eLocal is thrilled to announce a new blog-off series that will bring bloggers and professionals together to discuss hot topics and exciting trends in home improvement.
No more searching the web for the answers to your most pressing home improvement questions. This series gives homeowners information directly from the experts, while also creating a new forum for industry leaders to network and exchange ideas.
Uniting the Home Improvement Industry
During each bi-weekly blog-off, experts will answer specially selected questions that are relevant to their expertise. Those answers will be reviewed, distilled, and presented in a comprehensive article across eLocal’s network for the benefit of homeowners everywhere.
Since each article will allow opportunity for discussion, the content will not only provide homeowners with a summary of popular opinions on the chosen topic, but also create a community for experts to interact and debate. Homeowners are also able to jump in and ask questions.
“People normally need to visit multiple websites and scour the web to find different expert opinions,” says Sam Bookler, Director of Online Marketing at eLocal. “We’re excited to have all those answers in one place. You rarely see contractors, interior designers, and green living experts working together like this. We wanted to change that.”
Remember to visit eLocal’s plumbing, roofing, and electrical blog every other week to see the blog-off results. Without further ado, let us introduce you to our ever-growing list of blog-off experts. Be sure to check back because we will be adding new experts frequently! Interested in joining the blog-off? E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for information.
Larry Dimock is a master electrician who has specialized in troubleshooting problems in homes. His extensive website, www.thecircuitdetective.com, seems to tell everything he knows — from 3-way switching and GFCIs to how to find the location of a bad connection responsible for an outage on part of a circuit.
Terry Peterman, the Internet Electrician, has over 30 years of experience in all aspects of the electrical trade. He has been on the web since 1997, and has been providing DIYers helpful content and information for 14 years. Electrical Online: “Home Electrical Projects Made Easy!”
Doug Drube has been a licensed, bonded and insured C-10 Electrical Contractor in California since 1996. In addition to residential electrical, he has designed and worked with electrical control systems for supermarkets, restaurants and large commercial functions. His special skill is in troubleshooting, service and repair.
Jeff Meyers has been President of Mr Electric of The Dwyer Group Inc. since March 2007. Mr. Meyers has established a solid career working in the industry as an electrician, owning his own independent electrical business, and then owning a Mr. Electric® franchise. He served as Regional Franchise Director for Mr. Electric and later served at Mr. Electric’s corporate headquarters as Vice President of Operations since 2003. He served as Chief Operating Officer of The Dwyer Group Inc., managing the franchise support staff and serving as an advisor for the brand’s national and international franchise owners on a daily basis. He graduated from the University of Arizona with a bachelor’s degree in electrical and computer engineering.
Pegasus Lighting is an online lighting distributor. Top products include under cabinet lights, microfluorescent fixtures, and display lights. The company attracts shoppers who value a learning experience in lighting, competitive pricing, and an intuitive website. Pegasus Lighting also offers a Trade Professional Discount Program for contractors, designers, and other professionals.
Known for refined, timeless designs featuring the latest advancements in lighting technology and expert craftsmanship, Tech Lighting is a premier choice of architects, lighting designers, interior designers and homeowners. Part of Encompass Lighting Group, the company offers modern to period styling, and is a leader in low-voltage track lighting.
ANN SACKS Tile & Stone, Inc. joined the Kohler family of businesses in 1989 and was built on the concept that tile and stone, with its tactile warmth, strength and versatility, is an expressive medium for creating imaginative, emotionally relevant spaces. Dedicated to providing personalized service, ANN SACKS is an industry leader for luxury tile, stone and plumbing products, bringing a remarkable range of styles and international influences to consumers, architects and design professionals. For more info, contact KohlerInteriorsGroupPR@kohler.com.
KALLISTA’s distinctive plumbing products feature classic, timeless designs that appeal to the discriminating consumer. Known for diverse collections, full suite solutions and elegant finishes, KALLISTA products are a favorite among designers, specifiers and architects of grand luxury projects. For more info, contact KohlerInteriorsGroupPR@kohler.com.
Founded in 1873 and headquartered in Kohler, Wis., KOHLER Co. is one of America’s oldest and largest privately held companies. KOHLER is a global leader in the manufacturer of kitchen and bath products, engines and power generation systems, cabinetry, tile and home interiors, and international host to award-winning hospitality and world-class golf destinations. For more info, contact KohlerInteriorsGroupPR@kohler.com.
Mary Kennedy Thompson, president of Mr. Rooter Corporation, helps readers better understand their home’s plumbing with tips, steps and stories through her Mrs. Rooter blog. A former Marine, mother of two, and past president of Cookies by Design, Mary enjoys educating people with simple, easy-to-understand advice without plumbing lingo.
Currently a trainer for Green Plumbers USA and a plumbing instructor at ABC Training Academy (4 year Apprenticeship Journeyman Program), Greg Chick has done all phases of solar thermal plumbing service repair for both new construction and remodels.
The Roto-Rooter Plumbing and Drain Service Company blog aims to provide the latest organization news, useful information and tips that consumers can use. Paul Abrams is the Public Relations Manager for Roto-Rooter corporate and has been providing the most up-to-date industry news stories and content for the blog since its debut.
Todd Miller is president of Classic Metal Roofing Systems – www.classicroof.com. Classic manufactures residential metal roofing products that look like cedar shake, dimensional shingles, and slate. Benefits include energy efficiency, durability, fire safety, and wind resistance. Todd also maintains www.asktoddmiller.com where he answers questions about roofing and ventilation.
AphroChic is the brainchild of Creative Director & Founder Jeanine Hays. Originally taking shape as an interior design blog, AphroChic became a place for Jeanine, a policy attorney, to escape the stresses of legal work and share her passion for design.
Axios Architecture specializes in new and renovated single family residences. Its focus is on warm, modern living environments tailored to each homeowner. Its spaces are careful studies in light, proportion, material, function and careful detailing that pleases its clients every day they live in the home.
DeAnna Radaj, owner of Bante Design LLC, can enter a space and help tweak it to better suit its function AND the lifestyle of the occupants of the space. Using ILD, life quality can be increased AND be supportive to any lifestyle changes or health challenges. She is a nationally recognized speaker on healthy home design, color therapy/theory and the psychology of clutter.
Located in Graton, California, Ceilume is an international manufacturer of leading-edge ceiling tiles. All manufactured with a highly advanced thermoform technique, the decorative, affordable tiles are available is dozens of styles, finishes and colors – all rivaling the aesthetics and durability of traditional ceiling tiles. For more information, please visit www.ceilume.com.
Christine Schwalm is the owner and interior designer for Christine Schwalm Design. She is also the Visual Merchandising Manager for Ethan Allen’s Long Island flagship location. Her areas of expertise include space planning, accessorizing and home staging.
Charlene is the principal of Dezigner Digz TM, a professional home staging and interior decorating firm based in Burlington. Her work is featured in the book FabJob Guide to Become a Home Stager. She is also a Contributing Blogger for REALTOR® Magazine. Some of her articles have been published online by the International Business Times.
Lori Gilder is CEO and Founder of Interior Makeovers Inc. She is an award winning Architectural Interior Designer to Hollywood’s elite and is dedicated to providing her clients with a unique set of design standards and expert guidance throughout the home renovation and design process. Visit www.LoriGilder.com and www.DiaryofaRenovation.com.
Domicile Interior Design is a full service interior design studio specializing in residential, hospitality, retail and commercial interior design. Owners Amanda Malson and Jolene Ballard believe in forging meaningful relationships with all their clientele. Their goal is to create a home that reflects the client’s needs and personality through a unique and personal process. Domicile deftly blends old and new with a west coast influence to produce chic, eclectic and comfortable interiors.
freedomRail is a truly adjustable storage system for every area of the home. freedomRail puts homebuyers in control from the moment they choose a custom design to fitting their day-to-day needs and to adjusting easily when their needs change. Every freedomRail system delivers a smart solution that recognizes the customers’ needs for control and function in their day-to-day life. freedomRail solutions empower customers to stay organized and freely in control.
Nancy is an aspiring decorator and design blogger who loves to chronicle her home projects and anything else glamorous she comes across. Her blog, Marcus Design, showcases exciting interiors, artwork, do-it-yourself projects, home renovations and any other inspired work she stumbles upon.
A renowned interior designer, Melissa Galt’s designs have been known to inspire careers, save relationships, improve health, and increase prosperity. A few of her features include Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles, Style and Design, Southern Living, Better Homes, and Planhouse. When you find your home, you find your heart.
Interior designer Patricia Davis Brown is the owner of Patricia Davis Brown Designs, LLC in Vero Beach, FL. In 2010, she took her mastery of space planning and design national by launching ProfessionalKitcheandBathPlans.com and her online store PDBhomestore.com. She is also the author of Digthisdesign.net and writes feature articles for QuinStreet, Inc. Brown’s work has garnered 15 national and 6 state awards and has been recognized in numerous publications.
Kelly Fallis is the CEO of RemoteStylist.com, the affordable ONLINE platform for interior design which saves users time, money and frustration when decorating a space. Featured in the New York Times, National Post, Toronto Star, Dubai’s Gulf News, Wish Magazine and HGTV’s Marriage Under Construction, follow her on twitter @kellyfallis.
Katie Miller, LEED AP, is co-founder of Roomations.com, a website that provides homeowners convenient online access to custom interior design services. Katie has worked in the affordable housing field and at notable design firms Rossetti and HKS. She holds a Master of Architecture and MBA from the University of Michigan.
Jenna Burger is the owner of SAS Interiors, an interior design firm based in NY, with a mission to offer Simple, Affordable, and Stylish design ideas and services for everyday living. Jenna takes great pride in achieving the high-end designer look at a fraction of the cost. She’s an avid bargain shopper, DIYer, and design guru with a daily blog featuring up-to-date design inspirations and trends.
Michelle Henderson is the author of Second Street East. She writes about home décor, DIY projects and decorating and renovating her 1970s ranch. She also recently opened an online interior design service where she creates design boards for clients via e-mail.
Freelance writer Merrideth Kalil turned her love for retail and design into a business when she launched Seltzer Studios in 2009. As curator behind the online boutique for modern home decor, gifts and housewares, she’s drawn to objects and interiors that meld form with function and are infused with personality.
Emily Henderson is HGTV’s Season 5 Design Star, and now designer and host of Secrets from a Stylist, which starts airing February 26th on HGTV. She wouldn’t say she’s passionate about design, it’s more of an obsession; completely fanatical, and totally out of control. With her love of flea markets, Craig’s List, Etsy and eBay, she’s convinced she can create unique and beautiful rooms that reflect the inner style and personality of the client. Or at least she better, because that’s what she’s getting paid to do. Watch and see.
Suzy Annetta is an Australian-born Interior Designer based in Hong Kong. Suzy started writing her blog 3 years ago as a way of sharing her inspirations and connecting to the international design community. Suzy is now working on several exciting residential and hospitality projects around Asia.
Valorie Hart is a stylist and interior decorator. She lives in New Orleans, and writes the popular blog Visual Vamp. Valorie writes a shopping column for GoNola.com. Her decor work and writing has been published at large and she is currently working on a design book.
Zuniga Interiors: A boutique design studio offering residential and commercial design services. Known for contemporary designs mixed with global-infused style, Zuniga Interiors has an accomplished history of interior design, set design and interior styling for shelter publications and commercial clientele. A portfolio ranges from Hawaii to the California Coast.
REMODELING, HOME IMPROVEMENT, & DIY EXPERTS
Kevin Costenaro is owner and general manager of The Augusta Group, Denver and Golden’s premier developer of custom homes. For more than 20 years, he has brought engineering expertise with an eye for architecture and design to every project. A highly regarded construction industry expert, Kevin is able to quickly and accurately address needs and problems for residential and commercial projects. His friendly and professional demeanor coupled with his commitment to excellence has well positioned The Augusta Group for the growth and success it continues to experience today.
As the co-owner of Baywolf Dalton, Inc. since 1989, Nancy Keenholts Dalton is involved with the design, materials and labor specifications and management of employees and sub contractors. She has taught design/remodeling at North Seattle CC, and has been the guest host of ABC “Homefront” radio show. She believes listening is the most important skills. She listens to her client’s needs, budgets and time frame; developing and managing projects that exceed expectations.
Jody Costello is the Founder of ContractorsFromHell.com where she educates consumers on preventing remodeling nightmares. As a Pre-Renovation Coach, she guides homeowners through the risks and realities of remodeling while providing solutions through her on-line course, “The Home [Pre]modeling Bootcamp For Women (and The Men Who Love Them).”
Kia Ricchi, aka The Contractress, is a Florida-licensed contractor and author of the award-winning book, Avoiding the Con in Construction. The Library Journal wrote: “In this extremely useful book, Ricchi introduces homeowners to construction contracting in understandable language.” For information about contractor licensing, insurance, contracts, permits, and liens, visit www.TheContractress.com.
Leah Thayer is the founder and editor of daily5Remodel, a daily eletter and web-based community providing remodeling professionals with the latest industry news, business best practices and peer-to-peer engagement. Prior to starting d5R in 2010, she was a senior editor at Remodeling magazine.
EXOVATIONS answers homeowners’ questions about home improvement. It is an award-winning contractor for siding, roofing, windows, doors, gutters, decks, and gutter protection systems. EXOVATIONS has grown into one the largest replacement contractors in the Southeast and it offers franchises throughout the region. Roone Unger is the CEO and Founder of EXOVATIONS. He has been in the home improvement and building industry for over 20 years.
Mr. Appliance is North America’s leading appliance repair franchise system. Established in 1996, its franchises provide full-service residential and light commercial appliance repair. Mr. Appliance has more than 150 locations throughout the United States and Canada and is consistently ranked among the top home service franchises by Entrepreneur magazine and other industry experts. Mr. Appliance is a subsidiary of The Dwyer Group, Inc. Connect with Mr. Appliance via its blog, twitter, and facebook.
Pablo Solomon is known around the world for his drawings and sculptures of dancers as well for his visionary practical environmentally friendly designs. He has been featured in numerous books, magazines, newspapers, TV, radio and even a short film that aired on HBO for his art, design and conservation work.
ProToolReviews.com is the industry’s first online tool magazine built from the ground up. Its purpose is to provide accurate and readable tool reviews and industry news for the Average Joe, be he a contractor, journeyman, or do-it-yourself homeowner. ProToolReviews.com has a large readership and covers tools from all areas of the construction and building industries, including framing, electrical, plumbing, HVAC and specialty trades.
ServiceMagic connects consumers with pre-screened, customer-rated service professionals. The network consists of over 80,000 customer-rated service pros that carry the ServiceMagic Seal of Approval. Visit ServiceMagic.com for reliable service professionals in your area, and follow ServiceMagic on Facebook and @ServiceMagic on Twitter for home improvement news and DIY tips.
Stuart has a background in physics and is passionate about tools, DIY projects and robotics. He runs ToolGuyd, a blog about hand and power tools that aims to serve tool users of all levels with reviews, new tool previews, and tool buying guides.
Chris Rodenius, www.tool-rank.com
Chris Rodenius is a finish carpenter by trade, but he started Tool-Rank a few years back so that everyday tool users would have a place to share their opinions on their tools. Tool-Rank has since grown to include a popular tool blog where Chris provides news and reviews on the latest tools to hit the market.
GREEN BUILDING EXPERTS
Kevin Rockwell is an alternative energy blogger who has built an authority website that brings news and tips to consumers and businesses about the emerging alternative energy field. Kevin is a 30 year veteran of the media and brings his years of news experience to fold in writing for Alternative Energy HQ.
Megan McWilliams is the host of the Green Divas Radio Show & Podcast and publisher of TheGreeenDivas.com. Green Diva Meg takes a light-hearted approach in sharing practical and low-stress ideas for sustainable living using credible information, technology and humor.
Tanya Stock, Principal of Vida Verde, A Consulting firm that focuses on building smart and finding your right shade of green.
Jason Todd is the Home Performance Training Manager at GreenHomes America, the nation’s leading provider of Home Performance Contracting (HPC) services. Jason is BPI certified as a Building Analyst as well as Envelope Professional. Read energy-saving tips for homeowners, industry commentary, HPC news and more on the official GreenHomes America blog: blog.greenhomesamerica.com.
Anna Hackman is the editor of Green Talk as well as a sustainability and green building consultant and LEED AP. She was a real estate lawyer before she became obsessed with green building. Green Talk, which was started in 2007, is an offshoot of her green building passion and has grown to include over 600 article, podcasts, and videos about green living, green building, green business, recycling, and organic gardening. As a sustainability consultant her goal is to help businesses green their profits, which mean, help them save money by saving the environment. She is passionate about the environment and hopes her passion inspires others.
Kevin Songer is a LEED AP, Certified Arborist, green roof botanist and environmental lawyer who helps architects, landscapers and engineers design and install both nature irrigated, native plant green roof systems and food vegetated roof creations for habitat creation, stormwater and permaculture.
Peter L. Mosca is host of Income Property Investment Talk, a weekly radio program that has been helping real estate investors and owners purchase, operate and transfer their assets more effectively since 2007. He is a GREEN-certified REALTOR®, Public Speaking/Media Trainer, Media Producer and Community Builder, whose focus is “Specializing in You.”
Thomas Chartier is a licensed professional engineer and LEED accredited professional with a background in mechanical engineering, most specifically HVAC design. He holds several BPI certifications and brings over 13 years of experience in the design, construction and start-up of energy efficient and environmentally sustainable buildings. Past projects include the first LEED Platinum and LEED Gold high rise residential buildings in NYC, the first LEED certified office and retail building on Long Island, and several projects in New Jersey, currently seeking LEED certification.
Currently Mr. Chartier owns and operates Chartier Redevelopment Group, a 21st century engineering and real estate firm which specializes in the energy efficient design, construction and test-out of all building types.
Steve Crossland has lived and worked in Austin since 1985. He has been active in real estate in Austin since 1990, is a graduate of the McCombs School of Business at UT Austin, and writes about Austin real estate and other stuff for the Crossland Team blog.
Founded by Jesse Halliburton, broker of record with over 14 years of experience, Halliburton Homes is a real estate services company based in Hoboken, NJ. In 2008, as part of Halliburton Homes’ commitment to “go green,” the company opened the first LEED-certified residential real estate office in the United States.
Founded in 2002, HomeRun Homes is a centralized marketplace which helps people buy or sell a rent-to-own home, a commercial property, or to offer home services nationwide and globally to the thriving rent-to-own market.
Reggie has 39 years of experience in residential construction and home inspections with thousands of homes built and inspected. Reggie was HGTV’s original house detective on the show, “The House Detective.” In addition to being an active home inspector and certified member of ASHI, Reggie is also presently executive producer and host of, “The House P.I.” radio show, a show that’s all about houses.