Hawaii Renovation September 23, 2012

Page 1




Hua Xia Construction co-founder Andy Cao and his family have found the perfect recipe for their company’s success with a combination of high-quality products and excellent customer service. See page 3 Photo by LEAH FRIEL


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2 SEPTEMBER 23 • 2012


Come out on top with the right countertop SERVING ALL YOUR ELECTRICAL NEEDS

he kitchen is one of the most popular rooms in the home, and the countertop sets the tone for the space. Serving as the kitchen’s focal point, the countertop is often a gathering place for homeowners and their guests. When choosing a countertop material, don’t go simply with what’s popular. After all, what’s best for some might not be for others. Instead, consider your lifestyle as well as the material’s maintenance and cost. Here’s a rundown of some of the most popular countertop materials:


Granite A favorite of many, this natural stone appeals to those who appreciate that no two slabs are identical. It’s available in a variety of colors and finishes, and is known for its durability.

Hawaii Renovation is a weekly advertising supplement published by the Honolulu Star-Advertiser. SALES MANAGER DARWIN ROGERS

Closeup of texture, pattern of pink granite rock

Maintenance: Seal annually. Cost Per Square Foot*: $40-100

Quartz People who want a more uniform look are drawn to this man-made material. It’s incredibly durable and available in both neutral and bold colors. Maintenance: Sealing isn’t necessary because it’s non-porous. Cost Per Square Foot*: $45-90 Concrete Homeowners with a flair for custom design

love that this material is typically poured on site. The concrete can be dyed a variety of colors and inlaid with shells, glass or other materials. Maintenance: Seal annually and wax four to six times per year. Cost Per Square Foot*: $80-120


630-6741 or 285-3663

New Construction ■ Remodels ■ Maintenance ■ Trouble Calls

for a Free Consultation

Lic# BC-29228


E. huaxia.hawaii@gmail.com W. www.huaxiaconstructor.com

CALL: 537-5349 FAX: 843-2729


Marble Bakers appreciate the cool, natural-stone surface for rolling and kneading dough. But keep in mind that marble is prone to staining and chipping. Maintenance: Seal annually and avoid direct expo-

Specializing in design, local fabrication and installation of custom metal and glass products Aluminum • Bronze 385 • Stainless Steel • Brass • Glass • Steel Commercial • Residential • Pool • Rails • Gates Metal & Glass Sun Shades • Trellis • Awnings & Screens

Over 45 Years of Experience

JAYCO HAWAII, INC. (808) 676-7000 www.jaycohawaii.com *Call for Appointment

Custom Cabinetry Cabinet Refacing Countertops


ESTIMATES Call 848-8151

681 S. King Street (808) 529-4599 www.hccu.info Federally insured by NCUA.

KITCHEN & BATH REMODELING INC. www.kbremodeling.com | 2333-C Alahao Pl.

2 • SEPTEMBER 23, 2012

*Estimates gathered from MSNBC and include installation costs.

Laminate Achieve the look of other materials at a fraction of the cost. Laminate usually consists of plywood or particleboard covered with a thin sheet of plastic resin. Maintenance: No sealing is necessary, but use hot pads and avoid cutting food directly on the surface. Cost Per Square Foot*: $10-30

Phone: 529-4740 drogers@staradvertiser.com Send your comments and story ideas to hawaiirenovation@staradvertiser.com

sure to acidic foods, such as lemons. Cost Per Square Foot*: $40-100

Lic. # C-24313

Home Loans are provided through CU Network Services LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Hawaii Central Federal Credit Union (HCFCU). NMLS# 412820; NMLS# 375459



Contact: info@jaycohawaii.com • Fax: 808-671-8347




A construction company you can trust PHOTOS COURTESY OF

Hua Xia Construction BY KYLE GALDEIRA hether it’s constructing a brand-new home or implementing an addition to an existing structure, Hua Xia Construction is poised to handle the job. The family business is equipped to assist customers with everything from additions of full rooms or levels to kitchen and bathroom renovations, which represent some of the popular requests in recent months. By adding on to an existing structure or enhancing high-traffic areas such as the kitchen, homeowners can increase the value of their property while also supplementing their level of comfor t. In today’s tough economy, it may not be feasible to build a new home from scratch, but Hua Xia will work within customers’ budgets to find the best home improvement solution. Xiang Feng Cao got his start in the construction industry while working as a carpenter in China. He eventually opened his own business and workshop there before deciding to move to Hawaii in 2000. The skilled craftsman worked for various local companies until deciding to build his own construction team. Cao, with the help of his son, Andy, formed Hua Xia Construction in August 2008. The company draws inspiration from historic construction projects in China and Japan that have withstood the tests of time and remain solid structures today. Hua Xia aims to help its customers build or remodel their homes in similar fashion, and brings a desirable combination of style and durability to each job. The duo, along with a team of experienced workers, has been assisting local home and business owners with their building and remodeling needs ever since. As Andy explained, Hua Xia receives a great deal of business via positive referrals and by prospective customers noticing other finished projects. “Most clients will see a house we’ve built or remodeled in the past as an example of our workmanship,” said Andy. “We feel confident working as a family to make our clients happy.”





Hua Xia Construction co-founder Andy Cao and his family have found the perfect recipe for their company’s success with a combination of high-quality products and excellent customer service. See page 3 Photo by LEAH FRIEL


on the cover

HUA XIA CONSTRUCTION contact // 636-1888 web // www.HuaXiaConstructor.com

Hua Xia will handle the design and permitting process all the way through completion of the project, building quality structures from the ground up — or in some cases, from the inside out. The company also takes pride in its smooth finishing techniques, especially on various flooring applications, where experience and professional quality are vital. From minor renovations to multimillion

dollar projects from scratch, Hua Xia is ready to handle the task. Cao and his staff stress customer service every step of the way. Hua Xia provides homeowners with detailed models to aid in the visualization process, and will work to incorporate materials that are both cost-effective and of the highest quality. “We provide customers with a 3-D lay-

out of their project so they can visualize what their home will look like,” Andy said. “Customers appreciate the quality of work that we provide and a reasonable estimate beforehand that is usually met upon the completion of the job.” For more information, call Hua Xia Construction at 636-1888, or visit the website www.HuaXiaConstructor.com. SEPTEMBER 23, 2012 • 3

4 SEPTEMBER 23 • 2012


Seal in your dream look with Power Grout for ceramic tiles BY KYLE GALDEIRA

hile the grouting process is often overlooked as a minor formality, failure to properly seal ceramic tile, and the faults stemming from using inferior grout, can lead to a tremendous waste of time and expense down the road. According to American Carpet One installation manager Larry Marvel, ceramic/porcelain/natural stone tile grout makes up approximately five percent of a construction job, but fallbacks down the line stemming from its application account for roughly 95 percent of problems related to the project. Power Grout, a ceramic tile grout created by TEC, is touted by Marvel as a surefire solution to all grouting needs, and American Carpet One proudly offers the product in multiple sizes and colors to its customers. “Power Grout is the ultimate performance grout,” said Marvel. “It’s made from a breakthrough formulation that provides the benefits of urethane and epoxy, but without the drawbacks. It provides a fast, trouble-free installation with permanent, stain- and crack-resistant properties and


AMERICAN CARPET ONE contact // 447-2752 web // www.AmericanCarpetOne.com

perfect color consistency, whether installed by a novice or experienced pro. And it’s backed by a limited lifetime warranty.” The ease of installation and immense benefits make Power Grout a perfect solution for any job, whether residential or commercial, interior or exterior and on walls or floors. The product has drawn rave reviews for its color consistency, ability to fend off pesky mold and mildew and durability over time amidst heat and moist climates. “We think it’s perfect for Hawaii and our customers, and I wish they had it when my own shower was installed,” Marvel said. “It isn’t like having to install a urethane or epoxy grout; it’s very easy to apply.” Another time-saving characteristic of Power Grout is the product’s one-time application that is perfect for grouting a new project or re-grouting an existing area

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of a residential or commercial space. In contrast to competing products, Power Grout does not need to be sealed and resealed, and it is able to handle traffic in four hours and shower use in 24 hours. “It’s a single formula, and all you do is add water, mix and go,” Marvel said. “It’s an amazing product. If you combine the cost of traditional grouts with sealers and the time and waiting involved in the extra application steps, there’s no cost comparison, and Power Grout saves you money in the end.”

Power Grout is part of American Carpet One’s new TEC Installation System. This is a full tile installation system that addresses all needs from crack isolation to moisture membranes and finishes with Power Grout. As American Carpet One celebrates its 38th Anniversary as a locally owned and operated full-service home floor and design center, the company benefits from its involvement with the Carpet One cooperative, which is the seventh largest cooperative in the world and includes roughly 950 other locally owned and operated stores across the U.S., Canada, New Zealand, Australia and Guam. According to American Carpet One, collectively last year, the cooperative generated more than $3.8 billion in floor covering purchases and the resulting savings were passed on to the customers.



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Powerful performance made easy! The next time you install ceramic tile in your home with the new POWER GROUTTM you’ll never have to worry about staining, fading, cracking, mold or meldew on your grout lines. It's easy to install, fast setting and can be used for both floors and walls. POWER GROUTTM can also be used for both indoor and outdoor installations. One formula does it all! And you’ll never have to seal it! Plus, POWER GROUTTM is very color consistant, so now you can get all the advantages of epoxy and urethane grout without all the drawbacks. Come in this week and get ceramic tile on SALE! Ask about ceramic tile installation services by the ceramic tile installers at e il T American Carpet One. Come in ic Ceram s as low a tomorrow or call 447-2752 for * a FREE home measure.


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SEPTEMBER 23, 2012 • 5

6 SEPTEMBER 23 • 2012


Delivering a quality paint job with attention to detail

DEEP PURPLE PAINTING contact // 739-2000

BY KYLE GALDEIRA or Jimmy Suh, owner of Deep Purple Painting, quality is the top priority when it comes to assisting his customers with a wide range of painting projects. “I’ve been painting for 25 years, and my main goal is to produce a quality job. That’s the most important thing,” he said. Suh moved to Hawaii in early 2010 to be closer to family and friends, and brought his successful painting business with him to the Islands.The contractor spent nearly 20 years in San Francisco cultivating a sterling reputation for producing quality results. Whether the job involves painting a home’s exterior or a few walls of a commercial space, Deep Purple can cover it. At the onset of each job, Suh confers with the owner to determine the necessary steps involved in refinishing the desired surfaces. The painter considers many factors, including the relationships between colors and how they complement one another, and presents the owner with viable options. Other aspects he considers include the texture of certain surfaces and what variety of paint will coat them in a way that both protects and beautifies the home for years to come. “He’s great; I love him. He’s a really good worker,” said Jeannie Nakada, one of Suh’s loyal customers who has utilized Deep Purple Painting for jobs at her multiple homes. “Jimmy is honest, and he makes his customers happy with the result. He did a wonderful job at a reasonable price.” Suh has cultivated a host of positive referrals from satisfied


6 • SEPTEMBER 23, 2012

>> After >> Before

customers. When meeting with him, customers are encouraged to view the completed jobs in person in order to fully understand the company’s quality workmanship. After the look and feel of the project is determined, the client is presented with a written estimate of both the cost of the job as well as a timeline detailing the work to be performed. “The word-of-mouth referrals that I receive come from the extensive preparation and excellent results from numerous jobs, both residential and commercial,” said Suh. The owner has honed his craft for more than 25 years and can quickly diagnose problems with paint jobs that have resulted in unsightly chipping and peeling. Suh explained that tedious tasks, such as filling in any cracks or imperfections with quality patching materials, go a long way in ensuring a paint job’s effectiveness. He stresses quality and an honest approach to customer service throughout each project in which he’s involved. “A painter needs to follow the proper procedures,” Suh

said. “That’s why there are so many problems here in Hawaii with painting projects. You need to sand and prime the area, and prepare it properly. It’s worth the price for a premium paint job that’s done right the first time — saving time and money in the long run.” Before


FREE ESTIMATES Quality Work, Competitive Prices

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SEPTEMBER 23 • 2012 7

Homeowners getting ready for ‘Big Show’ BY KAREN NAKAMURA

he Building Industry Association of Hawaii (BIA-Hawaii) is very committed to our mission to “Enhance the Quality of Life for the People of Hawaii.” Our members are dedicated professionals representing developers, general contractors, specialty contractors, suppliers and associates. The 19th annual BIA Home Building & Remodeling Show, also known as the “Big Show,” will be held Jan. 25-27 at Neal Blaisdell Exhibition Hall. This January showcase of building industry experts and companies will offer consumers thousands of new products, services, building trends and remodeling techniques. It is also a very unique opportunity to ask questions, gather information and establish connections with the owners and


senior managers of Hawaii’s top contractors and suppliers. The “Big Show” will offer homeowners free consultations and special event seminars to provide additional resources for remodeling and new-home construction projects. Conveniently located under one roof, consumers will also discover the latest technological advances in building materials, appliances, construction innovations as well as architectural and interior design. The deadline for exhibitor entrants for Hawaii’s premier building industry event is Nov. 9, and all interested exhibitors may call Clarice Wantanabe at 629-7503 or email ckw@biahawaii.org for additional information. Karen Nakamura is executive vice president/CEO of the Building Industry Association of Hawaii.


SOLAR EVENTS Learn from RevoluSun design experts as they share the processes that have made them Hawaii’s leading photovoltaic contractor. Design, installation, and financing options will all be covered by RevoluSun experts.





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8 SEPTEMBER 23 • 2012


Ensuring your roof is solar-ready O


contact // 591-1900 address // 575 Cooke St. web // www.leakmaster.com

ne of the biggest questions homeowners face when putting in new solar panels is: Who is responsible if my roof leaks under my solar panels? Generally, solar companies will offer a short warranty of a few years against leaks after installation. That makes sense because they did not install the original roof under your panels. The problem becomes acute when you realize that most solar panels have a 25 year warranty. Will your roof last that long? Until now, roofers and solar contractors oftentimes pointed fingers at each other’s work if there was a hard-to-fix leak under the panels. LeakMaster Roofing announces its new Solar/Roof Integration Service in which the company will work with your solar contractor and guarantee that the roof itself will not leak for up to 20 years, depending on your type of roofing system. Even better, its new GacoRoof Silicone system offers a 50 year material warranty from the manufacturer. Now you have a single source of responsibility for leak warranties.


How does the company do it? First, it meets with your solar contractor to inspect the roof and coordinate installation. Second, during the solar installation, it works with the contractor to keep you dry. Finally, after the solar company has finished, LeakMaster comes by to do its final touch-ups to make sure your roof is beautiful and leak-free. Even if your existing roof is in fairly good condition, there are still ways to preserve it before it is covered with panels. Don’t forget that once the panels are fastened to the roof deck for 25-plus years, your access to the roof itself becomes problematic. It is much less expensive to repair or replace your roof before installing solar. Here are solutions that fit any budget:

• Simply repair your existing roof. This is especially true if you have an asphalt-shingle roof. Oftentimes these roofs have a lot of life left in them and don’t have to be replaced. LeakMaster can inspect and repair these roofs before the solar installation and


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then return after to waterproof the new penetrations in the roof deck. Depending on shingle conditions, LeakMaster warrants against leaks from its leak repairs for up to seven years.

• Put a protective waterproof coating underneath the panels. If it’s a flat roof, you should

at least waterproof the areas directly under the panels while there is easy access. Later on, when your budget allows, you can extend your protective coating to the rest of the flat roof. That is the beauty of roof coatings as opposed to old-fashioned asphalt roofing — you can do limited areas now and then tie them all together later.

• If your old roof is too far gone, install a new

system with a long warranty — up to 20 years. If you have a sloped roof, LeakMaster

installs all major systems including shake, shingle, tile, metal and asphalt. After the solar contractors are finished, LeakMaster will come back and waterproof your roof penetrations at no extra charge.


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8 • SEPTEMBER 23, 2012

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Is now the time to improve your home? I

n late January 2012, the National Association of Home Builders Remodeling Market Index hit its highest level in five years. David Crowe, chief economist of the association, stated, “For many consumers, fixing up their house now fits their sentiments — and their finances — far better than selling or buying. I have found the consensus among remodelers is homeowners feel they won’t be moving anytime soon. Clients are opting instead to do something they themselves will enjoy or benefit from.” Recent studies also show that installing replacement windows like Anlin have a 120 percent return on investment. Remember, your home is an appreciating asset, one that grows in value over time, unlike purchasing a car or computer that depreciates over time. So now is the time to invest in your home, not only for financial reasons, but to improve its security, function and beauty as well. Windows Hawaii can provide you with a free assessment of your home’s window, door and siding needs. The company offers topquality brands backed by 26 years of experience and an A-plus rating from the Better Business Bureau. Windows Hawaii can help you with products that will make

SEPTEMBER 23 • 2012 9

WINDOWS HAWAII contact // 671-0808 web // Windows-hawaii.com

your home more secure, upgrade its appearance, make it more comfortable to live in, reduce maintenance and save you money. Call 671-0808 to set up a free consultation and estimate. The company offers a variety of window and siding brands and warranties its products and installation for the lifetime of your home, a warranty that can be transferred should you ever sell your home.


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SEPTEMBER 23, 2012 • 9

10 SEPTEMBER 23 • 2012


Learn how to spice up the kitchen

f you’ve been thinking about the possibility of embarking on a kitchen remodel, now is the time to do so. Bella Pietra, Hawaii’s premier natural stone company, hosts a free Kitchen Remodeling 101 workshop to educate homeowners about everything they need to know to complete their kitchen project. From hiring the right contractor to a multitude of useful design tips, workshop attendees will gain the information they need to make smart decisions when upgrading the hub of their living space. “In every home, the kitchen is undoubtedly the most important room of the house. It’s where we gather to exchange our daily highs


Free Seminar Kitchen Remodeling 101 Saturday, Sept. 29 at 9 a.m. | Bella Pietra Reserve your spot at www.bellapietra.com

and lows, experiment with new recipes and help the kids with their homework,” said Layla Dedrick, Bella Pietra owner. “The most traffic flows in and out of the kitchen, so it's no surprise that it's crucial to select the right products when remodeling the heart of the home.” Dedrick and Ray Adams, owner of Elite Design Group LLC, will present an informative, interactive seminar that teaches attendees how to create a kitchen that satisfies the personal needs of all — from the gourmet chef to the busy parent — and how to select products that will enhance their everyday living. Homeowners will learn the following useful tips:

contact // 587-7779 address // 701 N. Nimitz Hwy. web // bellapietra.com

• Select the right contractor • Maximize your budget

• Choose the best products to suit your lifestyle and space

• Select upgrades that offer the most return on investment

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Seminars are free, but very popular. To ensure your seat, register at www.bellapi etra.com. Bella Pietra, which means “beautiful stone” in Italian, is Hawaii’s premier natural stone company offering the state’s best selection and quality of natural stone materials. Locally owned and operated since 2001, Bella Pietra specializes in natural products including marble, granite, slate, quartzite, travertine, limestone, glass tile and basalt lava stone from around the world. Bella Pietra offers old-world stone with contemporary elegance, and Hawaiiana for projects ranging from remodels and apartments to luxury island homes, department stores and hotels.

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Everything you need to know about upgrading the most important room in your home! Learn expert design tips including how to: • create a beautiful and functional design • hire the right contractor • select products that best suit your lifestyle

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SEPTEMBER 23 • 2012 11

Happy Pet, Happy Home Feng shui isn’t just for humans and their abodes, but animals, too! Keep the energy positive and free-flowing in your home by following this paw-fectly good advice

“Feng Shui – The Easy Way!” with

Join Alice today from 3 to 5:30 p.m., at Macy’s Ala Moana for a fun and insightful presentation, and go home with a feng shui instructional DVD. Register at www.aliceinspired.com or call 436-8234. Walk-ins welcome!

Alice Inoue

QUESTION OF THE WEEK: “Is there such a thing as ‘pet feng shui?’ I have a cat and a dog, and wonder if there is something I can do for them. Do you have any advice or insight?” es, I do! All living beings in a space are affected by the energies in the environment, including plants, which are affected first by unhealthy energy, followed by pets, then humans. Domestic animals protect you 24/7 on an energetic level. If your space has excessive energetic challenges, your pet’s health will suffer before yours, so it’s a great idea to support your pets with some good feng shui vibes! In the process, you will be supporting your plants and yourself.

best color for a bed. Pink represents love, but has been shown to make animals nervous. The best bed colors are calming earth tones, such as yellow or brown, or soothing colors, such as green or blue. Purple has a more royal and spiritual energy.


Pets are good feng shui Pets not only give you unconditional love, but their movement and sounds help to create “free-flowing” positive energy around the home. Most often, your pets will choose to be in the area where you are, enhancing the positive energy around you. Pets know energy Besides being at your side, have you noticed that your dog or cat has a few favorite spots in the house? Pets are living barometers of energy, and they are always drawn to the places with the best energy. Unlike humans who will pretty much set themselves down anywhere, animals will feel out the energy first, and circle and sniff before settling in their spot! Some areas of the home are inundated by electromagnetic fields generated by TVs, stereos and computers. These electromagnetic fields create what is commonly known as geopathic stress in the environment. Cats are often drawn to these areas to harmonize the electromagnetic field. Dogs, not having this capability, more often avoid such areas.

Remember, pets bring positive energy, and happy pets generate happy energy throughout the home. Make sure your pet is happy, and your feng shui will most definitely improve!

Basic pet feng shui points The following will maximize the feng shui for both you and your beloved pets.

easier for people to take advantage of you. For greater control, place extra pet toys in a dedicated basket when not in use.

• Keep your pet clean. The condition of our pets often reflects the state of affairs in other areas of our lives. So, if you are unrecognized in the workplace, check to see if your dog or cat’s coat is matted or dirty. A murky fish tank could reflect your muddled finances and a subconscious block to financial clarity.

• Put leashes in a cabinet, closet or basket. Leashes out in the open symbolize restrictions and lack of autonomy in your life.

• Give your pet his or her own “home.” Your pet needs a bed, mat, rug or other space to call its own. Your attentiveness to these considerations at home creates energy that enhances your ability to be recognized for your own unique skills and talents outside the home.

• Give your cat privacy. Put your cat’s litter box in as private a place as possible. A litter box in a public or open space in the home creates Go ahead and unclutter your life the energy that makes your private business everyone else’s busiome horizontal surfaces (e.g., the entryway, ness. dining room table, kitchen counters and

• Monitor where your pet sleeps. If you choose to let your pet sleep on the bed, know that it can put a damper on intimacy and energetically drive potential romance away.

Best colors for pets Colors radiate strong energies. Keep the effect of color in mind when purchasing beds, collars, food bowls and leashes. Red is invigorating and a great instant energy boost for an older dog, but it will increase the energy of a frisky or aggressive dog. Red, as a less than relaxing color, is not the

• Pare down the number of pet toys you have. Too many pet toys create unnecessary clutter and work, engendering the energy of being out of control, making it

• Keep your pets healthy. To others, your pet’s weight may reflect how you take care of yourself. Overweight pets can create energy that drives away romance.

Alice Inoue is a life guide at Alice Inoue Life Guidance LLC, a company committed to assisting people in living empowered lives. Alice shares her wisdom as a professional speaker and personal consultant, and offers a series of instructional DVDs on feng shui, as well as her award-winning books on feng shui, happiness and spiritual life wisdom. Visit www.aliceinspired.com to read her blog, sign up for her newsletters and download useful feng shui tips.


bedroom dresser) are meant to be clutter-free. To clear clutter efficiently, get a large bag, walk around the home and take no more than 10 minutes to fill it. Deal with the bag later and enjoy the effects now.

SEPTEMBER 23, 2012 • 11

12 SEPTEMBER 23 • 2012

Simple steps to care for granite, marble and other natural stone N

atural stone is one of the most sought-after upgrades in a home. Providing both versatility and timeless beauty, it’s no surprise that granite is the most popular natural stone option. Though very durable, the composition of stone can make it sensitive to damage through daily use. By understanding a few important dos and don’ts, you can easily keep your home’s natural stone looking as good as the day it was installed:

Tip 1: Don’t use all-purpose, ammonia or bleach cleaners Whether you have granite in your kitchen or travertine tile in your bathroom, there is a correct way to clean the natural stone in your home. Many homeowners are tempted to use all-purpose cleaners or bleach to keep stone surfaces clean, but these types of cleaners may actually damage your stone. Cleaning products that contain vinegar, lemon or other acidic ingredients can dull the surface, reducing the stone’s luster and eating away at the sealer. Ammonia-based cleaners should also be avoided as they can cause the stone’s surface layers to wear off over time.

Tip 2: Do use safe stone cleaners Do you want to know what cleaners are safe for granite and other natural stones? Smart homeowners only use specially formulated cleaners. For example, Zep Commercial’s CleanStone Plus Cleaner + Polish is pH balanced to safely clean stone, making it ideal for countertops and tiles. It quickly removes dust and fingerprints while leaving a polish that acts as an extra barrier against moisture penetration. The CleanStone Plus Cleaner + Degreaser is a good water-based option for dirty backsplashes or sink areas as well as high-traffic floor areas to remove scuffs and heel marks.

Tip 3: Do clean up spills immediately Because natural stone is porous, spills can be absorbed, even if the stone has been sealed. That’s why it’s important to clean up food and liquid as quickly as possible. Acidic spills such as orange juice, tomato sauce and sodas are examples of kitchen spills that should be cleaned up immediately. In the bathroom, shaving cream, body soap and perfume spills are concerning. These types of spills have a high-

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er potential for damage and cleaning them up quickly will help to prevent staining and etching.

Tip 4: Don’t use scouring pads for tough spills Always use a soft cloth or dishtowel to wipe surfaces. As tempting as it may be, avoid scouring pads or rough sponges, even if the spill has hardened. Rough materials are not safe for natural stone and can scratch or dull the surface, leaving it vulnerable. For tough spills or hardened food, spray a kitchen countertop cleaner first and let it soak for

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a few minutes. The cleaning agent will safely do the work for you and be much more effective than abrasive scrubbing. Tip 5: Do seal your stone surfaces Granite and other types of stone can be professionally sealed during the installation process, providing an extra-protective shield. But sealing is something that needs to happen regularly to sustain this barrier. Maintaining the sealant is easy by using a cleaner with sealant built-in, such as CleanStone Plus Cleaner + Protectant that rejuvenates stone and grout seals without leaving residue.

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ast week, I shared with you how we overcame some key challenges in restyling Primary Properties’ new office at Stadium Mall. To counter the large, white and box-like space, we incorporated Primary’s logo colors and added depth and personality with artwork and company messaging. We also designed a creative solution for “window treatments,” with a double-sided corkboard that showcases art on the inside and listings to passersby outside. The third and final challenge was to create a reception area that would greet clients and give them a warm, inviting first impression. To do that, I needed to incorporate two bedrock principles of decorating: layering and repetition. What I’m talking about is style, color and texture, and how you combine them. Most people understand style and color, but texture can be trickier to grasp. It’s anything your eyes or hands can rest on — from wood flooring, a brushed-nickel door handle or a ceramic candlestick, to a gorgeously patterned pillow or even subtly shimmering wallpaper. Texture can be material or visual. It’s how you mix textures that will make your room come alive. Layering different textures creates contrast and personality. Repeating them around the room will make it feel cohesive and put-together. Let’s take a look at how layering and repetition helped give Primary’s reception area a warm, eclectic, contemporary island feel. My anchor piece and first purchase was a clean-lined, chocolate-brown sofa. That gave the space a modern feel, but to create an eclectic vibe, I needed to layer in another style and texture. In came my animal-skin rug. Talk about edginess and pop! On top of that I layered two wood-and-mirror side tables that, put together, became a coffee table. How many textures have I layered


SEPTEMBER 23 • 2012 14

Home, Sweet Office By utilizing fundamental design principles such as layering and repetition, this office reception area got a much-needed homey-feel makeover


>> After

already? Now, to keep the space from getting chaotic, I needed to start repeating them. The console table I found picked up the same dark wood of the coffee table, and its clean lines and glass top enhanced the modern feel of the style-setting sofa. On the wall I layered in a new texture: a woven banana leaf wall hanging. That also introduced a touch of island flavor, which I repeated in the bamboo frame of the window treatment. I repeated the glass in the console table with my amber vases on the coffee table, as well as the amber glass vase in the floor lamp. Colors also need to be repeated. Notice the cream in the lampshade is picked up in the accent pillow, the creamy leather of the bench and the matting of the pictures on the corkboard. The color purple is repeated from the pony wall into the accent pillows on the sofa. To add even more interest, I introduced metallics. The silver in the candlesticks repeats in the lining of the artwork as well as the handle on the dish for business cards on the coffee table. As you can see, many elements have been layered and repeated. There are lots

Above, left The restyled reception area has a cohesive, eclectic look. Left The office space before its makeover. Above Organic-shaped art helps to hide this very visible light switch. CATHY LEE PHOTOS

>> Before

of different textures ranging from wood and metal to glass and upholstery. But repeating styles, colors and textures made this room feel not only eclectic and interesting, but pulled-together as well. This is something anyone can do on any budget. Assess your space. Determine what direction you want to go in with style and color. Once you’ve chosen your style (or styles) and color palette, see what you need to add more of or edit out to achieve these. And in all your choices, keep in mind your goals of layering and repeating textures. On a fun side note, here are some behind-the-scenes tricks I used: Almost centered on the wall behind the

sofa, very visibly, was a light switch. I was able to disguise it by finding organic-shaped wall art that went around the switch. Prominent in one corner was a fire extinguisher. It’s still accessible and ready to put out any potential blaze, but its visual impact is hidden now by the artificial plant. Mission accomplished: a restyled office that reflects its mission to sell homes in a professional environment that’s as close as possible to a warm, inviting home!

Cathy Lee is president and designer of Cathy Lee Style and Cathy’s Marketplace, a furniture and accessories showroom with design services at 1110 University Ave. in Moiliili. Lee’s interior design work has been featured in local and national publications, on HGTV and in her DIY design workshops. Visit www.cathyleestyle.com. SEPTEMBER 23, 2012 • 14


A multigenerational dwelling that harmonizes indoor-outdoor living This is the first of a three-part series.

hen the Palakiko ohana decided to return to their quaint family home in Kapahulu, it was too small and did not reflect their family’s current lifestyle and personal character. In 2008, they decided to demolish it and start fresh after their mother was referred to Graham Builders by a family friend. The Palakiko ohana has a design philosophy that believes the outer world is a mirror of an individual’s inner world. They also believe in building responsibly and caring for the environment. They wanted a home that represented each family member personally, while being respectful to their surroundings by harmonizing their new home within the context of the existing neighborhood. “We first met with Graham Builders to learn more about the design and build method,” said Donna-Marie Palakiko. “I always wanted to live in a custom home. This initial meeting allowed our family to understand what was required to achieve our dream home.”


“Since the project began, we have always called our new home ‘Lau Palakiko Hale.’ The family land is Lau property and through my mom’s marriage, we are Palakiko.” The family loves Hawaii plantation-style homes and the open-flow design that lead to other rooms reminiscent of “shotgunstyle” homes of the French Quarter in New Orleans. They collaborated with Graham Builders to incorporate these unique design elements throughout their new home. In addition, the Graham Builders design team ensured the mother could continue to live independently on the main level by including universal design elements such as placing outlets at a higher level, wider doorways and an accessible bathroom. The Palakiko ohana embraces indooroutdoor living, so Graham designed a covered dining lanai off the kitchen accessible through a 10-foot wide metal and glass overhead garage door. When open, the traditional boundary between the interior and exterior is completely blurred. With a wall of jalousies on the main floor and no hall-

ways on the second, natural light and ventilation are maximized, keeping the house cool throughout the day, thanks to Hawaii’s abundant trade winds. Meanwhile, the exterior is clad with HardiePanel cement board installed on a rain-screen system for added ventilation for the façade. “We have enjoyed working with Graham Builders’ from our initial concept meeting to the final walk-through,” Palakiko said. “They have been very attentive to our project and really got to know us as individuals and as a family to create a design that would allow us to live together comfortably.”

SEPTEMBER 23 • 2012 15

GRAHAM BUILDERS address // 1144 Young St. contact // 593-2808 web // www.grahambuilders.com

“This is not your average two-story home,” said Evan Fujimoto, Graham Builders president. “We designed a plan that allowed them to achieve the idea of incorporating indoor-outdoor living into a multigenerational home.” If you are interested in learning more, attend Graham Builders’ free upcoming “Building Your Home for Life” seminar Saturday, Sept. 29 from 9 to 11 a.m. at Honolulu Country Club. Seminars are free, but reservations are required. For a full schedule of 2012 seminars or to register, visit www.graham builders.com or call 593-2808.



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16 SEPTEMBER 23 • 2012


Workmanship from the heart BY SARAH PACHECO

n the past year CV Construction LLC has built a strong reputation among its clients as a trustworthy company that provides honest, reliable service for a great value. “We always try to give that extra and make sure the client is happy, and by happy, I mean to the extent that we’ve done our job right,” said project manager Victor Yeung, the “V” in CV Construction. Victor, whose background is in sales, met future business partner Chuan “Sam” He (the “C” in the company’s name) six years ago, shortly after returning home to Hawaii after some time spent living in California. Victor began by working part-time with Sam’s former construction business, eventually joining the company full-time in 2009. Sam, who has an extensive 15-year background in commercial and residential construction on Oahu, Maui and the Big Island, decided in early 2011 that he wanted a new partner


with whom to launch a new company that would better meet the requests and needs of his clients. He chose Victor as that person and within a few months, CV Construction was created. Since opening in March 2011, CV Construction has worked on more than 60 projects here on Oahu, including doctors’ offices, dental offices, financial institutions and restaurants. However, the majority of business revolves around residential projects, from kitchen and bathroom remodeling to home additions and other large-scale residential renovations. CV Construction doesn’t just build houses, according to Victor. “We get invested with our clients and develop a vested interest in their future, because we don’t just consider it a project — we’re dealing with people’s homes, we’re dealing with their livelihood, we’re dealing with what they live in. After we leave, they still have to deal with it day after day after day,” he explained.

CV CONSTRUCTION contact // 531-3888 • 428-5191

“We’re family-style, family-oriented, and we take care of our clients just like we’d like to be taken care of. Everybody we have in our company is family.” That extends to CV Construction’s employees, all of whom are either relatives or friends from Sam’s native village of Fujian, China. The company rarely, if ever, will rely on a subcontractor, which gives CV Construction control over the cost and timeline of the project, ultimately saving clients undue stress and money. For more information, call 531-3888 or stop by the showroom located at 1018 Smith St. Hours of operation are 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday and by appointment only Sunday.The company regularly posts before and after pictures of past projects on its Facebook page (search under CV Construction LLC), along with tips and links for DIY projects.You can also follow the company on Twitter (@cv8888) or visit www.cvconstructionhawaii.com.

Best Prices Guaranteed With Installation of the Same Equipment Over 30 Years Track Record • Free Estimates on Split Systems • We Sell, Service, Install & Repair A+ Rating We also sell Portable A/C’s, Split Systems, Window & Thru the Wall A/C’s, Flush Mount A/C’s Before you buy a split system, make sure you’re buying the highest energy savings available. The higher the EER the more you save.

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A clear view of the industry’s latest window innovations I

n 2010, President Obama established a new standard of energy efficiency for the fenestration industry, requiring that windows and doors achieve a Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (SHGC) of 0.30 to qualify for the government’s tax credit. The SHGC is a measure of thermal efficiency; the lower the number, the less heat transmittance through the glass. Numerous manufacturers complained it was too stringent. Discount Windows & Doors commended the move. As pioneers in the fenestration industry, Discount Windows & Doors selected Cardinal’s LoĒ³-366® glass (pronounced low E cubed-366) as the ultimate performance glass. This glass is able to achieve an SHGC of 0.16 — nearly half of the government’s requirement to achieve the tax credit. This product delivers the ideal balance of solar control and high visibility, and it provides the highest levels of year-round comfort and energy savings, making it the perfect glass no matter where you live.The secret: an unprecedented triple layer of silver. The silver coating on the inner side of the external pane, in conjunction with NEAT® self-cleaning glass, reflects more than 90 percent of heat away from the home. This is beyond ordinary low-E glass; LoĒ³-366 sets the new standard. For years, Cardinal has worked with top-tier window manufacturers by providing energy-efficient low-E glass. Now with three layers of year-round thermal protection, the benefits are exceptional. The result: a clear coating that blocks even more solar gain than ever before, reflects heat and lets the light stream in. The full-year benefits of Low E cubed-366 can be clearly seen. When the temperature soars in the summer, ordinary window glass just can’t beat the heat, and tinted glass spoils the view. It is formulated to reject solar heat while maintaining attractive visibility, so it keeps the heat out while letting light in. As a matter of fact, this product’s glass is our ultimate in performance and clarity among all of Cardinal’s clear-coated products. What’s more, this new product provides the ultimate in fading protection. It blocks 95 percent of the sun’s damaging ultraviolet rays — a leading cause of fading (visible light also contributes to fading) — so your furniture, carpets, curtains and wall coverings stay beautiful for years. During hot weather, the insulating effect of your windows has a direct impact on how your rooms feel. The better insulated the windows glass, the cooler your room will feel. If air conditioning is used within the home, there is an immediate and dramatic reduction in the cost of your bills from HECO by using Discount Windows & Doors thermally efficient windows. Discount Windows & Doors chose Cardinal Glass for all of its fenestration products; the insulating capability of LoĒ³-366 can’t be compared to any other glass product in North America. According to the Consumer Federation of America, the average American household spends $1,500 per year on energy costs. But energy-efficient windows can help save a bundle.


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SEPTEMBER 23 • 2012 17

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SEPTEMBER 23, 2012 • 17

18 SEPTEMBER 23 • 2012


Uncover a world of cabinetry for any kitchen, bath renovation

GOLDEN CABINETS & STONE contact // 836-8181 address // 1299 Kaumualii St. web // goldencabinetsstone.com


ince opening its doors in 2007, Golden Cabinets & Stone has gained a reputation for offering quality, affordable cabinetry and countertops to Hawaii’s consumers. Owner Wayne Cao noticed how expensive it had become to purchase cabinets in Hawaii and sought to bring more affordable options to residents looking to either build from scratch or remodel existing spaces. “When we transform a client’s outdated kitchen into a new, more functional kitchen, it is most satisfying seeing their face and hearing how much their whole family enjoys this new element in their home,” Cao said. Cao also noted that Golden Cabinets & Stone is fully stocked with inventory, and “plenty of choices” are available for everything from cabinetry and countertops to hardware, including handles for an attractive yet functional touch. Golden Cabinets & Stone now has a larger space at its new Kalihi-Palama location, where it offers a multitude of cabinetry in addition to 50 varieties of countertops, 30 choices of sinks and high-quality tile varieties — a per-


fect combination when renovating a bathroom or kitchen. Other cabinetry possibilities include modifying office areas, adding closets or sprucing up a garage or lanai with various storage elements. The company offers seven wood selections that are used in designing cabinetry.The cabinets are constructed from solid wood doors and plywood boxes, and provide customers with unsurpassed quality not available from competitors that offer particle or pressboard cabinetry.

Luxurious Cherry is a fine-grain wood that features a smooth texture and satiny feel.The option closely resembles coveted Koa wood’s appearance and is usually finished with a medium or dark stain to bring out the wood’s mahogany-red tones. Cherry is integral in defining the Shaker, Mission and country-style cabinets offered by the company. Other styles of Cherry wood include Royal Cherry — the company’s top-of-theline wood option — as well as Golden Cherry, Brown Cherry and Flat Alder.

Honey Maple is another popular choice among buyers looking for a hard wood that can provide the perfect combination of durability and beauty. White Oak helps brighten a room, as the wood’s white stain and lacquered finish last longer than paint. In addition to the wood choices available, Golden Cabinets & Stone also offers multiple elements of customization, including 30- and 40-inch wall cabinets as well as the option of including glass panels as an added artistic element. Special orders are welcomed, and if customers bring in the measurements for their desired cabinetry, Golden Cabinets & Stone can create a 3D computer rendering of what the finished product will look like. For granite countertops, the company has many choices such as Verde Butterfly, Imperial Gold, Emerald Green, Kashmir White, Yellow Rose and much more. For quartz countertops, Golden Cabinets & Stone carries five choice: white, black, coffee, green and blue. These are in-stock and reasonably priced. Whether you’re looking to finish a rental property or revamp your kitchen, the company’s competitive pricing saves you time and money, and gives you high-quality products.


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Ph: 836-8181 • Fax: 836-8166 www.goldencabinetsstone.com admin@goldencabinetsstone.com 18 • SEPTEMBER 23, 2012

CALL 596-2890 FOR A FREE ESTIMATE 825 Halekauwila St. Honolulu, HI 96813 www.energyprohawaii.com energyprohawaii@gmail.com Lic. #BC-20690 *Certain restrictions apply. Not combinable with any other offers or promotions.

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Easy updates for your bath H omeowners today constantly put off updating their bathrooms because they have no idea where to start. The inconvenience and the cost are fear factors for some homeowners, while others may only have one bathroom. These homeowners have no idea what to do because they need that bathroom daily. Tropical Wholesale can update your bathroom in one or two days with its new products manufactured by Liners Direct. With the company’s beautiful acrylic bath liners, replacement tubs and its quick and easy handicap-conversion shower kits, Tropical can save you money while updating your bathroom painlessly and cost-effectively. Acrylic is durable and tough and has long been used by the hotel industry. Hotels need bathrooms looking beau-

SEPTEMBER 23 • 2012 19

TROPICAL WHOLESALE contact // 263-1252 • 456-4892 • 396-0971 web // tropicalwholesale@hawaii.rr.com

tiful and durable because of constant overuse. So Tropical Wholesale’s products were invented for fast and easy installation while still being beautiful and durable. Acrylic will not chip or crack and is UV-stable, so it will not fade. Acrylic also will resist mildew and bacteria growth. Acrylic is the perfect solution for Hawaii homes. Bath liners are sleeves that fit right over existing tubs or showers for quick updates, leak solutions and beautification. There are many styles and colors including granite,

marble and tile selections. Tropical also can update existing shower and bath fixtures, install grab bars as well as corner caddies, soap dishes, seats and foot pedestals in only one to two days. Handicap bath and shower conversions are also available. Did you know that 45 percent of all household accidents causing serious injury occur in the bathroom? Conver ting a tub to a shower can reduce the risk of injury, especially for senior citizens. And for the homeowner who just hates his existing bath design, Tropical has an interior designer on staff to design a perfect bathroom for any home and any budget. For more information, call Tropical Wholesale at 2631252, 456-4892 or 396-0971. Customers also can visit the website tropicalwholesale@hawaii.rr.com.

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20 SEPTEMBER 23 • 2012


Finding safe and efficient electrical solutions for you BY BRANDON BOSWORTH ummer may have come and gone, but here in Hawaii we can still count on plenty of sunshine. For savvy homeowners, all this sun translates to cheaper utility


bills. By installing photovoltaic systems, better known as solar panels, your electric bill can often drop down to nothing except for the standard HECO surcharge. There are also federal and state tax benefits for making the

K SCHENK ELECTRIC contact // 381-4454

switch to solar energy. K Schenk Electric recently began offering solar energy panels. “I’m excited about the photovoltaic systems that we have started installing,” said the company’s owner, Kaulana Schenk. “Going green really benefits the owner and Mother Nature.” Founded in 2008, K Schenk Electric is a locally owned and operated firm specializing in residential and commercial projects. “We are a small company without a big overhead,” said Schenk. “Our staff is very knowledgeable and certified.

Not only do we know our electrical, the staff and I really know how to work with our clients. We are always willing to talk and find the safest route when making electrical decisions. We can also suggest options when clients are on a budget.” K. Schenk Electric is offering a 10 percent discount on a full-house rewire now through October. A rewire can be a great option for homeowners who have installed photovoltaic systems, since it can help to best utilize all the new power coming in from the solar panels. Upgrading and rewiring your home’s electrical system offers safety benefits as well, especially for homes that are 40 years old or older. “This discount will allow homeowners to prepare for the holidays and know their house is safe,” said Schenk. Besides rewiring and photovoltaic systems, K Schenk Electric provides a wide range of services for homeowners, ranging from renovations and electrical upgrades to general troubleshooting. They also work with businesses including renovations, remodels, new construction and rental-unit maintenance.

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The pros, cons of owning your photovoltaic system

he mantra,“no money down,” has flooded television airways in recent weeks. It’s a reference to solar contractors promoting the Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) method of obtaining a photovoltaic (PV) electrical system. First, there are a few basic assumptions: monthly utility bills are $220, monthly power consumption is 618 kWh and the minimum monthly connection charge to utility is $16. The premise behind this method of solar marketing is deceptively simple:The customer enters a “leasing” arrangement, which substitutes the solar company in place of the electric power company. The customer commits to a 20year contract to buy his or her power from the solar company at a reduced rate (e.g. 25 cents per kWh) that is lower than current utility charges, while the solar company installs and services the PV system. This is expensive for consumers, as they forfeit the renewable-energy tax credits available to those who choose to “buy” their systems. For those who choose to “lease,” there is a minimum FICO credit score of 700 to qualify for the “no money down” plan. There is also an escalation clause of 3 to 4 percent annually on the cost of the power purchased. To avoid this, the PPA would require money down, and in some cases, a “pre-paid lease” requiring up-front deposits exceeding $20,000. What happens to the “no money down” mantra? The “substitute” utility payments in the first year would be $154 per month, a savings of $50 from the $204 that would have been remitted to the utility company ($220


minus $16 minimum connection charge). With a 3 percent escalation, these monthly payments would increase to $199 in year 10, and $242 by year 20.This is based on a “simple” rate of increase. A “compounded” rate or higher rate (e.g., 4 percent) would yield even higher PPA payments. For taxpayers who wisely choose to “buy” and install their PV systems in 2012, income tax returns could recoup up to 65 percent of the gross price through generous renewable energy tax credits allowed by the federal and state taxing authorities. Beyond such largess, our local electric providers’ customers can realize hefty rates of return on their utility savings relative to the net cost of their systems.That will be an even greater bargain in the long run. Not only does this make solar affordable, but from an investment point-of-view, it’s very profitable. Assume that a typical two-system PV design has a gross price of $30,000. The federal tax credit is 30 percent, or $9,000, and the state credit of 35 percent is $10,000, as there is a $5,000 limit per installed system. The net cost after applying the credits is $11,000 ($30,000 minus $19,000). Let us further assume that the energy output will reduce electrical usage by 618 kWh per month. Multiplied by a rate of 33 cents per kWh, the homeowner realizes savings of $204 per month, or $2,448 annually. This represents a 22.25 percent rate of return and a payback period of four years, six months on the $11,000 net cost of the system. Where can you get that type of return in our current financial markets?

HI-POWER SOLAR contact // 342-0802 web // www.hi-powersolar.com

Based on the above assumptions, PPA payments total $9,768 after five years, $20,892 after 10 and $47,340 by the end of the 20-year term.The homeowner still doesn’t own the system. Contrast that with payments to retire a $30,000 home equity loan (HELOC). At an assumed interest rate of 4.5 percent (current initial rates are around 1 percent for the first 12-18 months), applying monthly payments of $204 (the projected utility savings) and the tax credits of the $19,000 reduces the loan period to less than five years, five months and a net outlay of $13,108.The PPA exceeds this total in six years, seven months. It’s a case of “pay me now or pay me later.” $47,340 not owning the system versus $13,108: It’s a no brainer.

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Remodel your kitchen, bath for great return on investment T own & Country Builders is a licensed general contracting design build firm that has been serving Oahu residents for the past 32 years. The company specializes in new and custom homes, remodels, second-story additions, designer kitchens, bathrooms, Americans with Disability Act (ADA) modifications/ improvements as well as multigenerational homes, and it offers full construction services including planning and permitting. When you consider remodeling, your kitchen or bathroom are fabulous places to invest your dollars, as they return the most value when you decide to sell your property. Not only do they pay for themselves in the long run, you also upgrade your lifestyle and make everyday living more enjoyable with kitchen and bath renovations. Modernizing your home allows you to incorporate the most innovative technology on the market. The elements that instantly date the house

are existing light fixtures, faucets, medicine cabinets, floor coverings, appliances, countertops and cabinets. You may want to incorporate the following into a new kitchen remodel:

Use stainless appliances and downdraft range technology, or vent through the roof with gooseneck hoods. For the kitchen finish, install dual built-in, pull-out trash containers to the base cabinets so that rubbish is concealed and the floor area is kept clean. Build a microwave-combination oven to make better use of the floor area and obtain additional storage in lieu of using a freestanding oven, which consumes space. White cabinets are in-style, and you may want to consider a Tasmanian green granite selection. Then complement the finished design with an Allure floor finish. You can reach Town & Country Builders by calling 737-7766 for a free in-home consultation, or visit the website www.townandcountrybuild ers.com. The company is a certified remodeler, member of the Better Business Bureau with an A-plus rating and winner of the 2012 Elite Customer Satisfaction award.

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HydroFlow product wins the battle against hard water A

lmost everyone in Hawaii has minerals such as calcium and magnesium in their water that make it “hard.” Hard water causes several problems, mainly the buildup of limescale. Minerals precipitate out of hard water and build up on the inside of pipes, water heaters, water-using kitchen appliances — such as dishwashers and coffee makers — hot tubs, solar water heaters, swimming pool heaters and more. Limescale reduces the flow of water through the plumbing until the pipes are completely clogged. The minerals also are a poor conductor of heat, so it takes what seems like forever for hot water to come out of the tap. Hard water also is the culprit of the sticky scum on shower doors. It reduces the ability of soap to lather, reacting with the soap to form spotting. In searching for a solution, Nano Tek-On director Harald von Sydow explained that there are several ways to combat hard water, some more effectively than others. For example, filtration in sink taps and refrigerators improves the taste of water, but doesn’t stop limescale buildup. Packaged chemicals soften the water in washing machine loads, but again, that’s just one small solution — the rest of your hard water problems still exist, and besides being hard on clothes, hard water chemicals are harmful to the environment. You can buy an expensive water softener to run water through. It will remove the minerals from the water by using salt, which is a health concern to many and something you continually have to replace, adding expenses without removing the buildup you already have. This is a costly Band-Aid approach. “There is another solution,” said Von Sydow. “HydroFlow is an economical little unit that clips on to the plumbing and will immediately begin reversing limescale buildup.” When a HydroFlow unit is installed, randomly varying electric fields are introduced to the water throughout the entire plumbing system, breaking up corrosion and limescale precipitates. The suspended particles wash away in the flow. HydroFlow normally dissolves existing scale in

SEPTEMBER 23 • 2012 23

NANO TEK-ON contact // 395-2996 web // www.nanotekhi.com An accumulation of limescale leads to poor water pressure, flow and volume.

Common in Hawaii, this is a residential pipe with limescale accumulation.

just a few months. It is consistently effective, reliable and maintenance-free. There is nothing extra to buy and no salt. The water tastes great, and the unit will quickly pay for itself in energy and water savings.

Although it is hidden from view, HydroFlow has an ‘activity’ light to let you know that it is working 24/7. Ask von Sydow to show you a cross-section of a limescale-clogged pipe next to one that has been cleared with HydroFlow. It’s incredible that something so small can clear out the pipes in your home. No more limescale, no more waiting for hot water. It keeps shower doors spot-free with minimal maintenance, and it is environmentally friendly and chemicalfree. Unlike roaches, limescale problems don’t have to be a normal part of living in Hawaii.You can take action now and get rid of it. To learn more about HydroFlow, call 395-2996 or visit www.nanotekhi.com. Nano Tek-On specializes in environmentally friendly surface treatments including sealants for glass and natural stone, antimicrobial coatings and self-cleaning surfaces.

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SEPTEMBER 23 • 2012



Simplifying your home-building process with pre-designed abodes T

he story of The Island Homes Collection, Honsador Lumber’s premier program of prepackaged homes, is one that focuses more on nurturing a vision into reality than the building materials that go into each model. For decades now, hundreds of curious families who have wanted to eventually own a home have come to Honsador Lumber to get information and begin their journey toward homeownership. Many who come leave knowing it will be a long road to fruition. Honsador Lumber, with its staff of trained professionals, respectfully assists those families in finding financial literacy assistance so they can realize their dream of owning a home. For clients who are ready to proceed, The Island Homes Collection helps to take several steps out of the planning and designing stages. More than 30 model variations come predesigned, and when purchased in a standard format, they are generally acceptable to the building department. Ideas on financing, sensible pricing, logical delivery of materials and even bonding to qualified builders are offered. It is truly one-stop buying at its best. All of the materials that go into the homes are of the highest quality. A 20-year, $5,000 Hi-Bor warranty is available when all requirements are met. Careful thought went into the design and development of all the models offered. Honsador sales consultants have the job of scheduling all the “next moves” to assure a smooth materials supply process. Most prepackaged home kits are completed with very few disappointments along the way. Building a home is an art form, and nothing is ever 100-percent perfect, but Honsador Lumber

24 • SEPTEMBER 23, 2012


Honsador Lumber left Kilohana Model: five bedrooms/three baths, 1,730 square feet, two stories below Olaloa model: three bedrooms/two baths, 1,104 square feet, single story bottom right Oahu model: five bedrooms/three baths, 2,408 square feet, two stories bottom left Malia Model: four bedrooms/two baths, 1,200 square feet, single story

is there to help throughout the process by ensuring the fewest negative events along the way. Honsador subscribes to the concept of designing a home that is affordable and can be built easily, thanks to efficient use of space and materials. Honsador has shown a sincere desire to help all who come and all who have a dream of owning a home. Many people are ready to buy, and even those who need more time come to open houses and can get more information online at www.honsador.com.

HONSADOR LUMBER contact // 356-1889 • 356-1893 web // www.honsador.com