It’s that time of year when hosting family and friends becomes a regular occurrence, and weather finds us entertaining more inside than out. Whether you’ll have a bustling full house or quiet family gatherings, the holidays are a great opportunity to evaluate the functionality of your space. For instance, when family and friends arrive, where do they gather? Are they able to mingle easily? Does your home suit your specific needs? Do guests feel welcomed and comfortable or in the way?
If you’re considering a renovation, the holidays are the perfect time to start your planning! When the dishes are… Read More >
Are you at a stage of life that has you thinking about changes to your living situation? Are you beginning to think about remodeling planning for your future home needs? Perhaps you’re now empty nesters, planning for your retirement years or looking for something that requires less maintenance. Clients frequently turn to us for guidance on these decisions. Some want to make their current homes more comfortable, while others are considering transitioning to a smaller home or even a condo lifestyle. The possibilities are endless and can feel overwhelming. The good news is, we’re happy to help.
There… Read More >
Please enjoy these before and after photos of remodeling projects. To view more project profiles, please visit our Project Types section.
Luxury Kitchen Update in Great Falls
In this Great Falls house, the kitchen did not reflect the entertaining capabilities of the rest of the home. A structural wall was moved to expand the
footprint of the kitchen and create a large pantry. A beautiful island provides plenty of space for gatherings and a nearby custom banquette is great for everyday meals. See more photos.
His & Hers Dream Master Bathroom in McLean, VA
The clients loved aspects… Read More >
Many of our condo clients, especially those transitioning from single-family living, have concerns about their units not having enough light. The challenge is, there is often only one exterior wall with access to natural light and limited hours per day when the sun’s shining in. As such, we’re frequently asked for help in making the space feel bright and welcoming. Here are a few condo remodeling lighting tips we’ve gathered over the years.
Add Recessed Lighting: Particularly in a condo, adding recessed lighting can make a huge difference in the overall feel of the space. Unfortunately, installation requirements of the… Read More >
At BOWA, we strive to apply a client-first approach to every step of the process. From the guidance provided by our Project Leaders to the availability of our Customer Service Team long after a project is completed, our goal is to deliver a wonderful client experience. The approach taken by our In-House Design Team is no exception. Since taking leadership of the design department, TJ Monahan has worked diligently to streamline and enhance the design phase to deliver a more client-friendly experience.
Traditionally, project design was a two-dimensional (2D) endeavor. Designers created and presented flat, static floorplans and a handful… Read More >
Kitchens are the most popular rooms to remodel and can be the most expensive. Considering the level of investment that goes into remodeling a kitchen, every little detail can feel like a monumental decision. Everyone wants their new space to be on trend, but nobody wants it to appear dated 5 or 10 years down the road. Here are a few kitchen trends that are not going anywhere any time soon.
Especially in homes that already have hardwood throughout, we are often ripping out cold, hard tile flooring in the kitchen and replacing it with hardwood to blend… Read More >
Water. It makes up 70% of the Earth and our bodies need it to survive, but it can do serious damage around your home when not managed correctly. Heavy storms and humidity indoors and out mean that water can appear in unwanted spaces. Here are a few tips to keep your water worries at bay in and around your home.
Outside the Home
Outside, take steps to ensure all water flows away from the structure’s foundation. First, make sure your gutters are clear of debris and downspouts direct water away. Also, ensure the grading around the foundation has positive slope,… Read More >
I’m not the only one out there who enjoys browsing Zillow and fantasizing about my dream home. But what’s more interesting to me than looking at perfect, turn-key homes, is hunting for a diamond in the rough, just waiting for its true potential to be revealed. For this blog, I decided to pick a city at random, and see what hidden gem I could uncover. This week, I found the perfect Spanish sanctuary.
This one immediately caught my eye:
From the street view, this house has a lot going for it already. Built in the early 1900s, this… Read More >
So, you want to brighten things up with fresh paint in your space. You search through hundreds of paint chips and finally land on what you think is the perfect bright white. Once on the wall, however, the finished color is not what you saw on the chip. The sheen is too glossy and shows every bump in your walls, or the color is making your existing cabinetry look dingy. How do you avoid having to go through this process again? We picked the mind of one of our In-House Designers, Stephanie Dickens, to help you select the perfect paint… Read More >
Vice President of the Middleburg Office Tim Burch brings Mark Ferguson to one of our equestrian facilities for the MVB Mortgage video series ‘Round Town. Learn more about BOWA’s process, client experience, and financing options when it comes to your remodel in these three videos.… Read More >
In our 30+ years, we have had the pleasure to develop creative design solutions for every part of the home. From kitchens to bathrooms to garages, our architects and designers have crafted inspired fixes to everyday issues. Here are some of our favorites from recent projects.
Clever Cutting Board Drawer
Our client in Great Falls wanted to expand the utility of the drawer over the trash can so it could be used for more than just storage. A cutting board with a hole was added to discard the waste right into the can. This board pops out for easy… Read More >
New construction has its appeal, but the character and charm of an old home is something that can’t be replicated. However, when it comes to real estate listings, phrases like “full of character” can be code for a host of alarming issues. If you’re considering purchasing an older home, it’s important to be able to identify red flags on your own because that “charming 3 bedroom in need of some TLC” may actually be a money pit.
I consider myself fortunate because fixing up older homes is not just my passion, it’s also my profession. As such, I have a… Read More >
Please enjoy these recent remodeling project highlights including stunning before and after photos. To view more project profiles, please visit our Project Types section.
Chevy Chase Whole-House Remodel
The original home was compartmentalized and lacked easy flow between rooms, leaving it feeling dark, cold and closed off. The renovation opened and connected spaces to create a light-filled home with smooth transitions and comfortable areas for daily use and hosting. The new walled garden creates privacy for outdoor entertaining. This wonderful project was also honored as a Grand Award Winner in the local Contractor of the Year competition.
Blending… Read More >
If you or someone you know is contemplating buying a home, a BOWA Purchase Consultation should be part of the process. Unfortunately, many new buyers are disappointed after purchasing when they discover limitations that thwart their plans to remodel. Perhaps there are HOA or property restrictions, structural limitations or estimated remodeling costs are more than anticipated. A BOWA Purchase Consultation is the perfect way to evaluate your options.
Stay & Remodel or Buy & Remodel
We often find ourselves helping house hunters decide whether to stay in their existing home and remodel or buy something new and remodel. The answer… Read More >
The sun is shining, the trees are blooming, your nose may still be running, and your car is still covered in a dusting of that pesky green film that signals spring in the DC area. This season seemed to be particularly bad, and it’s not over yet. Don’t let the woes of allergies and daily car washes get you down this season. Here are a few tips to keep the annoyances of pollen at bay.
Pollen Count Apps
An easy way to manage your expectations is to download a pollen count app. Zyrtec AllergyCast, WebMD Allergy, and Pollen.com’s Allergy Alert… Read More >
BOWA’s VP of Best Practices Doug Horgan makes a guest appearance on The Versatex Way, a podcast covering a variety of construction-related topics.
In this episode, Doug shares his take on building science best practices and how things have evolved over the years. Doug mentions some of his favorite tools and how he approaches trouble shooting and process improvement.
A consummate learner, Doug explains how he got started in the industry, his path for continued learning and his love of teaching. Doug details how he shares his insights with others in BOWA as well as the broader remodeling community. He… Read More >
When we think of designers, we tend to envision creative innovators who think outside the box and love breaking convention. All of this is true of a great designer, but beneath our seemingly idiosyncratic ideas is a fundamental set of guidelines making it all work. These guidelines are called the Principles of Design. In last month’s blog, we touched on two principles: balance and proportion. In this article, I will talk about those in greater detail, as well as seven other principles of home design.
The distribution of the visual weight of objects, colors, texture and space. These elements… Read More >
You likely have your “must-have” list if you’re on the hunt for the perfect condo. Have you been searching in newer buildings and not finding the feel or features you want? If so, an older condo building should be your next stop. It might come as a surprise, but the opportunities provided by purchasing in one of these established buildings in prime locations are abundant. Our condo remodeling experts share some of our favorite perks:
Older Condo Buildings Have Great Bones
We know what you may be thinking, “Really? An old building? I don’t want to open Pandora’s box.” But… Read More >
We receive lots of questions when it comes to selecting countertop materials. What will look the best? What’s the most bang for my buck? How much maintenance is required? These are all great questions, and important points to consider. While we’re always here to educate and advise, ultimately, the best choice of countertops for you and your family is a personal decision. Consider the following tips about a few options in today’s world of countertops.
Granite is a natural stone extracted from the earth, cut into sheets or slabs, and crafted with finishes such as polished, honed or leathered.… Read More >
Gawking at ugly houses is a favorite pastime of mine. Pointing out design flaws in homes around me can be exasperating for my friends and family. “Why don’t you point out something you like for once?” I’m often asked. Because that’s not as much fun! With good design there is very little to critique. I can simply admire, at ease with the feeling of contentment when all elements are working together in perfect harmony.
The concept of beauty is subjective. However, there are some homes that are objectively ugly. An ugly home is one that is not thoughtfully designed, with… Read More >
Start designing your next project with BOWA and be one step closer to your HOT savings!
Are you interested in a BOWA-quality remodel for less? If so, BOWA’s Summer Design Discount is the answer and now’s the time to get started!
This value-driven program offers homeowners the high standard of quality, service and aftercare that has earned BOWA the loyalty of so many clients at a significantly reduced cost. The 2019 program is LIMITED TO 5 DESIGN BUILD PROJECTS and is offered in exchange for some flexibility in a winter start date (2019-2020).
Given the response in previous years, we… Read More >
In the remodeling world, we talk about design trends yearly, monthly, even weekly. You can read five design magazines and get five different answers on the best colors, selections, and floorplans for your new space. Ultimately, it’s your space and your investment. We have created spaces for homeowners with a wide array of styles and needs. Here are a few ways individual style preferences and creative solutions have been incorporated into our recent renovations:
Uniquely His and Hers Bathroom
In a recent McLean master bathroom remodel, our clients each wanted to express their individual styles, in one shared space. BOWA’s… Read More >
The Four Categories of Residential Remodeling
In this first video of his Making Sense and Cents series, Project Leader Steve Scholl walks you through the four main categories of residential remodeling: Cosmetic, Pull & Replace, Custom, and Pull & Replace with Custom Selections. Stay tuned for more videos from Steve to help you make both sense and cents in your own residential remodeling ventures.
For more information on Steve, his recent projects, and what his clients have to say about working with, read more here: Steve Scholl… Read More >
The Face of Luxury Condo Renovations
With over two decades of condo experience, luxury condominium renovations represent 20 percent of BOWA’s projects annually. Given the specialized nature of this work and increasing demand, BOWA recently launched a dedicated Condo Division. BOWA’s condominium projects range from kitchens and baths to whole-unit and combined-unit renovations, in buildings from DC to Reston and Bethesda to Alexandria. The team has established relationships with management, boards and clients in over 33 buildings across the region.
BOWA’s architects are well-versed in the intricacies and nuances of condo design, like optimizing space, ensuring privacy and easing… Read More >
A fire in the fireplace, snow falling outside, and a warm beverage to keep you extra toasty. The bitter cold of winter has certainly arrived leaving many folks retreating indoors. From large-scale to do it yourself, here are a few ideas to keep your time inside entertaining and productive.
Binge-Watch in Style
Curl up with your family for movie night or binge-watch a new show. Perhaps a high-tech media room, complete with theater seating and a popcorn maker, is on your wish list. While hardcore movie buffs might still insist on traditional, dedicated theaters, many families are opting for media… Read More >
While BOWA has been doing condo renovations for more than two decades, this sector has been steadily increasing as a percentage of our work in recent years. Currently, condominium remodeling represents about 20 percent of our yearly projects. Given the highly specialized nature of this work and all signs indicating that demand will continue to increase, BOWA has officially launched a new Condo Division focused on growing this portion of the business.
Leading BOWA’s new Condo Division will be Adam Wertheimer as Vice President, and Steve Kirstein, Principal. These two have led most of our condo projects over the years… Read More >
The air is getting cooler, leaves are falling from trees, and with the holidays ahead, there’s no better time to make your home a priority! If they haven’t already, family and friends will start to pour through your doors to spend quality time inside. Here are some tricks to improve functionality and make your home cozier, so your family has more time to enjoy the season’s treats:
Make your Family Foyer a Priority
With cooler temperatures, come heavy outerwear and footwear. Make sure your family foyer, or mudroom, is ready to handle the additional gear by removing your summer items.… Read More >
Enjoy remodeling. Seems like a simple idea, right? Remodeling your home should be enjoyable. You should be able to engage with a remodeling partner and talk about goals, wishes, and long-term plans. You should be able to review and iterate on different designs, so you can understand what all of your options might be. You should be able to have honest conversations about money upfront to avoid pricing surprises later on in the process. You should have a single point of accountability so praise, questions, comments, or concerns only have one place to go. You should know when your… Read More >
A common misconception about remodeling your home is the idea that you need to add on to get more useful space. While additions can be a great way to create the extra space or functionality you and your family need, they aren’t always necessary. In some of our recent projects, the solution to more functionality wasn’t an addition but instead reimagining their existing footprint. For instance, how many times a year do you use your formal dining room? Usually, it’s reserved for special occasions and holidays and the other 300+ days out of the year it collects dust. In two… Read More >
BOWA would like to congratulate our two nominees and winners of the 2018 PROS Awards!
Fredy Villatoro: Best Field Technician, Customer Service
Jim Greenzweig: Best Remodeling Project Manager
The 2018 PROS Awards, sponsored by the Maryland Building Industry Association, recognize the dedication and hard work of customer service managers, project managers and superintendents who go above and beyond in all aspects of residential construction. Nominees were submitted by their employers and judged on their accomplishments in the 2017 calendar year, construction knowledge, focus on quality, scope of work and relationship with customers.
Winners were announced at MBIA’s End of Summer… Read More >
For many of us, nothing beats relaxing in the comfort of our own outdoor retreat. But is your outdoor space usable in the hot summer and chilly winter? It is possible to enjoy an outdoor room much of the year if you plan ahead and incorporate features into the design that will make the space more comfortable as temperatures rise or fall. Following are some items to consider and discuss with your design team when you’re trying to get the most out of your outdoor space.
In the summer months heat can make the outdoor entertaining downright unbearable. … Read More >
We’re honored that two of our recent projects are featured in Home & Design magazine’s May/June issue.
The first highlights a stunning, contemporary condo renovation in the Watergate, which had recently won both a local and regional Contractor of the Year award from the National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI). The project also won a Great American Living Award (GALA) from NVBIA and MBIA for Best Design and Architecture, Renovations or Additions over $1,000,000.
In the article, BOWA’s Steve Kirstein explains how the team of condo renovation experts was able to transform the space, which had undergone a poorly… Read More >
We Want Your Recipes!
Do you have a recipe that’s always a hit? Does your family recipe deserve the spotlight? Or do your mixology skills stand out at parties? Send your recipes our way!
We are currently gathering the ingredients to produce a cookbook in honor of our 30th Anniversary. The book will feature beautiful kitchen photos and recipes submitted by our friends, clients and partners. Anything from appetizers, entrees, desserts or even your favorite cocktails can be sent to us for consideration.
Send your recipes to [email protected]
Photos of you creating or enjoying your finished product in your BOWA… Read More >
Ashton Lee | May 14, 2018
Many clients come to us wanting “more space” or “an open floor plan.” Sometimes an addition to the home is the solution, while other times reconfiguring the existing footprint allows the homeowners to better utilize the space and achieve their goals with the square footage they already have. In some cases, the renovation involves removing walls to create an open-concept living plan and the feeling of more space.
On one of our recent projects in McLean, the clients wanted both an open feel for their main-level and a lovely outdoor living space. One free-flowing area was created by removing walls… Read More >
Please enjoy these recent remodeling project highlights from spring 2018. To view more project profiles, please visit our Project Types section.
Spa Bath with Storage in Arlington
By removing the tub and changing the orientation of the shower, BOWA’s Design Team was able to create a floorplan that enhances natural light and creates desired storage. With the addition of overhead lighting and heated flooring, the space is now warm, bright and efficient. The gray floor-to-ceiling marble creates a lovely spa-like feel.
Modern Aging in Place in Falls Church
As the… Read More >
Start designing your next project with BOWA and be one step closer to your HOT savings!
Are you interested in a BOWA-quality remodel for less? If so, BOWA’s Summer Design Discount is the answer and now’s the time to get started!
This value-driven program offers homeowners the high standard of quality, service and aftercare that has earned BOWA the loyalty of so many clients at a significantly reduced cost. The 2018 program is LIMITED TO 5 DESIGN BUILD PROJECTS and is offered in exchange for some flexibility in a winter start date.
Given the response in previous years, we expect… Read More >
Are you looking to freshen up your kitchen? In today’s world, the kitchen is the heart of the house. It acts as the center of family life and is often the focal point for social gatherings. These kitchen design ideas for 2018 may spark inspiration if you’re considering a kitchen renovation or just love beautiful projects.
Who doesn’t need more counter space? One way to maximize your usable space and achieve a clean, sleek aesthetic is to hide all those gadgets. The perfect solution that we’ve been utilizing in our recent kitchen remodels is an appliance garage. It’s… Read More >
So, you recently found or have been living in a condo with the perfect building amenities and a fantastic location, but the design of your space can use some work. Your wish list may include renovating the kitchen or bath, installing state-of-the-art technology, creating storage solutions, updating the style or reconfiguring the entire space. At BOWA, we’ve handled all these requests and more many, many times, giving us the experience and know-how necessary to ensure success on your condo renovation.
When it comes to condo renovations, it makes sense that many of the trends popular in single-family living are flowing… Read More >
With winter upon us, you probably have your thermostats and fireplaces running on all cylinders to keep your home toasty and comfortable. But did you know there are other things you can do to help keep your home warm? Following are a few winter design details to make your home more comfortable and efficient, and create the cozy environment you desire.
Heated Towel Racks
This is the quickest way to add warmth to your winter! It’s the time of the year when getting out of the shower means braving the cool air and a cold towel, but not with a… Read More >
The Face of Luxury Condo Renovations
If you’re considering the luxury condominium lifestyle, then your first call should be to BOWA. With projects ranging from kitchens and baths to combined-unit renovations, BOWA has more condo remodeling experience than anyone in the area.
Our relationships with realtors and building managers allow us to help identify and quickly evaluate units. Once we dive into design, our experts know the tricks for customizing ample storage, ensuring privacy, replicating a gourmet kitchen, making the space feel more open and more – all common concerns when transitioning from a single-family home.
Our production team then… Read More >
From our first deck addition to our most recent whole-condo renovation, BOWA has grown up with hundreds of DC-area families over the past 30 years. It has been an honor to help these families transform their homes to meet their evolving needs. From making room for new additions and improving functionality for busy lives to preparing for aging in place and caring for in-laws, we’ve been there every step of the way.
A Better Remodeling Experience
Why do clients come back to BOWA for a second, third or fifth time? Why do they refer their family and friends without hesitation? … Read More >
Everyone experiences architecture and design on a daily basis, but it can become intimidating when it’s time to remodel your own space. Below are a few tips from our designers and architects that will help ensure your tastes are properly reflected in your next renovation.
The first step in communicating likes and dislikes for your home renovation is to collect imagery. Nowadays, you have more options than just sifting through magazines and ripping out the pages. Websites like Pinterest, Instagram, and Houzz provide easy ways to collect what you like online in a shareable format. Showing designers and… Read More >
One of the best parts of a kitchen remodel in McLean is customizing the space to meet your needs. While many people would be happy with a kitchen that is functional, practical and reliable, many homeowners long for the beautiful details and customized features that truly make the space their own.
Here are seven ideas to customize your kitchen remodel in McLean:
1) Creative Cabinets:
As there are no longer set rules, cabinetry is a great area for easily adding personality to a kitchen. Cabinets can range in color from light to dark and even feature contrasting colors or complementary… Read More >
Please enjoy these recent remodeling project highlights from fall 2017. To view more project profiles, please visit our Project Types section.
Industrial Chic in Dupont Circle
BOWA’s in-house design team took this row home from traditional to industrial with custom steel, perforated stairs that allow natural light to flow from the top-floor skylight. Concrete floors and an exposed brick wall enhance the industrial chic design and highlight the owner’s vintage commercial signs.
Full Renovation of McLean Landmark
This 1910 home was in disrepair and needed a whole-house renovation to… Read More >
Kathy Kelly Hines | October 10, 2017
How we can help and why now is the time to remodel
The DC housing market has stayed hot for some time now. It’s been named the third most-active market in the nation, exceeded only by Colorado Springs and Chicago. What does this mean for those looking to buy or remodel? As a homeowner, this could mean a few different things depending on your situation. Should you avoid the bidding wars and transform your current house into your dream home? Or maybe take this opportunity to sell your home for the most profit possible? Now is the time to pay… Read More >
Did you know the first freeze typically occurs in October in the Washington, DC area? With that in mind, despite the recent mild temperatures, now is the time to start planning for the winter ahead. Exterior home preparation is critical to helping your home weather the harsh winter elements and avoiding damage. Consider the following steps to get your home ready for winter.
Shut Off Your Hose Bibs
Hose bibs are the water faucets to which your gardening hoses attach. Every year basements become flooded because water is allowed to remain inside the pipes through the freezing winter months, which… Read More >
Kathy Kelly Hines | September 22, 2017
Loudoun County is one of the most incredible places in Virginia with its rolling countryside and beautiful views. This is truly the perfect place to create an amazing outdoor living space for entertaining or simply relaxing in your down time. If your outdoor space isn’t doing much living these days, consider these inspiring ideas for an outdoor renovation in Loudoun.
Screened porches are a traditional go-to for homeowners who want to enjoy a bug-free time outdoors. Screen walls allow you to breathe in the fresh air and take in the scenery without worrying about pesky mosquitoes or other… Read More >
The simple sound of “drip, drip, drip…” in a condo can cause serious panic. Is it rain outside? An air conditioning drip? A toilet or shower leak? As one leak can affect many floors of a condominium building, your worries aren’t just about your individual unit, but also those of your surrounding neighbors. So, when it comes time to remodel, it is critical that you and your neighbors select a condo remodeling expert to properly manage your investment and the complex nature of condominium renovations. Despite what others might say, expertise in the specialized niche of condominium remodeling can only… Read More >
The kitchen is the heart of the home for many homeowners and, with careful planning and consideration, can be a valuable tool for keeping your home and family running smoothly. One of the most important parts of the kitchen design is the island. The kitchen island can provide a lot of functionality while adding style and purpose to the room.
The Purpose of the Kitchen Island
To design the perfect island, you must first ask yourself how you anticipate using the space, both now and in the future? This multi-purpose area may be used for any or all of the… Read More >