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Home Disaster Recovery Plan PDF Print

Disaster can strike at the most in-opportune times.  Whether it is a fire, a falling tree, strong winds or earthquake, the damage is sudden and devastating.  Beyond the concern for physical injury, the inconvenience of a home that is structurally compromised can leave a family in disarray.

At times like these, it is important to find a company that is caring and personal; a builder that will be sensitive to your concerns and show genuine interest in your well being.

MasterCraft Design & Build is a company that brings relief at times of distress and confusion.  We care about each of our customers and we want to take all the time necessary to understand exactly what is important to you at your time of crisis.

There are several steps that are critical in disaster aid:

1.   Quick response to preserve the remaining items and house structure

2.   Accurate and careful cataloging of existing items

3.   Careful and secure storage of critical items

4.   Communication and correspondence with Insurance Adjustors

5.   Accurate Architectural and Engineering evaluation of the house

6.   Timely routing of permits through proper municipal channels

7.   Application of Upgraded Building Codes

8.   Quality dismantling, cleaning and reconstruction of your home

9.   Occupancy and return of stored items

 

Quick Response:

In most disaster situations, the structure and protection of your house has been compromised.  It is important to choose a company that can arrive quickly and provide temporary protection of your home.  This temporary protection can keep weather from entering your home and causing further damage.  It can also secure your home against intruders or casual observers.  This protection may be required for several weeks until the reconstruction can begin.  If there are concerns about structural integrity, an engineer can give valuable advice to make sure that the structure is safe.

Accuracy and care during cataloging:

Items that are missed or damaged during initial jobsite review can be lost forever.  It is important to find a contractor that cares as much about your families possessions as you do.  Sometimes items are buried beneath rubble, so it is crucial to take enough time and care to sort through the debris and find the items of value that are hidden.  Rushing this stage of the process can cause irreparable damage.

Careful and Secure Storage:

Make sure that all of your valuables are stored appropriately.  Items that need to be in a controlled environment should either remain on-site in an unaffected area or be moved off site to secured storage.  Any items that are dirty or damaged can be separated at this time for cleaning and re-storage.

Communication with Adjustors:

Your insurance adjustor is the communication and pricing liaison for your insurance company.  Their job is to assess the damage and provide the necessary funding to complete the construction and restoration work.  Your adjustor will provide an estimate of the work for you and your contractor to evaluate.  Your contractor’s job is to make sure that all areas of work are covered.  They will also reconcile any costs that are not adequate to complete the work.  If necessary, They can acquire multiple bids to substantiate their prices.  The end result should be an accurate project scope of damages and enough cost to complete the work required to restore your home.

Architectural and Engineering Review:

Your local municipality along with your insurance company will evaluate the need for architectural and engineering drawings.  Most municipalities will require complete architectural drawings if more than 50 percent of your home is damaged.  Many projects will also require engineering if the structure of your home has been damaged.  If there is any doubt, it is best to have your home reviewed by a professional so that the restored structure is stable and secure.

Timely Routing of Permits:

Once the architect and engineer have completed their work, your contractor will need to submit the finished drawings to your local municipality for permits.  This process can take as little as a few days and as much as a few weeks.  The process is usually simple as long as the home is being restored to its original design.  However, if changes are being made to the structure, the review process can take longer.  It is important to be clear with your contractor and understand the effect that any changes will have to the project before proceeding.

Building Code Upgrades:

Many times during the permit process, your local municipality will require upgrades to the rebuilt home.  Building codes are constantly upgraded especially in regard to safety items.  The rebuilt home will have to comply with the updated codes, and these should be noted on the drawings that the architect and engineer produce.  Some insurance policies do not allow for this added cost and it will be up to you to pay that cost.  Many policies allow for the cost of the upgrades.  Your contractor will need to determine this issue with the insurance adjustor.

Quality Home Reconstruction:

The rebuilding process should flow smoothly if all of the previous procedures have been followed.  Make sure that the quality of the items being installed in your home match what you had previously.  If there has been smoke damage, make sure that proper procedures are followed to clean and seal any re-used materials that were affected.  Make sure that all damaged materials have been removed.  Do not let a contractor substitute inferior workmanship or materials.  If you have any questions about these items, make sure and ask for specifications or details to validate the selection.  Make sure that your home is constructed using sound building practices and that you are satisfied with the finishes in all areas.  Get a second opinion if you are not satisfied with answers that you receive.

Occupancy:

Occupancy requires several synchronized steps.  At 90% completion, your contractor will notify the insurance adjustor that the project is nearing completion.  This is necessary so that the insurance company can release the final 25 percent of the funding.  Once the insurance company is satisfied, any final items for construction must be completed.  The final project can then be inspected by your local municipality and application for occupancy can be completed.  If there are miscellaneous items still to complete, your municipality can give a temporary occupancy permit.  This allows you to move into the house and allows your contractor additional time to finish the undone items.  The most common unfinished items are the yard and landscaping work.  Sometimes weather will prohibit the installation of the exterior yard work and this will need to be accomplished at a more suitable time.  Most municipalities will allow up to 90 days for the temporary occupancy before the owner must complete the undone items.

Conclusion:

MasterCraft Design & Build is a contractor familiar with the insurance process and will be able to make the demolition and rebuilding process go smoothly.  We have the ability to negotiate on your behalf and should be able to get you the best final product for your insurance dollar.  Be sure that the contractor you use has the experience necessary to negotiate through and complete your project.

 
Why is Modular Green? PDF Print

Definition of Modular

For clarity, I would first like to define the term modular.  Modular refers to homes that are constructed in “Modules” or sections off site and then assembled on site into a complete home.  These modules can be finished off site with painted drywall, cabinets and doors installed and all plumbing and electrical run throughout the house.  The sections are joined together at the jobsite and set on the foundation.  Once they are assembled, the joints between sections are finished; the balance of the siding is installed, roofing is completed, porches and garages are added, flooring is installed, plumbing and electric are tied in, mechanical systems are installed and appliances and fixtures are completed.These homes are constructed using the same methods as conventionally built homes with a few exceptions.  They incorporate approximately 30% more materials so that they are stable during transportation and erecting and they require about 30% less labor.  If they are built with conventional materials you may be wondering how they add to the green process of building?

Three "Green" Strengths of Modular Building

1.   Modular homes are built in a controlled environment with materials that are stored in that same environment.
2.   Modular home construction is an efficient method that cuts down on wasted lumber and excess jobsite scrap.
3.   The assembly process involved in modules allows for tighter houses with fewer gaps for air infiltration.
 
Let’s take each of these items separately and dissect them to understand their benefit to the green building process.

Controlled Environment

We are all aware of the concern over moisture and mold in the construction process.  However, mold is not the only problem caused by excessive moisture. Moist wood will move and twist as it dries resulting in stud alignment problems.  Moisture also can cause nails and screws to move in the wood and pop out over time. 

 

The great thing about Modular construction is that the wood is never wet.  Just like the finished cabinets in your kitchen, a modular home is dry from delivery to the factory until it is assembled on site, the wood never gets wet.  The assembly of modules takes place in controlled environments that are free from the effects of outside weather.  All modules are wrapped in plastic before transport and then once the modules are set, the roof is joined and covered to prevent the entrance of moisture.  Moisture has little chance to affect the house and no chance to promote the growth of mold.

Less Wasted Materials

There are several ways that modular construction can conserve on wasted materials: 
  • Modules can be constructed in sizes that allow for maximum use of dimensional lumber.  Studs are usually ordered in pre cut sizes on conventional jobs, but floor joists must be cut to fit.  With pre constructed modules, the dimensions of the module can be sized so that the floor joists do not have to be cut.
  • In conventional framing, when the house is complete, the final scrap is thrown away because the expense of moving and storing it is too costly. On the contrary, small scrap that is generated at the factory during the production of modules can be stored and used for the next house.  This scrap goes beyond just wood materials.  Excess insulation, partial tubes of adhesive, caulking and other small items that would be thrown away on a conventional jobsite can be saved and reused.

Reduced Air Infiltration

Modular construction of walls and ceilings starts from the inside out.  Drywall is placed in position and then wall studs and ceiling joists are built on top.  This process allows for easy access to the exterior of the house.  Gaps in construction can be easily sealed to create a tighter exterior wall.  Ceiling systems can be insulated before roof rafters are installed which allows for full access to perimeter spaces.  In conventional framing, these areas are sealed as much as possible, but can never be accessed as well as in the modular method.

Conclusion

If you want to step your construction project up to the next “Green” notch, consider going modular.  The reduced labor will bring your project cost down and the “green” benefit will help to preserve our environment for the next generation.
 


See our Work

Checkout examples of our disaster recover work in our photo gallery:

Our Customers

 

"I so appreciate how quickly you have responded to my numerous questions and issues. Now I know the value of a custom home builder. You truly stand by your word and your work."

Vicki H., Wildwood, MO


 

"Building with Mastercraft Design and Build especially with Steve and Mike was a smooth, rewarding experience from beginning to end. Working with them, the building process was very smooth throughout: from design, to build, to followup. The process as a whole can be overwhelming but they were with us every step of the way. Steve was pleasant, kind, patient and very accommodating. If he was frustrated with us, he never showed it. The quality of workmanship and materials is excellent as we feel that we received a well-built home. We are very happy with our new home."

Dan and Colleen P., Des Pres, MO


 

"After our home flooded due to a broken water line that ran a full night while we were not home, we hired MasterCraft Design & Build to manage the restoration.  This was a major effort as we completely lost our kitchen and most of our finished basement.  It was a significant amount of work that could have easily carried with it cost overruns and a lot of stress.  The process could not have gone better with MasterCraft.  Steve Horn and Mike Skidmore made the project truly painless, worked with us to keep their services within the budget provided by the insurance company, and kept us informed every step of the way.  I was so pleased my daughter and I then hired MasterCraft to manage the renovation of her home, with the same great results and experience."

George & Mary C., Oakville, MO


 

"Steve Horn of Mastercraft Design & Build is truly a professional in the field of custom home building. He uses reputable and highly qualified subcontractors who stand by their work. I wouldn’t say building a house is easy; but Steve made the process rewarding by keeping us involved in every step of the process from design to completion. Steve was easy to work with on all the upgrades and kept detailed records of the progress to stay on schedule. We have a beautiful home we can enjoy for years to come."

Len & Midge M., Mehlville, MO


 

"We have found Steve Horn to be not only an expert in building custom homes but also in building a custom "Green" home. We had ideas about building green that he not only put into action but helped in making sure we were doing it correctly. He has background in green design and building and used that expertise in doing our home. He is skilled in building custom homes and is a person that you can depend on. His personality is one that makes sure you are pleased with the way your home is being built and his integrity gives you the assurance that the cost of your home is what you would expect. No overcharging, no increases in building supplies, just honesty that you can depend on."

Stephen & Dawn K. - Crestwood, MO


 

“I have been in construction and maintenance for the past 30 years.  Over that time, I have worked with some good contractors as well as some who did not meet my expectations.  MasterCraft Design & Build is at the top of my list of outstanding contractors.  Steve helped us to create a custom design/build home and made the process very easy and enjoyable.  We love our new home and recommend MasterCraft Design & Build to anyone wanting to build their dream home.”

Joe and Jane S. - Mehlville, MO


 

"MasterCraft made sure that everything was done beyond our expectations!  The work was excellent, and the subcontractors were professional and polite as well.”
Rebecca P. -  Manchester


 

"My major remodeling project was completed on time and under budget.  Steve was always ready to answer questions and the end product was exactly what we envisioned."
Mark G. - Des Peres, MO


 

"Last May our luck turned very bad when a 15 ton oak fell on and crushed our carport/storage room (and cars inside).  However, we had the good luck of knowing Steve Horn, the owner of Mastercraft Design & Build. Steve directed the re-build project from debris removal through the construction of the replacement structures with outstanding personal attention to details.  The quality of the work and subcontractors, as well as the attention to costs, were excellent.  We highly recommend Steve and Mastercraft."

Warren & Susan L., Ladue, MO


 

"We were very happy with the work that MasterCraft Design & Build did for our foyer.  Steve and his team were professional, considerate, and detail-oriented, and they always showed up on time.  When it's time to renovate our kitchen, we know who we'll be calling."

Zach H. - University City, MO


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