3 Reasons to Bookmark Responsible Contractors


While many homeowners are handy around the house, it’s rare that they’re both a skilled painted and trained electrician. And thus comes the time to hire a contractor. But where do you start? How do you know you can trust your home (and wallet and time) with this business? Responsible Contractors can help you make the right choice and save time during the search process. And because home maintenance and projects are always there, we have a helpful blog designed with the everyday homeowner in mind.

1. Your friends don’t have all the background 

Getting a referral from a trusted friend is one of the best ways to find the right dentist, restaurant and (sometimes) a contractor. However, just because your neighbor’s cousin had a stellar experience with one contractor doesn’t mean you just dive in without doing your homework. Our website lists only contractors who are licensed, bonded, insured, and their references must be verified before they can be approved and listed.

2. Save time… and money!

Skip the search engine looking for contractors and instead start with the directory at Responsible Contractors. Knowing that you can trust the contractors listed (and read testimonials from real customers) will save you a lot of time digging through archaic phone books or less trustworthy websites. You can use our directory for “shopping” around and get many free and no-obligation quotes to make sure you are getting the best deal for your project. Bonus: You don’t have to give out any of your personal information to browse our website. No username or password needed to find the right contractor for you.

3. Tips for improving, repairing and caring for your home

Want to know the latest kitchen trends? Click here. 

First time homeowner looking for advice to help you maintain your home? We’ve got it. 

Choosing window treatments for your home? We can help! 

Check out our blog for more helpful home improvement tips. 

Our goal is to assist consumers in the selection of the best general or specialty contractors for their particular needs. We also want to provide consumers with other useful information such as tips for home improvement, home repair, home care or selection of the best construction or remodeling products, so if you have tip or a great idea, or other useful information, please share it with us on our Facebook page.



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2018 New Years Resolutions for Your Home


By now you’ve probably set some resolutions or goals for the new year, but if not, it’s never too late to add home improvement projects to your list for 2018. Here we feature five ideas you can add to your list and tips to help you reach your goals.

But first, detox

After months of heavy holiday meals, a detox is all the rage this time of year. But along with that green smoothie also comes a home detox. First, get out the trash bags and open every drawer, cabinet and closet in your home. Set a goal each day to empty out one drawer or one portion of your closet each day for 30 days. The bags don’t always have to be full of trash, but clothing and other materials you can donate to your local Goodwill or Salvation Army. You can even set aside some bags if you’re up for a yard sale once the weather warms up. By the end of January you will be living with less clutter, and have more space to look around and appreciate your home. This will also help give you a fresh set of eyes to see future projects staring back at you (more on those below). Also, challenge yourself to no shopping (except for food and necessities) for the month of January. Along with purging, not bringing new clothes and decor into your home will really help you reset and be more strategic with what you want to have in your home. Bonus: once your closet is cleaned out, consider updating it with efficient storage to keep you organized the rest of the year.

New year, new paint

Nothing says get rid of that old paint quite like spring (which is right around the corner). Picture yourself opening up the blinds and curtains to take in all of that natural light, how much more relaxing will it be to have beautiful new (or simply touched up) walls? A professional painter can make sure you do the job right the first time, staying on track and on budget.

Kitchen renovation & pantry reset

Now that you’ve cleaned out that junk drawer and all the cabinets in the kitchen (right?), it’s time to dream up a kitchen renovation and start your design and planning process with a contractor. A contractor can help you achieve your kitchen dreams with new cabinets, backsplash and countertops. If you’re wanting to start smaller, enlist a contractor to help you design a new pantry with dedicated storage solutions. Then, instead of opening the pantry overwhelmed, you can exhale a big sigh and see exactly what ingredients you have ready to whip up dinner.

Deck and patio remodel

No better time than now to start working on a new deck or patio. Once you’ve know where and how big you want your deck or patio, you will need a to decide whether you want a wood or composite deck, or maybe a stone or stamped concrete patio. You may also want to consider if you will need railings, a deck or patio cover, and how it will effect your landscaping and existing structures. Do you want a contractor who specializes in particular type of deck or patio, or someone who can handle all phases of your project? Your choice of materials and the expertise of your contractor will greatly effect the quality and final cost. A good contractor can recommend the best materials for your budget and design, but be sure to get multiple bids and check references.

Tackle the garage once and for all 

We all know the garage becomes the biggest black hole for “stuff” in your home, and often times serves more of a storage solution for household items than for its intended purpose of keeping your cars safe and secure. You’ll need to start with junk removal, taking your trash bags through every corner and shelf. As you’re removing trash or other things that don’t belong, think about what an organized garage would look like for you. Consider what you need. Need new doors, cabinets, flooring or storage systems? What is the main purpose of your garage going to be – storage, vehicle shelter, workshop? Just like building a home there are a lot of considerations. Simple or complex, considering all the possibilities will help you select the best contractor for your needs.

Want more ideas? Check out these helpful solutions:

4 clever ways to ban clutter with multi-functional storage solutions
Built-ins beyond the bookshelf
The kitchen remodel: is it for me?

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4 Reasons to Remove a Tree


As residents of the Pacific Northwest, we are fortunate to have city skylines and backyards plush with trees. But sadly we need to safely remove trees due to some obvious and not-so-obvious reasons. A professional tree removal service is a necessary part of removing large, dangerous, or hard to reach trees. This is not a weekend job for even the most talented do-it-yourself homeowner.


It may be difficult to imagine your front yard without that large tree, but there are many important reasons why this might be necessary:

  1. Dead trees can fall and damage your home or cars. They can attract unwanted pests such as termites and rats. Falling branches could cost you thousands of dollars in repairs or medical bills if it were to fall on a person or your pets.
  2. Over-sized and unmanageable trees and branches can be dangerous, but they may also just need a professional pruning without completely removing the tree.
  3. Tree disease is contagious. If your tree died from a disease, it needs to be removed as it could pass on the disease to other trees nearby.
  4. It’s not just the branches that can cause issues, but below the ground, large and forceful roots can grow long and wide, severely impacting your home, foundation and driveway.

Removing a tree from your home or commercial property is no easy do-it-yourself weekend job. Ranger Tree Experts specialize in tree pruning, removal and other services for managing your large, difficult to handle trees. Their friendly and experienced professionals have the talent and skill to get your trees into great shape no matter how big or difficult the job may seem. As a full service tree company, they take a lot of pride in offering everything that you need to make sure your big trees are at their best.


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Closet and Storage FAQs

Closet-Guys (1)

The Closet Guys was founded in 1994 and serves the Pacific Northwest with offices in Marysville and Spokane. They service clients from Everett to the South Sound. The Closet Guys have more than 13 years experience creating functional, flexible spaces for homes and offices while providing high-quality professional craftsmanship.

Why should I hire a professional instead of just buying closet parts from a local home improvement store and put it together myself?
Your time is valuable, and often the money that you saved to do-it-yourself is not nearly enough to justify your frustrations. When you compare the quality of the product, the risks, costs, and the time it takes to do it yourself, the savings is quickly outweighed. We professionally design, manufacture, and install custom closets, garage storage systems and other space saving systems every day, and we know what to look for to make sure our systems function and fit properly?

How do I design my closet?
Just give us a call an our professional design team will assist you with a free estimate.

What features and accessories are available?
We offer a wide range of features and accessories for our closet, garage and pantry storage systems. These include: bathroom storage and hardware, book cases, closet, kitchen and laundry organizers, outdoor shelving, utility shelving and more.


What can I expect on price?
Materials, size of room, number and type of units, color/wood tone choice and accessories all influence the cost. We can design your system and tailor it to fit the best design options for your needs and budget.

What colors or finishes do you offer?
Popular colors and finishes change constantly and so will the choices we make available to you. Choosing stocked colors allows you the shortest lead time and the least expense. Through our suppliers, we have available color choices to meet the most discriminating demands.

Are your closet systems adjustable? Can I change my design down the road if I need to?
Our solutions are designed so that you can easily move shelves as your needs change.

How long does it take?
Some systems can be completed as quickly as one week from consultation to installation, though most systems take about 10 to 14 business days to complete with the most complex or custom systems taking 14-30 days. Most of our installations are completed in just a single day!

Do you guarantee your materials?
Yes, we offer a lifetime guarantee on the products we manufacture and install.


“We do mostly custom homes and have been using The Closet Guys for 20 years. They do our closets, pantries, storage areas and any melamine shelving. They are really good at walking the job with you, setting up the job, taking accurate measurements, and explaining everything. They have great follow up, are reliable, and do the job for the agreed price. The fact we are still using them after 20 years speak to the quality of their work.” Marla, Spokane Valley

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4 Stunning Kitchen Trends for 2018

Is updating your kitchen one of your New Year’s resolutions? Trendy countertop and cabinet ideas can be a fun way to update your kitchen while remaining both eye-catching and timeless.

Statement Islands

The island is the centerpiece of your kitchen and frequently used for dinner, homework, or social gatherings.  Change things up from the rest of your cabinets and paint it a different color, or add reclaimed wood for an urban rustic look.


(Source: interiorzine.com)

Counter top materials

For a clean and sleek look, quartz is a popular choice going into 2018 among homeowners because of its resistance to scrapes and scratches.

Countertop Solutions is a fabricator and installer of solid surface products and a dealer for quartz and granite products. Solid surface are non-porous low-maintenance material used for a variety of surfaces and often mimics the appearance of granite, marble, stone, and other naturally occurring materials.


(Source: lizmarieblog)

Integrating appliances with clever paneling and built-ins

The minimalism trend carries into the kitchen by integrating appliances with the cabinets. With clever paneling and built-ins, you can keep the bulky refrigerator out of site as it blends in seamlessly.


(Source: nickels cabinets)

Open shelving and few upper cabinets

Create a comfortable and airy feel in your kitchen by eliminating upper cabinets to allow for open shelves. You can display your best dishware and art on the shelves.


Choosing a contractor is never a task to be taken lightly, and when it comes to your home or business’ surfaces, we are proud to recommend Countertop Solutions, knowing that you will be in good hands. At Responsible Contractors, we aim to bring you the best in each industry.

To read more about Countertop Solutions and find other contractors we recommend, please visit us at http://www.responsiblecontractors.com.

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Prepare Your Home Before Holiday and Winter Travel

seattlepi credit

(Photo credit seattlepi.com)

Imagine coming home after the holiday travel season to expensive damage that happened while you were away. The winter weather and other elements often damage homes that are left unprepared while vacant while the homeowners are traveling. These important proactive projects will help prevent loss and devastation from occurring while you’re away.

Heating and Fireplace

Protect electronics, house plants and pipes (more on that below), by setting the right temperature in your home. Too cold and you can see damage, too warm and you’ll rack up your utility bill. Keep your thermostat set between 50 and 60 degrees to prevent appliances from working too hard. If you are leaving pets at home, along with the proper care you’ll need from a trusted friend to check in on them, make sure you leave your home at a comfortable temperature. You’ll want to keep your home warmer than 60 degrees; for specific information contact your veterinarian.

If you have a traditional wood fireplace, make sure it is completely cooled and cleaned out before you leave. Close the damper to prevent warm indoor air for escaping. If you need your fireplace inspected or repaired, call a fireplace contractor. 

Frozen and Leaking Pipes

Does your bathroom sink have a small trickle? This little leak can add up costs while you’re away. Do a complete inspection of all faucets to ensure you’re covered.

If no one is staying in your home while you’re away, turn off the main valve. Shutting the valve off will help prevent major damage should a pipe burst or faucet leak. Keeping your home at the suggested temperature (50-60 degrees) will help prevent pipes from freezing, and ultimately bursting.

If you haven’t winterized your outdoor pipes yet, make sure to insulate exposed pipes with rubber or fiberglass sleeves. Remove hoses and cover the spigots.

Contact Pac West Plumbing to have any leaks repaired before you leave, and get more information about how they can help solve and prevent future plumbing problems.


Energy Vampires

Think you’ll save money by just being out of your house for several days? Try again. Computers, coffee pots and lamps are just a few examples of electronics that suck energy even when not in use. Unplug these items while you’re away to actually see cost savings. Just don’t unplug your refrigerator!

Security and Safety

Keep an outdoor light on or invest in a motion-sensor light to help deter someone from breaking into your home. Put your mail and newspapers on hold as to not tip off any criminals that the house is empty. Leave a key with a trusted friend to check in on your home and inspect any possible damage or security breaches.




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Home Tips: Prolong the Life of your Roof with Maintenance


Roof damage and leaks don’t get better with time, just more expensive.

To help prolong the life of your roof it’s important to invest in a professional who can provide frequent and safe roof maintenance and cleaning. A general inspection will determine if you have any missing, lifted or loose shingles, and inspect for mold, cracks or peeling.


If you roof shows signs of damage, contact Tony’s Roofcare immediately to speak to an expert and receive your commitment-free quote. Signs that may indicate a roof replacement is needed include: missing, cracked or curling shingles, leakage in the attic after heavy rains and even higher than usual energy bills.

The weather has the greatest impact on the quality of your roof. You should clean your gutters twice during the fall and winter and once in the summer. It’s also important to keep heavy snow off your eavesdrops and cleared out of ridge vents. Make any sure branches, leaves and other debris are cleared from the roof. If you choose to do this yourself, make sure it’s during a dry and sunny day and have someone with you to assist.

If your home has a cedar shake roof, you can lengthen the lifespan of the material with either pressure washing or air cleaning along with a chemical preservative. Tile roofs need to be kept clean of debris to keep them from leaking. Debris or moss can cause water to clog any metal flashing and possibly drive under tiles. Contact the experts at Tony’s Roofcare, who can properly provide this maintenance, helping your roof to last for more than 30 years.

Tony’s Roofcare has been serving the South King and Pierce County area since 1997. A family-owned and operated and fully licensed and insured company, Tony’s offers roof repair, cleaning and roof installation.



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