Custom Home Builders
Have you ever wondered, “Where is the world’s largest truck stop”? If you’re not a trucker, you probably haven’t. But at Rocking O Construction, we have built several truck stops and travel plazas across Oklahoma, so we are very interested in this type of commercial construction and contracting. Anyway, the world’s largest truck stop title is currently claimed by Iowa 80, located on Interstate 80, Exit 284, just outside of Walcott, Iowa. You may not expect Iowa to be the location of such a large and well-built truck stop, but the state is a major crossroads for shipping within the industry.
Iowa 80 was originally opened in 1964, which means that it is celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2014. It has been added on to and re-modeled several times over the years by different contractors; it was not all built overnight or at any one time. Iowa 80 is a major destination for both truck drivers and tourists alike, as well as families that just happen to be out on the road and in need of a place to get gas, grab a quick bite to eat, or use the restroom facilities.
Iowa 80 has more than 50,000 items available for sale in the store and serves more than 5,000 patrons each day. This is a lot for a commercial business built in the country alongside a freeway! The truck stop also serves 2 million cups of coffee each year, and an average of 53 tons of beef and 58 tons of pork each year. More than 18 million eggs have been served over the past 5 decades, and the truck stop itself has received more than 64 million visitors to the main building, which is currently almost 100,000 square feet, and may be added on to at some point, if new construction ever takes place at the world’s largest truck stop in the future.
If you’re ever in the Walcott area, a visit to Iowa 80 is a quick and (potentially) inexpensive option that you might as well add to your agenda. The building itself is quite impressive to us, because we work in the commercial construction field and build truck stops on a regular basis along the highways of Oklahoma between Dallas and Tulsa, as well as other places.
Many homes built across the nation and in Oklahoma from the 1950’s to 1980’s were finished out with what many people refer to as “popcorn” or “cottage cheese” ceilings. You know what we mean – that extremely ugly texture on your ceiling that gives your home an extremely out-of-date appearance. This is a trend that, while still used some in the 1990’s, has fortunately gone out of style. However, many homeowners are now stuck with ugly ceilings. However, there is hope. You don’t have to move or burn the house down, because popcorn ceilings are removable – for a price.
The process is tedious and messy, but a popcorn ceiling can be removed by wetting the ceiling surface and then simply scraping the texture off with a trowel or putty knife. This process may sound simple, but it will require moving all of the furniture out of the room and putting down tarps to prevent the mess from getting to your carpet. Though it is far from pleasant, it can be done by the average Joe, without hiring a residential construction company.
If your home was built before 1979, it is important to note that it likely contains asbestos fibers. Asbestos usage in popcorn ceilings was banned in the United States under the Clean Air Act of 1978, so it wasn’t used after that point. But for older homes, this can make the removal of that ugly ceiling quite complicated. You may want to at least consult a licensed professional or hire a bonded construction company to ensure that the removal is done correctly, without contaminating your home.
Though it requires a lot of work, getting rid of your ugly popcorn ceiling can greatly improve the resale value of your home. If you hire a contractor or construction company to do the work for you, the process will be pain-free on your part; you just have to put up with the mess in your home for a short time while the job is being done. Getting rid of an ugly textured ceiling is always worth the cost involved, especially if you are looking to sell your home for top dollar. Prospective buyers who enter your home will immediately begin factoring in removal costs if they see that you still have an ugly popcorn ceiling. People simply do not like these ceilings and prefer their ceilings to be the same texture as the walls of the room.
In the aftermath of the housing crash after 2007, there was increasing skepticism as to really how viable home ownership was anymore. There’s been lots of talk about the banks and shady lending practices. Fingers pointed at the government, the banks, and irresponsible borrowers and others to blame the housing bubble bursting on, while it turned out to be far more complicated of a mess than could be easily outlined. Consumers, especially potential homeowners, are understandably leery about sinking a huge investment into a purchase that may end up depreciating over time instead of accruing value. Even in improving economy, both inside and outside of dallas.
In spite of all the criticism, it was the bread and butter 30-year fixed-loan mortgages of the housing market that proved to protect borrowers from the crash and sudden fluctuations in interest rates. Rather than a relic from some golden era long past, these old fashioned loans allowed home owners who had them to weather the housing crisis while borrowers with shorter term, adjustable-rate loans suddenly couldn’t adapt to the enormous changes in their payment requirements.
Buying a home, whether it is an older home or a brand new custom home builder , is not the frightening proposition it was just a few years ago. All the old reasons why it’s a good idea are still there with some more information that should encourage, rather than discourage, the purchase of property. Just as the fixed-rate loans kept millions in their homes during the uncertainty of the housing crisis and collapse of the economy, studies are showing that regardless of background, it is homeowners who are more financially stable in the long run. Their children do better in schools, vote more often than renters, and get more deeply involved with their communities. Home owners see the most reliability in their net worth, again regardless of background. They also gain better access to credit. All of this helps drive the economy to a more stable state.
Timber frame construction is what most people think of in the United States when you talk about building a home. These are the sorts of houses that custom home builders put up for people. Large wooden beams are cut and assembled to form a framework with smaller, narrower beams between them. Timber frame houses often leave some of the framework exposed as part of the external appearance or interior design such as exposed ceiling beams.
Wood panel homes are assembled from pre-fabricated panels. These panels have stiff foam insulation between thinner pieces of wood inside them. Much like their timber frame cousins, wood panel homes have many of the same potential enemies: wood rot, termites, and warping. But being primarily wood, they are also more renewable than some other construction materials.
Manufactured or prefabricated (prefab) homes use mass produced components built in a factory. Wood panel homes can be considered partially prefabricated because of the assembly of the paneling away from the actual construction site, manufactured homes are generally considered homes that are bought in one or more pieces which are then delivered to the property and assembled if necessary. Manufactured homes don’t even necessarily need to be placed on a permanent foundation.
Insulated Concrete Form (ICF) is a new type of home construction. Concrete forms are used to provide exceptionally strong structure for the home with very little new timber needed for the frame itself. ICF construction is more expensive to put up, but provides long term savings for heating and cooling bills and are also very fire and insect resistant as well.
Steel stud construction is most commonly found in commercial buildings but it can be found occasionally in residential homes. Steel stud uses a similar principal to timber framing but steel and screws replace wood and nails. Like ICF, steel stud constructed homes are more resistant to fire and insects while appearing almost identical to timber frame houses once completed.
Rocking O Construction is a respected Residential Construction or Custom Home Builders service with over 60 years of experience and excellence. We know the North Texas and Oklahoma region and have served the communities of Durant, Texoma, Dallas/Fort Worth, Oklahoma City and other areas in both residential and commercial contracting.
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