Sometimes I get to throw down some lessons I learned growing up in New England, and after the five-day snowstorm and deep freeze we just had, now is one of those times. As anyone who’s lived through a January thaw following a hard freeze will tell you, the sound of running water is always bad […]

My wife Betsy spent a few days in Duck Key in early November, approximately eight weeks after Hurricane Irma hit as a Category 4 storm with 130 mph sustained winds. It was interesting to see how the buildings held up. Roofs were slammed the hardest. There were plenty that had evidence of being hit with […]

There are a number of things a homeowner could—and should—do after a storm. Sometimes you can catch a small problem before it turns into a disaster, or catch a potentially deadly condition before anyone gets hurt. 1. Check power lines. Be sure they’re intact and that nothing’s leaning against them. Look for hanging wires. 2. […]

Many years ago I built a summer home on Nantucket Island overlooking the harbor for a prominent jeweler and his wife. As was the case with most of the projects we worked on, the jeweler and his wife flew in periodically to review the construction’s progress. One day when the framing was complete, I went […]

Here in Charleston we’ve had a lot of rain lately and I’ve been called in to fix a lot of leaks. I was trained when I was kid by master craftsmen to prevent and repair leaks on Nantucket Island, a veritable proving ground for learning to make buildings water tight. High winds from the Atlantic […]

My father had a big, heavy wooden toolbox that he used to build some of Nantucket’s finest houses of the day. Forty years ago, when he had abandoned his hand tools for more efficient power tools, I asked him if I could have it, because it was being beaten up under piles of stuff in […]

In the Lowcountry of South Carolina, many homeowners find they aren’t able to use their screened porches throughout the entire year. Whether it’s too cold in the winter, too hot in the summer, or pollen saturated in the springtime, the homeowner with limited space sometimes decides to trade screened space for a four-seasons room. Perhaps […]

Constructing a 3D model is an inexpensive way to fully understand the form and function of a house before it’s built.  It will be much easier to correct oversights and omissions during this phase of the design process.  This fairly simple process makes use of hard-to-read flat plans to create a house in miniature. Supply […]

Wow! It’s great to see the Gund home in the current issue of Nantucket Today. We built this home more than twenty years ago, and our photos of the house when it was new are almost identical to the photos taken recently by Terry Pommett. It’s no surprise that the building has aged so well. […]

Here in the Lowcountry of Charleston, South Carolina, many houses are elevated to protect them from flooding during hurricanes. Frequently the homeowner faces the problem of a living area on the first floor soaring ten feet above ground—or more–that seems detached from the yard. When the house is first built, a steep flight of narrow […]