What is a Tenant Improvement?

Nucave Construction Inc. provides construction management services for a variety of projects which include tenant improvements. Tenant Improvement projects occur in the event of commercial real estate agencies working with a building owner to lease an entire space. Tenants typically require alterations to be made to a rental space as a part of a lease agreement to configure the space for the particular needs. This includes but is not limited to walls, floors, ceilings, additional restrooms, furniture plan, lighting, among others. 

 

Preliminary Space Plan

The preliminary space plan details the considerations to be taken into account from the property owner and the tenants perspective when negotiating a lease involving tenant improvement. 

 

  • Per square foot allowance determines what tenants may be given for improvements and how that relates to rental space

 

  • Materials, repainting walls, doors, architectural, and permits are examples of items to be included in the tenant improvement allowance

 

  • Completion on usability of rental space coincide with rental payments by tenant 

Design and Planning Estimates

Nucave Construction Inc. can provide a preliminary cost estimate based upon your specifications. Fully accurate cost estimates are available upon submission to the city or state and everything has been itemized and final plan and specifications are approved. Allowance for unclear and contingent areas should be made.  

 

Negotiation

The proposed preliminary plan becomes the basis for the construction planning and management of the project, therefore finalizing:

– Demolition plan  

– Power and ceiling plan 

– Mechanical plan 

– A licensed team familiar with building codes and regulations to ensure requirements for design and permitting

 

Finalizations  

Included in the leasing agreement, the building owner agrees to pay for some construction expenses and the tenant pays for special equipment or furniture. Interior finish materials are included in the drawing sets but not required for permit set, but  furniture is shown for reference. Now in the final review the interior designer is to assist with fine details, however we work with tenants to create their ideal space and add any personal details. Then a final walk through is completed to ensure the list of contacted items (punch list) is completed in order to receive final payment from the owner.  Once the project is complete a certificate of occupancy is obtained showing the work has been inspected and approved by authorities. Now your space is business ready. 

Hidden Fasteners or Traditional Fasteners? What is the better option?

Building a deck can be a marvelous project to embark upon, however, there is a downside to having a deck. All of those visible nails and screws. Although they may be flush with the deck boards, they can be an unsightly thing to view when your vision includes a clean finish space. Traditional deck screws/nails also can be prone to corrosion. So now what? What is the better option and how does one decide? Hidden fasteners or traditional? Hidden. Traditional. Hidden. Traditional. HIDDEN. TRADITIONAL. HIDDEN.

Hidden Fasteners Defined

Hidden fasteners are clips that adhere to the joists underneath the top deck board, and then clip into the deck boards. Thus hiding all screws/nails. Many brands of composite decking often have clip kits that are available for purchase with the material.

Why are hidden fasteners the better option?

Besides the obvious being that the fasteners provide a smooth surface, over time decking can expand and warp. Composite decking is particularly sensitive to temperature changes, so the fasteners allow for the expansion. Also since they are hidden, water penetration is minimized due to the zero perforation of the surface from any screws/nails. Decking installed with the traditional fasteners do not allow for expansion of any kind, which can cause boards to split and also allow water to seep in where the screw/nail penetration exists.

Brand Options

Now it just comes down to brands. There are a myriad of options on the market, but here are some, just to name a few.

  1. Camo
    • uses the Camo Marksman tool to install the screws at an angle
    • versatile use for many decking types (i.e. composite, PVC, solid wood)
    • limited lifetime warranty
    • stainless steel or protech finish
  2. Eb-Ty
    • oval shaped biscuit type fastener
    • made from polypropylene plastic
    • distend to fit slotted edges of boards
  3. Tiger Claw
    • the pneumatic tool from Tiger Claw helps ease the installation process. the tool holds the clips in place while driving a screw to secure decking.
    • variety of stainless steel clips that fit in between deck boards:
      • TC-G
        • works with grooved & non-grooved boards, using the TC-150 slot cutter
        • works with Trex Select, Evergrain, Choice Deck, Fiberon Horizons, Protect, Paramount, Wolf PVC, Island, Moistureshield, Tuf-Dek, Veranda Armorgaurd
      • TC-1
        • made from carbon steel
        • has teeth that can be driven into softwood board sides
      • TC-2
        • same model as TC-1, but made with stainless steel
      • TC-3
        • designed to create a 3/16″ gap for nongrooved composite and mahogany decking
      • TC-4
        • same design features as TC-3, but creates a 1/8” gap and is specifically designed to work with ¾” and 5/4” x 4” hardwood planks
      • TC-120
        • has sharp prongs
        • compatible with ¾” x 4” or 6” hardwood deck board
  4. ConceaLoc
    • manufactured by Timbertech
    • brown stainless steel clip
    • allows for a 1/8” to 3/16” deck board gap
    • comes with stainless steel screws
    • can be purchased in a 175, 900, or 1750 count container
    • can also purchase compatible drill/router bits
    • comes with a 25 year warranty
  5. Trex Hideaway
    • 1/4″ self-spacing clips
    • comes with 1-5/8″ screws
    • designed to fit between Tree grooved composite decking boards
    • 1 box covers 50sqft / 1 bucket covers 500sqft
    • there are start clips available for purchase from Trex, which can be used along the house wall and front edge of the deck
    • made from glass filled nylon and available in black
    • also designed to work the Trex Steel Framed System

There are so many hidden fastener brands out there that are available for purchase, to name them all in one sitting would take a century and a half, but it’s just a matter of finding the one that works for you and the system you have chosen.

Complexity

When it comes to terms of complexity of installation, hidden fasteners can be a tad bit more tedious to install versus traditional methods. With hidden fasteners the screw is either driven in at angle into the decking board, or it is driven into the joist itself and then the board is slid into the groove, thus locking it in place. Whereas with traditional methods, the screw or nail is just driven directly into the board itself and it goes through it into the joist below.

In Summary

Hidden fasteners are the better option compared to traditional fastener systems. They provide a cleaner appearance to the finish boards, do not corrode from the elements, zero allowance for water penetration, allow for expansion of the boards, and will not allow the boards to split from expansion. The installation process is a bit more tedious than traditional methods, and may require different tools for proper installation. In the end it all comes down to which method is preferred, and which method has the proper allotted time.

Garage Conversion

The garage. One of the main epicenters of the house, besides the kitchen. You have seen the thousands of blog posts and Pinterest posts on garages that have been converted into beautiful living spaces or art/music studios. But what exactly does it take to execute a renovation such as this? And what does one do exactly with the beautiful newfound space? Well, lets break it on down.

Requirements

When it comes to converting a garage, requirements can vary state to state or city to city. There’s also seemingly a million different things that will either allow or hinder the project to take place. Let’s break it down to make things easy.

  1. Permits
    • obtaining a permit is step number one in the process of any construction project that will be adding on something to your home.
    • obtaining a permit ensures that the building project follows code/building regulations which will prevent lawsuits in the event that you decide to rent out the space.
    • can cost anywhere from $1k-$1.5k; can cost more if a variance application is needed.
    • with a permit, an inspection of the final project will be required.
    • a building permit can be obtained from your local governing office.
  2. Parking
    • some cities or HOA zones may require a certain amount of space for covered parking, due to street parking either being limited or prohibited.
      • this could prevent the idea for a garage conversion.
      • therefore it is a good idea to check with your local agency prior to permit application/construction.
  3. State of the Garage
    • how is the garage state? is it in need of major repairs? does the roof leak? is there mold or pest damage? these are key factors that fall into the category of requirements, in order for the space to be legal.
  4. Plumbing, Electrical, Heating/Cooling, Etc.
    • this is pretty self explanatory, but if the space will be lived in then basic living features are required.
    • these can also determine if a conversion is possible however. for example, when it comes to the plumbing, only a certain amount of fixtures can be placed on a 3″ or 4″ sewer line. venting is also required. so is venting the new fixtures a possible endeavor? is water able to be ran to the new living space?
    • insulation of the space can affect the cost as well, whether it is heating/cooling insulation or soundproofing insulation
    • factors such as these can affect the outcome of the project terms or possibility.
  5. Safety Dance
    • nope, not the 1980’s hit song. just the basic safety requirements that must be done for the space to be legal if it is going to be lived in or rented out.
    • again, this is also pretty self explanatory, but the basic safety features being door locks, window locks, smoke detectors, etc.

Money, Money, Money

Now let’s talk overall cost. Cost is something that once again varies state to state or city to city, as design fees and permits and title 24 calculations can all vary in cost. But when converting a garage there a multiple factors that can affect the cost. One example of this being the company that one has chosen to general the project. Cost can differ from general contractor to general contractor, therefore it’s a good rule of thumb to shop around and get multiple quotes to compare. Also sub-contractor, if you choose to find companies to sub out the work on your own instead of going with a general contractor, prices can also vary by company. The average overall cost of such a remodel is anywhere between $6k-$19k, according to HomeAdvisor. However the cost be up to $25k if any electrical or plumbing will be required.

One way to stay on budget with such a project however, is to do your best to stay within the existing building envelope. What does that mean? If possible, keep whatever is existing there. Knocking down wall after wall can drive the project cost way up. Also, when it comes to finish materials, shop around. Lots of appliances and furniture pieces can be found on websites such as Craigslist, OfferUp, Facebook Marketplace, etc. Also, for a lot of other finish materials, checking with your local Habitat For Humanity is a good place to look as well.

Another good way to stay on budget is to do some of the finish work yourself. Installing some of the finish material on your own can save lots of money when it comes down to it, but if it is going to take much much longer doing the finish on your own, it’s best to let the professional do it. Time is money.

Endless Possibilities and Benefits

When it comes to converting a garage, the possibilities are absolutely endless. Here are some examples of what the newfound space could be utilized for:

  • playroom
  • studio apartment/in-law suite
  • bedroom
  • art/music studio
  • office
  • family room

The list can go on an on, as can the benefits. Here are some examples the benefits of a converted garage space:

  • added value to your home if space is done by code
    • the value can decrease however if the space requires covered parking or limits parking, done illegally or without permits, eliminates necessary storage
  • if converted into a living space, it can be rented out either as an AirBnb or a small apartment (which could help with yearly/monthly income)
  • if converted into an art/music studio, it can give the quiet (or really loud) artist the space to create peacefully without interruptions or distractions (even a music or art studio can be rented out as well, as studio time)

In Summary

In conclusion, when done right and according to code, a converted garage can be a great addition to a home and its occupants. Cost can be high, but can easily be covered for if the space is planned on being rented out. Cost can also be kept low by doing some of the work yourself or shopping around for contractors. Just be sure to check with your local governing agency first, to ensure that converting a garage is legal in your area.

DIY Deck? No problem! Or is it…?

You’ve seen the shows, you’ve watched the YouTube videos, your significant other has showed you multiple Pinterest posts…now all that’s left to do it build your dream deck. Right? Well, after getting multiple quotes you decide you want to DIY it, but you haven’t the slightest idea of where to even start. Well look no further! For you have found the blog post that is going to save you A LOT of the headache of the research, and break down the entire process of building a deck.

Budget, Design, Budget

First and foremost is always budget. Your budget determines the key points of your design, as elaborate as your design may be, sticking to budget is key (unless of course you don’t mind going over budget a little). Syncing your design ideas with your budget is super helpful and is a good way to keep yourself on track.

Do I need a permit?

The answer is yes. Laws require that a permit must be obtained, if the deck you plan to build is 30″ or higher off of the ground. More information on how to obtain a building permit can be found on your local governing agency’s website.

Now that I have a permit, what next?

If you haven’t found a supplier for your deck material just yet, that would be the next step in your plan. The supplier you choose depends on what material you are going with for railing and the deck itself (i.e. composite or wood decking, cable or wood railing, Envision or Trex) the options are absolutely endless. Once you have a supplier figured out the next step is to move on to the building process and get the show on the road.

Time To Build

To properly install a deck, one must begin with the joists and beams, in order to give the deck a proper structure. Joists are the repeated structural members that are used to build a deck frame, and the beams are the main load bearing element of the structure. When it comes to spacing them apart, spacing depends on the size of the beam. But a good rule is to not have them more than 16″ on center for composite decking and 12″ on center for wood decking, in order to properly distribute the weight without compromising the structure. Stretching a string across joint composite boards can help with proper spacing, as composite boards aren’t as flexible as their wood counterparts. A good step by step is shown below for marking out your joists:

  1. Lay out your first joist position (whether it be straight or on an angle)
  2. Use a sharpie or pencil to mark where the joists will be
  3. Toe nail your joist to the rim joist
  4. Use a circular saw (or even a sawzall if you’re truly skilled) and hammer/chisel to create a notch for where the joist will be
  5. Be sure to install the joists crown side up
  6. Use a pneumatic palm nailer to attach the joist/beam hardware, in order to insure maximum structure security

Once the base is done, you can begin laying the finish boards on top, and then the moment the finish boards are in place the railings can be set in place as well.

The process of building a DIY deck in itself is an arduous process, but through careful research and endless YouTube tutorial videos is can be done. If you end up wanting to hire a professional, that’s 100% okay! Not all plumbers can be electricians and not all homeowners can be contractors. Just be sure to do careful research on various contractors, and also be sure to find one that is licensed bonded and insured.

Wood Railing, Composite Wood Railing, Cable Railing…SO MANY OPTIONS!

Wood railing, composite wood railing, cable railing….SO MANY OPTIONS. If you find yourself feeling even more overwhelmed now than you were before when it came to deciding whether to choose envision, AZEK, or trex decking, never fear! For another informative blog post is here!

When it comes to fine tuning your dream deck vision even more, the options that arise from the shadows when it comes down to the fine details (i.e. the subject of today’s post, railing), may cause even more of a stress headache. There is wood railing, composite wood railing, AND cable railing. So let’s break it on down to make life much much easier for you.

Wood Railing

Wood railing is just like it sounds, its just basic wood railing. Just like having a basic wood deck the railing itself has to be kept up as well to avoid splinters and fading and whatnot. Wood railing is also prone to damage from pests, just as it’s cousin (wood decking) is. Aside from the general upkeep, the aesthetic can be pleasing to the eye if a cabin in the woods aesthetic is the look one is going for. The general cost for wood railing is generally lower also, depending on the type of wood it is that one is purchasing as well as if the installation/execution will be diy or professionally installed by a contractor.

Composite Wood Railing

Composite deck railing is railing that is made from the same material as your composite deck. Just like the composite wood decking, composite wood railing is low maintenance and is resistant to pests and splintering. If a modern yet rustic aesthetic is the look one is going for, composite wood railing in the way to go. The cost is a bit pricier than its basic wood counterpart, again depending on the type and if installation is diy or installed professionally by a general contractor.

Cable Railing

When it comes cable railing, there are a couple options to consider. Wood cable railing and composite wood cable railing (depicted above). Cable railing in general gives a much more modern look to your outdoor space, is made from galvanized steel which is rust resistant, and can also give a more panoramic view of the scenery whereas with wood railing (composite or real wood) can obstruct the view because of the slats. Cable railing has a much more clean look to it and requires minimal maintenance, depending on the option one decides to go with. If a rustic mixed with modern aesthetic is the style of choice, the basic wood cable railing is the way to go. Though the wood will require the same maintenance as complete wood railing or decking (i.e. sanding, staining, etc.) so the wood portion of the railing does not splinter or completely fade/rot. Composite wood cable railing however gives a complete modern look for any outdoor space, and the wood will last for a very long time and not splinter or fade. The cost overall is much higher, due to the wood choice, cable, and installation (which is recommended to be done by a license professional), but the cable railing system will last much longer and saves money in the long run.

So what’s the best?

To answer such a question with one particular answer wouldn’t do the subject justice. It all depends on budget, time allocated for maintenance, and the space/style you have. Whether you choose wood, composite wood, or cable railing to help make your vision a reality, there are no wrong choices when it comes to the terms of YOUR dream deck.

Envision, AZEK, and Trex Decking // What to choose? What to choose…

Previously on….. “What decking should I choose?! How do I know what’s right for me?!”, we discussed the differences between wood decking and composite wood decking, and the pros/cons of each. However when continuing the planning of your dream deck, the research can lead to many more different options/brands, and upon this discovery, it may lead one to begin to feeling overwhelmed. With options such as Envision, AZEK, and Trex decking, it can be hard to narrow down upon a decision. Today we will be taking a look at each of these options and dissecting what each has to offer.

Envision Decking

One of the most important things to consider when considering envision composite decking, is whether your project is residential or commercial. This type of decking is a good option for backyard deck, patios, porches and residential boat docks. TAMKO has been a primary manufacturer of building materials since 1944, and began manufacturing envision composite decking in 1999 and all of their products are compression molded. The TAMKO envision line features four main products:

  1. EverGrain Decking
    • economical solution for composite decking
    • available in five colors (Cape Cod Grey, Cedar, Redwood, Weathered Wood, and Forest Green)
    • features realistic wood grain textures
  2. Envision Expression
    • mid-grade composite
    • available in four colors (Canyon Ridge, Caribou Brown, Harbor Grey, and Woodland Bark)
    • outer layer and core board are bonded for more durability
  3. Envision Inspiration
    • mid-grade composite
    • uses two inks to create a natural wood grain look
    • available in three colors (Barnwood Plank, Tangled Twine, and Weathered Wicker)
  4. Envision Distinction
    • luxury grade composite
    • four different ink colors are used to create a look that is very similar to natural wood
    • available in four colors (Spiced Teak, Shaded Auburn, Rustic Walnut, and Greywood)

AZEK Decking

AZEK decking captures the aesthetic of real wood, but lasts longer, stays cooler in the hotter months, and retains its color. All without the maintenance of real wood. Now apart of the TimberTech family, AZEK also features three major collections:

  1. Vintage Collection
    • sophisticated, natural-looking colors
    • wire-brushed, low-gloss finish for authentic wood look
    • available in six colors (Cypress, Dark Hickory, Mahogany, Vintage Coastline, English Walnut, and Weathered Teak)
  2. Arbor Collection
    • warm wood tones, vibrant colors
    • cathedral or straight wood grain patterns
    • resemble rich wood tones found in nature
    • available in seven colors (Brazilian Walnut, Morado, Island Oak, Autumn Chestnut, Hazelwood, Mountain Redwood, and Silver Oak)
  3. Harvest Collection
    • traditional cathedral wood grain patterns
    • soft, solid color patterns
    • available in three colors (Brownstone, Kona, and Slate Gray)

Trex Decking

Trex Decking is an eco-friendly, high quality choice when it comes to composite decking and will last for decades. Natural wood grain tones blend with the low maintenance design to create a pest, rot, and stain-resistant material. Made out of a wood fiber polymer composite material that is 95% recycled materials, fasteners go in between the deck boards, keeping the walking surface smooth/unblemished (which is ideal for children and pets). Trex decking features three major collections:

  1. Transcend Composite Decking
    • luxury colors create and ageless look
    • hassle free design
    • fade, stain, mold, and scratch resistant
    • multiple color options ( Havana Gold, Island Mist, Lava Rock, Spiced Rum, Tiki Torch, Gravel Path, Fire Pit, Rope Swing, Tree House and Vintage Lantern)
  2. Trex Select
    • high performance
      • stands up to harsh weather conditions
      • resists stains and mold better than traditional composites
    • backed by Trex’s 25-year limited residential fade and stain warranty
    • available in five colors (Madeira, Pebble Grey, Saddle, Winchester Grey, and Woodland Brown)
  3. Trex Enhance
    • consists of two collections within itself:
      • Trex Enhance Basics & Trex Enhance Naturals
    • compatible with all trex railing
    • Trex Enhance Basics is available in three colors
      • Beach Dune
      • Clam Shell
      • Saddle
    • Trex Enhance Naturals is available in five colors
      • Coastal Bluff
      • Foggy Wharf
      • Rocky Harbor
      • Sunset Cove
      • Toasted Sand

As outdoors spaces become more and more popular, especially in San Diego County, California (specifically north San Diego, Oceanside, Vista, and Encinitas), and with the summer months coming up, having a broken down list such as this one often may help alleviate some of the headache and stress that comes with planning your dream deck.

Wood Decking vs Composite Decking. Which one is best?

When it comes to planning your dream deck, it can be hard to choose what material to use. Two of the most common types of decking used are wood and wood-plastic composites. Whether you hire someone to do it or you end up doing it on your own, there are important factors to consider when comparing both wood and wood-plastic composite decking. In this post, pros and cons for both types will be discussed.

Wood Decking

When it comes to wood decking, there are various options. Cedar, redwood, pressure treated pine, etc., are all very common options that are used for decking and railing. There are also more “exotic” options that are out there as well, such as, tiger wood, ipe, and mahogany.

One of the many pros that come with choosing to use wood, is that it is more affordable and readily available. It can also be easily found at any lumber yard. However, even though it may be more affordable and save you in cost initially, it does end up costing more money in the long run. Wood easily fades over the years and in that time it can also splinter, which poses as a danger to children, pets, and bare feet. It also is very high maintenance. Wood decking easily absorbs water if not properly sealed regularly. The wood will also fade over time, so staining it regularly also becomes part of the maintenance. Insects (primarily termites) can also affect the aesthetic, requiring more maintenance for the upkeep of the wood. On average 16-32hrs are spent painting, sealing, cleaning, and doing overall maintenance per year.

Composite Decking

When it comes to composite decking, the maintenance is much lower, only ever requiring sweeping or a good pressure wash. Whereas wood decking requires more money and time over the course of the years, composite decking has an average of 2-4 hours spent on maintenance a year. Composite-wood decking was invented in the late 1980’s, and is made of wood fibers encased in plastic. While early generations of the wood-composite looked more artificial and plastic-like, modern wood-composites resemble more of a authentic appearance and have a more randomized embossed grain. Composite decking is also available at home improvement stores (i.e. Lowe’s, Home Depot). Though this material is more expensive than the wood decking it saves lots of money in the long run.

Insects cannot damage the boards at all, no need for staining/sealing since water cannot be absorbed into the slats, and it cannot splinter, thus making the material far more durable than wood. Composite-wood decking can also be easily bent for any curved sections that you have envisioned for your deck. The only con to this type of decking is the heat consumption, studies show that at temperatures of 109 and above, bare feet can blister. However due to new technology, such as CoolDeck from MoistureShield, heat absorption is reduced up to 35%; making it more bearable on those hot summer days.

In conclusion, it comes down to the budget and the time one is willing to spend on maintaining the aesthetic/structure of the deck. To better help make a final decision on what will be the best choice for your dream deck, it is recommended to compare the wood decking you like best to the composite that is your favorite. This makes it much simpler to compare the two together without becoming overwhelmed.

2020 ADU Laws Are In Effect!

The new California ADU (Accessory Dwelling Units) laws are in effect!!

1. No minimum lot sizes for ADU’s
2. No restrictions on the size of ADU’s
3. Expediting approval time for ADU’s
4. Garage conversions made easy
5. No additional utility fees
6. No owner-occupancy requirement

This is a HUGE break for homeowners looking to increase the rental income of their existing home.

Please share with your online friends they may be VERY INTERESTED in this!

We can take you from start to finish, let’s do it!
CALL NOW to take advantage of this opportunity before your neighbor does!!

760-913-9097
Nucave Construction Inc.

Enlarge your living space with a custom wall opening

This interior space opened up a ton when we created this custom wall opening with countertop and LED lighting.

Rafter and Beam Cut Ends

One great way to give your pergola a unique look is customize the cut ends of the beams or rafters. There is a wide variety of options to choose from here are a few.

 

There is a wide variety of cut end designs for beams and rafters

Types of cut end styles

Choices of corbel styles for rafters and beams

Standard options of corbel cut ends.