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Job interview tips for construction companies

One of the most common mistakes that construction companies do during the recruiting process is relying on poor interviewing skills.

The interview should be prepared carefully in order to bring you conclusive answers from the prospective candidates; in the same time, as an employer, you must also learn to show the proper  attitude during the interview, because you surely want to make the candidates reveal  information about themselves without offering them tips on what you want to hear. After all, an interview is organized so that you can find the best employment match for your company, not to listen to clichés. If you do not ask the right questions, you may end up with the wrong person, so here are the aspects that you should insist on, during the interview:

  • Ask the candidates about previous job accidents that they have been involved in and try to find out if they are responsible enough to take the necessary safety precautions, while working
  • Check the skills of your candidates and determine if they match the job requirements, definitely in the area of precise and detailed masonry restoration contractors.
  • Ask potential candidates to describe their most recent projects; evaluate their attention to details and passion for their work
  • Not least, make sure to verify their work history.


What’s New In Constructions: Modular Construction Is Popular Again

Modular construction is also known as prefab or offsite construction and is anything but new. However, its advantages are being rediscovered, transforming the modular construction concept into a new trend.

Different building elements are created in a factory and then transported to the construction site, where they are assembled to create the building itself. Some modules arrive on a job site up to 80-90% completed, which reduces the amount of work performed on the job site, as well as vehicular traffic, security and disruption.

Surely, every contractor tries to condense the schedule and save costs; with modular construction, this becomes easy.  It encourages designers to be more efficient and reduces delays, enables architects, detailed building restoration specialists and others to work together and maintains quality control. The design is flexible, which makes modular construction suitable for bigger or smaller projects, from residential to commercial and even industrial (being an efficient solution for the problems related to the lack of on-site storage).

Modular construction is also sustainable. We can talk about an improved environmental impact, due to several factors: modular construction is built in a controlled environment, which inherently means less waste.

Not least, we must mention that, besides all the other advantages, modular construction comes with flexible and affordable financial arrangements.




Do You Have Hail Damage on Your Roof?

Hail damage is caused by a form of solid precipitation called hail stone. Stones vary in size, from small, pea-sized pieces of ice to stones the size of a softball or larger. Though the damage caused by hail stones to ground objects is visible, the issues caused by hail storms might not be that obvious in the case of roofs – here are some of the most common signs that your roof has sustained hail damage:

  • Metal parts are the most visibly affected by hail – check the gutters, the vents, the flashings in the roof valleys, around chimneys and around skylights for dents and cracks;


  • If you have a sloping roof that has ridge caps, check those parts for cracks, chipped or missing parts;


  • Asphalt shingles develop dents and bumps when they are affected by hail stones. Look for areas where the granules that protect the surface of the shingles are displaced or missing – the hail can rip off the granules, leaving the shingle substrate exposed and decreasing the roof’s resistance to water;


  • If you have roofing that uses rigid materials such as tiles, check for chipped parts and cracks. Be very meticulous because even the tiniest hairline crack can let water through, causing water damage or leaks in the roofing structure. For commercial building, be sure to hire commercial roofing Connecticut specialists to do the inspection for you.

Why Install Metal Roofing in Connecticut

Whether it is a commercial, residential or industrial building that you want to install a new roof on in Connecticut, metal roofing is the

perfect choice. The first step is to find a commercial roofing CT company that is highly recommended.  Metal roofs are affordable, durable, weather-resistant and attractive and they work very well in the type of climate that characterizes Connecticut, so here are the most important benefits of metal roofs in more detail:


  • Durability – metal roofing materials carry very long warranty, usually around 50 years, but in most cases they last much longer without getting damaged, without warping, peeling, rusting or rotting,


  • Weather-resistance – metal roofs are very strong and able to withstand harsh weather, including strong winds, hail or snow,


  • Weight – the metal alloys that this type of roofing is made from are resistant, but lightweight, so metal roofs are the perfect choice for lightweight constructions that could not hold up heavier roofs,


  • Variety in design and colors – metal roofs come in the form of sheets or as shingles of various shapes and sizes and they are also available in many different colors from bright red, green, black and blue to more natural hues such as brown or terracotta,


  • Quick and easy installation – metal roofing can be easily fixed on top of the existing roof and it does not need an expert to install them.





Replacing Windows to Save Money and to Improve the Comfort of Your Home

Old, drafty windows are a nuisance – they not only ruin the comfort of your home, especially if you live in regions that gets colder weather, but they also make you waste money by increasing cooling and heating bills. One of the best solution for the problem is to get the old, dysfunctional windows replaced with new ones – here is why:

  • Old windows are usually single-pane structures in wooden frames, while modern windows use two or three panes separated by vacuum or gas to further improve efficiency and are available with varied frame designs. A good double or triple window can reduce the amount of energy lost through the window by at least 25-50% in cold periods and around 20% in summer,


  • Double or triple-pane windows provide excellent insulation from noise as well, so they are especially useful for homes in noisy areas such as for buildings close to busy roads,


  • New windows add curb appeal to the building and increase the resale value of the property. However, local talented masonry restoration Connecticut experts often recommend restoring the windows as much as possible, but update glass to increase insulation;


  • New windows might seem expensive, but you don’t have to pay the entire price – you can check your possibilities to apply for a federal tax credit to reduce the financial burden of installing, energy-efficient windows on your home.


The Best Shingles for Buildings in Connecticut

Connecticut has humid continental climate, with warm summers that get high precipitation and winters that are quite cold, but get moderate amounts of precipitation. The four seasons are distinct and temperatures do not vary extremely during short periods. The balanced climate is quite mild on Connecticut roofs, making shingles the perfect solution for buildings in the area – here are the varieties that work best:

  • Asphalt shingles – the lightest weight and the most affordable variety of all shingles features high resistance to tearing, humidity, sunshine and winds provides great protection for any building. For local installation look to the professional folks at New England Masonry and Restoration;
  • Dimensional shingles – these are thicker shingles made from multiple layers of material to create a three-dimensional appearance and to offer more protection to your home than asphalt shingles. Dimensional shingles are also more expensive and heavier than asphalt shingles; 
  • Wood shingles – expensive varieties that need expert installation and regular maintenance, but uniquely beautiful products that work great on historical buildings;
  • Composite shingles – made from various materials such as rubber compounds or resins, composite shingles carry the longest warranties of all shingle varieties. They are very popular because they efficiently replicate natural materials that are much more expensive such as slate, other varieties of stone or wood.

Fun Things to Do in New England Before Summer’s End

If you’re visiting New England this summer, you’ll find there are a lot of great things to do without having to travel too far. This diverse area is ripe with everything from lakes, water parks and natural hiking trails, to unique venues, lighthouses, food festivals and much more.  Pay attention to the communities here too, as amazing work from local commercial roofing Connecticut experts show off their talent.


But what are the most fun and enjoyable things to do in New England before the summer comes to an end? Let’s take a look:


  • Cotton candy, arcade fun and a relaxing day at the beach are just some of the things you can enjoy while touring some of the most happening boardwalks of New England. Hampton Beach in New Hampshire is considered the best, but make sure to also visit Salisbury Beach for a truly unique experience.
  • Your New England summer will not be complete without a fun and exciting hiking trip. Trails like those along the Camel’s Hump or Mount Washington will show you the full splendor of New England’s stunning landscapes.
  • Waterplace Park in downtown Providence should definitely be one of the first places you visit in New England. Created by Barnaby Evans, an award-winning sculptor, this masterpiece is comprised by more than 100 bonfires blazing just above the three rivers that pass through Providence.


There are many other exciting places to visit and things to do in New England that you should definitely consider. Fishing along the local lakes and sea coasts, water rafting in Maine, or visiting the soothing waterfalls of New Hampshire are among the other activities that will make your summer truly memorable.

3 Towns That Boast Some of the Friendliest and Most Peaceful Neighborhoods in Connecticut

Choosing the best place to live isn’t always just about the infrastructure, how many restaurants serve great food or how good the school system is. Although all these are important factors, you’ll find that, when moving to Connecticut, the importance of buying a house in a friendly and lively family-supporting environment cannot be emphasized enough.


  1. Old Greenwich


This is one of the friendliest and most diverse towns in Connecticut. Old Greenwich is peaceful, friendly and close to the beach. Best of all, the town is deemed extremely safe, fabulous masonry restoration services too, so it’s a great place to move to with your entire family. Whether you’re more interested in fashionable clothes or in having a good old fashioned American barbecue, you’ll find everything you need here.


  1. Weatogue


Weatogue is the perfect place to move to if you want to enjoy a quiet and peaceful walk in the woods followed by a delicious meal at the local restaurant. A quiet urban community perfect for family life and filled with beautiful parks and soccer fields, Weatogue is one of the few towns with genuinely helpful school programs and where the local neighborhoods are all friendly, inviting and free of crime.


  1. New Canaan


New Canaan is quite possibly the perfect place for raising a family. Here you can relax and enjoy the tranquility and diversity that Connecticut is known for, while also enjoying a somewhat more upscale lifestyle. From 50s diners to gourmet restaurants, there are plenty of food places to consider. Also, the houses and mansions here are extremely beautiful, the school system is among the best, and New Canaan is close to New York City.

What Are the Top Real Estate Areas Connecticut Has to Offer?

Moving to Connecticut is no easy task, especially when you have so many great places to choose from. However, when it comes to selecting the best real estate areas in the region, there are a few that stand out more than any other.  There are many areas that have wonderful historic building restoration neighborhoods that should be considered.


South Windsor – A Great Location for Families


From the school system to infrastructure, restaurants, food places and clothing stores, South Windsor has just about everything you can hope for. If you want to move with your family to Connecticut, the relaxing family life in this small town will be perfect for you.


A Great Place for Students in Avon


Avon allows for the same peaceful and relaxing lifestyle associated with South Windsor, but also provides children and students with the opportunity to expand their horizons and target better careers later in life. Students are encouraged to volunteer, join internships and discover their areas of interest more proficiently. Also, there are local service agencies that can help them play a more active role when it comes to civic involvement.


An Unforgettable Experience Moving to Simsbury


Although the median home value is somewhat higher than in the other two areas, Simsbury is considered to be one of the very best places to live in Connecticut – especially if you have a family with young children.


The schools here are outstanding, and the crime rate is very low. Moreover, most of the people who recently moved here were pleasantly surprised by the friendly and inviting community of this quaint little New England town. The people are engaging, well-educated and helpful.

How to Easily Find the Most Popular and Overall Best Schools in Connecticut

If you’re looking for a trusted school with a good track record, you’ll be happy to learn that Connecticut is in no shortage of prestigious academic establishments. From elementary to high school, you’ll find some of the best rated schools in the country here, and picking one will not be difficult either, not to mention their exteriors are, bar none in the commercial roofing Connecticut industry too!


Just consider these simple tips for choosing the best schools in the Connecticut area:


  • Know what you’re looking for. Are you interested in spending less? Do you want a school that can continue to provide your child with support and high quality education from middle school to high school? What area do you want to move to? All these factors have to be considered before you can pick your school.
  • Pick a school district that has several highly rated schools. The competition between schools is likely to motivate the staff to continue improving the children’s educational experience.
  • Don’t just take their word for it or listen to online reviews. Consider taking a trip to see a few of your top picks, and take your child with you. That way you can make a far more informed decision than just based on the school’s online reputation.


The high population density and short distances between school districts in Connecticut should also help you by giving you a broader set of options. The key is to do your research patiently and avoid making rash decisions that could negatively impact your children’s future.

Why Should You Install Concrete Siding?

Concrete fiber cement siding is a good alternative to other types of siding based on materials such as wood or vinyl.

Concrete siding consists in heavy straight boards that must be handled with care by at least two workers. Installing them also require the guidelines provided by the manufacturer, as well as special tools. Siding in general is a very technical process that must be assigned to specialists.

The advantages of concrete siding
First of all, concrete is a cost-effective material that offers a good level of protection as well. It is fire-resistant (class 1A), free of termites, flexible and it can withstand harsh weather conditions, for many years, without decaying.

Both vinyl and wood siding require regular maintenance (cleaning, washing…); with concrete siding, maintenance is a task that you can forget about, at least for very long periods.

Another advantage is that this type of siding works very well with insulation, which means that it will contribute to a better energy-efficiency.

The US Green Building Council also recognizes concrete siding as a durable and sustainable option. These attributes translate into very long warranties (50-years).  Look to Connecticut masonry experts for help.

The appearance of concrete siding is another aspect that must not be neglected: it can be designed to resemble other materials, it comes in many colors, and it holds painting.

How Much Insulation Do I Need?

Insulation is very important to our houses, because it represents an effective remedy to ensure the thermal comfort and reduce the heat transfer. Another reason why we need it is an economical one: poorly isolated houses tend to have very expensive energy bills, and isolation comes as a solution for money savings in the long run.  Make sure to hire great masonry restoration experts to fix any holes on the exterior of your home, which helps solidify the insulation to do it’s work.

There are many types of insulation and materials; their efficiency is measured precisely by the R-value (the insulation’s resistance to heath transfer). The US Department of Energy provides the recommended R-value for each area of the country; obviously, if the climate stays warm year round, you do not spend so much on energy, so the insulation requirements will be different from those in colder areas.

But wherever you are, you should be able to add adequate new insulation or make effective upgrades to the existing level of insulation.

Insulation can be interior or exterior and may be added to the attic or to the walls.
Generally, the attic insulation is 12-15″ thick and must hide all the ceiling joints, in order to be efficient. As about the walls in your house, they need as much insulation as possible, from the floor to the ceiling, wrapped around plumbing, ductwork and electrical boxes. In order to increase the R-value in exterior walls, specialists recommend foam insulation, underneath the siding.

Exterior Remodeling Ideas to Increase Your Home’s Value

The investments in a house’s infrastructure are the most important in preserving its durability, but the exterior aspect also has a significant impact and should not be neglected. Investing in quality materials for exterior remodeling may translate into a youthful and modern air, no matter how old is the home you live in.

Here are some exterior remodeling ideas that will increase the value and the curb appeal of the building.

•    Start with the front door! Install a new one or give it a fresh paint and consider replacing the old hardware around it (the house number, the mailbox…)
•    Invest in a new facade, whether it is about siding or simply a fresh paint. Choose a style and color palette according to your taste, but make sure that they also match the general aspect of the street. It doesn’t mean that you cannot use original remodeling ideas, but you certainly do not want your home to make a discordant note or to stand out in relief in a gruesome and unpleasant way, so choose carefully, use your artistic eye or ask the advice from a specialist
•    Transform your garden in a beautiful and relaxing place and try taking your landscape to another level using not just vegetation but also exterior lighting
•    Repair the old walkway or replace it with a new one made of stone or brick. The effect is guaranteed.

Having fabulous building restoration by professional contractors done is one way to guarantee an increase in your home’s value.

What Are the Advantages of Gutter Screens?

Every homeowner knows that rain gutters require regular maintenance (removing leaves and other debris), in order to remain fully functional, otherwise, they will fail to accomplish their purpose: keeping the water away from the house and its foundation. Maintenance operations must be performed at least twice a year and, if you are unable to do them yourself, you must take some money out of your pocket and have the gutters cleaned out professionally.  The best of the best commercial roofing Connecticut roofers will exclaim!

If you are tired of this periodic concern, you should consider installing some type of gutter protection, such as filtering screens, designed to keep debris away from the water. You can find solutions for every budget: from cheap gutter screens to expensive micromesh systems.

Investing in gutter screens not only reduces maintenance to once every couple of years, but also prevents premature rusting and damage due to wet debris accumulation. In other words, you will not be forced to consider replacing your gutters for a while…

If your area is prone to bushfires, you should know that there is always the risk that stationary debris catch fire and endanger your house`s integrity; this is one more reason to purchase some form of gutter protection.

Gutter screens also keep pests away, so you do not have to worry anymore about insects that make your gutters home.

Trends In Architecture – The Shape And Functionality Of New Buildings

The most modern trends in architecture will radically transform the way we think about the criteria used for determining building technologies and styles – here are a few trends that are already having considerable impact:

  • Minimalist styles – clean surfaces, natural hues and high functionality are already the trend for homes just as much as for office spaces, on the inside and on the outside as well. Ornaments are skipped entirely or are present only as accents


  • Using natural materials – as the demand for environment-friendly, green and passive buildings increases, houses made from sustainable natural materials such as homes built from logs or from natural stone are becoming more and more popular, or simply using product that lasts a lifetime with the help of skilled Connecticut masonry companies.


  • Prefabricated houses – another new and impactful trend, modular buildings are popular among owners, architects and constructors as they are quick and easy to erect and they provide durable and aesthetically pleasing housing solutions


  • Outdoor living – while in the past, outdoor spaces around the house were taken up by patios, backyards and the occasional grill, the latest trends extended indoor functionality outdoors in areas where climate conditions are suitable for such an approach. Outdoor kitchens are already very popular and outdoor rooms are catching up quickly, too.

How Do I Hire a Good Contractor? – Tips and Ideas

Finding a good contractor for home improvement, repair or construction projects is certainly a daunting task, but not impossible – nothing is, with the right approach. If you are in the process of searching for the right contractor, here are a few tips to make it all easier for you:

  • Look locally – start your search in your neighborhood, then extend it gradually to your town and the region where you live.



  • Check reliability – verify the contractor you have in mind on review websites and forums.


  • Request multiple quotes – collect at least three or four quotes for your project from various contractors to get an idea about how much it will cost you.


  • Don’t go with the lowest or the highest offer – make a reasonable choice based more on service quality and reliability than on the price. Bear in mind that the cheapest or the most expensive offers are not necessarily the best, so make sure you evaluate the offers from every aspect before committing to one contractor or the other.

Historical Buildings in Connecticut – Must-See Monuments

The architectural heritage of Connecticut is certainly among the state’s most important attractions – wherever you go in the state, you will see amazing constructions preserved in their original forms and open for the interested public.  There is always building restoration experts hard at work to preserve the historic buildings.

Besides traditional architecture that exemplify the dominant style of e certain era, Connecticut gives home to a lot of “firsts”, “bests” and “onlys”:

  • The Buttolph-Williams House features traditional New England design and building technique
  • In New Haven you can visit the country’s first agricultural experiment station as well as Yale University’s oldest building
  • Hartford has lots of Colonial-style monuments
  • In Litchfield you can visit the state’s first historic district.

In the past, Connecticut was the chosen home of many scientists, artists, writers and other important personalities:

  • Nobel-prize dramatist Eugene O’Neill lived in New London – his house called Monte Cristo Cottage is open to the public
  • Another important American writer, James Merrill also lived in New London county’s Stonington
  • 19th century sculptor John Rogers lived in Fairfield
  • Painter and sculptor Frederic Remington lived in Fairfield county, in Ridgefield.

If you like Gothic architecture, you will also find a lot of monuments to visit in Connecticut – Fairfield, Windham and Hartford have lots of beautiful Gothic buildings.

Commercial Roofing Products – A Few of the Most Popular Materials

Commercial roofing products are available in such a wide range and variety that whatever you are using your commercial building for, whatever the building’s structure and design, you can surely find the best roofing material for it – here are the most common ones:

  • Single-ply membrane – made from various materials such as PVC, TPO or EPDM, roofing membranes are easy to install, lightweight, flexible, therefore suitable for unconventional roof structures and they come with superior heat-reflection properties, especially light-colored varieties.


  • Metal – tin, aluminum, copper and steel roofing sheets are also gaining in popularity these days due to their resistance, durability, low maintenance needs. They are also very quick and easy to install.


  • Asphalt shingles are also great for commercial roofs and are the most chosen by commercial roofing Connecticut companies – the shingles can be easily adapted to any shape and angle, they are available in many different colors and shapes, they are resistant to impact, fire and wind and they are very affordable, too.


  • Bitumen roofs – one of the most traditional roofing materials, bitumen sheets have a proven track record of being resistant and durable. The high-tensile strength of the material makes sure the surface does not crack and bitumen can withstand even the harshest weather as well.

Home Restoration Ideas to Make Life Easier for You

concrete restorationHome restoration is usually a stressful and tedious process. However, it doesn’t have to be that overwhelming – just have a look at our home restoration ideas, we put them together in hope of making it all easier for you.

Assign a Budget

Don’t buy cheap materials of sub-par quality, but don’t go overboard either – the golden middle way is the best. The price of construction materials, tools and furniture vary widely, so do a little online research to find out how much the renovation will cost you.

Make Accurate Measurements and Create the Design on Paper First

You will need to measure everything to be able to calculate the quantity of the materials you will be using for the renovation. If you find the calculations difficult to do, consult an expert – better pay for consultancy than for materials you don’t need.


Home restoration is not only about building and installing new materials – it is also about tearing down walls, removing debris, cleaning, preparing surfaces and many other tedious tasks. Make sure the space you will be renovating is properly prepared for the renovation – it’s tiring, but it’s worth it.

Get the Right Tools

To be able to do a great job you definitely need the right tools. Assess your tool-related needs based on the operations you will need to perform and make sure you buy the best tools you can afford – they make all the difference.

Work Systematically

There is nothing worse than realizing that you need another source of light over the sink when the backsplash and the cabinet are already installed and the plates all sit nicely on the shelves. Design every process carefully – start with electrical work and plumbing, then move to the floors and the walls and leave the decorative elements and the furniture last, that way you can be sure everything is done the right way. If the renovation also involves large, exterior structural elements such as the roof, the gutters, the sidings or the doors and windows, start with those and move inside only when everything is fixed on the outside.

Prepare for Material Storage and Debris Removal

If you are planning large-scale renovation, you will need large quantities of construction materials as well, materials that you will need to be able to store among proper conditions, so make sure you have a shed or a storage container to accommodate your materials.

Renovation also generates a lot of debris, even if you want to redo only one small room. Work out a way to collect and to dispose of the accumulated debris – without a solid debris-removal strategy you will find it much harder to contain chaos.

For all things related to building and masonry restoration in Connecticut talk to New England Masonry.