As a child, you may have dreamed of how it would feel to live in a tree house or a fort that you and your friends created in the woods. Many architects and designers love a challenge: They enjoy taking unconventional dwellings and turning them into places of residence. Some families forgo the idea of a traditional home with a picket fence and choose instead to live in a cave, church, water tower or bunker. Of course most of us are happy in our traditional New Jersey homes, wishing only to enhance our existing living space. A kitchen remodel, room addition or basement finishing can be easily achieved with the help of your New Jersey remodeling contractor.
- 1. Church Homes
- A few people have taken on the challenge of converting old church sanctuaries into their places of residence. For example, ZECC Architects converted an old Dutch chapel into a single family residence. Christopher Wren’s Christ Church was severely damaged during WWII; the roof of the church was destroyed, but the 11-story tower was left untouched. The church is now in private hands, and architect Nicholas Boyarsky converted the roofless church into a flower garden. He transformed the 11-story tower into an apartment with a wood spiral staircase.
- Since the beginning of time, caves have offered refuge to nomads and travelers, and even today some people choose to live in caves and still have the modern conveniences of technology. In 2010, according to an article in The New York Times, one family set up their entire home inside a cave; they use umbrellas and interior roofs to keep the kitchen sand-free. Besides the cave-like walls, their kitchen looks like any other, with counter space, sink, appliances and cabinetry.
Water Tower Homes
- A water tower home is a modern-day version of living in a tree house that attracts some home-owners, as they like the idea of “living with a view.” In addition, building your home in a water tower provides an opportunity to recycle old buildings. Jo Crepain of Antwerp wanted to preserve an old water tower near a park where he played as a child, so he bought the tower, and along with the help of another architect, he made his home in it. Other examples include a water tower in Essen, Germany, which was converted into a fully operational apartment and commercial property. This water tower houses two apartments, a telecommunications company and a real estate agency.
- Many World War II bunkers in various parts of the world are now residential housing; the owners of these fortified residences say that one of the biggest advantages of living in a bunker is the special temperatures maintained throughout the year. In the summer, it is cooler inside, and in the winter, it’s much warmer than outdoors. One architect decided to build his house on top of an old bunker, so he uses the actual bunker for storage and for protection from natural disasters.
If you’re looking for a professional New Jersey basement finishing contractor, then give us a call today at 800-734-3737 or complete our request for a design and budget consultation.
There are many ways to finish basement ceilings and you have to chose which type that suits you best. You can chose from traditional drywall, tongue and grove board, acoustic ceilings and drop ceilings. You can think about each option and find the best one that works for you.
If you decide on drywall, you have to be prepared to relocate pipes and ducts in between the joist. If all of it can’t be hidden in the joist cavities, then you will have to box in what is showing. You will also have to add furring strips to put extra support where you need it. This is necessary to give strength to the boxes and provide a solid backing for the finished ceiling treatment. You will find that drywall is a good choice due to the fact that it is inexpensive but there is a lot of work involved before you get a finished product such as plastering and sanding.
If you prefer acoustic ceiling, the tiles are wonderful to work with due to their small size. You can install them by stapling them to the furring stripes but you do have to have all pipes and ducts hidden to get a smooth surface for your ceiling. You will find the same with using tongue and grove board, but once again you have to have a smooth surface and all pipes and ducts must be hidden. The cost of using this material is a bit higher, especially if you have to get someone to move pipes and ducts that can’t be hidden easily.
A drop ceiling works really well on a New Jersey basement ceiling if you have the height in the room. It is the easiest solution for your ceiling. This involves framing everything out, but it certainly will take care of the pipes that are hanging and cover them well with a smooth finish when you’re done.