Author: Mike Burns

Hiring professionals results in joy!

30 Sep Westmount | as easy as 1, 2, 3 !

You can't turn on the television without seeing a DIY reality program where 'everyone is a carpenter!' What was portrayed to be a simple list of upgrades, 'just remove that wall', 'replace the tub', or 'extend the deck', all made to sound so easy. DIY? Or perhaps 'that guy next door can help?' He's handy! All too often these projects are MUCH bigger than expected and can end in disaster. And as mentioned in other posts, there is no way of knowing what might be revealed once things start getting pulled down. Know exactly what is involved right from the start. Advice, timeline, budget, anticipated hold ups, product knowledge and options, it's all part of our job. Employ professional experienced contractors right from start and your renovation can be a pleasure! A perfect example is Jonathan's work on our Westmount renovation. With work almost complete our client will be enjoying their home without having to worry about a thing! ...

Read More
image

25 Sep Clifton St | finishing touches

The countdown is on for finishing up work at our Clifton St build. As our team put their focus on structural details and interior finishes, the team from Concreations were back to lay paving and bring the architectural vision of Outside Planning and Design to life. Photos show the gorgeous bespoke cedar bench carefully crafted by Corey and Phil, and the stunning slate pavers that complete the exterior architect design. Stay tuned for the final reveal of this MRB showpiece. ...

Read More
image

23 Sep Clifton St | Not just a ceiling

Our Clifton Street build has many bespoke features, the stairs, and outdoor cedar benches to name a few. Another stunning installation in this home is the design and craftsmanship of the drop ceilings. Photos show Pete at work meticulously cutting and fitting SPF (Spruce, Pine, Fir), more often used as flooring, into this stunning feature ceiling. Holes are cut in preparation for lighting, and corners are carefully mitred for a perfect finish. Finally, a urethane coat is applied for a subtle matt finish allowing the beauty of the natural wood to become the highlight. ...

Read More
image

18 Sep Westmount | Exterior

Jonathan and his team are fast crossing things off that long list at our Westmount renovation. And that was just the interior! We have also commenced work on the extensive list of upgrades that are being embarked upon on the exterior. -Stripped complete exterior cladding and fascia/soffit from house -Installation Vaproshield building wrap on entire house -Installation of cladding rain screen -Installation of new cape cod siding, cap cod v-joint soffit and cape cod wooden fascia boards -House will also be re-roofed. ...

Read More
image

16 Sep For Sale | 2454 James St

Remember our James Street job completed in early 2012? These gorgeous flats could now be yours. Design by Omar Gandhi and craftsmanship and work by MRB Contracting, an investment opportunity like this doesn't come along too often. For full details and further appraisal of this listing head to Red Door Realty Attention to detail is evident in all aspects of the buildings form & function The design offers clean architecture with an intuitive living space ...

Read More
image

11 Sep Clifton St | Stairs

Take a minute to check out what foreman Smitty has been crafting. Wow! Way beyond a functioning staircase, these stairs are a focal point and fabulous feature. Smitty cut these awesome stringers from 3 1/2 x 12 inch Parallam. Parallam is made from clipped veneer strands laid in parallel alignment and bonded with adhesive. Parallam can be made from any wood species, but Douglas-fir, southern pine, western hemlock, and yellow-poplar are commonly chosen because of their superior strength. Brackets were mounted before drywall (inside the wall), so leaving just a 'fin' protruding to attach the stair landing. 3" thick pine treads, coated with Urethane, and all fastened together with the strength of galvanised carriage bolts, leave this installation looking as though it's floating in air. ...

Read More
image

09 Sep Black Point | Deck

Meanwhile, back to Scottie and 'the dream job.' He and his team have been crafting the finishing touches on the exterior of this MRB design-build. Each post on the deck has been meticulously rabbeted to allow the glass panels to slide in snugly with no handrail leaving unobstructed views of Blind Bay and beyond. Simultaneous work on the interior, and the drywall is all but hung and taped ready for painting. ...

Read More
image

04 Sep Westmount | Renovation

A significant renovation on this Westmount home has been keeping MRB newbie Jonathan and his team busy. The list of jobs is long, and include; -Complete main floor gut right back to framing -Installation of several structural beams to enable us to remove walls for open plan -Rewire of entire main floor and installation of new 200 amp electrical service -Reframed several window units to accommodate two large units that will allow ample natural light throughout the main floor -Reframed fireplace in center of main floor to integrate existing wood burning fireplace insert into the new clean modern lines of the new space -Kitchen will be relocated to the west side of the home -Addition of main floor powder room -Existing stairs and railings will remain to keep some of the homes original charm. ...

Read More
image

02 Sep MRB | Design Build

MRB's master carpenters don't just build, we craft. With attention to the finest detail, we are natural designers. How a project fits together is important to us, which is why we are now offering a fully design and build service. Our in-house designer Elaine Lourdes shares the MRB passion, and after a decade of experience practicing architecture in Asia and Scotland, Elaine understands how an integrated design and build team produces the results that our clients deserve. One team The MRB team brings together talented players who are invested in every stage of play. From first sketches through detail design, estimating, approvals to construction, one team works together and manages from start to finish. More Control With designer, carpenter, estimator and project manager working side by side, we have greater certainty over quality, cost and time. We understand the implications of design decisions and refine the details to find optimum solutions...

Read More
image

28 Aug For Sale | 213 Theatre Loft

Like what you see? Take a tour through this finely crafted, highly stylised, modern theatre loft that could be yours. Click on the photo below to watch a video of the space… 'A picture says 1000 words', but if you need more; New custom kitchen. Baltic birch doors and boxes, laminated with high gloss laminate finish, soft close Blum door hinges and drawer slides. Walnut panels and accents. Franke kitchen sink with Blanco faucet and LED under cabinet lights Stained spruce slat wall and ceiling cladding, front and back wall of unit. The carefully selected furnishings make this “pied-à-terre” a very exciting condo package for anyone looking to be close to all the action the Halifax Peninsula has to offer. Privacy, south facing windows & above compromise design & craftsmanship.   For further appraisal contact Jules jules@juleschamberlain.ca...

Read More
#icebucketchallenge #als

26 Aug MRB | #icebucketchallenge

Challenge ' A call to engage in a contest, fight, or competition: a challenge to a duel.' In true MRB spirit, the team took on the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge with energy and enthusiasm. With the 24 hour clock ticking, the site was prepared and plans meticulously reviewed. I'm not sure who was responsible for bringing uniforms, but thank goodness workplace safety was still priority! (Thanks Steevo:) Good on you team, a job well done.   ...

Read More
image

21 Aug Walnut St | Product choices

A new rear exterior clad with Cape Cod Wood Siding is a natural choice on a job like this. These gorgeous old homes have stood the test of time and earned the right to be repaired and restored with quality materials. The rear entryway was removed and rebuilt with rough sawn spruce that is treated with Lifetime. Lifetime is an all natural wood preservative used as an alternative to toxic treatments and poisons for outdoor applications. It's truly an environmentally friendly wood treatment product. After application, and over time, with exposure to the weather that usually causes the wood finish to deteriate, Lifetime treated wood is enhanced. The stunning grey and silver tones are beautiful. This finish treatment is a great choice for tying the old and new together in a restoration project. ...

Read More
Elite Marble and Tile, Mapeguard

19 Aug Walnut St | Mapeguard

Unlike the start to finish MRB builds where we meticulously build walls and floors straight and level, Steevo and his team tackle the renovations in homes that have often seen 100 years of foot traffic, shifting, settling and life! So, Steevo not only uses his craftsmanship and skills to prop up, and replace tired footings and supports (the stuff you don't see), but also utilises some of the many innovative products available to us. This week, they have been inside ensuring the flooring through the kitchen is level before laying new tile. After a self levelling compound has been applied, our friends from Elite Marble and Tile came in to lay Mapeguard. 'This flexible, thin, crack isolation membrane helps to prevent future cracks in floors with movement of up to 10mm.' ...

Read More
GRPhoto_110331_3663

14 Aug Congratulations Omar

Congratulations to our friend Omar Gandhi. Omar recently became the deserving recipient of the Prix de Rome prize from the Canada Council. The prize is awarded annually to a young architect or architectural firm in recognition of outstanding achievement.  Having worked closely with Omar on several of our builds, Moore Studio, West End Addition and Oxford Street, we are so excited to celebrate his achievements and success. Omar Gandhi Architect Inc. design studio is responsible for the drawings of MRB's upcoming build at Purcells Cove Rd. For a sneak peak at the fabulous location New Project and drawings 'Stereo Vision' ...

Read More
image

12 Aug Clifton St | green roof landscape

Work at Clifton Street is fast transforming this work site into a home. Neat and clean lines extend from the architectural design of the house to collaborate with the front entrance landscape, along with the sidewalk upgrades, this new home is really merging back into Clifton Street. Specially chosen membrane sealing the roof on the backyard shed will enable the space to become a roof top garden. Landscape Architect, Sue Sirrs 'Outside planning and design' approaches each rooftop with careful consideration to ensure that requirements are met and plants grow and thrive. We are on the home stretch, stay tuned for updates as this build nears it's completion. ...

Read More
image

07 Aug Black Point | progress

Outdoor living spaces have been fitted with convenient storage cupboards and built in bench seating. Relaxed decking and that stunning tricolour cladding settle the build into the landscape and invite you to explore the beach and stunning vista beyond. This MRB design provides our owner with the convenience of an attached carport that steps right onto the deck. With the inspectors tick of approval on the framing, electrical and plumbing indoors, Scottie and the team will see the spray in foam insulation commence today. When insulation is complete, the team can begin with interior finishes. Modest in size, but proud in attention to detail and design, I am loving watching this build grow. ...

Read More
image

05 Aug MRB | new fleet

'Feels like Christmas morning.' After weeks of chatter, build up, and anticipation it was time. Mike had been planning and crafting with his friends at 'O'Regans' to secure the right deal. Some new team members means some new team tools. The choice of color? well that was easy! The added extras? there are plenty; Tool boxes, Back racks, Side rails. Everything a contractor needs. And most importantly, the branding. The transformation of a single use expense to a multi tasking powerful marketing tool! Roll out the new and improved MRB Fleet. We hope to see you around! ...

Read More
image

31 Jul Walnut St | progress

Before Steevo and his team could start the new front porch, they had to jack up the roof to correct and straighten the sag and install new support posts. Usually, holes are dug and MRB prefer to use Postech screw piles for decking foundation, however, as Steevo discovered when he hit solid rock, this job required a different approach. Steevo drilled directly into the solid rock and installed rebar to reinforce the post footings. Meanwhile on the inside, the bathroom is awaiting inspection and ready for drywall. ...

Read More
#celebrationzone
#pei2014

29 Jul MRB Family weekend @PEI

MRB team mates and honorary members saddled up the trucks early Thursday morning and hit the road bound for Prince Edward Island. With her exceptional organisational skill, Lindsay had planned this, the 3rd annual, MRB in PEI one to be remembered. A couple of action packed days swinging golf clubs and casting fishing lines, before resting weary heads in MRB built mobile homes (A.K.A tents!), primed the team for a final night on the town. Congratulations Charlottetown and PEI outdoor activities, you were magnificent. As was Mike Burns golf game! ...

Read More
image

22 Jul Black Point | Concrete floor

Scotties 'Black Point dream job' now has a floor! In floor heating was laid over 3 inches of spray foam insulation, then the concrete was poured. In this instance, the concrete was dyed 'dark grey', unlike the concrete floor Scottie recently installed at Wilson Blvd, where a finish/stain was applied after the pour. Once polished, a concrete floor is long lasting, durable, and low maintenance. A simple warm soapy wash once a week can see this floor give up to 100 years of service. A sensible choice for sustainable building. ...

Read More