moving this wall a couple of feet, you can push back appliances, still have space for a stacked washer and dryer, and create a built-in look for appliances or cabinets and counters.  You can also bring light into the kitchen area by removing the top half of a wall and making an attractive bar between the kitchen and a living room.  Hang traditional shutters for privacy or leave open for socializing and conversation.


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Wed 13 August 2014

Kitchen Remodeling: Things to Consider During Your Next Kitchen Remodel | Bethesda MD Email Print

Written by Bob. Categories: Kitchens Tags: kitchen remodeling, kitchen remodeling bethesda md, kitchen design ideas, kitchen design ideas bethesda

cbb6912b-c134-4401-a74d-787cfdd6aadbRenovating one’s kitchen can be an exciting prospect. For many homeowners, kitchen remodeling is their chance to finally be able to turn their outdated kitchen into the gourmet dream kitchen they have always desired. However, before you grab a hammer and start demolishing your kitchen, there are some things you will want to consider about your remodel. Knowing how you want your finished kitchen to look before you begin your remodel is imperative in ensuring that the remodel goes as smoothly as possible. Here are a few things you should consider before you begin your kitchen remodel.


How you want your new kitchen to be laid out is something you will have to take into consideration before beginning your remodel. Will your kitchen remain basically the same, or will your new kitchen have a completely different design and flow? This is important for you to consider as it could have an effect on the way you go about your remodel. For instance, many homeowners have chosen to incorporate their living/dining space into their kitchens creating a great room in their home. If you decide to attempt something like this, it will be necessary for you to hire a contractor and a kitchen designer to help you transform your space.


Another decision you will have to make before you begin your remodel is what new appliances you will want to purchase for your kitchen. It is important to choose appliances as early in the remodel process as possible due to the fact that the appliances you choose could have an effect on the way your new kitchen is designed. Your renovation will have to take the dimensions, as well as the color and design, of your new appliances into account as this could alter the way you choose to layout your kitchen, and the design scheme you choose to go with.

Making basic decisions such as these ones before you begin your kitchen remodel will go a long way in helping to make the remodel process go smoothly. Furthermore, for those who have never before attempted a kitchen remodel, it can be beneficial to hire a professional kitchen remodel company to remodel your kitchen for you. Doing so will help to ensure that you get the gourmet kitchen you have always dreamed of. 

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