WHAT'S NEW AT MILLER MARRIOTT? If it's been a while, allow us to reintroduce ourselves...
We specialize in creating timeless, authentic single-family homes in Southeastern Wisconsin and build approximately 20 custom homes a year...but we also do much more than that! As a full-service provider, Miller Marriott lends experience in designing & building new homes (we can also help you find land!). We believe everything we do is to enhance the experience for our client, including: interior design, land entitlement, 3D modeling and construction. Additionally, we are able to provide real estate services for marketing, buying and selling properties.
The CHARLESTON: A Modern Farmhouse
4 BR | 3.5 BA | 3 CAR GARAGE | 2891 SQ FT Located in Germantown, WI | W130 N11617 Harvest Hills Rd
HOLIDAY DECORATING TIPS FROM OUR MILLER MARRIOTT DESIGN TEAM
“To me there is no place like home for the holidays. Growing up, the phrase ‘Less is More’ stuck with me and it truly reflects the way I decorate for Christmas. There is something special about curling up on the couch with a fluffy warm blanket and adding fresh cedar garland around a doorway or mantel to make your home feel cozy. I love mixing textures and patterns but I keep the colors neutral because I’m a minimalist girl at heart.” - Katie McBain
“My favorite holiday decorations seem to always be the ones plucked from nature like fresh garland, pine cones, and pheasant feathers. Mixing these with brasses and pewters, plaid, and twinkling lights always creates such a classic, cozy feeling. Add a little Andy Williams Christmas music and it feels like Christmas past.” - Sara Hall
CONTROLLING HOME MOISTURE PROBLEMS
Article Contributed By Advanced Windows | “Moisture Problems in Houses” Canadian Building Digest (article number CBD-231)
UNDERSTANDING CONDENSATION | Condensation occurs anytime warm, moist air contacts a surface that is colder than the air’s dewpoint temperature. At dewpoint, the air is completely saturated—it is holding all the moisture it can hold for that temperature (the relative humidity is 100 percent). If the temperature of a surface falls below dewpoint the excess moisture will condense as dew or frost. Window condensation is common in the wintertime, as warm, relatively moist air contacts the cold surface of the glass, much like the moisture that forms on a beverage can taken out of the refrigerator. Thus, moisture problems depend on temperature and relative humidity. The tighter a home is, the more likely it is that humidity generated inside will remain inside and cause problems—unless the home is properly ventilated. But even if moisture levels stay constant, condensation can occur if surfaces get very cold, as they often do in the depths of January nights. Finally, adding moisture to the air will raise indoor humidity levels and make condensation more likely. Air movement also influences moisture problems. In the winter, the warm air inside the house has a natural tendency to rise. Warm, moist air leaves the house through the attic or the upper story and is replaced by dry, cold air pulled in through the lower level. This is called the stack effect. The stack effect causes moisture problems to be most pronounced in the upper stories of a house. For example, the windows on the lower level may be clear while the second story windows are frosted over.
SOLVING MOISTURE PROBLEMS
Deal with obvious sources of moisture:
- Repair plumbing leaks
- Fix leaky roofs
- Ensure that gutters are properly drained away from the house
- Install a sump pump if the water table is high
- Ensure that ductwork in a damp basement or crawl space is properly sealed—especially the ducts that return cold air to the furnace.
Ventilate areas where moisture is produced:
- Use the exhaust fan when cooking
- Use bathroom fans while showering and allow them to run for 20 to 30 minutes after showering (installing a timer will make this easier)
- Make sure your bath and kitchen fans exhaust outside the house
- Make sure your furnace, clothes dryer, gas fireplace and water heater properly vent to the outside and don’t spill exhaust back into the house (which is a serious safety issue as well)
...Be a savvy homeowner when it comes to moisture. Some wintertime condensation on windows is normal, even in an efficient well-ventilated home.
PREPARING YOUR HOME FOR WINTER: Ice Dam Preventative Care by Miller Marriott
Icicles hanging along the eaves of your house may look beautiful, but they spell trouble. That's because the same conditions that allow icicles to form — snow-covered roofs and freezing weather — also lead to ice dams: thick ridges of solid ice that build up along the eaves. Dams can tear off gutters, loosen shingles, and cause water to back up and pour into your house. When that happens, the results aren't pretty: peeling paint, warped floors, stained and sagging ceilings. Not to mention soggy insulation in the attic, which loses R-value and becomes a magnet for mold and mildew.
Life of an ice dam: Here's a breakdown of the conditions that lead to the formation of ice dams. First, heat collects in the attic and warms the roof, except at the eaves. Next, snow melts on the warm roof and then freezes on the cold eaves. Finally, ice accumulates along the eaves, forming a dam. Meltwater from the warm roof backs up behind it, flows under the shingles, and into the house.
Fast fixes for ice dams: Blow in cold air, rake it, or deice it - hacking away at ice dams with a hammer, chisel, or shovel is bad for your roofing and dangerous for you. And throwing salt on them will do more to harm to your plantings than to the ice. Short of praying for warm weather, here are stop-gap measures we recommend.
Take a box fan into the attic and aim it at the underside of the roof where water is actively leaking in. This targeted dose of cold air will freeze the water in its tracks. You'll stop the leak in a matter of minutes, another option is to pull off snow with a long-handled aluminum roof rake while you stand safely on the ground. A rake with wheels will instantly change the exterior temperature of your roof without damaging shingles.