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Home BUILDER Magazine - March 2006

A Great Way to Start 2006
Construction-friendly weather and a catch-up with backlogged permit applications will keep new home builders very busy through the first half of 2006.

Alberta: Can't build fast enough
New home construction in Alberta hit a record breaking 40,847 starts in 2005 and another 40,000 starts are expected in 2006. The plus-40,000 figure for 2005 was the highest total recorded by CMHC in the past 20 years.

"Mud-on-My-Boots" Builder Steps In
"I really love what's involved in building, every step of the way," says Dave Benbow, a self-described "mud-on-my-boots" builder. "I love the smell of the earth when we're building a new foundation, and the smell of the wood when we're framing. And being part of the on-site team is just in my blood."

Footings and Drainage
At times we try to read strict requirements into the building code that simply are not there and, in doing so, cause our customers expensive problems. Such is often the case with foundation perimeter drains.

Fibre Cementing Siding
Fibre-cement siding is gaining a foothold in Canada, particularly on the west coast, where it is being promoted for its long-term durability and resistance to fire and rot. Composed of Portland cement, ground sand and cellulose fibre mixed with water, it looks like wood and is installed in a similar fashion.

Keeping Basements Dry
There doesn't appear to be any compelling reason, short of a hurricane or flood, why water should leak into basements... Nor is there any reason enough moisture should accumulate to create that unpleasantly pungent, lingering dampness odour - not with two popular Canadian foundation waterproofing products...

Project Management
If you're a builder, you know that building the average house can take up to 83 signatures. You also know that, in a typical construction project, each individual involved will have no more than 70 per cent of all required information...
Enter product management software: computer programs specifically designed for home builders and contractors.

Landscape Psychology: Sheltered Sanctuaries
The days of stepping out onto a small wooden deck, flipping a burger on the barbeque, and heading back indoors to entertain your guests have gone the way of charcoal grills and concrete patio slabs. Today, most homeowners are looking for a multi-purpose, maintenance-free outdoor living space.

One-Tooth Saws
TOOL TALK by Jon Eakes
Can a one-tooth saw possibly be worth $375? When it will cut a hole for a six-inch rigid ventilation duct without twisting your arm off… yes!

Curing Shoddy Stucco Work
...water penetration and serviceability tests showed that most of the two- and three-coat stucco jobs were underperforming and many were not code compliant.

Roof Proof
Complex roof designs featuring dormers and a gable or two are the hip choice of many custom home designers these days. But as pretty as these roofs may be, they can be a roofer's nightmare if not designed well.

Selected stories only, subscribe to receive complete editorial.

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