Natelli Homes Blog

Need a Home Addition? 5 Improvements for Bethesda ResidentsAny Bethesda homeowner considering a home addition must first consider the return on the addition. For example, the cost to add a sunroom is significantly more than adding a simple deck, so how much monetary value will each project bring to the home? Will the cost of construction be recouped if the home were to be sold? Consider five of the best improvements before paying anyone to upgrade your home. 

Replacing the Entry Door | Bethesda

Using a steel door in the entryway brings a number of advantages to the home. Homeowners who choose steel doors average 130 percent recuperation of the construction cost. This is partly due to the low cost of steel doors. For example, a fiberglass version of the same door will cause the homeowner to spend three times the amount. The steel door will be attractive and improve curb appeal as well as increase the home's energy efficiency.

Most steel has magnetic weather stripping naturally. It seals better than alternatives and blocks the weather out while keeping the air controlled environment inside. 

Add a Bedroom to the Attic | Bethesda

When you're looking for more remodeling opportunities, don't forget to look above your head. That attic you've deemed useless is actually a cash cow. Most homeowners who turn that area into a working bedroom gain 83 percent of their cost. This is a large percentage. While the project does get costly quickly, it also returns in kind. This type of home conversion is cheaper than adding a new room, for example, because the base already exists. There is no dirt to turn or walls to add. With a growing number of generations being forced to live together, the extra space may become necessary.

Adding a Wood Deck | Bethesda

Homeowners choosing this option typically recoup almost 81 percent of their project cost upon home reselling. The appeal of the wooden deck comes from consumers who are more thrifty than ever before. They want to spend more of their time at home, and an open deck is the perfect outdoor opportunity. 

Wood for the decks has risen in popularity due to the low cost of wood compared to other deck materials. Other types of materials might run as high as 50 percent more than plain wood. Finally, the wood deck provides the illusion of more available living space attached to the home.

Replace the Siding with Vinyl | Bethesda

Homes with vinyl siding typically recoup almost 80 percent of the cost of the project. This is another low cost project which improves the home's curb appeal. New siding will make the home look newer which will aid in selling negotiations. Additionally, vinyl is very low-maintenance. It will last nearly 25 years, which heightens its return on value. Overall, it is the best value for the money when it is compared to other types of siding.

Replacing the Wooden Windows | Bethesda

This simple home addition will bring in a 77 percent recoup for the homeowner. These projects are quite appealing due to improved curb appeal and increased energy efficiency. The new homeowners will appreciate the low energy costs, especially when this home upgrade is paired with the tightly sealed steel door.

Additionally, some window replacements fetch extra federal tax credits for homeowners. The cost of the project, however, does deliver a long rate of return, so windows should only be replaced if they are beat up. The savings in energy should be considered a nice side bonus.

If you have any other questions on home additions or upgrades, contact us today!


In the month of September alone, the Windows for Hunger campaign by Natelli Homes raised enough for 4,200 meals through the Capital Area Food Bank. We are so encouraged by the success, Natelli is now offering 3 meals to the CAFB for every person that "likes" Natelli Homes on FaceBook.

Please support the Capital Area Food Bank by contacting Natelli Homes if you are considering new windows or exterior doors. The results of having new quality windows and doors by Natelli Homes speaks for itself, but now you can also help others in the metropolitan area who are in significant need.

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altA new custom home built by Natelli Homes for the Darvish / Fallahi family was recently featured in Bethesda Magazine. The details and character of the home fit the client perfectly. Take note of the spectacular iron railings, the tile-work in the bathroom and the enormous kitchen with stone and marble countertops and WoodMode cabinets.


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Windows are definitely one of the "glass half full / half empty" situations (pun intended). The views, the ambient light and architectual relief windows that windows provide cannot be replaced. Windows let us experience the outside elements without sensing the heat or cold - but how do yours feel?

If your windows are 5 to 10 years old you might start looking at them. Changes in technology for windows and exterior doors have been dramatic in the past decade. There are compelling reasons to consider changing older windows in your home. Consider the following examples.

altThe photo on the left shows a window with a broken seal. Windows are made with two panes of glass and the air between the two panes acts as an insulator and is often filled with argon gas, which is effectively a super-insulating gas. When the seal fails, the insulating gas is released and air can freely flow in and out of the space between the two panes. This invading air between the panes of glass can contain varying humidity and pressure. The result is what appears to be condensation or clouding between the two panes that cannot be cleaned. The only solution is replacing the entire window.

altThe photo on the right shows a door jamb with excessive rot. Old and rotten wood parts are often the primary reason to replace windows and exterior doors. Water can easily get into the home causing mold and mildew. One might consider repairing the bottom of the door jamb with a synthetic material but one should determine if any function of the door has been compromised by the rot and water intrusion first.

The most obvious evaluation is simply to feel if there is cold air coming through your windows. Clients say they could see their curtains move on a windy day before we replaced their windows. If you feel that your home is significantly more comfortable when you pull curtains or window treatments over the windows, then you really should consider replacing your doors and windows. All this plus the evident energy savings make replacing your doors and windows an easy decision.

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altI am both proud and excited about a campaign Natelli Homes has organized with the Capital Area Food Bank as our focus for the next year.

Hunger is a staggering issue in our community. This condition is an unfortunate and often overlooked result of our country’s economic status. Poverty levels have reached new levels and thousands of people in our area simply don’t have access to appropriate food sources and proper nutrition. The CAFB serves almost 500,000 people each year through its non-profit partners. Surprisingly more than half of the households assisted by their efforts have at least one employed adult and only 5% of the recipients are homeless. Hunger and food insecurity are quickly reaching into households that were previously self-sufficient. Sadly, the numbers of children affected are an increasing component of the statistics.

Natelli Homes hopes to make continuing donations to the Capital Area Food Bank through the installation of replacement windows and doors for our clients. Our “WINDOWS FOR HUNGER” campaign will provide a constant source of funding for the programs at the CAFB. We hope to introduce our clients to the successful efforts made by the Food Bank in our area. There are many ways to contribute to the CAFB, both through volunteering and donations.

I encourage you to learn about the Capital Area Food Bank by visiting their website at www.capitalareafoodbank.org

Please share the attached coupon with anyone who might be interested in assisting the Food Bank when they install new windows or doors in their home. Look for similar opportunities on the Natelli Homes FaceBook page in the near future.

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Natelli Homes is pleased to display one of its newest product lines in Arlington this weekend.  The Ashley model is designed and developed for narrow lots in areas such as Arlington and Bethesda.

altThe original home was demolished in the latter part of 2010 and we are already getting prepared for the Owners to move in their new home.  This hand-crafted home was constructed to the same standards as the ultra-custom homes that Natelli Homes builds throughout the Washington metropoliotan area.  With four finished levels, five full bedrooms and an expansive recreation room and den in the basement, there is a surprising amount of room for families.

Please join us this Sunday, May 15th between 1:00 - 3:00 p.m at 1909 N Quebec St in Arlington, VA.  This will be a one- time opportunity to see the most current new home design and quality from Natelli Homes.

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The weather this January and February has been unique to say the least.  We have had the predictable snow and windy cold days, but to have near 70 degrees this past Friday makes me think of summer.  For those who planned ahead, they will be enjoying a new pool and pool house this summer to combat the intense heat of August in metro DC. 

This project in Bethesda, MD, was planned last summer so we could coordinate the permits and begin construction in the fall.  Overall winter temperatures were pretty forgiving for construction so we made good progress.  The lot has some intense topography so retaining walls anchor the ends of the pool terrace.  alt At one end, the pool house masks the fact that the project is cut into an 8' tall slope.  We used full masonry walls for the pool house to make it easy to clean and practically a maintenance-free structure.  The walls will have a stucco finish with tile and stone accents.   

altA curvilinear concrete retaining wall with field-stone veneer levels the other end of the project and creates a lawn area adjacent to the pool for recreation and casual seating. You can see the stone masons taking advantage of the warm weather in the adjacent photo.  We will excavate the pool soon which fits between the pool house and the wall in the photo on the left.  The before and after images of this project will be dramatic so I'll continue to share the progress as we get closer to completion.

Feel free to contact me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit our website at www.NatelliHomes.com where you can find valuable coupons for the remainder of February.

Natelli Homes is finishing a replacement window project in Potomac, MD.  The painters are touching up the new trim and casings and the windows are being cleaned, soon ready for the installation of the window treatments.  I asked the client how things were going.  Without hesitation he said, "I immediately felt the difference".  The house is measurably warmer in every room.  The cold air whistling through the old french doors is gone and the storm windows filled with bugs and dirt are no where to be seen - the house is quieter, warmer and feels like new.

altIn this home, rather than install insert windows, we did full replacements because the existing windows were so poorly insulated around the perimeters. We filled the jamb-space with expanding insulation and then applied new trim on all the interior surfaces.  Rather than "picture frame" the windows with casing, we installed proper sills with returns and a back-band on the casing to really make the trim punch.

altOne of the aesthetic benefits is without a doubt the architectural improvement of the windows.  In the photo on the right, look at how the grilles add significance to the window.  We elected to space the lite opening of each window a bit larger than the standard sizes offered by the manufacturer.  Having larger openings enhances the view but still gives the window the detailing it needs.  The grilles have clean profiles and the arrangement resonates with tradition.  Even the shadows from the muntins add character to the room.

It's easy to justify replacing windows and doors in a home.  Just make sure you sweat the details or your investment may not reach its full potential.

Feel free to contact me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and visit our website at www.natellihomes.com.  We have some on-line coupons available for the month of February.

There are many reasons to replace old windows and doors in a home, but the architectural value of windows can't be overlooked.  Window grilles in particular change and enhance the persona of a home.  Removable grilles can be provided for ease of cleaning,  grilles can be sandwiched between the panes of glass so they provide an apparent division of divided lites, but the most pronounced and historically accurate use of grilles is a permanent application on the inside and the outside of the glass.  This type of grill, also known as "Simulated Divided Lite", produces the authentic look of a traditional window with milled wood and clad components separating the pieces of glass.  Windows with Simulated Divided Lites are significant, they have appropriate mass and are recognized by any layman as quality products that enhance the character and value of the home.

altIn this home in Potomac, MD, we installed new JeldWen custom sized clad windows with true divided lites.  The existing windows in the home did not have any grille divisions in the glass.  The window openings were effectively black holes in the facade - the home needed some architectural content.alt  Including windows with grilles immediately changed the look of the home.  The window openings took on a character;  the grilles added color and visual interest to the front elevation.

altUsing replacement windows with grilles is an easy but often overlooked change to the home.  We get used to how things are sometimes and need to consider options that may not have been considered before. altThere is a lot more about the architectural potential of windows that we will cover in a future post such as the size  and layout of the window divisions, the type of grilles to use and even the color, but for now just admire the architectural transformation of this home with the simple addition of grilles in the windows.

Feel free to contact me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit our website at www.natellihomes.com, where some valuable coupons for bathrooms, kitchens and windows are available for the month of February.

Arguably the most important rooms in a home are the kitchen and family room.  Families tend to congregate, eat, play, laugh, argue, watch TV and use computers in these rooms.  Dining Rooms are used a couple of times a year and Living Rooms almost have no purpose at all.

altFor this property owner in Bethesda, like the vast majority in the Washington, D.C. metro area, they needed an affordable expansion of the kitchen, family room and breakfast room.  This project included a family room addition about 20 feet square that adjoined the kitchen and breakfast room.  altThe family room connects to the kitchen through an open counter-top and two cased openings as you can see in the adjacent photo.  The breakfast room is large enough to house a generous table and will include a wall-mounted TV and wireless computer connections.

altThis project is ready for the finishes.  The drywall has been installed and primed, the sub-floor has been screwed and prepped to receive the wood flooring and equally important, the home is clean and safe.  A clean project is a safe project.  The windows are ready to be trimmed with casing and stool - this project is ready to continue on its speedy schedule.  Check our posts in a week or two - I will be sure to include some photos of the completed cabinets and trim.

Feel free to e-mail me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit our website at www.natellihomes.com.  We have valuable on-line coupons for kitchens, bathrooms and windows that will not be available for much longer.