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How to Expand Your Living Space With a Great Outdoor Space

Outdoor spaces are one of life’s simple pleasures. Whether you are grilling, playing or just relaxing, an outdoor space elevates the comforts of your home. Outdoor rooms are also a great way to add usable square footage to your home. From a small patio to a deck or a screened-in porch, there are many ways to incorporate the outdoors into your home. Here are some tips on how to create your outdoor oasis. Plan It Out Your first step is to determine the best location for your outdoor space (if you don’t have any existing location ready-made). Here are two ways to help you do so: Standing inside your house, check the views looking out to identify an area that will feel like a natural extension of your home. Next, head outside and examine the area you identified from the inside. Are there any obstacles that need to be considered? You’ll want to make sure... Read More

Designing an Entryway for Modern Living… and Minnesota Weather

Entryways and mudrooms are important spaces that provide both function and beauty in a home. This is especially true in states like Minnesota, where our entry needs change as often as the weather does. From sunshine and rain to cold and snow, these high-traffic areas become home to outerwear, backpacks, shoes, sports gear and more. So it is no surprise these hardworking spaces have become popular areas for updating and remodeling. Here are a few tips to create and maximize an entryway in your home. Pick the Right Space Whether you are looking to improve your existing entryway or create a new mudroom, you want a space that is easy to access. Here are five key features to consider: Seating Walls Storage Flooring Accessories If your home does not have a lot of space for an entryway, look for existing spaces to repurpose, such as a stair landing, hall closet, front porch or the corner... Read More

From Baby to Teen: Designing a Kid’s Room That Grows With Them

Designing a kid’s room is a fun part of decorating your home. But while buttercream walls with jungle animals is adorable for your newborn, they may not fit your kindergartener. And they definitely won’t transition to your pre-teen, who would prefer hot pink walls or racing stripes in their room. Luckily, designers have taken note of this and are now designing kids’ rooms that can transition as personal tastes change.    Design a Space for Family to Gather Kid spaces are also family spaces. These rooms become a gathering place for sleep, play and quality time together. With this in mind, think about designing your kid’s room as a place all of you can enjoy together for a long time. Pick colors that make you happy and that are relaxing. Choose furniture and accessories that allow you to easily be in the space. Create a room that feels good. Choose a Simple Palette Choosing a... Read More

HGTV: Things You Can Learn & Things They Don’t Tell You

We admit it: we love HGTV. As contractors, we are natural lovers of homes. We love everything about them, and we especially love to dream about all the potential things we can do to make a house one that you will love. So it should come as no surprise that a few members of our team love to indulge in HGTV favorites such as Love It or List It (and critique Hillary’s ideas), laugh at the adventures of Christina and Tarek on Flip or Flop, or simply admire the beauty of the homes Nicole restores on Rehab Addict. And while you can learn a thing or two about how to complete a home remodeling project from these shows, there are also things they don’t tell you. Here’s what you need to know. Learn the Basics Many of HGTV’s homeowners remark how they can’t visualize all the elements together when talking through ideas with the show... Read More

Remodeling for Resale: What to Do and What to Skip

Home-selling season is officially in full swing! But most sellers feel that getting their homes ready to sell is a daunting process—especially if there are remodeling projects that must happen before selling. It can be especially hard to know which projects will attract the best offers and which are best left to the new homeowner. We put together this mini-guide to help you decide which projects to do and which ones to skip. Before You Get Started… As with any home project, do your homework. It is important to understand what you are working with and what your options are before you can decide which home remodel projects to embark on before selling your home. Get to know your local market. You should research your local market like a homebuyer. Look at other comparable and sold listings in your neighborhood and surrounding areas to get a sense of what homebuyers in your area are looking... Read More

“What if we took down this wall…?” What You Need to Know

Spring is (almost) here. Fresh air and bright, open spaces are a welcome change after the long winter. And that one wall between the kitchen and dining room is the only thing keeping your home from having the feel you want. But before you grab the sledgehammer, take a few minutes to make sure you know what to expect when taking down a wall in your home. Do Your Homework Taking down a wall can be simple or complex depending on the wall (loadbearing or not) and what it houses (electrical, heating, plumbing, etc.). All of these things are movable or can be addressed, but doing so will impact your budget and timeline. Bring in a contractor, builder or structural engineer to help you assess your wall and what you will need to take it down. This preliminary step may require you to remove a section of the wall to get a closer look. Develop... Read More

10 Ways to Prepare for Your Kitchen Remodel

You have decided it’s time to remodel your kitchen. You have a Pinterest page of ideas, a stack of color swatches and a collection of home remodeling magazines that would make any HGTV lover envious. You have done a great job getting inspired, but now it’s time to get started. Follow this handy checklist to help you prepare for your kitchen renovation. Get your measurements. This includes your appliances, counter heights and shelving heights in addition to the square footage of your kitchen and the current layout of cabinets. These measurements provide you with a solid starting point for designing your next space and knowing where to increase or decrease space. Map out your dream kitchen. Sketch out your dream kitchen to scale. Then put it in a drawer for a couple of weeks. Pull it out and see if your sketch works with how you use your kitchen or solves issues you are experiencing—modify... Read More

Excel Builders Wins 2 Awards for Excellence

Here at Excel Builders, we don’t like to brag, but… We recently won two awards for exceptional service to our customers! We invite you to read more about the awards and to view our profiles to see for yourself how we earned them. Best of Houzz – Service If you’re considering a home remodel, you might already be familiar with the Internet’s leading building and interior design website, Houzz.com. The website showcases the work of more than 600 thousand professionals, including design and build firms like us, as well as interior designers, architects, remodelers and many others. Each year, the Houzz community selects certain professionals in the categories of Customer Service and Design. We are pleased to announce that Excel Builders has been selected! We are winners of a Best of Houzz award in 2015—the third year in a row that we’ve won this award. Our selection to the Best of Houzz is just one... Read More

A Recent Kitchen Remodel: Easy on the Eyes in Eden Prairie

One of the most challenging aspects of kitchen design is creating a space that remains easy on the eyes, even in the middle of daily use of a busy family. The key is making sure that there is a place for everything and every activity. At Excel Builders, one of our latest kitchen remodels is a great example. The kitchen in Eden Prairie uses custom storage solutions to create a relaxing and functional workspace. How We Hid Clutter and Saved Space The custom cabinetry really sets this kitchen apart. We worked with the team at Artisan to build one-of-a-kind cabinets that took advantage of every inch of space. This angled cabinet gives the homeowner extra storage options while maintaining an open feel. We also built lower cabinets with pullout drawers so that the homeowners could store even the things they use most at the bottom and back. Everything they need is easy to get to,... Read More

From Dream to Reality: Your Vision, Your Remodel

In a perfect world, the perfect image of your home would translate itself into a concrete plan for your builder to follow. In the real world, it often takes careful work from an experienced designer, plus excellent communication between construction and design staff to make your vision come to life. That image of your dream kitchen, bathroom, addition or basement that you keep in your mind will never be realized without a team of professionals with the skill, patience and dedication to see it through. At Excel Builders, we know how to help our clients turn their ideas into beautiful spaces they can enjoy every day. We take pride in helping our clients turn vision into reality. Our Process and Teamwork Are Vital As a design-build company, we handle projects from the earliest infancy to successful completion—we are able to work with clients at any stage of the process. You may know exactly what you... Read More

Excel Builders, At the Center of the Venn Diagram of Home Remodelers

How do you know which team of experts to choose to bring your home remodeling dreams to life? We believe you need to find a team you can rely on to bring you superior results in all aspects of a remodeling project, from design, build and installation, and superb customer service. Unfortunately, not all home remodelers deliver on these fundamentals. Thankfully, we at Excel Builders do: Our Chaska-based team continues to grow and learn, thanks to our dedication to excellence at every step of the remodeling process. To learn more about our southwest metro team, we encourage you to call us at 952-361-8664 or to email our expert design-build team. Note: We’d like to thank Jody Brown for inspiring this post. She made some fantastically funny Venn Diagrams in a post on Houzz. If you haven’t seen it already, we encourage you to check it out.

10 Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Remodeling Contractor

It’s December, which means Christmas and New Years are right around the corner. We know many homeowners who choose to invest in a kitchen renovation or bathroom remodel as a gift to themselves at this time of year. Others set resolutions to complete those projects they’ve been putting off for some time, such as basement finishing. We want to help you get your project started off right—we want to help you find the best home remodeler for the job. Here are the top 10 questions we believe you should ask before hiring a remodeling contractor to work in your home: Are you properly licensed by the state of Minnesota? If the answer is “no,” walk away immediately. You do not want to get involved with someone who refuses to follow basic industry standards. Are you a member of the National Association of the Remodeling Industry? This membership matters, as remodeling contractors who join this agree... Read More
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Memberships and Affiliations

BBB Rating AAngies ListExcel Builders on HouzzBest of Houzz 2014NARI Member