Natelli Homes Blog


Smaller home additions have as much impact as large ones.  If you lack the space to expand, it's time to be creative.  Work with the existing structure and add only the things you need.  Here are some ideas for a small and effective home expansion.

Turning unused space into something new is a great cost-saving idea. 

  • Evaluate the home and determine if the space is currently in use.  For example, if you never use the dining room, merge the table with the kitchen and turn that dining room space into something else. Another example is turning a small room into an exercise room, laundry room or walk-in closet.
  • Unused small rooms can attach to the adjacent room to make the space larger.  You will have to knock down the wall separating them, if possible.  For example, merge the dining room space with the kitchen or living room space.
  • Use attic, storage or basement space into something useful.  Additional bedroom, closet space and kids rooms are great examples.

If you do need to tack on additional space, be specific.  You want the investment to be worth every penny. 

  • Add a carport, garage or driveway to the property.  After dents and scratches from being on the side of the street, your car will thank you.  Garages take up so much land, but provide 360-degree shelter for your car.  In addition, people can use the walls of the garage for storage.  A carport is a cheaper option providing sidewalls and a roof for shelter. If you want storage, you can give up space for a small utility closet.  A third option is to create a driveway; while it doesn't shield your car, at least it's off the street.
  • Prefer outdoor gatherings or enjoying the view? A patio, sunroom or deck is your solution.
  1. Sunrooms are enclosed glass chambers where families and friends can enjoy the outdoors without going outdoors.  Place sunrooms near the kitchen, living room or dining room in an area where the outdoor view is breathtaking and the sun hits the room during the day.
  2. Patios are an alternative to sunrooms.  Installation is at the back of the home.  Some patios come with ceilings and walls; some don't.
  3. Decks don't come with ceilings or enclosures, but are a great place to feel the wind, look at the view and host gatherings.  It's great for anyone to be in the thick of outdoor space.
  • Fireplaces bring people together, so it's no wonder it's a popular home addition feature.  Fireplaces come in many shapes and styles.  As far as function, there are three kinds: wood burning, electric and gas.  Choose to install one inside or outside the home.  Place the fireplace in an area where it will be used a lot (patio, living room, kitchen, bedroom or bathroom).

Home additions are large and extravagant operations.  It doesn't have to be.  By being creative, you can get the most out of the space allotted with visually pleasing results. 


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Are you running out of space in your home? That's the problem a lot of people are facing. The economy is bringing families together again, for better or for worse. Many college students aren't able to find a good job after they earn their degree, so they end up moving back home. According to Pew Research, there are currently over 21 million people from the Millennial generation living at home. It's not just the college students, though. Many older generations are choosing to live with their children instead of living in a nursing home or assisted care facility. That means more people are living together in one home, and many of them are started to feel the space crunch

If you feel like your family is living on top of one another, it may be time to consider home additions. Instead of forcing people out or looking for a bigger (and more expensive!) home, consider adding on to your existing structure. This can often be a money-saving option that gives everyone the space they need without putting a strain on the family budget. You can customize the area to fit the needs of the individual. Add an outside entry for your late-night-loving young adult, or make sure mom and dad have their own sitting area to enjoy the morning news while your kids enjoy cartoons. Whatever it is that your family needs, Natelli Homes is here to help make it happen. 

Contact us today and let's start talking about the space solutions you need. Our experienced designers and architects will draw up plans for a space you'll love and establish a budget that won't break the bank. Then you'll be ready to contact a builder and make these dreams a reality. Imagine having all the room you need and never having to leave the neighborhood or the house you love. Make room for everyone with a design from Natelli Homes!


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With the economy doing so badly in recent years, home remodeling hasn't exactly been at the top of everyone's budget. But giving your home a make-over is making a comeback at long last! Here are five of the top trends to keep your eye on:

  1. Kitchens go modern- Not too long ago people were looking for the comfort of a rustic kitchen with warm colors, wrought iron hardware, and cozy lighting. 2014 expects to see a strong push for modern kitchens with cabinetry in white or gray, simple countertops, and minimalist designs.
  2. Brass is back- Brass trim is back on the list of must-haves for the home of 2014. If the modern kitchen is not for you, a rustic kitchen can be brought up to date with dull, hammered brass hardware. It lets you keep the warmth of the past while being thoroughly up-to-date!
  3. Bathroom update- The bathroom comes in right behind the kitchen for remodels. 58% of remodelers plan to remake their bathrooms in 2014, and the trend is for modern resort-style bathrooms with large walk-in showers with multiple heads, heated floors, glass tiles, and cool shades of blue, white, and grey.
  4. Colors- While kitchens and baths are getting treatments in monochrome or soft, pale colors, the rest of the house is seeing the 2013 trend of vibrant colors evolve into accent colors that are focal points.Pantone, the international authority on colors, sees designers going for a trend of colors such as "nectarine", "green flash", "lemon zest", and "rouge red".
  5. Greener and greener- Going green was once a perk. Now it's an assumption. Energy-efficient appliances, renewable materials such as bamboo, and designs that incorporate the local climate, such as tall windows to channel the sun's warmth into a room, are all eco-friendly trends that are getting easier and easier to go with.


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Many homeowners strive to improve the value of their home through various additions and upgrades. However, you can do this while also personalizing your property into something that you not just like, but love because it is able to reflect who you really are. By following certain upgrades and giving them a personal touch, you can make your home better while also increasing its value with incredible success.

Addition of a Patio, Deck, or Porch

It is okay to focus on things that already exist in your home, but the addition of a deck, patio, or porch can have an enormous impact on enjoyment and value. When you add something brand new, this means that you can be the one to decide each and every detail from the beginning to the end. Creating a realistic budget for a project like this is definitely recommended because it is easy to get out of hand, but after doing this you can use a professional to stay on track and have a great outcome. In regard to details, there are beams, railing, material, design, and size to consider, so there is a lot of room for personalization.

Minor Changes to Your Kitchen

While a major kitchen upgrade may be something you want to do, increasing the value of your property with home remodeling does not require significant changes or additions. In this case, instead of purchasing all new cabinets, you can have them refaced, and then you can invest into wooden countertops as they are an inexpensive alternative to granite. It is possible to increase the value of your home from your kitchen alone by something as simple as changing window molding, so do not doubt the benefits of even the smallest upgrades or changes to your kitchen.

Remove All Wood Paneling and Popcorn

In order to make a drastic improvement in terms of appearance, getting rid of wood paneling and popcorn must be done. Fortunately, this is a fairly inexpensive process, which makes it worthy of being a priority. Getting rid of these two features in your home can make it look a lot newer, especially because it is the old properties that still have paneling and popcorn. Doing some remodeling to your home can be an excellent investment for various reasons, one of them being an increase in value.

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19e38db1-71c5-4c49-fafb-77ba1bff9e47It is easy to spend thousands of dollars on your home throughout the years, so being able to increase your monthly savings can have an enormous impact after a significant amount of time has passed. With a few upgrades, it is possible to earn $20 per month in savings, which may not seem like much, but it adds up to $240 per year and $2,400 over the course of a whole decade. Making use of home remodeling in an attempt to save money is an excellent option, but you must focus on the long-term savings and not immediate savings as this is where you will see a huge difference in costs.

Replacing Your Windows and Doors

While older windows and doors may work fine, they may not be doing their job to save you money. It is beneficial to replace them as you can get energy-efficient ones that will lower your utilities. When your central air conditioning system has to do less work to keep your home at a comfortable temperature, you will end up using less energy, and this is how you will save money by replacing windows and doors.

Getting Energy-efficient Appliances

Along with acquiring appliances from reputable manufacturers, you should focus on energy-efficient ones as this can lead to savings on homeowners insurance in the form of a discount after getting certified by the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. While the savings from home insurance is worth looking forward to, other savings come from another upgrade to reduce your energy usage.

Investing in a Tankless Water Heater

A tankless water heater may cost a bit more money than a standard one, but you are more than likely to be satisfied with investing in one for long-term savings and because it requires far less maintenance. It is important to understand that an upgrade like this will cost more than purchasing a standard water heater and having it installed, so it is the future that you must look at to understand the value in this investment. When you want to increase your long-term savings from home remodeling, feel free to contact us as we can provide you with the help you need to make this happen.

ac3f812d-395f-4eaf-eac5-3886f9209ea2If you are currently considering home renovations, or are even considering completely remodeling your home, your homes piping may not be an item that you had previously considered adding to the list of things in your home that need to be renovated. However, your piping is essential in ensuring that the water your family needs will reach, and be distributed throughout, your home. A homes piping is such an integral (and unseen) part of one’s home, that, consequentially, many people do not consider repiping their home, and do not know how they would be able to tell if their home needed to be repiped. Oftentimes older homes will eventually need to be repiped. Luckily for the homeowners though, old pipes will often give off signs that they need to be replaced. While there are many signs that can indicate that a home needs to be repiped, here are a few of the major signs that can indicate repiping may be necessary for your home.

Lack of Water Pressure

If you have noticed a steady decline in the water pressure coming out of your homes sinks and showers it is likely that it is time to repipe your home. In fact, poor water pressure is one of the clearest indicators that something is likely wrong with the pipes in your home.

Water Changes Color

If you begin to notice that either the water coming out of your pipes has a red cast, or that the water coming out of your homes faucets is colored at first and then runs clear, then it is likely time to repipe your home. Colored water is often a sign that the pipes in your home have begun to rust, which is not healthy for you and your family to consume through the water.

Your Homes Water Has an Unpleasant Odor

If you have begun to notice a change in the scent of the water coming out of your homes showers and faucets, this can be a clear indicator that your pipes need to be replaced. Unpleasant smelling water can be an indicator that the pipes in your home are failing and/or deteriorating, and it is vital that you have them looked at by a professional.

Each of us relies on the pipes in our homes to supply us with the water our families need, which is why it is vital to have your home repiped at the first indication that there may be a problem with your homes piping.

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f28fbb3c-600f-4f3e-e122-b221d6d09b46Live in a house long enough and eventually you are going to reach a point where the desire of doing some home renovations becomes almost an obsession. In many cases, this obsession (or even just a simple desire) meets up with the roadblock known as a lack of liquidity. One of the nice things about living in a house long enough to reach the point where home renovations transforms from a want to need is that it may also be long enough to build up enough equity to qualify for a loan.

A home equity loan, to be precise. The home equity loan is a very popular method method of borrowing money for renovations, remodeling and home improvements. (Though, despite its name, a home equity loan can be spent any way you like; it doesn't have to be spent on your home.) You even have two different options for structuring the loan: either for a fixed amount or by establishing a line of credit to draw upon as necessary.

It is very much worth noting that despite being known by a different name, a home equity loan is basically just a second mortgage. Which means that you will once again be expected to jump through the very same hoops you jumped through with your first mortgage. That means filling out a loan application, paying closing costs, application fees and points and facing the ultimate penalty of foreclosure if you can't pay the loan back.

Despite those not inconsiderable downsides, there is an upside to taking out a home equity loan to cover the cost of home renovations. In most cases, you may be able to borrow up 80% of the equity you have established in your home. Introductory interests rates can be substantially lower than the rates you were able to get with the first mortgage. Those introductory rates are usually locked in for only six months, after which they will fluctuate relative to the prime rate or some other benchmark percentage. While the that uncertain rise in the interest you will pay is hardly promising, if you plan wisely on the amount you plan to borrow and develop a strategy for paying off as much as you can within that six month locking period, you can potentially exploit the system for pretty significant gains.

The wiser path in some cases may be to lock into a fixed interest rate for the length of the loan. You won't get that low introductory rate, but you also won't get any nasty surprises down the road. If you are going to be borrowing a large amount that you can't possibly pay down by much in six months or if you are borrowing during a time of interest rate instability, this would almost certainly be more advantageous.

Another reason for the popularity of home equity loans is the ability to deduct 100% of that interest. If you aren't used to itemizing your deductions, you should consult a tax professional to make sure you take full advantage of this opportunity. 

And for those aching to get down to business and engage in some serious home renovations, there is one overwhelming benefit to taking out a home equity loan.  In comparison to some other means of borrowing, the home equity loan is a relatively painless and quick means of getting your hands on the liquid assets necessary to make those renovations a reality. 

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natelli homes blog3Not everyone has the space or the know-how to install a traditional wood-burning fireplace. With an electric fireplace, you don't need to. In fact, it's easy to set up an elegant and dramatic focal point in any room, while still providing the warmth, ambiance and comfort that comes with a traditional fireplace. And the best part? They are an eco-friendly alternative to burning wood or using a gas fireplace, and are ready to go right out of the box. Simply decide on a location, plug it in, and you're room will look (and feel) like a million bucks.

Here are some additional benefits to consider when remodeling your home:


Want to have the elegance of a fireplace while remaining eco-conscious? Then you're in luck. An electric fireplace requires very few resources to produce heat, and there are no emissions as a by-product, so you'll be adding nothing negative to the environment while it's operating. There's also no wood, gas, or additional lines to be installed, all you'll use is pure and clean electricity straight from an outlet. 

Plug-in Ready

Electric fireplaces are ready to go straight out of the box. There is nothing to install or configure, no additional resources to acquire beforehand, and very little planning as to its placement (just an open wall). All you have to do is find a place to plug it in and you're house will be warm and cozy in no time, all with the appearance that you've had a traditional fireplace installed.

Money in Your Pocket

Looking to save money on your gas heating bill? Because with an electric fireplace, you'll notice savings on your bill after just the first month (again, electricity is greener than gas in more ways than one). What's more, there is no waste when the unit is operating, because electricity converts directly into heat. Compare that to a gas fireplace where some of the costs in running it are related to the dissipation of the gas into the environment. Also, think of all the money you'll be saving not having to furnish wood as fuel as you would with a traditional fireplace.

The bottom line? An electric fireplace is a classy and contemporary alternative to traditional wood and gas fireplaces. They put off a warm glow by using bulbs that look almost identical to real flames, are clean from soot and ash, use a sustainable resource, and are perfectly safe to operate in any room in your home. 

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natelli homes blogWhen it comes to dealing with home renovations, it can be easy to forget that you may find yourself in a position of short-term upkeep of the old homestead while you pursue the long-term dream of living in the completed renovation. Depending on the state of the home and the extent of the renovation needed, upkeep has the potential to become a job in and of itself. As long as you know what to look out for, however, you could turn enjoy full-time benefits for a part-time job. 

  • Exterior Walls 

Scrutinize all outside walls and trim for traces of marred clapboard, chipped bricks, broken shingles and bent siding. The exterior of the house is the only resistance you have against external forces impacting your dreams of renovation. Patch any cracks or holes in the stucco and repair or replace any parts of the exterior that is showing signs of wear. Eventually, your plan for total home renovations may allow for more extensive refinishing, but during the maintenance phase you just need to take steps from exterior walls making the renovation more work than necessary.

  • Windows

Address any windows that stick or are difficult to open or close. This could potentially be the result of decades worth of paint layers.  If opening or closing windows that stick result in further damage, replace broken sash cords or make modifications to cure the problem of binding. Caulking windows not properly insulated can help keep the interior of the home from experiencing further damage during renovations. 

  • Flooring

Refinish wood flooring and do whatever it takes to put an end to squeaky floorboards, steps or stairs as a necessary step in maintenance during the long process of completing all your home renovations. You can worry about redoing an entire floor later, but in the meantime any broken tile or ceramic flooring should be repaired or replaced. Waste no time in removing musty carpets and rugs because that smell will sink into any new items introduced into the home while renovations are taking place. 

  • Steam Heat

Older homes in need of renovations will often be a younger homebuyer's introduction to the world of houses heated by steam. Learn how to flush radiators while you decide whether or not to replace this steam heating system with a furnace system or space heaters and room unit air conditioners. Leaky radiators or radiators that continually make a banging should eventually be replaced either with a new radiator or an entirely new heating system, but in the meantime maintenance may be limited merely to learning how steam heating systems work.  

  • Roofing

Roofs should be inspected for loose, cracked or damaged shingles. A completely new roof may be part of your long term plans for home renovations, but in the meantime just make sure to replace any individual areas of disrepair. Don't forget to check that the metal flashing hasn't corroded, rusted, come undone or are otherwise suffered damage.

  • Doors

Replace or repair interior doors that stick or loosely swing open. Check around all doors leading outdoors for signs of inefficient weather-stripping. While replacing old doors with updated models may be on your list of things to do as part of your overall plan for home renovations, a short-term fix may be limited merely to the addition of insulating material. 

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Architectural Design and New Custom Homes | Montgomery County

Montgomery County is one of the most luxurious counties in the country (if it's not already at the top of the list). Looking around neighborhoods such as Bethesda, Potomac, and Rockville, the number of beautiful homes with pristine roofs, columns on wraparound porches and decks is simply astounding. Look to Silver Spring and Chevy Chase and the number of custom homes with fabulous kitchens and bathrooms to die for are enough to make anyone want to move to this part of the country. 

Montgomery County is one of the best places to live in the country because people here are very comfortable in how they live. This means their homes are specifically made for the residents who inhabit them and they would not have it any other way. 

If you're in Montgomery County and are looking to modify your home or build a completely new one here's how we can make that dream come true:

Natelli Homes in Montgomery County

With Natelli Homes, you’ll find that there’s no easier way to begin your home remodeling (or home renovation for that matter) than by starting with Natelli Home’s architectural design services.  

We have taken on dozens of architectural design projects that have turned average homes into stunning dream homes. When we start the architectural design process, we ensure your home renovation will blend seamlessly with the rest of your house while making your home look like new.

Our architectural design specialties include:

  • New custom homes
  • Home renovations
  • Home additions
  • Bathroom home renovations
  • Screened Porch and open porch home renovations
  • Home remodeling
  • Kitchen home remodeling
  • And more…

With all of these services and options for your home in mind, what makes us the best choice for your home renovation or home remodeling project?

When you decide to work with Natelli Homes, you’ll be getting an architectural design firm who takes out expensive costs and wasteful spending. We eradicate cost variables for you by defining the cost objective from the start so that your architectural design project works within your budget. In this equation, there is no better option than Natelli Homes.

Click here to learn more about our architectural design services for new homes, custom homes, and more in Montgomery County.

Custom Homes | Montgomery County

Everyone deserves their very own custom home. And, if you live in Montgomery County, that dream may become a reality faster than you think.

Natelli Homes has spent over 25 years building some of the most fantastic custom homes in the DC Metro Area. When you’ve been creating custom homes for as long as we have in such as powerful part of the country, you develop a list of clients who reflect the quality of work we put in:

  • Politicians
  • Physicians
  • CEO’s
  • Lobbyists
  • Attorneys
  • And even an Astronaut

We’re not playing insider politics by telling you that Natelli Homes is the cream of the crop when it comes to custom homes. Also, while it’s no secret that we excel in providing premier residential architectural designs to the nation’s elite, you’ll be delighted to know that your average resident is as much a part of our clientele as are the luminaries and dignitaries of the Beltway (assuming you’re not one yourself).

As your custom homebuilder in we’ll always give you the best the area has to offer. Our decades of custom home experience is humbly passed onto our clients and can be made a part of your home if ever you need an abode with the perfect architectural design to match your individual style.

Click here for more information about our custom homes here in Montgomery County.

New Homes | Montgomery County

All the hassle and stress involved in buying a home in can be avoided if you’re willing to purchase a new home instead.

Who doesn’t want a new home? The 1980’s-era wall-to-wall carpeting, 1970’s-era wallpaper, and enclosed kitchen designs can be too dated for the modern homebuyer. If contemporary interior decorating, high ceilings, green windows decked with plantation shutters, and granite-covered islands to match your modern, open-concept kitchen sounds more like your cup of tea, you may find it more palatable to buy a brand new home.

If you know what you want out of a home and haven’t yet found what you’re looking for, it’s probably because your home hasn’t been built yet. This is why we encourage you to look at new homes in Montgomery County that will not only fit your lifestyle, but will give you the piece of mind that older homes will not allow you to have – fixer upper maintenance costs, etc.

New Homes in Montgomery County | Portfolio Homes

Not too sure where to start? Natelli Homes makes buying a new home a snap by giving you Portfolio Homes to choose from. What are Portfolio Homes? We simply take pre-designed homes (designed to fit many lot shapes and sizes) and adapt them to fit your needs and desires. With these new homes, our clients will be getting a 6 to 9 month head-start on architectural design – allowing us to get you in your new home faster. Portfolio Homes are an easy, stress-free, cost-effective, and time saving solution to getting custom new homes.

Click here to learn about buying new homes in Montgomery County.

Home Renovations | Montgomery County

Home renovations are a tremendous undertaking without the right kind of support. Having Natelli Homes on your side makes all the difference!

Home Additions | Montgomery County

If you’re looking to add more space to your home, the easiest way to create a new room, garage, or porch is to make a home addition.

By creating a well-designed addition that is as cost-effective as it is practical, your home renovation (be it kitchen or dining room) will have the square footage needed to increase the value of your home while also making it a more entertaining place for family and friends.

So, if you’d rather improve upon your home instead of jumping ship and leaving the neighborhood, call Natelli Homes today to get your home addition designed and budget established ASAP.

Click here for your FREE home addition consultation in Montgomery County.

Bathroom Home Renovations | Montgomery County

We provide bathroom home renovations in because, aside from your master bedroom, there shouldn’t be a more peaceful room than your bathroom.

We begin by listening to your needs and determining your budget. We then make it so that your personality is reflected on everything -- from the splashes of color on the walls, to the floors and fixtures. When we’re finished with your bathroom home renovation, you’ll be amazed with your new piece of serenity.

Just take a look at the customizations you have at your disposal:

  • Custom tiles
  • Mosaic inlays
  • Marble and granite countertops
  • Glazed or stained wood vanities
  • Oil-rubbed bronze finishes on fixtures
  • And more…

There’s nothing like our bathroom home renovations. When you work with Natelli Homes, you’ll witness firsthand how our architectural design services make the process of bathroom home renovations a simple and efficient process.

Click here for your FREE bathroom home renovation consultation in Montgomery County.

Screened Porch and Open Porch Home Renovations | Montgomery County

Both screened and open porches have become vital living spaces for homes. 

A tall glass of lemonade on a warm summer day can best be enjoyed at the helm of your home. There’s nothing that says “I’m the king of my castle and the captain of my ship” than a homeowner who has full mastery of their front porch. The sense of ownership that comes from firmly placing two feet down on your very own residential promenade is a sensation we want all of our customers to feel when they allow us to design and build a spectacular screened porch or open porch for their home.

Whether you’re in the mood for:

  • Plush seating
  • Dining tables
  • Fireplaces
  • Outdoor TV's
  • And even motorized screening

We have vast experience with a large number of low-maintenance products and materials that will enhance the use and function of your screened porch or open porch.

Click here for your FREE screened porch or open porch home renovation consultation in Montgomery County.

Home Remodeling | Montgomery County 

Natelli Homes is your one-stop-shop for home remodeling in Montgomery County.

Kitchen Home Remodeling | Montgomery County

And, when it comes to kitchen home remodeling, we’re the best in the business in providing you with years of expertise designing both utilitarian and multifunctional kitchens to meet any and all of your home remodeling needs. There’s no question that the kitchen is the most important room in the home. With today’s busy lifestyles, it provides a gathering place for the people in your life that are consumed by work and school. If the centerpiece of your home isn’t up to snuff, then there is no glue that holds the family together.

That’s something that we simply cannot have.

Natelli has been involved in kitchen home remodeling for decades and has the architectural design expertise to get you started.

For example, take a look at some of the kitchen cabinets we install:

  • WoodMode
  • Brookhaven
  • Premier Custom
  • Plato
  • Wellborn cabinets

Click here for your FREE kitchen home remodeling consultation in Montgomery County.