Prejean Computer Consultants offers great deals on computer maintenance and repair. You can drop off your ailing hard drive or ask for a house call. For more info: www.prejeancomputerconsultants.com or call the office at (225) 450-2184. Acadian Robotics manufactures 3D printers and kits, offers 3D printing services, and 3D modeling classes. Call Craig Billings 225-336-7088 for more info.
Elvis Jacob takes us on a tour of Acadian Custom Cabinets in Gonzales. Stop by the shop on Hwy 44 to find out more about his custom cabinets and woodwork, including D-Fend-It hidden compartment kits and furniture. (225) 622-6337.
We finally get to show you all the befores/afters at Paul Salvant's condo in New Orleans. The space had not been updated in 25+ years, so it was a treat to see this project from start to finish! To get pest control service from The Bug Man, give him a call at (225) 923-BUGS.
This month, we're at Ascension Equipment and Rent-All to find out what kinds of equipment they have for your lawn and garden needs. Give them a call at (225) 647-5881 or check out their website at www.AscensionEquipment.com.
The Bug Man updates us on his NOLA condo:
Check out Gorman Brothers' spring specials here:
Deals at Gorman Brothers Appliances in Prairieville! Doug Gorman shows us what's included with the $1099 Stainless kitchen special and some new items just in at Gorman Brothers. From apartment affordable to top-of-the-line, Gorman Brothers has what you need and services what they sell. (225) 744-3333, 17515 Airline Highway in Prairieville.
Maria Thorn, Keller Williams First Choice
Featured listing: 12380 Legacy Hills, Geismar
Lonnie Roussel, Keller Williams First Choice
Gary Fontenot, Realty Executives South Louisiana
Featured listing: 39468 Bradbury Lane, Prairieville
Randy Anderson, Realty Executives South Louisiana
Featured listing: 18449 Oakwood Dr., Prairieville
Mia Townsend, Wall Decor & More Interiors in Prairieville, tells us about their July specials: 30% off all in-stock items on Thursdays and Buy One Get One 1/2 Off candles for the month! Ricky Townsend shows us some custom shutters and shades installed in a new home. Wall Decor & More does everything from rugs to paint to furniture to wall coverings (and 12 months same as cash financing). (225) 673-3267 www.WallDecor&More.net
The Bug Man, Paul Salvant, tells us how they deal with termites and fire ants. Say goodbye to pests with service from The Bug Man! Gonzales office: (225) 644-8429, www.BugManOnline.com
Today: Evan Gonzales, Ascension Granite & Marble talks about how white marble has become both fashionable and functional in the kitchen. You don't have to worry about wine stains any more! He also explains how to avoid counters you hate by picking out your slab. Natural stone has many variations, so most samples don't resemble the finished product. If your builder shows you just a sample, ask to pick out your slab. It's important!
Viewer deal: Ascension Granite & Marble - have them install 35 sqft or more and they'll give you an undermount sink FREE.
Featured home: 16083 Feliciana Ave in Bluff Oaks. For a tour, call Robyn Holifield (225) 413-5381, ConnectBR.com
Ricky Townsend, Wall Decor & More Interiors in Prairieville, shows us how he installs interior and exterior custom shutters. Their hurricane shutters are second to none! Ginger Combel gives us tips on interior design, starting from the ground up. Wall Decor & More does everything from rugs to paint to furniture to wall coverings (and 12 months same as cash financing). (225) 673-3267 www.WallDecor&More.net
Looking for computer training or repair? Prejean Computer Consultants has a new training facility and a 3D printer!
For more info on computer training: (225) 450-2184
Realtors on our tour:
Robyn Holifield (225) 413-5381
Ginger Maulden (225) 806-3733
Waterfront property offered by Realty Executives, Stevie Graugnard and Gary Fontenot
Realty Executives South Louisiana Group
15616 Airline Hwy. Suite B, Prairieville , La. 70769, Office: 225 677.7772
Licensed to Practice Real Estate in Louisiana, Each Office Independently Operated
Security systems & monitoring with NO CONTRACT
from Tommy's Lock & Alarm:
Tour of Homes with Realty Executives & Tiger Town Realty
Tour of Homes with Realty Executives & Tiger Town Realty
Realtors on our tour:
Nicole Rowell, Realty Executives (225) 936-4250
Ricky Gautreau, Realty Executives (225) 715-7256
Shannon Andre, Tiger Town Realty (225) 939-5338
Annette Leon, Tiger Town Realty (225) 235-1152
Realty Executives office: (225) 677-7772
Tiger Town Realty office: (225) 755-7022
3D Printing at Prejean Computer Consultants:
Tour of Homes with Realty Executives
Realtors on our tour:
Don Stern, (225) 413-3624
Brandy Smith, (225) 241-7251
Randy Anderson, (225) 921-9777
Stevie Graugnard, (225) 717-0550
Karen Kliebert (225) 323-5633
Brandi Phillips (225) 413-7655
Realty Executives office: (225) 677-7772
Tour of Homes with Realty Executives
Realtors on our tour:
Kenny Gautreau, (225) 571-2226
Randy Anderson, (225) 921-9777
Stevie Graugnard, (225) 717-0550
Belinda Deslatte, (225) 715-0824
Nicole Rowell, (225) 936-4250
Dentistry From The Heart at Absolute Quality Care Family Dentistry:
A Tour of Homes with Tiger Town Realty:
A Tour of Homes with Tiger Town Realty:
A Tour of homes with Tiger Town Realty (225) 755-7022
Edward Prejean, Prejean Computer Consultants, talks about how to prevent data loss and theft. He offers online backup services, computer cleanup services, and more. He talks about current scams looking for your personal information that happen right here in Ascension Parish. Call or stop by their Gonzales office for more info: (225) 450-2184, 207 N. Bryan, Gonzales.
We go to Purpera & Sons Lumber to see a product demo of Ballistol Sportsman's and Multi-Purpose Oil. Patrick Young shows us how to use Ballistol to clean guns, tools, door locks, and more. Ballistol Oil is available at Purpera & Sons Lumber, 559 S. Airline Highway in Gonzales. (225) 644-6538, www.PurperaLumber.com
Paul Salvant, The Bug Man, shows us mosquito misting systems for the home. Call (225) 644-8429 or stop by the Gonzales office at 511 E. New River, 1 block off Airline (just before the McDonald's).
Anna Arceneaux shows us a great house available now in Dutchtown. 37168 Grist Mill Ave in Plantation Creek. Call www.AnnaSellsLaHomes.com or call Anna at (225) 445-1711. Call Keller Williams First Choice at (225) 744-0044.
Lonnie Roussel is team leader at Keller Williams First Choice. For more info on how you can start a career as an agent at Keller Williams, give him a call at (225) 744-0044 or stop by one of their career nights (every 3rd Wednesday evening).
Purpera & Sons Lumber in Gonzales has some great stuff for home improvement - and they DELIVER. Call them at (225) 644-6538 or stop by the shop at 559 South Airline Highway in Gonzales. Talk to Chip Chaney, Outside Sales Manager, about options for your project.
Need a tin roof? Andy Taylor tells us about metal roofing options here:
How about windows that are low-e and hurricane rated? Brian Thompson tells us about Atrium Window options here:
Outdoor Kitchen project: Kevin Boudreaux (KTB Properties) builds an outdoor kitchen addition with a pergola and appliances built into brick. The wood and hardware came from Purpera & Sons Lumber in Gonzales.
In this episode, Kevin offers a summer special of $1000 off any outdoor kitchen project whose total value is over $15,000 but you must call before August 1, 2011. Call KTB at (225) 622-2600 today!
Gray Bailey, DDS (Absolute Quality Care Family Dentistry in Prairieville) shows us how he uses organic methods and recycled materials in his vegetable garden. He grows everything from tomatoes to potatoes. Also, if you have a question for the dentist that you'd like to have answered on the show, send it to us!
Outdoor Kitchen project: Kevin Boudreaux (KTB Properties) builds an outdoor kitchen addition with a pergola instead of extending the roof line at a home in Dutchtown. The space features a custom brick area for a built-in grill, warming drawers, a sink with hot & cold taps, side burners, and utensil drawers. The pergola is constructed from cedar and stained a dark color to match the trim of the house. The wood and hardware came from Purpera & Sons Lumber in Gonzales.
Creative Cajun Cooking:
You've seen Jimmy Babin on "The Outdoor Kitchen Show" but in this episode of Prime Property, we'll show you some behind-the-scenes stuff. Jimmy talks about his indoor/outdoor kitchens, warehouse, and catering facility. Skip Noel from Outdoor Living in Gonzales explains how he gets Jimmy landscaping in shape for all the spring parties coming up.
Fore more about Outdoor Living, call Skip Noel at (225) 647-7870.
Build your Southern Porch!
Jim Stephenson, Kommerling USA, shows us PLANTATIONTM Porch Flooring, a tongue & groove flooring made entirely of PVC. It's super strong and easy to install. It's got a nail/screw recess that completely hides fasteners and installs like any porch floor - but lasts much longer.
Michael Rowland, Great Southern Wood Preserving, shows us YellaWood® Porch Columns, made from high-grade KDAT lumber with little or no knots and EPA environmentally preferred treatment. It allows for wiring or conduit in the center of the column and comes in 6x6 up to 12x12 sizes. www.YellaWoodColumns.com
Real Estate: Short sales, Foreclosures, and how to buy them
Sue McDonald, Keller Williams First Choice, talks to us about the difference between a short sale and a foreclosure. If you're having trouble with your mortgage, talk to your lender. They may be able to help you. If a short sale is in your future, you need a realtor who knows what they're doing.
If you're trying to sell a home in this economy, you're competing with short sales and foreclosures. You'll have to be the "prettiest girl on the block" and you'll have to be priced right, right off the bat. A good realtor can help you stage your home and will show you the prices of homes in your area.
If you're a buyer, there's never been a better time. There's plenty to choose from and it is easy to find a bargain. To get started, call Sue McDonald (225) 806-5053. www.KellerWilliamsAscension.com
The Bug Man : pest control in your home and business
Paul Salvant, The Bug Man, shows us the products his company offers for pest control. If you live in South Louisiana, you've got a great chance to have termites, mosquitoes, rodents, and all sorts of creepy-crawlies. The Bug Man can take care of pest control in homes and businesses. And yes, he's got humane traps for everything with fur that might try to get in your walls and attic. Call The Bug Man at (225) 923-BUGS. www.bugmanonline.com
Parish updates and fun stuff
We talk to Ascension Parish President Tommy Martinez about parish updates and upcoming events. The Parish has finally gotten funding to start the parish-wide sewer system that will bring us into compliance with DEQ. It will be a long process, but it will eliminate faulty subdivision package plants and make sure that all effluent gets treated and routed properly. Trust me, it's a big deal.
We also talk about the upcoming Louisiana Festival of Festivals, an event that will take place at the Lamar-Dixon Expo Center in Gonzales November 11 - 14. Starting with a Veteran's Day Parade, the event will host booths from festivals around Louisiana, food from all over the state and Louisiana artists. Some names from the musical line-up are: Chris LeBlanc, John Lisi & Delta Funk, Marcia Ball, Geno Delaphose, Jamie Bergeron & Kickin' Cajuns, Waylon Thibodeaux, Cliff Nickens, Aaron Foret, TK Hulin, Na Na Sha, Ken Marvel, Sammy Kershaw, Lil Bayou Band, Couzain, Kenny Cornett and ending the weekend with honors and entertainment by Van Broussard. The website should be updated soon: www.LaFestivalofFestivals.com.
NOTE: if you know of someone who may need extra help in the event of a hurricane (elderly or sick who may need oxygen, generators for necessary medical equipment, emergency evacuation transportation, etc.), please to to the Parish website to get them registered for assistance: www.AscensionParish.net
Kim LeBlanc tells us about the new location for Bounce n' Around Inflatables in Prairieville. The new facility on Hwy 44 across from DeLaune's has more space, visibilty, and room for expansion. Kim tells us about the moving process and how they're managing to stay organized and productive during the move. Want to rent a Bounce n' Around inflatable, tables & chairs, concessions or other party equipment? Call them at (225) 647-9996. Check out all they have to offer at www.BounceNAroundBR.com. Ask for this TV discount:
$20 off any weekend inflatable rental, $35 off inflatable rentals Monday - Friday, available only at Bounce N' Around (225) 647-9996.
Back to school: Prejean computers, Home for sale
Edward Prejean (Prejean Computer Consultants) tells us how to get our home computers in shape for back-to-school. Viruses, malware, hard drive failures - they can handle it. Want help with a network or system backup? Call Prejean Computer Consultants (225) 450-2184 - they make house calls too!! www.PrejeanComputerConsultants.com
Tim Houk, Keller Williams, has a great house available right now in Settlement at Lakeside. Located off 931 near Ralph's Market in Gonzales, this home has all the upgrades. You've got to see the antique brick, cypress beams and heart-of-pine flooring - it's beautiful! For more information, call Tim Houk at (225) 301-7467. www.TimHouk.com
Lumber and millwork: Purpera & Sons Lumber
Chip Chaney is the new contractor liason at Purpera & Sons Lumber. He tells us about interior millwork and specialty doors and windows available at Purpera & Sons. For more info, contact Chip Chaney or Blane Purpera at (225) 644-6538.
Michael Rowland (Great Southern Wood Preserving) explains how Yellawood is environmentally preferred as a building product and is safe enough to use in projects intended for children. Yellawood is sourced and milled locally, so that's even more bang for your Louisiana dollars. To find out more about Yellawood and why it is a preferred building product, go to www.Yellawood.com.
Presold property: hiring a realtor for new construction
Robyn Holifield, Keller Williams First Choice, tells us the advantages of hiring a realtor to help ease the process of new construction. Have an idea of your dream house but don't know how (or where) to get started? Call Robyn at (225) 413-5381 or check out the website: www.KellerWilliamsAscension.com
Sue McDonald invites homeowner Joyce Rodrigue, who has gone through the pre-sold process, to tell us about her experiences with hiring a contractor for a custom house. Building a dream house isn't as easy as it seems - you have to deal with the contractor, subcontractors, suppliers, weather, and who knows what else. Having a realtor (with a clear construction contract) on your side makes this much easier. Call Sue McDonald (225) 806-5053 for more information about Keller Williams First Choice.
Medical construction project: Putting it together
Kevin Boudreaux, KTB Properties (225-751-4545), shows us his new medical facility going up at Hwy 42 near Airline. Gray Bailey, DDS, needs an addition to his facility at Absolute Quality Care Family Dentistry and hired KTB Properties for the project.
Medical construction project: Getting started
Kevin Boudreaux, KTB Properties (225-751-4545), shows us his new medical facility going up at Hwy 42 near Airline. Gray Bailey, DDS, needs an addition to his facility at Absolute Quality Care Family Dentistry and hired KTB Properties for the project. Kevin shows us how he's getting the foundation ready for concrete by putting in all the necessary lines for the plumbing, electrical and specialty lines for the dental chairs.
Dr. Bailey shows us around his property in Galvez and how he's reclaiming hurricane-fallen trees for the lumber in his medical facility. The fallen oaks are becoming flooring and the pine will be in the frame. All the wood was milled, dried and inspected for commercial construction.
Episode 87: Project house, lot grading, Family pets
Kevin Boudreaux, KTB Properties (225-751-4545), shows us how our project house is coming along. It's almost finished, waiting for final adjustments, power and inspections. Stonewall Broussard grades the lot to prepare it for sod. He also does excavations and covered ditches (225) 268-9001.
These homes are pre-sold, but if you'd like more information about residential or commercial construction, call Kevin Boudreaux, KTB Properties at (225) 810-2228.
Pet Planet USA has lots of great family pets, but which one is right for you, your kids and your house? John Grandeury shows us basic aquarium care and talks about what it takes to be the proud parent of a rabbit, guinea pig, hedgehog, bearded dragon, snake or bird. Every time I drop off my dogs for grooming or boarding at A Pet Salon, I always play with the pets at Pet Planet. Their animals are all used to people (and kids) so you don't have to worry when choosing your family pet. Stop by the shop on Hwy 44 in Gonzales or call (225) 744-2636. www.PetPlanetUSA.com
Episode 86: Project house driveway, electrical, tile
Kevin Boudreaux, KTB Properties (225-751-4545), shows us how the driveway is set and poured. Then, he shows us how to wire a 2-way light/fan switch. Now that the walls are sheetrocked and painted, it's time for flooring. We see ceramic tile applied in patterns on the floor and countertops.
Episode 85: Construction project
Kevin Boudreaux, KTB Properties (225-751-4545), shows us how the exterior cladding is applied: roofing shingles, stucco, bricks. Now that these are applied, more can go into the interior of the house: hvac, plumbing, sheetrock.
Episode 84: Project house concrete, framing
Bob Landry (Baton Rouge Ready Mix, 225-275-3257) explains how concrete is poured in extreme heat. The foundation was prepared and inspected before the trucks came out. Each foundation needs about 50 cubic yards of concrete, which must be treated with a retardant that will keep the concrete from setting too fast in the heat. First, the form is poured for the main house, then the garage. Baton Rouge Ready Mix offers several aggregates, mixes and colors in their concrete. For more information, call Bob Landry at the office or on his cell: (225) 939-9910.
Kevin Boudreaux, KTB Properties (225-751-4545), shows us how the frame of the project house is constructed. Once the concrete is set, a greenplate is laid out on anchor bolts and the frame is attached. Kevin even gets up in the roof system to show us bracing and hurricane hardware.
Once the frame and roof are put together, it's time to get some systems in. Ray Decareaux (Acustom Electric, 225-571-2060) shows us how his crew pre-wires the entire house for electricity, phone and cable. Today, they're running cable through the attic and down the studs to attach to electrical boxes. Everything will be inspected by the Parish before it is electrified. Got electrical questions? Call Ray at Acustom Electric in Gonzales.
Episode 83: Keystone Construction
Kevin Boudreaux, KTB Properties (225-751-4545), is getting the foundation ready for construction, including plumbing and setting the forms for concrete. One of the properties is pre-sold, call KTB Properties for remaining availability.
Episode 82: Keystone Construction, Pet Salon renovation
Kevin Boudreaux, KTB Properties (225-751-4545), shows us the plans for his residential projects in Keystone of Galvez. Prepared by local design firm, Swan Designs, these properties will be standard garden homes offering from 1350 - 1450 sqft. Kevin has submitted the plans to Ascension Parish and is awaiting approval to set the forms for the foundation. One of the properties is pre-sold, call KTB Properties for remaining availability.
Nicole Husser shows us the renovation and expansion at a A Pet Salon on Hwy 44 in Gonzales. They did a partial knockdown of a wall to incorporate an adjoining space into their expansion to include Pet Planet USA. Al Husser used the new expansion to include lots of pets with minimal crowding. They added many fresh and saltwater fish tanks, reptile habitats, birdcages and open boxes for cuddly puppies and bunnies. A Pet Salon still offers dog grooming and boarding of almost every species. Call Nicole Husser for information about A Pet Salon/Pet Planet USA: (225) 644-2636.
Tips for choosing a boarding facility for your pet:
Choose a boarding facility like you would a day care for your child - ask many questions about feeding, walking, interaction with your pet.
NEVER home board a pet. Unlicensed, uninsured boarders will not cover any accidents that may happen and probably do not check shot records. You don't want to board your pet with sick or pest-infested animals.
Make sure your pet is up-to-date with inoculations and dogs are strongly advised to have bordatella vaccinations.
Check with the BBB for complaints or get references from other pet owners.
Episode 81: Audio, Landscaping
Derek Tircuit at Tiger Audio (225-644-3226) has everything for home, auto, marine and outdoor audio systems. Derek shows us several options for installing outdoor kitchen/pool area audio equipment. For boats, he can install marine audio that is mp3 or satellite radio compatible. He's got everything you need for your car from remote start and Bluetooth integration to woofers and speakers. Tiger Audio's grand opening celebration and special sale is Sunday, May 31, all day. Come for the food and stay to listen to some awesome audio systems (and get great specials)!
Larry Lewis owns Larry's Lawn Care (225-439-3311) and has been helping us maintain our yard and landscape. I'd been letting our plants get way too overgrown and Larry came in with his crew to restore order to shrubs, trees and flowerbeds. We moved some unruly rosemary to screen the electrical box and the next step is adding in some color and mulching. Call Larry if you need help with your landscape!
Episode 80: 3 Rivers Island, KTB new project
BJ Posey (MNS Real Estate) shows us properties on Three Rivers Island. She takes us around in her party barge to see all the wild wetlands and then down Diversion Canal to see the properties that are now available. They could be homes or camps, considering how affordable they are. There are still lots available for custom building. The community is a quiet golf-cart community, with a community pool and lots of fun! For more information, go to www.MNSRealEstate.com or call BJ for a tour at (225) 802-8808.
Kevin Boudreaux (KTB Properties) explains his latest project: 2 residential lots in the garden section of Keystone of Galvez. The lots are located next to a beautiful treeline and near the community's lake. Kevin is waiting for designs to be approved to start scraping the ground and getting it ready for construction. He'll build both homes at once to save on costs that he'll pass on to the homebuyers. We'll see every phase of construction. For more information about this project, call KTB Properties at (225) 751-4545 or (225) 810-2228.
Episode 79: Ascension Real Estate Tour
Sue McDonald (MNS Real Estate) shows us a spacious family home in Old Mill subdivision in Dutchtown. 12321 Sugarmill Drive is listed for $259,900 and offers: 4 bedrooms, 3 baths, 2155 sqft Living Area, 2933 sqft total, built by Jerry Passman, walk to playground/clubhouse/pool, living/kitchen area features double sided fireplace, cypress cabinets plus work island, large breakfast/dining area, fenced backyard. Call Sue McDonald at (225) 806-5053 for details or go to www.MNSRealEstate.com.
Robyn Holifield (MNS Real Estate) shows us Fountain Hill. The first home, owner/agent, is located at 18238 Fountain Hill Blvd and was just reduced to $599,900. It offers 5 bedrooms, 3 baths, 3500 sqft living, 5972 sqft total, impressive entry with columns, open space for entertaining, exterior lighting and patio area, dramatic stairwell and wrought iron balcony with black granite stairs, game room with billiard table, media room with surround sound throughout interior and exterior of home, Corinthian columns throughout living area, limestone fireplace and a Master Suite with all the upgrades. Three courtyards with fountains. For a tour of the home, call Robyn Holifield at (225) 413-5381 or go to www.MNSRealEstate.com.
Our final home was also in Fountain Hill, located at 36156 Pleasant Hills. Listed at $509,000, this home offers 4 bedrooms, 3.5 baths, 3071 sqft living, 3945 sq ft total. Located on lake lot with fountain view, Dutchtown schools, extravagant entry with 20' ceilings and wrought iron breezeway, Australian cypress wood floors and cabinets, Thermador professional stainless appliances, media room with projection equipment, 2 fireplaces, custom Master Suite with all the upgrades in the bathroom, slab granite in kitchen, master and guest bath. Custom faux finishing throughout, 14 faux marbled columns, dramatic windows in living area - custom draperies stay with home. For a tour of the home, call Robyn Holifield at (225) 413-5381 or go to www.MNSRealEstate.com.
Episode 78: Commercial Remodeling, Flooring Studio
Kevin Boudreaux, KTB Properties, is done with the commercial remodel! The project was a boutique on Highland Road that he helped turn into a gelato shop. He had to chip out concrete in the floor to accomodate plumbing, build a wall to separate service area from prep areas, add a bathroom and re-lay a floor. He explains his role in the project, getting the building ready for the specialized equipment. For more information, call Kevin Boudreaux at KTB Properties (225) 751-4545, (225) 810-2228.
The new business is called Latte & Miele (milk & honey) Gelato Di Roma. It's owned by Dr. Corrado Di Martino and Simone Romano. They're both from Rome, Italy and are excited to start a new business in our area. Latte & Miele is located at Highland Centre at Highland Road and I-10. Before they open, they check out all the remodeling by KTB Properties, the new machines and order lots of supplies. Latte & Miele is now open for business: (225) 747-7457
The Flooring Studio in Gonzales is steeped in local history. Originally owned by Charles Gonzales and called Gonzales Floor Coverings, this building is over 30 years old but is still in good repair, thanks to owners Michael and Tammy Spiers. They've updated and repaired several parts of the structure and interior since buying the business right before Katrina hit. In many cases, renovating an older building can be easier than new construction - especially in the higher wind speed code area of Gonzales. The Flooring Studio has everything for your floors - carpet, tile, wood, laminate, granite, travertine and more. They also have boat carpet in stock and can install anything they sell. Call The Flooring Studio today: (225) 647-6463 or stop by the showroom at 13161 Hwy 44 in Gonzales. They've got a huge sale going on and great financing too!
Episode 77: Commercial Remodeling Project
Kevin Boudreaux, KTB Properties, is busy with another project! He's remodeling a boutique on Highland Road into a gelato shop. He had to chip out concrete in the floor to accomodate plumbing, build a wall to separate service area from prep areas, add a bathroom and re-lay a floor. He explains his role in the project, getting the building ready for the specialized equipment. For more information, call Kevin Boudreaux at KTB Properties (225) 751-4545, (225) 810-2228.
Roland Fernandez is the equipment vendor for the new gelato shop. His company, Gourmet Solutions, is located in Miami but helps set up ice cream, gelato and yogurt shops all over the country. He delivered all the freezers, gelato makers, display cases and coffee machines. He helped save the owners some money by finding second-hand equipment in great condition. For info: (305) 807-1929.
The new business is called Latte & Miele (milk & honey) Gelato Di Roma. It's owned by Dr. Corrado Di Martino and Simone Romano. They're both from Rome, Italy and are excited to start a new business in our area. Latte & Miele is located at Highland Centre at Highland Road and I-10. Before they open, they check out all the remodeling by KTB Properties, the new machines and order lots of supplies. We'll put an update when they're open for business. For info: (225) 747-7457
Episode 76: Renovation, Real Estate
We go out to Donaldsonville where Kevin Boudreaux, KTB Properties, is renovating a 1930s service station. It is in the Historic District in Donaldsonville and is ready for new life as a cafe. KTB has removed the rotted roof structure and the interior walls. The current enclosed space is less than 300 square feet, so he plans to enclose the bays areas with antique cypress garage doors and plate glass walls. During renovation, Kevin found that the walls are mostly made of antique brick covered in stucco. He plans to expose as much of that beautiful brick as possible, instead of recovering with plain old stucco. For information about renovation, call Kevin Boudreaux at (225) 751-4545 or 810-2228.
Sue McDonald, MNS Real Estate Group, shows us a new construction home in Gonzales and tells us about a commercial building on Burnside that's up for lease/sale that would be perfect for renovation. Now available in Courtyard Square is this beautiful home by Gil Broussard (CRBA builder of the year), located at 38329 Magazine Street, Gonzales. Here's the skinny: 3/2.5, bonus room, 2310 LA, $295,000. Come check out the wood windows and the view of the fountain from the front room! Call Sue McDonald to ask about the home in Courtyard Square or the old D&G Cycles building on Burnside: (225) 806-5053.
Episode 75: Ascension Expansion
Barney Arceneaux, Mayor of Gonzales, talks about his role as the new mayor and what challenges he hopes to overcome. From road repairs to economic expansion, he's got a big wish list for his little city.
South Louisiana Business Bank is now open to service businesses in Ascension Parish. Locally owned and operated, SLBB offers all banking services and loans. CEO Ron Wilson explains some of the loan requirements and things you need to know for growing your small business. If you're ready to start or expand your business, go to www.slbbank.com
Episode 74: Winter Colds, Spring Cleaning
Pharmacist Chris Dupre' tells us what to do about those pesky winter colds. There's lots of products available for quick relief of allergies and minor colds. There's also stuff to help little tummies through stomach flus, preventing dehydration much better than the old-school standby, Sprite. Remember, decongestants can be harmful to someone with high blood pressure, but you can find HBP-friendly products at Ralph's Pharmacy. Located at Ralph's Market in Gonzales, Hwy 44 @ 931. Call (225) 622-0445. Stop in and check out all the after-Christmas merchandise up to 75% off and all the sales on home decor! Chris also tells us that one way to prevent spreading colds and flu among family members is to clean and disinfect your home like it's a biohazard ('cause it is!)... so we go to Jani-Care for tips.
Danny Bonfiglio, owner of Jani-Care in Baton Rouge, gives us tips on cleaning and disinfecting the whole house. Start at the top (ceiling fans) and move on down. Once a year, you should wipe down walls, the tops of door jambs, baseboards and the tops of picture frames. When someone has a cold or flu, use disinfecting wipes on light switches, door knobs, telephones, toilets, sinks and whatever the sick person may have touched. Go around with a can of Lysol and mist everything. Don't forget remote controls! When you're done cleaning all the furniture, hit the floors. Vacuuming should be done pretty often and Danny recommends carpet cleaning once a year. They've got a great rate for residential carpet cleaning and our viewers get 20% off! Call (225) 751-CARE or go to www.JaniCareBR.com.
When you're done cleaning your house, don't forget to change out your air filter in your air conditioning system. You'd be amazed how much stuff gets trapped in there. Allergy-friendly filters work great! If you haven't changed your filter since New Year's Eve, please do so. We actually had firework residue trapped in ours!
Episode 73: Candles, KTB wrap-up
Shawn Brown shows us her home-based business, S-Scents Aromas. She makes custom scent candles and air fresheners (and more). Our picks: the LSU or Saints-colored air fresheners in fleur-de-lis shapes and the hot pink "Girls Nite Out" candles and princess cut fresheners. Her gift baskets were great for Christmas, but she operates year round. To check out her wide array of custom scents and products, go to www.SScentsAromas.com. Her products are available for sale around Gonzales as well.
Kevin Boudreaux wraps up his commercial project at KTB One Plaza in Galvez. One of the renters is getting ready to move in and leasing is looking good. Kevin is offering incentives for move in, including no charge for most build out (that's huge and of course, restrictions apply) and the rent is only $15 per square foot. And, no maintenance charges!! So, if you're looking to start or move your business, give Kevin a call and inquire about his location at KTB One Plaza in Galvez: (225) 751-4545 or (225) 810-2228.
Episode 72: Real Estate Tour
Sue McDonald gives us a lesson on why it's important to hire a realtor when buying a home (even if you're not a first-timer). A realtor's most important priorities: shrewd negotiation, sharp assessment and protecting the client's privacy. Sue also tells us about Montrachet Acres. And, yes, they actually mean "acres." Each home sits on an acre-size lot! Located in West Baton Rouge, these homes are great for families, especially those with jobs downtown. For more information, call the MNS Real Estate Group: (225) 744-0044.
Kara Samson and Susan Riley give us a tour of Creekside Subdivision in Gonzales. With some homes ready to go and others in various stages of construction, Creekside has a lot to offer. In the 1450 sq ft range, all homes are 3 bedroom, 2 bath and prices begin at $165,000. For more information, stop by the Creekside Sales Office (the first house in the neighborhood) or call Kara (225-246-1213) or Susan (225-246-1046). We loved the accessibility of the office, the agents and Jody, the "punch list guy".
Episode 70: Stucco, Iron Work
Carlos Vargas shows us how the stucco was applied to the facade of KTB One, our commercial project. He explains the 3 coat process for "real" stucco and the differences between it and synthetic stucco. Trim work is actually cut from hard foam pieces (EFIS) that are then coated with stucco. The first layer on the building looks like cement. It is gray and hard but the concrete-based product also has sand and fiberglass mixed in. The sand helps with texture. The fiberglass helps with elasticity. The colored layers of stucco are the final process. It comes in a bucket that is color-mixed from the original white to the contractor's choice of color for his building. It also contains material for elasticity: Elastomeric. It takes a day or two to dry, but should last for a very long time. If you have stucco or painting needs, call Carlos Vargas (225) 413-3786.
Tim Whitney of Prairieville Iron Works shows us how the wrought iron awning is contstructed so that it will not be damaged (or damage the building) in a storm. Commercial wind codes are strict, for good reason. All of the supporting posts are anchored in the concrete and welded to the frame. The frame is then connected to the building with long screws that go through the wood and metal skeleton. For residential or commercial iron work, call Tim Whitney at (225) 673-9372.
Parish Updates: Flu vaccines, C&D debris removal, the final pass for storm debris, the Recycling Road Show: www.AscensionParish.net
Episode 69: DPW updates
Jackie Baumann, Chief Engineer at the Ascension Parish Department of Public Works, explains what's going on with storm debris removal in the Parish. The first pass is completed. The Parish is now working on a second pass that will pick up storm debris and construction/demolition debris. To report debris that needs to be picked up, call the hotline: (225) 663-3041. So, what's happening to all that wood? It's being processed into mulch at several sites around the parish, including the Lamar-Dixon. This isn't flowerbed mulch, though. It's very heavy and thick and full of whatever made the trees weak in the first place (termites, ants, fungus, etc.). Many people have asked if they could come get some of the mulch but that is not allowed at this time because of the liability of have folks drive up to the processing areas. And, folks, you don't want that stuff in your yard! The Parish is trying to put the wood chips to good use: alternative fuels. Louisiana Green Fuels (a biofuel manufacturer) is accepting some of the chips to use as alternative fuel.
Only storm debris and construction/demolition debris are getting picked up on the second pass. Storm debris: dead trees, dead vegetation, etc. C&D: shingles, fence boards, lumber, sheetrock, tin, metal skirting, etc.
NO: green vegetation
NO: concrete, appliances, junk
The Parish CAN NOT come onto private property to move trees or debris. All debris must be moved to the side of the road.
Call (225) 663-3041 for more info.
Road improvements have been taking place all over the parish. Joe Sevario is completed with new shoulders, a safer curve to 42 and a turn lane into Galvez Middle School. Striping and overlay projects are happening all over the parish. Have you seen the new green street signs and highly reflective road signs? They're going up everywhere and that project is ongoing.
To report a missing sign, potholes or roadside ditch issues, go to www.AscensionParish.net and click on the DPW service request button. It's the fastest way to get a complaint filed. Otherwise, call (225) 621-5730 for the Department of Public Works.
Joe Terrance (Terrance Construction 225-445-6399) is supervising the sheetrock going in to one of the suites at KTB One. His crew works very quickly, using fire-rated drywall on firewalls. He prefers using drywall screws to nails when sheetrocking. For leasing information on KTB One, call Kevin Boudreaux at (225) 751-4545 or Ricky Gautreau (Coldwell Banker Mackey) (225) 644-5468.
Episode 68: Commercial project
Lots of work is going on at our commercial project site, KTB One. In this episode, we see the HVAC lines installed, the electric panels and meters wired up and the stucco applied. Kevin explains leasing options: $15.50/sq ft with no maintenance fees.
Bert Guerra of GJ's Sheet Metal in Gonzales (225-644-3142) comes in to put in the HVAC lines. Each unit will have its own air-conditioning/heat system and thermostat. The sheet metal crew brings the fiberglass insulated lines and hangs them from the rafters. Each will be sealed to be air-tight and efficient.
Ray Decareaux of Acustom Electric in Gonzales gets all the panels and meters installed. As the spots are leased, he'll install custom electrical features. Inspections must be completed before sheetrock is installed.
Episode 67: Storm protection
Former Gonzales Police officer Sherman Jackson gives us some tips to prevent fraud after a storm. First, chain up that generator with a lock so thieves have a harder time trying to take it! Also, never give out personal information over the phone or in email. When those fraudulent disaster relief calls, emails and letters come in, the best thing is to weed through them and ignore anything not directly requested from the government or your insurer. If you need to speak to authorities in your area, call the Centralized Dispatch for Ascension Parish (225) 621-8300. The Ascension Sheriff's office has a great website for crime info and prevention: www.AscensionSheriff.com
Contractor fraud is a huge problem in post-disaster areas. Some even come right to your door! To check out a contractor's license, go to www.LSLBC.louisiana.gov. They've got databases and videos to help keep you protected. More tips: make a copy of the contractor's driver's license and take a photograph of the person and their license plate on their vehicle. If you hire someone who needs money for supplies, call Purpera & Sons Lumber to set up a credit card tab for supplies and have them delivered to your door. That way, everything you buy is actually delivered to your project. Purpera & Sons: Airline Hwy/Purpera Road (225) 644-6538.
KTB One held strong even though it was in partial construction during Gustav & Ike. Interior systems are going in now. Bert Guerra of GJ's Sheet Metal in Gonzales (225-644-3142) comes in to put in the HVAC lines. Each unit will have its own air-conditioning/heat system and thermostat. The sheet metal crew brings the fiberglass insulated lines and hangs them from the rafters. Each will be sealed to be air-tight and efficient.
Jeff Alvarez (Southeast Engineers) and Joe Terrance (Terrance Construction) talk about how KTB One will be a strong commercial building. It is engineered to withstand up to 130 mph wind speeds. Jeff is on hand to make sure that the engineered plans are followed correctly and Joe is on hand to show the carpenters how to attach the interior wooden frame to the exterior steel frame. For leasing information, call Kevin Boudreaux at (225) 751-4545.
Episode 66: Parish Updates
Parish President Tommy Martinez gives us the scoop on proposed taxes, road improvements and recycling. On November 4th, voters will decide on a 3 mill property tax to purchase the Lamar-Dixon Expo Center. Although appraised at $50 million, the Dixon family is offering the facility to the parish for $7.5 million (16 cents on the dollar), including the 120 undeveloped acreage and ponds with the property. Please remember that during the aftermath of Gustav, the National Guard handed out over $7 million in commodities at the Lamar-Dixon alone. That's $70 per capita (enough to pay your proposed additional tax for at least 2 years). So, if you went to get supplies or a tarp at the Lamar-Dixon, keep that in mind. The Lamar-Dixon also served as a staging ground for utility crews and first responders. If residents vote in favor of the parish purchasing the property, the facility and grounds will continue to be used for 4-H kids, high school sports and graduations and recreation. The parish would like to install a sprayground bigger than the one at Jambalaya Park, walking/biking trails, a public fishing pond for kids (using existing ponds) and, possibly, Mardi Gras celebrations. The cost for the average homeowner will be a little over $2 in additional tax per month.
Road improvements are a huge issue in Ascension Parish. Joe Sevario Road (between 42 and Galvez Middle) is complete. Many more projects are on the table, but of course, the parish needs money to get them done. Mr. Martinez is putting together a 1/2 cent sales tax proposal to present to the Council to help get things done.
Recycling: for so long, all the Baton Rouge transplants have been guilt-ridden about throwing cans and paper in the trash. Mr. Martinez tells us about Councilman Chris Loar's new group, Ascension Green, that is focused on the environment in our parish and looking for volunteers. There is also a Recycling Road Show happening once a month at the Prairieville Wal-Mart where you can bring recyclables. AND, we may actually see curbside recycling in the next year!!!
For more information on Parish Updates or to get in contact with Councilman Chris Loar to participate in Ascension Green, go to www.AscensionParish.net.
Kevin Boudreaux is very happy that his commercial project suffered no damage from Gustav or Ike. The interior walls are being framed and the HVAC systems are going in. The facade is framed and awaiting glass and stucco. For information on leasing space at KTB One, call Kevin at (225) 751-4545.
Episode 64: Buying & Building
Clarence Blumrich at A+ Mortgage Services, (225) 647-7842, gives us the low-down on the credit crunch, sheriff's sales and seller financing.
Right now, the best (and probably only) option for 100% financing is the Rural Development Loan Program. Ascension Parish is designated rural and many homes in the parish qualify for this kind of loan, as long as you fit the income guidelines. This loan does not require PMI. To learn more: www.rurdev.usda.gov.
For regular conforming loans, you'll need to put 3% down (or more if your credit score is under 680) in order to get a PMI company to guarantee your loan. So, check that credit score and get pre-approved before you start house shopping. The more information you can show a lender (proof of income, ability to make a downpayment and assets like a 401(k) can all help you get in a home.
Everyone's talking about foreclosures and buying cheap property, but there are a few things you should do before you head to an auction. Ask questions: take a look at the sheriff's website (www.AscensionSheriff.com) to see what kinds of property are available. You cannot enter any of the properties, but the addresses are listed if you'd like to drive by the property for a look-see. If you find a property you'd like to bid on, make sure there are no other outstanding liens. This is public information that can be found in the databases at the courthouses in Gonzales and Donaldsonville: www.AscensionParishCourt.net for more info. If you can't pay the whole amount in cash, you will need a letter of credit from a mortgage lender. Just like a regular loan, you will need to follow all closing procedures (title search, appraisal, inspection, etc.) in the time allotted by the sheriff. It can be done, but it is tricky. Make sure you get pre-approved before you bid on anything.
Seller Financing can be a good thing, depending on the terms. Don't get tricked into paying more than the house is worth just because you think you have to settle for seller financing, though. Ask about the terms: purchase price, length of loan, interest rate, closing costs, pre-payment penalty, balloon payments. Always do a title search to make sure there are no outstanding liens and get that paperwork signed in front of an attorney. Make payments using traceable methods only: check, money order, wire transfer. If you should want to refinance, this will be crucial.
The steel is going up at KTB Plaza One. Kevin Boudreaux watches as the crew puts up the exterior and middle supports for his new building on Hwy 44 near 42. The anchor bolts were set before the concrete was poured, according to the engineered drawings. Next up will be the purlins, wall girters and exterior walls. For information on leasing space at KTB One, call Kevin at (225) 751-4545.
Episode 63: Update, Standby Generators
Kevin Boudreaux is ready to get KTB One put together. It took 12 weeks for the custom cut steel pieces to come in and, in the meantime, all the concrete was poured for the slab, parking area and driveway. Now, Kevin will bring in some heavy equipment to put this jigsaw puzzle together. Subcontractors will come in late September to install HVAC, plumbing and electricity. IF YOU ARE INTERESTED in leasing a retail/office space in KTB One or if you need to build a commercial building, call Kevin at (225) 751-4545.
Damain Kerek, Summit Electric Supply, answers some questions about stand-by generators. They are an excellent investment for your home, but there are many things you need to factor in before you run out and buy one.
First (and foremost), call a qualified installer to come over to your house to figure out what size machine and switch you need. The installer will pull necessary permits and give you a quote on the installation of the machine and wiring. The installer can also connect you with a qualified plumber who is necessary to connect the natural gas or liquid propane line.
Damain explains that a gasoline generator is okay if all you need in an outage is some lights and a fan. (But at $4/gallon, you may want to do without even that!)
A standby generator produces "cleaner" power that will run large appliances (refrigerator, deep freezer, air conditioner, in-home medical equipment, computers, etc.). However, the machine you buy must be able to handle the power load hooked up to it. A "smart" switch helps with this, because it can transfer power to machines that need an extra boost to kick on and then make sure all appliances have the power they need to keep running. The smart switch will also cycle the generator motor weekly and run diagnostics. Oh, and if you're trying to save a few bucks by shopping at a big-box store, please make sure to ask about how often you must run the generator so that you don't void your warranty. The warranty can be a tricky thing, so make sure you completely understand it. Can't find help at the big-box store who can answer your questions?
Call or stop by Summit Electric in Gonzales: (225) 644-5637. Darrell Hollister or Damain Kerek can help. Also, for our viewers, Galvez Electric (a qualified installer for Eaton Cutler-Hammer generators) is offering FREE ESTIMATES for our viewers. Jason Melancon can come by your house and gauge your needs and help you figure out how much (or how little) power you need from a standby generator and how much installation will run (225) 337-2351 or (225) 247-3212.
Episode 62: End of Summer info
It's time to start thinking about Back-To-School sales. One thing on most parent's minds is what kind of computer to get their kids for school. If you're buying new, don't get sucked into the bottom-of-the-barrel closeout deals. The models are usually outdated and won't last long. Right now, Windows XP is still widely available and supported while we wait for Vista to get the bugs worked out. So, a good middle of the road option is a computer with a Dual-core processor, at least 1 GB RAM, CD/DVD reader and burner, photocard readers and enough space on the hard drive to hold lots of music and video. (For this, you may want 100GB storage or more.) For more information on how to pick a computer or to clean and update the one you already have, call Edward Prejean of Prejean Computer Consultants at (225) 450-2184 or go to www.PrejeanComputerConsultants.com. They have a knowledgeable crew who can help save you money and frustration when it comes to computers and networking.
Clancy Joubert stops by with his daughter Brooke to check on my lawn. The grass is green and thick - looking better than ever. He explains the products he uses and the cutting schedule which keeps the grass and roots healthy. I have a typical suburban yard: centipede sod in the front, who-knows-what in the back. The back grows much more quickly - I'm practically growing hay back there - but Clancy keeps everything looking beautiful with his Mow, Blow & Go service. Give him a call for yard, landscaping and concrete curbing services: (225) 715-4877. You know you're tired of weedeating in 100 degree weather... give Clancy a call today!
Judy & Ronnie Rachal have been hard at work in their gardens. Uncle Ronnie works the vegetable patches (and Aunt Judy gets all the tomato glory!). This week we get a peek at the flower gardens. Their secret is "Black Gold" soil that they get from a cotton gin. It is the dirt that is removed from cotton husks during ginning. It is pre-fertizilized and very light. It is already composted with cotton hulls and sits at the gin for almost a year before it is sold to gardeners. Not sure where you can get it around here, but you could try calling local cotton gins to see if they hold on to their dirt.
Episode 61: Lawns & Gardens
We go to Gautreaux's Lawn & Garden on Hwy 44 and Black Bayou Road in Gonzales. Shane Gautreaux gives us a lesson on how easy it is to operate a ZTR. For more information: www.GautreauxsLawnAndGarden.com or stop by the shop and say hi to Shane: (225) 644-2157.
Judy & Ronnie Rachal have been hard at work in their gardens. Ronnie works the vegetable patches (and Aunt Judy gets all the tomato glory!). Their secret is "Black Gold" soil that they get from a cotton gin. It is the dirt that is removed from cotton husks during ginning. It is pre-fertizilized and very light. It is already composted with cotton hulls and sits at the gin for almost a year before it is sold to gardeners. Not sure where you can get it around here, but you could try calling local cotton gins to see if they hold on to their dirt.
Episode 60: Summer Real Estate, Excavation
We head out for an open house tour that spans the parish. To contact one of the agents at the Coldwell Banker Mackey Gonzales office, call (225) 644-5468. We also went to KTB One for an update. Stonewall Broussard showed us how he excavates the drainage canal with laser precision. (See below.) To contact Stonewall Broussard about excavation or installing a catch-basin system (cover your ditch), call him at (225) 268-9001.
12406 Dutchtown Villa Drive.
Dutchtown schools! 3 bedroom, 2 bath, 1581 LA. List price $194,900. Located in a garden home subdivision in Dutchtown. Open/split floor plan. Spacious kitchen with large island and custom cabinets and pantry. Master suite has his/her vanities, separate 4' shower, jetted tub, linen closed and huge walk-in closet. Extra features include computer nook, wood and ceramic floor, ventless gas fireplace. 2 car garage. Excellent for family or investor.
Contact Ricky Gautreau (225) 715-7256.
1016 S. Lexington Ave. Lexington Estates subdivision in city of Gonzales. 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, 1230 LA, List price $144,900.
New construction in the heart of the city. Lots of amenities including ceramic tile countertops and backsplash, tile flooring, ceiling fans and more. Convenient to schools, shopping and major highways, I-10. Split floor plan. Ready to move in. Contact Ricky Gautreau (225) 715-7256
914 E. Cornerview Rd., Gonzales 5 bedrooms, 3.5 baths, 2581 LA, List price $249,900
Great home located in Gonzales with 2581 sq ft of living area! Office with exterior entrance. Many updates and improvements, including stainless appliances and slab granite in kitchen. Imported Australian cypress woodwork throughout the home. Large yard (3 city lots included) with 3 adjacent lots also available. Nice media room with lots of built-ins. HVAC units replaced 2003. Large covered rear patio for entertaining. Across the street from Jambalaya Park, Gonzales police, City Hall, Gonzales Recreation Center. Great family neighborhood. Contact Randy Anderson (225) 921-9777
40478 Loosemore Rd., Gonzales, 5 bedrooms, 4.5 baths, 4718 LA, List price $799,000
Stunning home on 1.43 acres of land, minutes from I-10. Commercial grade kitchen appliancesw, granite in kitchen and master bath. Huge bonus room upstairs with its own closet and bathroom. Master bedroom has huge walk-in closet with built-ins and double doors to view or enter the outside patio. French doors to master bath also. Patio built for entertaining includes TV cabinetry, screened in area, large in-ground pool surrounded by wrought iron fence. Natural gas hookup ready for your grill. 30x50 shop with 25x30 overhang and roll up doors. Wrought iron gate entrance. All the upgrades and space you can imagine! Contact Nicole Rowell (225) 936-4250
18063 Wood Haven Dr., Galvez, 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, 1431 LA, List price $155,500
Priced to SELL and completely updated. House has been repainted in and out. New flooring in every room with wood laminate and ceramic. New kitchen appliances. Master has his and hers walk-in closets and vanities. Bonus towel/linen closet. 12x12 exterior storage shed remains. One street neighborhood, family-friendly Contact Steve Melder (225) 716-0972
Cypress Village Square NOW LEASING at Hwy 44/Black Bayou Road.
A beautiful new professional plaza centrally located close to Gonzales, Dutchtown, St. Amant, Prairieville.
Phase One has 4 spaces and is anchored by Hollier Physical Therapy, who has already moved in and is enjoying the new location. 2 spaces are now available in Phase One. Each space is 1400 sqft and lease for $1500/month.
Call Steve Melder to find out about current move-in incentives! (225) 716-0972. More info: www.SteveMelder.com
Stonewall Broussard explains how he's excavating the drainage areas for KTB One, Kevin Boudreaux's new commercial development at 44/42 in Galvez. Drainage is a big issue in our parish and all new commercial buildings must resolve these problems before construction. Kevin contacted his engineering company to make sure everything is up to code and even goes beyond to install a lift pump to make sure his drainage areas do not flash flood, backflow or become stagnant. Stonewall excavates to laser precision and tells us a little about how tough it actually is to dig a ditch (correctly). He also installs residential catch-basin systems (he can properly cover open ditches). Call Stonewall at (225) 268-9001.
Episode 59: Remodel Complete/ Solid Foundation
Tess Boudreaux takes us into their master bedroom to see the remodeling going on to turn the once-separate rooms into a suite (that still maintains privacy for the bathroom). They've finally finished! We talk to Brett Miller of Ascension Granite and Marble about replacing granite in the bathroom. Since the counterspace was elongated, Brett had to figure out where to put the seam so it isn't noticeable - they decided to put it right at a sink hole. Tess chose Copper Canyon granite out of Brazil to blend with the copper and gold accents throughout the room. Don't forget the great offer at Ascension Granite and Marble: buy granite for your kitchen and get the undermount sink free!! Call 644-2231 or go to AscensionGranite.com.
Maria Boudreaux of Fleur De Me Designs did the design and painting: (225) 938-0907 for more info.
We also talked to Kevin Boudreaux out at KTB One, his commercial property going up on Hwy 44, between 933 and 42. After thorough inspection of the footings, anchor bolts and plumbing, it's time to pour the slab!
Episode 58: Project Updates
Tess Boudreaux takes us into their master bedroom to see the remodeling going on to turn the once-separate rooms into a suite (that still maintains privacy for the bathroom). They've been doing lots of faux-finish painting in the bedroom and bathroom. It continued into the dining and living rooms because it looked so good! Maria Boudreaux of Fleur De Me Designs did the design and painting: (225) 938-0907
We also go out to KTB One to talk to Bill Savoy of Savoy Plumbing. He shows us how his crew installs water and drain lines in the footings before the slab is poured: (225-675-5655)
Episode 57: KTB Projects
Kevin Boudreaux is a busy guy. Even though residential building is slowing down, this contractor is as busy as ever with his home remodeling and commercial projects. For more on KTB: www.KTBProperties.com
Tess Boudreaux takes us into their master bedroom to see the remodeling going on to turn the once-separate rooms into a suite (that still maintains privacy for the bathroom). They took out most of the wall between the bedroom and bathroom to add in two sets of antique double doors imported from Holland. They ripped out carpet in the bedroom to make the slate flooring from the bathroom flow between the spaces. They're also redesigning the vanities to function better for their needs. Good thing there's a contractor in the house! We'll get to see the rest of the project on future episodes.
Kevin takes us out to KTB One to see the progress there. All the permits have been approved and they have begun work on the foundation. Bruce Greene of Thomas Trucking talks about how much clay and sand have been brought in to help make a good slab. The footings have been dug and await plumbing. Sand for this project is actually river sand brought over from the foot of the Sunshine Bridge, which helps tremendously on shipping costs. Thomas Trucking: (225) 445-1500.
Jeff Albarez of Southeast Engineers discusses how they've worked on drainage issues for this project. A retaining pond was not an option for this shopping center because the area is too small, so they devised a way to shape and slope the land surrounding the building to help water flow into a retaining system that lets it flow gradually into the ditch. This helps keep the water from backing up into the building or flowing too fast to surrounding buildings. Got a project for Southeast Engineers? Call Jeff or Craig at (225) 295-1880.
Episode 56: Open House Tour
Spring is the time to get around town and see all the houses on the market through open house events by local realtors. The CRBA's Parade of Homes continues through April 26 and 27, Saturday from 11am - 5pm, Sunday from 1pm - 5pm. There is no admission charge, just a great opportunity to see the latest trends in design and home amenities. For more info on the Baton Rouge area Parade of Homes, go to www.capitalregionba.com. There is also an event ($5/ticket) around Lake Pontchartrain that continues through May 4: Parade Around the Lake, www.paradearoundthelake.com.
Pam Crutti presented 2 homes. She is owner/agent for her home in Longwood Estates (above). It offers 2800 sq ft living area with 4 bed/ 3 baths, 1.5 stories with 2 bedrooms upstairs and a master suite, guest suite and bonus room downstairs. It is on a large lot with mature trees, professionally landscaped and a great deck for entertaining. The kitchen features cypress cabinets and granite countertops, gas cooktop. ** $4,000 toward closing for a full price offer.** 37046 Longwood Avenue, $355,000. Contact Pam Crutti for a showing. Cell: (225) 413-6762, Coldwell Banker Mackey: (225) 647-8805. Website: www.pamcrutti.com.
13356 S. Old Dutchtown Ave, Old Dutchtown subdivision. It offers 2107 sq ft living area, 4 beds/3 baths, lakeview lot, kitchen with large breakfast bar and island, fireplace, fenced backyard, community amenities: clubhouse, pool, workout room and playground. List price: $279,900 with $2500 toward close with full price offer. Contact Pam Crutti for a showing. Cell: (225) 413-6762, Coldwell Banker Mackey: (225) 647-8805. Website: www.pamcrutti.com.
Debi Wiltz showed us this home at 16221 Ole Homestead Lane in Ole Homestead subdivision in Galvez. It offers 3705 sq ft living area with 4 beds/4 baths, 1.5 stories, 2 large bonus rooms upstairs (in use as a guest suite and a gameroom). This is a great big house for a great price ($107/sq ft!). Custom built, lots of built-ins, Australian cypress floors, open floor plan. Kitchen offers island and granite countertops. Big backyard features privacy fence, covered back porch for entertaining and playground for the kids. Water features in front and backyard remain. List Price: $399,000. To see this home for yourself, call Debi Wiltz at (225) 963-8128 or Coldwell Banker Mackey at 647-8805.
Brandi Trabeau gave us a tour of a home that's part of the CRBA Parade of Homes. It will be open April 26 and 27 for viewing. Contact Coldwell Banker Mackey to schedule a showing after the Parade. This home is located at 14500 Oak Path Ave in Oaks on the Bluff. It offers 3437 sq ft of living, 4 beds/3.5 baths, 1.5 stories, large bonus room and outdoor kitchen/entertaining area. All the upgrades, including a show-stopping kitchen with granite, antique-glazed cabinetry, large island and stainless Viking appliances. Sound system inside and out. Climate control with 4 zones. Master bath offers 72" undermount jet tub, beautiful stonework and lots of closet space. List price: $524,900. Contact Brandi Trabeau at (225) 413-7655 or Coldwell Banker Mackey at 647-8805. For more Parade listings: www.capitalregionba.com.
Episode 55: Spring Clean-Up
Danny Bonfiglio, owner of Jani-Care Commercial Cleaning Service & Supply in Baton Rouge, (225) 751-CARE, gives us tips on spring cleaning. Start at the top and move your way down. Remember to clean the tops and sides of ceiling fan blades, door frames, tops of picture frames, air vents and all your sheetrock with a damp dust cloth. Move furniture out of the way and dust/sweep/mop the floor where you normally go around heavy objects. Disinfect everything, not just bathrooms. This means the floors and baseboards too. If you have trouble spots in the bathrooms with rings in tubs and toilets, try a commercial product like Ring King. For better air quality, you can try battery-operated misters. For worst-case odor scenarios, try an odor neutralizing machine. It actually changes the composition of the air in your house to neutralize odor. Go to www.JaniCareBR.com for more information.
Clancy Joubert, Louisiana Lawn Care (225-715-4877) stops by for an update on the progress of my (until now) neglected yard. His crew has done quite a bit of weeding and feeding with the turfgrass and flowerbeds. He went and picked up a pickup truckload of chocolate brown mulch and his guys make sure all the beds get 2-3 inches of mulch. We discuss how the concrete curbing will finish off all that hard work. To get in touch with Clancy, call him or email: LouisianaLawnCare@eatel. net.
Episode 54: Spring Lawn Care
Clancy Joubert, Louisiana Lawn Care (225-715-4877) tells us how to take care of our lawns. Spring is definitely here, with clover popping up all over our turfgrass. Clancy says that now is a great time to weed/feed/treat for pests. Fireants are starting to come out of the ground to forage. Spot treat visible beds with contact killer, then spread the broadcast granules over your whole yard for longer term effects. Landscape beds need to be freshened as well - weeding, pest control and mulch. Check any irrigation systems, too. If you don't have the time (or lower back) to deal with all your yard/landscaping needs, call Clancy at 715-4877. His crew can take care of it all - concrete curbing too! email: LouisianaLawnCare@eatel. net.
Shane Gautreaux at Gautreaux's Lawn & Garden takes us around his great new location on Airline in Prairieville. Zero-Turn-Radius (ZTR) mowers are the hottest item for this year's yards and Shane can get you into a ZTR for less than $3000!!! Special financing is available on Hustler and Toro models. They've also got 12 months same as cash deals going on right now. Gautreaux's offers ZTR's, walk-behinds, string trimmers, edgers, tillers, chainsaws, blowers and all the accessories. Don't forget - they service everything they sell and do yearly maintenance on lawn equipment. So, if you haven't gotten your machine checked out yet for this year's growing season (or if you just plain want a new machine) give Shane a call at (225) 673-8673 or stop by either location: 17839 Airline in Prairieville or in Gonzales at Hwy 44 and Black Bayou Road. Click here for more: www.GautreauxsLawnAndGarden.com.
Episode 53: Ascension's Environment
Our air and water quality have truly begun to suffer in our parish. To report illegal open burning, call the DEQ at (225) 219-3640 (after hours and weekends: 225-342-1234). In unincorporated parts of the parish, you may burn your own yard clippings on your own property while you are in attendance. You may not burn any trash, boxes, paper, plastics or other refuse. Burning of any kind is not allowed in any of the city limits (Gonzales, Donaldsonville, Sorrento). Burning is not allowed at all in East Baton Rouge Parish.
To find out more about the Clean Waters Project and how you can support a centralized sewer collection system in Ascension, call Chris Piehler, Director of the Clean Waters Project at (225) 219-3609. To help keep your own system from getting "upset", use environmentally friendly household cleaners and never put anti-bacterial products down the drain. Mo-Dads and septic tanks need routine maintenance and pump-outs every once in a while.
EPISODE 52: Ascension Parish Issues
Tommy Martinez, Ascension Parish President, talks to us about the many issues facing his office. The Parish Government has a very small part of the tax millage (less than 2%) but has the lion's share of responsibilities: the court and prison systems, sewers, drainage, roads, animal/mosquito control, health unit, recreation and administration. With all that on his plate, he says he is confident in the newly-elected council and that together, things will get done. His goals before the end of the year: construction started on over 100 parish roads, extend GO-Zone tax benefit deadlines, find more grants for a centralized sewer system and get things moving, resolve the Lamar-Dixon issues, establish a budget for recreation/parks, find permanent funding for animal control and fix the budgets for mosquito control and the health unit. One of his biggest requests of Ascension Parish residents is for patience and volunteer efforts. Remember, every dollar you spend in Ascension helps your parish, your neighbors and yourself. For goverment phone numbers and info: www.AscensionParish.net.
Blane Purpera, Purpera & Sons Lumber and Tim Nevitt of Great Southern Wood Preserving are proud to announce the availability of an environmentally-preferred treated lumber product. The new treatment process (Micronized Copper Quaternary compound or MCQ) does not release chemicals into ground or water, is virtually non-corrosive and much easier to paint or stain. The MCQ southern pine lumber is great for building decks, arbors, fences and more and can be treated with a cedar pigment to make it look like expensive cedar but at less than half the cost with none of the insect/rotting problems of cedar! Purpera & Sons Lumber offers excellent customer service - just call ahead at (225) 644-6538 and they can have your order ready to load up when you arrive or they can deliver right to your jobsite. Environmentally preferred products are just a small way to help your environment (right in your own backyard!)
EPISODE 51: Commercial developments
Coldwell Banker Mackey Co. is now in Gonzales and Donaldsonville, having purchased both offices of Rick Gautreau & Associates Real Estate. The offices will remain the same, with the same friendly faces - but now offer more service and listings! Gary Binns goes through some of the plans for the Commerce Center coming to 42/Airline, Purpera Square office spaces coming to Purpera Road in Gonzales and Cypress Square already on the ground at Hwy 44/Black Bayou Road. There's plenty commercial space coming, so if your business needs a piece of "prime property" contact Gary Binns at (225) 647-8805. Be sure to ask about "Go Zone" opportunity properties.
Kevin Boudreaux of KTB Properties is getting closer to breaking ground on KTB One on Hwy 44 near 42. Because of the new statewide uniform construction codes, it's better to have an engineer or two on your side as you're drawing up construction plans! So, we talk to Craig Duos and Jeff Albarez of Southeast Engineers in Baton Rouge, (225) 295-1880, about what it takes to build anything new in Ascension Parish. The wind speed maps are below and you can clearly see how much of the parish must already conform to the higher codes. The northern part of the parish will probably have to follow suit next year. Remember, the parish and the cities have engineers in their offices to check all your calculations (on residential and commercial properties) so you better know your stuff or hire someone who does. Call Southeast Engineers for more info: (225) 295-1880.
EPISODE 50: Real Estate Update
Coldwell Banker Mackey Co. is now in Gonzales and Donaldsonville, having purchased both offices of Rick Gautreau & Associates Real Estate. The offices will remain the same, with the same friendly faces - but now offer more service and listings!
Eagle's Landing, Legacy Oaks and more!
EPISODE 49: Carpet Care, Reverse Mortgages
Carpet Care tips from Jani-Care: Danny Bonfiglio (225) 751-CARE
For pet stains (urine): blot liquid with paper towels, mist with water/vinegar solution and blot again
Vacuum thoroughly once a week, get a professional cleaning once a year
Use cleaning products sparingly and never scrub stains
Savings for Prime Property viewers: 20% off carpet cleaning!
Reverse Mortgages: Clarence Blumrich, A+ Mortgage Services (225) 644-7842
Rules for a Reverse Mortgage:
You must be 62 or older
Must own a single family dwelling, not a mobile/manufactured home
Speak to your tax professional and/or estate planner before applying for loan
Monthly payments can supplement income and need not be paid back
You will never be forced out of your home - any previous mortgages will be paid
Heirs are not liable for loan unless they wish to sell or take possession of the house
Payments are federally insured, even if lender goes out of business
No maximum loan amounts, no income requirements
Payments may be construed as supplemental income and may disqualify you from low income assistance (like Medicare)
Debt must be satisfied before house is sold
Interest is adjustable
Heirs do not get house unless debt is satisfied
You do not get full appraised value - only a percentage, depending upon lender
EPISODE 48: 2007 Wrap-up, 2008 projections
Lots of things got underway in 2007:
Joe Sevario Road Project began construction
Congressman Eddie Lambert procured state funds and cooperation to get construction started on Hwy 42
Income limits were raised on the Rural Development Loan program, interest rates were cut .5%
More to come for 2008:
Parishwide Wastewater Management Plan needs to be finalized and passed (after those user fees come down!)
Hwy 42 construction? Let's keep our fingers crossed.
More commercial development in both the cities and unincorporated parts of the parish
Remodeling existing homes will be the norm if residential construction slows
EPISODE 47: Commercial Construction
Kevin Boudreaux, KTB Properties, is getting into commercial construction. He got licensed by the state and is ready to get started. His first project, KTB One, will be a shopping center in Galvez on Hwy 44 near Hwy 42. The plans, which are pending approval from the State Fire Marshal and the DEQ, include 7 units that will house 1 restaurant, offices and retail space. Building outside of city limits present challenges when it comes to water and sewer service, but the lower cost of land and lack of commercial overdevelopment makes up for having to install a wastewater treatment facility. For information about this project, go to www.KTBProperties.com.
Eric Lambert, Rail Road Auto Plaza, just went through the trials and tribulations of building a new commercial facility in the city of Gonzales. He razed a 50-year-old existing building and started from scratch. Turned out, that made things a bit more difficult, but it made for a safer, more problem-free facility. When building in Gonzales, contractors must have plans that are engineer-certified to meet wind speed codes. When building an office inside a larger facility, he found out from the State Fire Marshal that the entire office had to be fire-proof, including sheetrock, windows and doors. Rail Road Auto Plaza is the newest, most customer-friendly auto service station in the area. Located at the railroad tracks on Burnside in Gonzales, open M-F 8-5:30 and Saturdays until 2pm. Call 647-3000 for more info.
The La DEQ wants to remind everyone that there is a STATEWIDE prohibition on open burning. You may not burn trash piles anywhere in the state, no matter how far out you live in the country. Exception: leaves, twigs, woody debris. Christmas trees are okay, but none of the paper trash or any other trash. If you catch anyone burning tires, plastic, construction debris or chemicals, please contact the DEQ at (225) 219-3640.
EPISODE 46: Kitchen Wrap-Up
Evan Gonzales, Ascension Granite & Marble, comes in to install the granite. The machine-aided design and production made sure everything fit perfectly. Evan also added the 3-inch piece behind the new smooth-top range for a seamless look. (See construction pics) The granite really gave this kitchen a high "wow" factor! For more info: www.AscensionGranite.com
Elvis Jacob, Acadian Custom Cabinets, inspects the kitchen after everything is installed. The cabinetry came out beautifully and adds some serious storage, function and even a new display area in the peninsula. The shoe moulding was cut by Acadian to reflect the "waterfall" profile in the granite and it really adds to the personality. For info on Acadian Custom Cabinets, click here.
Bill Woodward (Woodward's Remodeling & Repair: 225-644-2002, 571-1457) has completed all the staining and sanding, installed the intricate shoe moulding, painted and installed the new fireplace mantle and has moved on to the den to paint the 70s paneling. With a remodel that comes out this well in one room, it always moves on to the rest of the house!
One major consideration for anyone remodeling or building an addition is whether or not you must comply with the new wind speed requirements for residential construction. If you fall in the purple area of the map below, you must comply with the new codes. The area in yellow will be required to comply after 1/1/09.
For any remodeling or construction job, make sure to hire a licensed contractor. For more info: www.lslbc.louisiana.gov
EPISODE 45: Remodeling Update
Elvis Jacob, Acadian Custom Cabinets, walks us through a complete kitchen remodel project with Danny Frederic. Danny's house is over 30 years old and the last time he and his wife updated the kitchen was 15 years ago. So, they decided to completely remove the original cabinets, outdated appliances and re-design their space. Elvis updates us on the progress: the cabinets are installed and ready for countertops. For info on Acadian Custom Cabinets, click here.
Evan Gonzales, Ascension Granite & Marble, comes in after the cabinets are installed. The Frederics have already chosen their desired color (Baltic Brown, 3cm) and waterfall profile. Evan uses a laser to measure all edges and lengths. These measurements are fed into a CAD software program which then instructs the machines on how to cut out each slab. For more info: www.AscensionGranite.com
Bill Woodward (Woodward's Remodeling & Repair: 225-644-2002, 571-1457) comes in to complete trimwork and sand/stain/seal the cabinets. This process takes a few days, but in the end, the solid wood cabinets will be as smooth as glass.
EPISODE 44: Remodeling
Elvis Jacob, Acadian Custom Cabinets, walks us through a complete kitchen remodel project with Danny Frederic. Danny's house is over 30 years old and the last time he and his wife updated the kitchen was 15 years ago. So, they decided to completely remove the original cabinets, outdated appliances and re-design their space. Elvis helped them plan for more functionality with adjustable shelves and pull out spice racks. The Frederics chose Appalachain Red Oak for their cabinets for durability and to brighten up their area. They will also change up the kitchen's peninsula for better access to the breakfast nook and add granite to the counters. Their budget is $15,000 and we will be there for each phase of the project.
What do you do when your family outgrows your house but you don't want to move? Build an addition! Evan Gonzales of Ascension Granite and Marble needs more space for his growing family but the land his home sits on has been in his family for generations - so moving to a bigger home wasn't an option. He and his wife decided to add on extra bedroom space, another bathroom and a large shop for Evan's hobbies. On the back of the shop, they will add some outdoor kitchen features. This project also caused them to re-do the roofing to make the additions seamless. One major consideration for anyone building an addition is whether or not you must comply with the new wind speed requirements for residential construction. If you fall in the purple area of the map below, you must comply with the new codes. The area in yellow will be required to comply after 1/1/09.
For any remodeling or construction job, make sure to hire a licensed contractor. For more info: www.lslbc.louisiana.gov
Episode 43: Fall Landscaping
Green Escapes Nursery has everything you need to spruce up your yard for the fall/winter season. Bulk and bagged mulch (red, chocolate, black and cypress), garden soil, river silt, limestone and more - just back up your truck and they'll load you up! The time is now for planting anything and everything - especially trees. GEN has them all: shade trees, magnolias, crepe myrtles and fruit trees (citrus, fig and more). They also carry every kind of palm known to man, from large to small. All the easy-care shrubs, roses and fall color you're looking for. Stop by the nursery at Hwy 44 and Abby James Rd in Prairieville or call Don or Becca at 622-1196. They do free estimates for landscape design. They also offer contracts for routine landscape maintenance!
LSU AgCenter, Ascension Parish Extension is accepting soil samples for testing. Pick up a soil test kit at the AgCenter office - 2nd floor, YMCA building, Lamar-Dixon Expo Center. You can also download forms and instructions here: www.stpal.lsu.edu. Desiree Dorest gave us lots of information about soil testing - it's the simplest way to get your landscaping and turfgrass to optimum health. The soil test results actually give you instructions on how to get your soil right for whatever it is you're planting - from centipede grass to azaleas to winter crops! A routine sample costs $7 (check or money order only). For more info about upcoming events at the AgCenter, go to www.LSUAgCenter.com.
Episode 42: Property History
Find the history of your property:
Since tracing family histories has become so popular, I wondered what it would take to find the history of the property my house now sits on. Was it always a cow pasture? Was there ever a plantation or settlement here? Ascension Parish is rich with history on both sides of the river, so I thought it would be worth asking. With every real estate transaction, there is an attorney who researches the property to make sure there are no claims or liens. I contacted Larry Buquoi, an attorney in Ascension Parish who has actually done abstracting research himself and knows the process. Land records are available only at the courthouses in Gonzales and Donaldsonville (www.AscensionParishCourt.net
for locations). Records are on the computers back to about the 1960s. You can search by VENDEE (buyer) or VENDOR (seller). Start with your name as vendee and find the conveyance record. You will see the name of the seller. Then trace the seller's name under vendee. There may be several listings, so check the property description. If you go back far enough, you will have to look at the older books of conveyance records (available only at the Donaldsonville office). The helpful people in that office may help you decipher the numbers stamped on records and can point you in the right direction (if you ask politely). You may want to call ahead to find times that are typically not busy or crowded if you need help. I found out that the land my house sits on went through family feuds, tax seizures and sheriff's sales. The land was divided from a larger tract down to the 12.5 acres that now comprise my neighborhood. In 1973, it was sold for $17,000. In 1996, it sold for $110,000. In 2001, it sold for over $500,000! Nice appreciation!
Episode 41: New Stuff
Credit Options: Clarence Blumrich at A+ Mortgage Services explains what the recent cut by the Federal Reserve means for homebuyers and folks looking to refinance. Rates are coming down a little bit, but the same will always be true: the better your credit and downpayment, the better your rate will be. Also big news for homebuyers in Ascension: the Rural Development Loan program has raised its income limits. That means that more people and houses will qualify for the RD loan which offers 100% financing, fixed rates and NO PMI! You could even roll your closing costs into the loan if the property appraises well. For more information, call Clarence at (225) 647-7842. You can also check out the RD program (administered by the USDA) at www.rurdev.usda.gov.
Listings: Stevie Graugnard at Rick Gautreau & Associates Real Estate shows us several new listings, including a garden home in Prairieville, waterfront properties in Pierre Part and an historic home in Donaldsonville. For more information about the listings on the show, go to www.RickGRealty.com and click on "Property Search." Or, just call Stevie at 717-0550 or the office at 644-5468.
Flooring: Lane Spiers at The Flooring Studio shows us the latest trend in flooring: handscraped hardwoods. This flooring is made to look like antique, reclaimed wood without the added cost. They also carry super-tough bamboo flooring (all the rage now because it is eco-friendly) in all colors. For rental properties, choose from laminates starting at $1.19/sqft or in-stock carpet at $1.69/sqft installed with pad! Call 647-6463 or stop by the showroom on Hwy 44 in Gonzales, next to Ascension Granite.
Episode 40: Investment Property
Kevin Boudreaux of KTB Properties tells us about how to invest in real estate rental property. He has some properties available in Lexington Estates (Gonzales) that are Gulf Opportunity Zone-eligible and a great buy. He also tells us what to expect in rental property; initial investment, landlord responsibilities, lease agreements and expected income. Along with huge tax benefits and building equity, rental property can be an excellent investment opportunity for those with good credit. For more information, go to www.KTBProperties.com
For info on Fair Housing Act and lead-based paint: www.HUD.gov
Episode 39: Avoid Scams!
Edward Prejean at Prejean Computer Consultants tells us how to prevent internet threats from entering our homes. First (the obvious) keep your anti-virus software up-to-date. Most anti-virus software now comes with an excellent firewall, spam and spyware protection. I personally use Trend Micro's PC-cillin and it works great for me. Some of the tips I won't forget: never reply to any kind of spam - don't even bother with the "unsubscribe" button in the email. That just lets them know that your email address is valid and they'll sell it to whoever wants it. Never click on hyperlinks in any email that ask for any kind of information. Type in the address independently and save it to your bookmarks to prevent fraud. There are almost 20,000 "phishing" attacks every month! Also, periodically run registry cleaners and defrag the hard drive. (Don't know what that means? Unplug your computer and bring it to Edward. He can fix it up, most of the time with next day service, and have it running like new.) And, if you've never cleaned the dust and dirt out of your hard drive, it probably needs it. Call Prejean Computer Consultants at (225) 450-2184 or drop by 203 N. Bryan Ave in Gonzales.
With the nationwide new home sales declining, the effect will inevitably change the Ascension real estate market. When people can't afford new construction, they start to look for older, cheaper homes that they can remodel. Since the storms, remodeling scams have plagued homeowners in Louisiana. For some great information about how to hire a competent contractor or remodeler, check out the State of Louisiana Licensing Board for Contractors' website at www.lslbc.state.la.us. You can also check on license status of any Louisiana contractor at 1 (800) 256-1392. Remember, never pay cash for any job, keep good records in a job file, always get references and don't put more than 10% up front. Never pay the final payment unless you are satisfied with the job. If you live in the City of Gonzales, your contractor must be licensed with the State, Parish and City. The Gonzales area falls into the new code requirements and any additions made to your house will have to comply with the >110 wind speed codes. For more information, check out the "building/permits" links at www.AscensionParish.net and at www.GonzalesLA.com. Never trust a door-to-door contractor/remodeler/roofer/whatever. They will take your money and run. If you're lucky, they'll do a crappy job before they leave. Just ask my mom! (see photos above)
Episode 38: One Day Room Makeover
Everything old is new again! Linda Ansley-Noland (It's All Arranged! 225-505-1967) stops by to help rescue my furniture. I'd had everything "under arrest" by pushing it against the walls in my open floor plan. With a one-day room makeover, Linda just re-arranges what you already have to make a room look new. Although we had limited options with my large sectional sofa, it's still fairly new and I wasn't ready to buy new furniture. Linda pulled it away from the wall (where it was blocking the picture window) and created an entryway with a small table and chairs and the display shelf I'd had in my dining area. Now, I have a defined entryway, living room and dining area. My sofa is "sittable" now because the TV can be seen from any seat (and I can actually use the recliner since it's not up against the wall!) Linda also shifted the dining table and put up some of the art I'd put away to cover the void caused when the display shelf was moved into the living room. All of this only took half a day and didn't require that I buy anything! Her cost is about $35 per hour - so this cost less than $150! And considering that I didn't have to go out and buy new stuff (or try to sell my old stuff) it really saved me a bundle!! Call Linda for a consultation and let her unlock the potential in your home!
I love finding wonderful things in unexpected places. At Ralph's Pharmacy and Gifts, you can find all the pharmacy stuff you'd expect and gifts you'll be surprised to find. Courtney Dupre' took us on a little tour and showed us some of their great stuff. Beanpod soy candles, pictures and frames, wine accessories, fleur de lis stuff, LSU stuff, jewelry, windchimes, fun little polkadot handbags and luggage and more! Stop by the shop - it's located next to Ralph's Supermarket in Gonzales. You can browse while waiting for your prescriptions - you never know what you'll find!
Episode 37: Arranging your space
Doug Gorman of Gorman Brothers Appliances in Prairieville knew exactly what he wanted in his kitchen when he and his wife built a new house. So, if you've ever asked the appliance man what he has in his own house, now you know: Thermador Professional series 36" cooktop with griddle, vent hood, wall ovens, warming drawer, built in fryer and steamer, built in icemaker and a Thermador refrigerator with matching cabinet facing. Of course, he's also got a super-silent dishwasher and microwave. To balance all that stainless steel, Doug chose to use antique, reclaimed bricks, cabinetry, beadboard ceilings and exposed beams. Countertops were engineered quartz. The combined elements make for a kitchen you never want to leave! For information on appliances, call Doug Gorman at 755-0741 or stop by the showroom at 17515 Airline Hwy in Prairieville (next to Wal-Mart).
Elinda Tallion just built a new house, but wanted to incorporate her existing furniture into the decor. Now, arranging furniture to maximize flow and function isn't always easy (you should see my house!) so Elinda called interior designer Linda Ansley-Noland of It's All Arranged. Linda helped Elinda place furniture, shop for decor and add new pieces to compliment her existing pieces in her new house. Linda is one of those fabulous people who can help you redesign your living space by merely changing the placement of existing objects to get more out of your rooms. She offers design and shopping services, color consultations and home staging for real estate. For an initial consultation, call It's All Arranged at (225) 505-1967.
Salon Venus is moving to a new location and owners Michele Crawford and Kathie Sharon had to figure out how to adapt to a space less than half the size of their existing space. By maximizing the smaller square footage with more compact workstations and the "less is more" attitude, these ladies are making a go of it. They are freshening the landscaping and parking area and putting out their "Open for business" sign on August 1. Their new location is at the corner of Hwy 44 and 929 (Causey/Post Office Rd.) in Prairieville, across from Delaune's hardware. For appointments, call (225) 622-3880.
Episode 36: Outfitting a kitchen
Evan Gonzales of Ascension Granite & Marble shows us what's new for natural stone countertops. Quartz is becoming quite popular since it has all the durability of granite and is nonporous (so it is more stain-resistant and doesn't have to be sealed). It also comes in specialty colors and has a consistent look. Granite will always be popular because of its durability and the unique personality of natural stone. Evan just brought in another finishing machine which can do a "waterfall" effect on the countertop profile. He's now offering a FREE PROFILE UPGRADE to anyone who mentions this show and buys a countertop at his shop. Ascension Granite & Marble is on Hwy 44, south of 621 (look for the slabs of granite outside). Call Evan at (225) 644-2231.
Elvis Jacob at Acadian Custom Cabinets shows us his new shop on Hwy 44 (at Post Office Rd, near Delaune's in Prairieville). Acadian uses computer design to help customers visualize the look of their kitchen and then sends the plans to his automated cutting machines (much like Evan does with the granite). The guys at Acadian help you choose which layout, wood and cabinet style will match your personality. Custom cabinets add instant value to a home, whether new construction or a remodel. Call Elvis at (225) 413-9972.
Doug Gorman of Gorman Brothers Appliances shows us the many options for kitchen equipment. When outfitting your kitchen, think about whether or not you'll actually be cooking in it or if you just want it to look pretty. There are a range of options for both categories. If you're really going to be cooking, go ahead and splurge on the big "pro" appliances. If not, save some cash and go for more affordable models that perform just fine for the "hey, it's taco night" kind of cook. My favorite appliance in the store was definitely the wine cooler with 3 temperature zones for reds, whites and sparklers. The shelves can be stained to match your cabinetry. oolala! Stop by the showroom at 17515 Airline Hwy (near Prairieville Wal-Mart) and talk to Doug or Mike Gorman about what appliances match your needs. (225) 755-0741.
Episode 35: Ascension Growing Pains
Finding Affordable Homes: Rick Gautreau of Rick Gautreau & Associates Real Estate explains that there are affordable new construction homes in Ascension Parish. Lexington Estates homes feature many amenities and large lots and start around $130,000. Creekside homes offer larger square footage, more amenities and start in the $150's. For more info, go to www.RickGRealty.com or call the Gonzales office at (225) 644-5468.
Wastewater Management Problems: Ascension Parish does NOT have a parish-wide sewer system. Most wastewater is treated at individual neighborhood package plants or septic tanks which discharge into parish ditches, bayous and lakes. Our water quality is in danger because of this, especially since most septic tanks and many package plants are not well-maintained and are only expected to last 10-15 years. The Parish Council has been aware of the problem for decades but has not yet adopted a master plan to make all sewers connect to parish-owned treatment plants that will discharge into the Mississippi River. There is currently a plan devised by the Corps of Engineers that will try to accomplish this in several phases. The price tag for this enormous project will be near $200million. Hopefully, $40/month user fees (to replace fees paid to private companies like Mo-Dad) will help cover the costs (along with lots and lots of grant money) and property taxes should not be affected by the project. The master plan will be discussed in the Parish President's report at the July 19th Parish Council meeting at 7:00pm in the Gonzales Courthouse Annex. The public is urged to attend. Thanks to Ronnie Hughes (Parish President), Bob Turner (Director, Public Works) and Ron Sigler (Planning & Development) for giving honest, unvarnished opinions of the infrastructure problems we are facing and what we can expect if nothing is done.
Episode 34: Buying a Vacation property
Financing a Vacation Home: Clarence Blumrich of A+ Mortgage Services explains the differences between a second home loan (owner-occupied only) and an investment property loan (rental property). If you're thinking of buying a vacation home, you can get a vacation home loan at about the same interest rate as a primary home loan (interest rates are currently between 6 1/4 and 6 3/4%). However, you are not allowed to rent it out - it violates the terms of your mortgage. If you want to buy a vacation home and rent it out to help offset mortgage costs, that is considered an "investment property" loan (just like a loan for a rental-only property). Investment property loans will require larger downpayments (at least 10%) and have higher interest rates (currently between 7 1/4 and 7 1/2%). However, if you are in the business of rental properties, you might be able to take advantage of Gulf Opportunity Zone tax incentives. For more information on the GO Zone, go to www.GoZoneGuide.com. Talk to your tax professional before getting started.
If you're interested in buying a vacation property in partnership with someone else, you don't necessarily have to form a legal partnership (although that is safest for all involved). Credit scores and income-to-debt ratios will be considered on all loan applicants. For more information on vacation property loans, call Clarence Blumrich at A+ Mortgage Services in Gonzales (225) 647-7842.
Keep in mind that your mortgage payment is not the only thing to consider when buying a vacation property. Insurance is expensive on the Gulf Coast. If you're buying a condo, your hazard insurance is covered in your association dues. Dues should also cover maintenance and upkeep of common property areas. Ask if your dues will cover water, sewer, trash, cable and/or electricity. You should also get insurance on your contents (to cover carpet, sheetrock, furniture, etc.) and you may need to purchase a separate flood policy. Don't forget about your property taxes and PMI, either.
Choosing a vacation property: Rebecca McCullough of Re/Max Gulf Shores helped us find a great vacation home at an amazing price. The real estate market is steadying from last year's downswing and right now you can still find great values and buy with the confidence that the market is not going down. If you're buying out-of-state, it is wise to contact a realtor who knows the area and looks forward to personally showing you all the properties that fit your budget and lifestyle.
Most affordable: Like I said, Franklin and I got a great deal, mostly because we're not directly on the beach. Our unit is located "on the island," meaning south of the Intracoastal waterway in Gulf Shores. Located exactly 2 miles from the beach, we bought in the heart of Gulf Shores, near all the restaurants and activities. The unit is 1425 sqft, 3 bed, 2 1/2 bath with attached enclosed garage and all major appliances. The list price in March was $158,500 and we negotiated for a lower price. The homeowner's dues are only $275, but do not cover any utilities. There is a nice pool and a workout room. We love our (affordable) little piece of paradise because we don't need to rent it out to offset costs and didn't need to create a partnership to get it. It's also GO Zone eligible! For listings at Regency Club Condominiums, call Rebecca at (251) 968-1000.
Average price: When most folks want to buy a vacation home, they want a condo on the beach. Prices are quite a bit higher for Gulf front property, but most range between $300k and $900k. After you decide what your budget is for your mortgage, dues, taxes and insurance, a realtor like Rebecca can show you any number of properties on the beach. There are almost 3,000 condos available in South Baldwin County, Alabama (Gulf Shores, Ft. Morgan, Orange Beach, Ono Island). The condo we visited was at Surfside Shores, Unit 1601. It is currently listed at $429,000 and offers 1050 sqft with 2 bedrooms, 3 baths, a large family area and of course, a balcony facing the Gulf. For more on this listing, go to www.GoGulfShores.com.
Super luxury: If you're looking to relocate or retire to luxury, you should check out Cypress Gardens in the Craft Farms area of Gulf Shores. North of the Intracoastal Waterway, this golf community offers privacy, great water views from each property and gorgeous homes designed by McCullough Architecture and built by Yarborough Propreties. This homes offers over 4,000 sqft (heated & cooled), tons of outdoor patio space (open and screened areas) and all the amenities you would expect (and more) from a property listed at $1,400,000. We toured the Cypress Gardens model home and if you'd like more info, call Rebecca McCullough at (251) 968-1000.
Episode 33: Landscape & Garden
The Ascension Fresh Market
is now open Saturday mornings at the Lamar-Dixon from 8:00 am to noon. We went for creole tomatoes and found fresh cut flowers, jams and jellies, fresh coffee and yummy baked goods. We also found Mr. Norwood Milton of Wood's Nursery. He invited us over to his nursery off of Hwy 621 (9/10 mile west of Airline). He showed us how he gets ready for the Fresh Market and what plants he has for sale now. From shade loving orchids to sun loving bell peppers, he has all kinds of beautiful plants for your landscape. Stop by his nursery or give him a call at 955-2200. He also sells woodcrafts and pottery. Bring cash or check! For more info on the Fresh Market: www.AscensionFreshMarket.org
Episode 32: Real Estate Update
Rick Gautreau (Rick Gautreau and Associates Real Estate) tells us about the grand opening for his Donaldsonville office. Also, Keystone is breaking ground in Galvez. This development by builder Kevin Nguyen will have 752 lots of varying sizes (from garden style to estate-size). It will feature walking paths, a community pool and a very nice bridge over Henderson Bayou. After meeting traffic and environmental impact requirements, Keystone is ready to roll. For more information, call Rick Gautreau at 644-5468 or go to www.RickGRealty.com.
For drawings of Keystone:
Local mortgage update:
The national subprime loan fiasco has made some changes to the way lenders do business and this will affect many homebuyers who are just starting out or who need to repair their credit. Clarence Blumrich of A+ Mortgage Services tells us about how you can get a "mortgage checkup" to make sure your mortgage won't put you in a bind and that you're getting the most benefit from the value of your home. Call Clarence at 647-7842 for more information.
FIRM (Flood Insurance Rate Maps)
have been adopted by the Parish Council and will go into effect August 16, 2007. If your flood insurance rating is going from Zone B (now called Shaded X) to Zone A, you need to get flood insurance now before the maps go into effect. You can get grandfathered in and pay the lower "B" rate instead of the "A" rate. Go to www.AscensionParish.net
and check out your position on the map. Questions? Call Marian Johnson-Miles at 621-5700.
Town Hall Meetings to discuss the Joe Sevario road project
. Parish Councilman (District 5) Dempsey Lambert is inviting the public to attend "town hall" style meetings at Galvez Middle School at 7:00 pm on Tuesday, May 22 and May 29. Engineers and parish officials will be there to explain what the scope of the project is and how it will affect those who live along Joe Sevario (between 933 and 42). They will be adding a right turn lane into Galvez Middle to help traffic flow and add REAL shoulders to both sides of the road from the school to Hwy 42. They will also be straightening out the curve at Bess Road (now a hairpin turn which causes safety issues for traffic going to/from Hwy 42). Phase 2 will re-configure the 4-way stop at 933/Joe Sevario and add a traffic signal and turn lanes. It's a big project that will take a while, so if you have questions, come on by either meeting. You can also get more info by calling Mrs. Betty Robert at 621-5709.
Episode 31: Ascension Business
The Ascension Economic Development Corporation was created to help foster business - both large and small - in Ascension Parish. We talk to Tommy Kurtz and Edie Michel who explain the exciting possibilities of a new "Mega Site" on the river. With 1400 acres already optioned, surveyed and environmentally ready for business, Ascension Parish is ahead of the game to attract a large business to that spot. For more information on the Pointe Sunshine Mega Site, click here:
For small businesses, there are the Edible Creations Center and the Ascension Fresh Market at the Lamar-Dixon Expo Center. The Edible Creations Center allows small, food-based businesses to rent the 5,000 square foot commercial kitchen and machinery to prepare and package food for sale. The Fresh Market (sponsored by our friends at EATEL) is now open on Saturday mornings and features produce, food and flowers from several local farms and businesses. Their grand opening is May 26. For more information about any of these, click here: www.AscensionEDC.com.
If you are starting or already running a small business, you will probably need some help getting your business online and computer friendly. Edward Prejean at Prejean Computer Consultants talks about how he can help small businesses get running and stay running. For more information, check out his website at www.PrejeanComputerConsultants.com.
Episode 30: Save money on lighting
Damain Kerek and Kevin Fletcher of Summit Electric Supply
tell us about new energy efficient lighting that can help your commercial building (office, retail, warehouse, etc.) save money on electricity and taxes. By installing new, efficient lamps and ballasts (Kevin recommends Sylvania SuperSavers) you can cut your electricity bill by 40% and qualify for a one-time tax deduction through the EPAct legislation of 2005. In a nutshell, if you reduce energy consumption 40% under the government's baseline (set by ASHRAE 90.1 - 2001), you could qualify for up to $.60 per square foot of your commercial space. Of course, this deduction goes to the owner of the building and there are several guidelines to follow. For more information, talk to the friendly folks at Summit Electric Supply in Gonzales. They can come out and evaluate your space and recommend products that will work for you.
Ed Beard of Ed's Shenandoah Hardware in Baton Rouge shows us how to change out flourescent lamps and ballasts ourselves (saving money on a handyman). When the big light on our patio awning at our house went out, we changed the bulbs, but that didn't work. Ed told us the ballast probably needed replacing (and we were worried we'd have to replace the whole fixture!) So, we had him change one out for us on the show. Pretty simple. Of course, for safety's sake, turn off the breaker to the fixture and check the wires with an inexpensive electrical tester to make sure there is no current flowing. Remove the bulbs and pop out the piece covering the ballast. Ed says you can detect a blown ballast by its heat - so be careful. If the ballast is very hot, you will need to wait until it cools or use protective gloves. Pull out the old one, trim the wires a little on each side. Pop in the new ballast and connect same-colored wires to each other, twisting together and using wirenuts. Tuck the wires back in and replace the metal sheath covering the ballast. Put in the new bulbs. Test the fixture by turning on the breaker to the area. It should be good as new. For parts (and advice, too) go to Summit Electric Supply in Gonzales. They've got all the lamps and ballasts (and friendly service too).
EPISODE 29: Parade of Homes
The CRBA is proud to present the 2007 Parade of Homes event. Free and open to the public, 63 beautiful new construction homes will be open for viewing April 21-22 and 28-29. Saturdays from 11am to 5pm and Sundays 1pm to 5pm. There are 25 houses in Ascension Parish, including several in Pelican Point Golf Community, Settlement at Lakeside, Windscape Place, Summer Lake and more. Maps will be published in the newspaper on April 21. Or you can get it right here:
Parade of Homes map
For more information, go to www.capitalregionba.com
. Remember, any realtor can show you these and many more homes. Prime Property prefers Rick Gautreau and Associates Real Estate. In this market, you need a realtor to go to bat for you!
Roy Domangue shows us the IRC Code Compliant house at Lot 10 in Oaks on the Bluff. Located off Bluff Road near C. Braud Road, this house has a self-guided tour of the code compliant building techniques for homes in the "up to 120mph" zone. It also showcases some of the new energy requirements in lighting and insulation. Check it out for yourself! Click the link for more:
DVD videos about the new code: The LHBA has a video for free download on their website at www.LHBA.org.
Click on the link under "What's New" for "Thinking of Building Your Own Home? Get the facts." It answers questions about what you should know about new construction and licensed contractors.
The CRBA is about to release a video answering questions about code compliance. It goes through the relevant chapters of the 2006 IRC code and tells you what you need to know before you get to the permit office. That video will hit the permit offices in 2-3 weeks. Do you have a specific question about the code? Send me an email at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
EPISODE 28: Spring Landscaping
Bob Souvestre, State Coordinator of the Master Gardener Program for the LSU AgCenter answers some questions about landscaping in the springtime. Many trees and shrubs are in full flower, including all the beautiful azaleas and hawthornes. Did you know you should prune your azaleas right after they're finished blooming? If you wait until summer, you'll lose most of next year's blooms. It's also time to weed, feed and apply pest control to your lawn - before it gets too hot to apply broadcast granules. Questions on your spring landscaping? Go to www.LSUAgCenter.com!
EPISODE 27: Investment Property
Clarence Blumrich of A+ Mortgage Services tells us that lenders are beginning to tighten their belts. Borrowers with credit ratings less than 680 will have fewer loan options and possibly higher interest ratings. However, if your credit rating is good and you're looking for an investment opportunity, you should talk with your CPA about the GO ZONE. People willing to buy residential property in the disaster areas of Hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Wilma and offer it for rent before the end of the year could be eligible for huge bonus depreciation write-offs for their federal income taxes. For more information on the GO ZONE, go to www.GoZoneGuide.com
(publication 4492). If you'd like to find out how to get financing for a home, a vacation home or an investment property, call Clarence Blumrich at A+ Mortgage Services at 647-5842 or go to www.APlusMortgageLa.com.
Lexington Estates subdivision in Gonzales is doing quite well. Rick Gautreau of Rick Gautreau and Associates Real Estate reports that there are several houses under construction, in several phases. Many are available for sale and you can pick your colors. The neighborhood has done quite well and all of the original owners are still around! For more information on Lexington Estates, go to www.RickGRealty.com
or call the office at (225) 644-5468.
EPISODE 26: Security/Efficiency
Detective Steven Nethken of the Gonzales Police Department stops by to give us some tips to prevent burglaries. With the population explosion in Ascension, crime rates will naturally increase, but that doesn't mean you have to be a victim. No-cost tips: prune back or remove landscaping that an intruder could hide in or that obscures a window or door, have a neighbor collect mail and newspapers and watch over your house while you're away, let the patrol officers in your area know when you'll be out of town, don't leave bicycles or expensive outdoor items unprotected, start a neighborhood watch and NEVER leave your spare key under the mat. Other tips: If you have a door with glass near the knob, get a double cylinder deadbolt (some versions have a key for both sides, some use a keypad). Big, barking dogs make it harder for intruders to go undetected and monitored security systems with motion sensors and glass breakage detectors can really give you peace of mind. If you need to report suspicious activity or need to have a patrol officer visit your house, call (City of Gonzales: 647-7511) (Ascension Parish: 621-8300). For crime stats and info: www.AscensionSheriff.com
Blane Purpera at Purpera & Sons Lumber Company on Airline Highway in Gonzales gives us a little history behind his family's business - a mainstay in Ascension Parish. Purpera & Sons has all the lumber you need for any kind of project and can help get you started. They also have what you need to fulfill the new residential energy efficiency requirements, including solarboard reflective heat barriers and low-e windows. They've completely resurfaced their parking lot and added a warehouse. Stop by or give Blane a call at 644-6538. For info on energy codes and free RESCHECK software: www.EnergyCodes.gov.
EPISODE 24: BUYING A NEW HOME
Rick Gautreau and Kara Samson show us the model home in Creekside Subdivision. Located off Germany Road between Airline and 44 (not far behind Ralph's Supermarket), Creekside offers homes starting in the $150s that feature square footage in the 1400s. This neighborhood is in its first filing and construction is underway. For more information, call the office at Rick Gautreau and Associates Real Estate (225) 644-5468 or stop by the model home Monday - Friday between 8am and 5pm. If the "open" flag is flying, a realtor is there to help answer questions about this great new development.
If you're thinking of buying your first (or next) home or of refinancing the home you've got, you need to talk to Clarence Blumrich at A+ Mortgage Services. He gave us great information during the episode about how to make sure you have the credit to buy a house, what kinds of loans are available for the self-employed and what to look for in refinancing a home. Before you get yourself in a bind with a loan you don't understand, call Clarence. His office is at 41416 Black Bayou Road in Gonzales and he'd love to help get you on the right track and in the right house for you. A+ Mortgage Services: (225) 647-7842.
EPISODE 23: ASCENSION REAL ESTATE NEWS
First, Realtor Rick Gautreau (Rick Gautreau & Associates Real Estate, Gonzales) gives us a forecast of the real estate market in Ascension Parish. He believes it will remain hot, hot, hot. Many families displaced by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita are just now getting their LRA checks and are deciding to buy in our growing community. He also explains the benefits of the Gulf Opportunity "GO" Zone. Investors who buy residential or commercial property to use as rental properties stand to get significant FEDERAL income tax benefits. For more information, go to www.RickGRealty.com
or call Rick's office at (225) 644-5468. You can also go to www.GoZoneGuide.com.
Then, Contractor Roy Domangue (Wooden Creations, CRBA, LHBA) gives us exclusive footage from the upcoming informational video to be put out by the home builder's associations to educate the public on the new residential building codes. Ascension Parish is cut almost in half by the wind speed line. Do you know where your new home site falls? Check out the map below. Are your contractors and subs up-to-date on the new code? Look for the video (coming soon) at the Permit Departments. You can also get info from www.LHBA.org.
EPISODE 22: INFO FOR THE NEW YEAR
We go out to Lot 111 in the Lakes at Dutchtown subdivision to check out builder Roy Domangue's project house. The house is a learning center for consumers and builders who want to find out more about the new building codes in Louisiana. The interior is exposed so everyone can see different types of insulation and how to fulfull the new energy efficiency requirements. The house is located in the Lakes at Dutchtown subdivision, off Hwy 74. When you turn into the neighborhood, go to the first stop sign. The house is just past the stop sign, 3rd on the right. Everyone is welcome to walk through and look at the educational information inside.
In the second half of the show, Bret Cook of Cotton's Pest Control
gives us some information on how to protect homes from invasion by any of the nasty pests in South Louisiana. Common in Ascension are ant infestations (both fire ant and wall-nesting pharoah ants), rodent infestations and, of course termites. Both the native subterranean and the Formosan termites live in Ascension. Bret tells us that signs of termite infestation may take a while to spot, but the easiest to see are holes in the walls and swarms of the little critters inside your house in the spring. Got a case of the creepy-crawlies? Call Cotton's Pest Control at (225) 644-8633. Tell them you saw them on Prime Property!
EPISODE 21: PROJECT WRAP-UP
Kevin Boudreaux of KTB Properties has built a new home in his Lexington Estates development in the City of Gonzales. He let us see every part of construction from the ground up. We've covered lots of issues that have come up with the new International Residential Code and now construction is complete. In this episode, we talk over the project with Kevin and his real estate agent, Rick Gautreau of Rick Gautreau and Associates Real Estate (225) 644-5468.
EPISODE 20: FINAL TRIM-OUTS
Continuing from our last episode, Bill Savoy finishes installing our plumbing. He shows the major parts (and challenges) to installing a toilet. He gives tips to homeowners with problematic commodes. He also installs a vacuum breaker on our outside faucets. Any homeowner can handle these small challenges with the proper tools, but for serious plumbing, call Bill Savoy at Savoy's Plumbing Service (225-675-5655).
: Colin Porta of Colin Porta Electric installs our appliances, including the range and vent hood. He also installs all the switches, outlets and lighting. He checks all the outlets, making sure each one works (and trips) properly. Colin explains the importance of Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters (the outlets with RESET buttons) and how they trip the electrical outlets in case of overload.
: Bruce Green of Thomas Trucking, (225) 445-1500, brings in the dirt for the front yard. He explains how this mix of sandy river soil and clay is excellent for grading evenly and laying sod.
Porta Heating and Air installs and checks the air conditioning unit. They charge it up with freon and check the vents inside for proper cooling. Now that electricity is hooked up to the house, Colin Porta does a walk through, checking the panel, breakers, outlets and switches one last time to make sure our project house passes its occupancy inspection.
EPISODE 19: TILE, TRIM-OUTS
Our driveway is poured and Kevin Boudreaux explains how it is done in 12 foot sections with "key way" joints to prevent cracking from expansion and conctraction caused by temperature and humidity changes.
In this house, KTB is using a neutral colored ceramic tile on the kitchen counters and all high-traffic floors. Mr. Joe James is handling this tile installation and he shows us how he "scratches" straight cuts with a hand tool and uses a toothless diamond blade saw for trickier cuts. While vinyl would have been a cheaper option on our floors, tile is still very affordable and much more attractive to potential homebuyers.
"Retired" Carpenter Gary Rheams finishes our trim, double checking doors, adding knobs and installing cabinet hardware. Now that all the flooring is installed, he adds shoe moulding to the baseboards to finish the look. Questions for our carpenter? Call Mr. Gary Rheams at (225) 505-7979.
: With the tile installed on the counters and floors, it is time for Mr. Bill Savoy of Savoy's Plumbing Service to come in and finish trimming out all our plumbing. He starts in the kitchen and assembles hardware under the sink. He then shows us a typical bathroom lavatory and how to fix minor leaks and clogs. Any homeowner can handle these small challenges with the proper tools, but for serious plumbing, call Bill Savoy at Savoy's Plumbing Service (225-675-5655).
EPISODE 18: TRIM, PAINT, CARPET
Trim: "Retired" Carpenter Gary Rheams puts in our trim, including baseboards and crown moulding. He shows us the straight cuts made with the circular saw and the "cope" cuts made with a hand coping saw to fit corner joints on baseboards. He also trims out the doors, making sure they are secure and level. Questions for our carpenter? Call Mr. Gary Rheams at (225) 505-7979.
Paint: Jack Vince Professional Coatings takes care of sanding and staining our custom cypress cabinets. Jack uses a 3M 100 grit sanding sponge to gently sand our raised panel cabinets without damaging the details. Jack adds a second coat of sealer while Eric begins rolling color on the walls and ceilings. They use neutral colors for this spec-house to match a broad range of tastes. The colors are Tavern Taupe on the ceiling and a shade darker, Muddy Water, on the walls. Jack explains how new construction paint jobs take a lot of work - sanding, filling cracks and joints, priming and painting. For Jack Vince's Professional Coatings, call (225) 806-0306.
Carpet: Our "Dusty Trails" plush carpet is installed by Mr. McClinton Pooler of Marchand's Interiors. He shows us how the carpet is laid over a 6lb pound pad, cut to fit, power-stretched to prevent bumps and wrinkles and carefully joined at the seams. Mr. Pooler shows us how "T" seams are cut and rolled at the doorway of the bedroom closet to make a seamless transition. For carpet needs, call Marchand's flooring department at (225) 647-4076
EPISODE 17: INSULATION, DRYWALL, CABINETS
Insulation: Gerald Courville, A&E Insulation, tells us about the fiberglass batting he's installing in this house. It's rated as an R-13, which is more efficient than a standard R-11 batting. He also shows how all holes in the framing are filled to stop air leakage and styrofoam baffles are placed in the soffits to make sure that when insulation is blown in the attic, there is no blockage of the soffits. For more info on insulation, call Gerald at (225) 389-0905.
Ron Nolan of R&R Builders is putting in all our drywall. His crew installs the ceilings first, then the walls using drywall screws. Then all screwheads and joints are mudded and taped to leave a seamless finish. After the mud cures, the walls are sanded and mopped with water to remove excess dust. Then the crew sprays on a light "orange-peel" texture to prepare the walls for painting. For more info on drywall, call Ron at (225) 275-4704.
On our last episode, we measured for cabinets. Now, we go to Cory's Custom Cabinets in St. Amant to watch Cory and Scott Babin custom make the cabinets for the kitchen and bathroom. The kitchen cabinets are raised panel cypress and the bathroom cabinets get sturdy engineered panels that are perfect for humid rooms. Cory shows us how he designs the kitchen on a computer and then programs a CNC machine to cut out all the panels. He assembles them in the shop with glue and finishing nails, then transports them to the project home for installation. Cory and Scott drill holes for plumbing and electrical outlets and install our beautiful cypress cabinets, making sure they are sturdy and level. For more on cabinets, call Cory's Custom Cabinets at (225)622-3438.
EPISODE 16: INSTALLATIONS
Plumbing top-out: Bill Savoy, Savoy's Plumbing Service (25) 675-5655)
, completes the plumbing top-out by installing all the tubs, the flanges for the toilets and all the pex piping for sinks, etc. He shows us how the piping runs from the attic and how he makes sure the fittings don't leak. He also makes sure there are plenty of air vents to prevent sewer vapors from leaking into the house. The system will be pressurized to make sure the plumbing will pass inspection to move on to sheetrock.
Shingles: Hermen Romero, HSR Construction (225) 273-1004
, installs the shingles. He explains the nailing patterns and spacing of the shingles. He adds metal flashing under the shingles in the valleys to make sure the water flow will not enter the attic.
Bricks: Wilbert Harris, Jr., (225) 205-3120
, is the brick mason on this project. His crew mixes mortar onsite and will install the 6,000 bricks required for this house in about 6 hours. KTB orders all the bricks and has them delivered when the shingles are installed and Mr. Harris puts the bricks on the house quick as a flash.
Siding: Buddy Deville of J&J Vinyl Siding
explains the siding and trim chosen for this project and shows us how it is installed. One person installs trim around the windows while the rest of the crew cuts and crimps the siding panels to install along the side and back of the home.
Cabinets: Scott Babin of Cory's Custom Cabinets
comes in to measure the kitchen and bathrooms for cabinets. KTB Properties has chosen raised panel cypress cabinets for this house.
EPISODE 15: Rough-Ins
Decking: Russell Terrance of Terrance Construction (225-445-6399, www.TerranceConstruction.com)
has finished framing the house (in 4 days) and his crew is completing the decking and feltpapering of the roof. Russell and Kevin get into the roof once more and talk about how the rafters and joists are braced and the box ceilings in the family room and master bedroom are put together. The roof is now awaiting shingles and the ceilings are awaiting sheetrock. These things will happen as soon as all the rough-ins are completed and insulation is put into the walls and attic.
Door/window rough-ins: Before sheetrock or siding can be installed, all windows and doors must be put in. Kevin explains how the windows are installed with utmost care to prevent water intrusion and seepage. The doors are put in, but not totally finished (which is why it's called a "rough-in"). Since there will be plenty of traffic coming through the doors with other installations, it makes sense to leave the last steps of door installation until the interior of the house is finished.
Electrical/HVAC: Colin Porta of Porta Electric is handling the installation of all the electrical systems. Since this is a small home, it is getting standard wiring (no high-end audio/video equipment on this project). Porta runs the wires from the breaker box to all the receptacles("homeruns"). He explains how and why some appliances get their own wires. Then Porta Heating/Air installs the HVAC (heating/ventilation/air conditioning) system. Again, this is a smaller home, so it needs a smaller compressor unit, but it will be very efficient. Porta explains the location of the filter, thermostat and vents. We get to see the crew in action, putting together the air-handler and installing the ducts. Heavy duty tape is used to seal any air leaks to prevent wasting energy. He also tells us that yearly inspections are recommended for all HVAC units to check for leaks and/or blockages to maximize energy efficiency.
Plumbing top-out: Bill Savoy of Savoy's Plumbing Service (225) 675-5655 begins the process of roughing in the plumbing. Before we get to the installation, a factory rep shows us Pex piping that is replacing most of the copper pipes used in residential plumbing.
Next episode: completion plumbing, drywall, siding
EPISODE 14: Framing
Framing: Russell Terrance of Terrance Construction (225-445-6399, www.TerranceConstruction.com)
is part of the reason this residential project is moving so quickly. After raising and bracing the walls using the "balloon framing" method (assembling the entire frame with top and bottom plate, then raising), Terrance's crew attaches the walls to the frame with cutting nails. After everything is solid, the guys add the roof, showing why bracing the peaks and valleys is so important. The code for this process is changing with the new year, so make sure to contact your local permit office for changes that apply to your project. Joists, rafters and the roof are braced, then decked in with plywood sheeting, then covered in felt paper awaiting shingles.
EPISODE 13: Model Home - Concrete & Lumber
Concrete: Allan Sanchez of Delta Concrete Products Co., Inc., (225-665-6103, x212)
shows us how his front-loading trucks pour concrete. He explains how quickly concrete hardens in hot weather and why Louisiana's humidity is actually a good thing for concrete. KTB uses 3000 psi commercial grade concrete for all its residential slabs. The concrete hardens in just a few hours and the entire form, including the carport area, is complete. The concrete must cure for 72 hours before the carpenters can come in and wreck the form.
Lumber: Blane Purpera of Purpera & Sons Lumber in Gonzales (225-644-6538)
comes in with the entire order of lumber for this project. He shows us that most of the lumber is Southern Yellow Pine with some Northern Spruce used for studs. KTB moves so quickly on its construction, it is wise to have the whole order come at once. A do-it-yourselfer may prefer to have sections of the project delivered in stages, as the process may take longer - especially with the wild weather we're having. Blane also tells us that when dealing with treated lumber (used around windows and door frames) galvanized hardware must be used to offset the corrosive properties of the treated wood. Purpera & Sons also supplies KTB's hurricane hardware - anchor bolts, clips and strapping. For questions about hurricane hardware for your project, call Blane at (225) 644-6538 or stop by the warehouse on Airline Hwy in Gonzales (just south of K-Mart).
Framing: Russell Terrance of Terrance Construction (225-445-6399, www.TerranceConstruction.com)
is part of the reason this residential project is moving so quickly. His crew of carpenters actually finish framing and roofing this house in less than a week. Russell shows us how his crew wrecks the form (tears down the boards used to support the concrete while it was poured) and recycles the wood into door and window headers. He tells us that our project (1558 sqft) will require about 21,000 nails with 3,000 used solely on supporting joists. This project is also good practice for his crew to get used to having to stand walls up onto anchor bolts set 18 inches apart (instead of 4 feet apart). One exterior wall is over 48 feet long and must fit onto 32 anchor bolts that have shifted slightly due to the pouring of the concrete. It's quite a job but his team does fine. The walls are up in about an hour. Then they are braced and the crew climbs up to install joists and rafters.
EPISODE 12: Model Home - Foundation
Marking property lines and servitudes -
KTB marks all property lines with stakes and then measures out the footprint of the house, marking the lines of the house with string. These measurements all come from the houseplan (see here)
Jerry Jennings of 2 J's Construction (225-802-1773) comes in to check that the housepad is level. He uses a transit (pictured) to measure levels on all corners. When they are all level, Jennings' crew installs batterboards, firmly nailing them together to hold the shape of the foundation.
- Bill Savoy of Savoy's Plumbing Service (225-675-5655) installs all piping that goes under the foundation. This includes main water and sewer lines. Savoy's uses some copper tubing for main water lines coming into the house. He protects these lines with plastic sleeves since concrete can do seriouse oxidation damage to copper. He uses high-grade PVC piping for sewer lines and makes sure they slope downward to the city sewer connection at 1/8 inch per foot. Bill demonstrates how a purple primer is used to connect PVC joints.
- Joey Haydel of Cotton's Pest Control (225-644-8633) comes out to spray the entire foundation and its perimeter for termite prevention. He explains common infestation problems in Ascension Parish and what homeowners need to do to protect their property.
- The City of Gonzales inspects at this point. They check for leaks in the plumbing lines and make sure all foundation preparation steps are followed (including termite treatment). For more info in the city of Gonzales: www.GonzalesLa.com. For more info in the parish: www.AscensionParish.net.
- Kerwyn Simms of Simms & Sons (225-288-2998) comes in with a crew to dig the footings and prep the foundation for concrete. The Simms crew digs 12 inches into the natural ground using an excavator and manual tools. The housepad is divided into sections according to the rooms marked on the houseplan. These are all covered by Visqueen plastic sheeting and wire specially made for supporting concrete. More thick wire is used in the corners for support.
EPISODE 11: Model Home: Planning/Permits
, location, location. Where to build? How much land do I need? What concerns will one lot have over another? Kevin chooses a lot in the latest filing of Lexington Estates, on Lexington Drive off Worthey. It is lot 32 and measures 70 x 122.
. Lot 32 is zoned R7, which means it must have 7.5' servitudes on all sides. Our model home's smallest servitude is 8.3'. The front yard is 30', back yard is 42.4', and the left servitude (with driveway) is 21'.
. The cost of materials and labor has skyrocketed. Three years ago, this house could have been built for less than $90/sqft. Right now, the best that we can get is $109/sqft. The sale price on this home must be at least $138,000 for a contractor to even bother building it. Kevin is fortunate that his company has the financial resources to keep this project a model home until completion of the development.
What to build? Kevin chooses a plan with 1558 total area, with 1258 living area. It includes vaulted ceilings in the family room and master bedroom. It has 3 bed, 2 full bath, a foyer, dining area and an open carport.
Though the permit will only require 2006 building codes, Kevin is building this home to the new 2007 standards (120 mph wind requirements in the city of Gonzales). We'll see more of what the requirements will be in upcoming episodes.
The plans are made, the permits are in hand. It's time to get the lot ready for construction. Kevin's crew comes out with a bulldozer and scrapes 4 inches of vegetation, roots and dirt off the lot. The vegetation is left to decompose into compost mulch for future landscaping.
What's next? In the next episode, KTB will make a house pad and concrete foundation.
EPISODE 10: HAZARD PROTECTIONS
When I had questions about my homeowner's insurance, I called my agent Don Plaisance of ANPAC Louisiana [(225) 292-1958] for a personal insurance review. While my regular homeowner's policy is not changing, here are some of the things we learned from our interview:
Damage from rising water is not
covered by homeowner's. You must have National Flood Insurance. If you already have it, check your coverage. Is it enough in case you actually flood? To get an excellent policy on my home ($250k structure, $100k contents) it was only $316/year. Remember, if you have the minimum coverage, you may get next to nothing if you flood.
My house is considered FIRM rate "Shaded X" (the old Flood Zone B). To check your flood rate status on the updated Ascension Parish maps, click here: www.AscensionParish.net.
If I decide to move or build a new house, I must make sure I never let my insurance policy lapse. Even if I rent for a while during construction, a renter's policy will ensure that I will not be considered a "new" customer and have to go through the state insurance pool instead of my regular company. If you do decide to move, your homeowner's coverages may change - ask your agent.
Any questions? Call your insurance agent. Or heck, call mine: Don Plaisance, ANPAC Louisiana (225) 292-1958.
My family was fortunate in our lack of damage during last year's storm season. Our biggest concern was actually our inconvience and discomfort caused by lack of electricity. Some of our neighbors had portable generators and were able to run a few items but no one had air conditioning. That was awful, especially with a toddler at home. Now, there is a generator available for home use that runs on natural gas or propane instead of gasoline. It powers your whole house, including your air conditioner, and it comes on automatically as soon as your power goes out. It even maintenances itself during the year to make sure it is always ready for an emergency. Summit Electric Supply Service Center Leader W. Damain Kerek recommends a 12 kilowatt machine for a 2,000 sqft home. They run in the $3900 range. For more information, call Damain at Summit Electric Supply in Gonzales at (225) 644-5637. These machines are available for new and existing homes, contractors and private homeowners. www.Summit.com
EPISODE 9: GRANITE
Evan Gonzales of Ascension Granite & Marble shows us how a big chunk of rock from Africa becomes a beautiful countertop. We see how granite is quarried in South Africa and shipped to the States for fabrication. Evan picks a nice piece to turn into a luxe cutting board. He cuts the slab with a diamond blade rail saw then puts the piece into a computer-automated machine for shaping and edging. For more info, stop by Ascension Granite & Marble on Hwy 44 (about 1 mile north of Airline) or call him at 644-2231.
You can see available colors from his distributor, G&L Marble of Atlanta here: www.GLMarble.com
EPISODE 8: COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE
Daneen Dudley and Tiffany Wheat Dyason explain some of the ins and outs of moving a business to a new location. They moved their party facility, Jump-N-Jive
, to a new location on Old Jefferson Hwy and experienced a few real estate lessons getting into their new construction building. Their best advice is to work with the State Fire Marshal
from the very start because there are new codes for new construction. Also, if you are just starting out, try negotiating a lease/purchase with the company developing the commercial property you're interested in. It could help your business whether it does very well or not.
Michele Crawford talks about how she and her partner, Kathie Sharon, found a great location in Prairieville to start their own business, Salon Venus. After working in a Baton Rouge salon, Michele decided to go out on her own but found that rent in BR was a bit high. She and Kathy found an operating salon in Oak Grove Plaza whose owner was ready to move out of state. The two were able to take over the lease, move right in and get to work right away. She explains how commercial leasing usually involves extra "maintenance fees" if the landlord is responsible for upkeep of the property.
What we learned:
Commercial leases may be a better option than purchasing property for a new business, in case the business does poorly or even if it is very successful and needs to move to larger accomodations at a later time. At the end of a lease, you can choose to stay or go. If you buy
a piece of commercial property and find that you cannot afford to stay in business after a while, what will you do to cover your note until it sells? What if it takes 6 months to sell your property? Can you personally cover it or will you have to file bankruptcy instead of just closing your doors at the end of a lease? Something to think about...
Ask a realtor you can trust to represent YOUR interests when looking for commercial property. You may be able to get a better deal. A realtor can also explain lease terms and obligations to you. We spoke to Randy Anderson, a realtor with Rick Gautreau & Associates real estate in Gozales. More info: www.RickGRealty.com
Commercial leases do not work the same way as residential leases. Landlords are usually NOT RESPONSIBLE for any upkeep or maintenance unless you pay extra for it ("maintenance fees"). The only thing the landlord is providing is commercial space. If a lightbulb, air conditioner or something major goes on the fritz, it is usually the lessee's problem to get it fixed!
EPISODE 7: STORM PROTECTION/INSURANCE
Ron Moreau stops by to tell us about the DEMCO StrikeSafe program
. It offers surge protection for the entire home, whether it comes through the electric box, cable or phone lines. While it can't act as a forcefield for direct lightning strikes, StrikeSafe gives Entergy and DEMCO customers extra protection from damage caused by electrical surge. For more information, call Ron Moreau at (225) 261-1221 x230 or go to www.StrikeSafe.com.
Marian Johnson-Miles gives us the nitty gritty on the new FEMA flood insurance rate maps for Ascension. Big changes are happening in the parish and in this case, the early bird gets a heck of a lower rate on flood insurance. You can view the new map at www.AscensionParish.net
or at your local library. If you have technical proof that there is a mistake on your property, the appeals deadline is July 14, 2006. Need more information? Go to the Parish's website
or call Marian at (225) 621-5700. She'll tell you like it is. Remember, insurance companies must go by the OLD maps, so if the new maps will put you in a flood zone, get insurance at the lower rate NOW, before the new map is adopted and you have to pay the higher rate. Good luck!
EPISODE 6: NEW TRENDS FOR THE HOME
Gorman Brothers Appliances in Prairieville carries all the new home appliances with all the bells and whistles. If you're planning a dream kitchen, you've got to stop by the showroom and test drive the new cooktops. Gas or electric, classic or eclectic - they've got what you need. (225) 755-0741.
Mark Temple and Deb Preston at All About Wood Imports have the "in" items in home furnishings. What's in? Classic dark stains and all-wood construction. You've probably seen some of their huge armoire selection when driving down Airline Highway. They're just south of Bayou Manchac and have antique reproductions you can afford. (225) 677-9981.
Silvia Martin has the cutest home decor in her shop, Maison Jolie. All the LSU and specialty items you want and she can tell you new ways to incorporate them into your home. She also carries handmade jewelry and Lampe Berger. Located in the big shopping center on Airline between Winn Dixie and All Star Ford. Maison Jolie: (225) 677-9365.
EPISODE 5: LANDSCAPING IDEAS
Shane Beard, owner of Nature's Creations Landscaping Service, (985) 974-9408, gives us tips on home landscaping - mulching, watering, lawn care - all the good stuff. If you need help designing a new landscape or if you could use a hand taking care of what you've got, give him a call. He's licensed, insured and very knowledgeable on Louisiana landscape.
Desiree Dorest gives us great information on the community projects with the LSU AgCenter Ascension. Coming up is a vegetable garden competition (in all age ranges), youth camps and, of course, the Louisiana Master Gardener program for serious gardeners. Want more info? www.LSUAgCenter.com
or call Desiree at (225) 621-5799.
If you've spent good money on landscaping, you definitely want to be able to enjoy it year-round instead of being chased into the house as soon as the sun goes down. Ron O'Neal, Capital City Mosquito Systems, tells us about the MistAway system. It sprays a mist that kills all biting insects but is water-based and safe around landscaping, people and pets. For more information, go to www.MistAway.com
or call Ron at (225) 751-1216.
EPISODE 4: PARADE OF HOMES
The good folks at the CRBA tell us about their organization and the Parade of Homes event. Roy Domangue, CRBA President, talks about the educational and outreach functions of the builder's association.
Tricia Guitreau, Parade Chairperson, gives us information about the event.
Parade Info: FREE Admission, 24 homes in Ascension
Dates: April 29-30, May 5-6 Saturdays 11-5pm, Sundays 1-5pm
Beth Alford, Re/Max Realtor, gives us a tour of the EATEL SmartHome. Located in The Settlement at Lakeside, this home will be open for the Parade and features lots of the bells and whistles new homeowners are coming to expect.
Jamey Ruiz of Complete Wiring and Security shows us how his company wired the SmartHome with FiberEdge and home automation features.
EPISODE 3: HIGH TECH HOMES
EATEL's New Business Development Coordinator, Johnnie Balfantz, shows us what it means to have a FiberEdge Certified Home. It's more than just switching from the old-style of cable. Want to be FiberEdge Certified? www.FiberEdgeCertified.com.
EPISODE 2: HISTORIC RESTORATION
Gary Sutton gives us a tour of White Hall Plantation, a restoration in progress. White Hall is the last plantation home on the Atchafalaya River and was almost demolished in 1975. Gary and his partner, Marc Becker are working to restore White Hall to her original beauty and want to open the grand old house as a public museum. For more information about the project: www.WhiteHallPlantationHouse.com
Stevie Graugnard, a realtor with Rick Gautreau and Associates Realty
who is trained in historic real estate, shows us several historic properties in Ascension Parish. Several are for sale and awaiting restoration while others are in move-in condition. Interested in historic property? Call Stevie - she's got the listings and can explain all the tax credits and benefits of buying historic property in Louisiana. (225) 717-0550.
PILOT EPISODE: NEW CONSTRUCTION
Rick Gautreau shows us Lexington Estates in Gonzales. Need more information? Call Rick Gautreau and Associates at (225) 644-5468 or go to www.RickGRealty.com
Kevin Boudreaux of KTB Properties shows us how to build history into a new home with salvaged wood, stone and cast iron. Find out how to get an antique feel without the "old house headaches."
Dr. Claudette Reichel takes us on a tour of Louisiana House, an education and resource center currently under construction on the LSU campus. We talk about hurricane resistant features that will help a house withstand winds up to 130 mph! For more information on Louisiana House, go to www.LouisianaHouse.org