Molntjänster

Molntjänster

På SWC Technology Partners arbetar vi med våra kunder för att förstå det bästa sättet att utnyttja molnet. Ofta gånger vi hitta sätt för våra kunder att:

Minska sin årliga kapital spendera på teknisk infrastruktur
Förbättra tillämpningen och servicetillgänglighet
Öka nätverk och applikations svarstid
Utöka befintliga applikationer till Cloud leveranssystem
SWC Levererar molnet via:

SWC Cloud | rådgivandemolntjänster
SWC fokuserar på att leverera snabba, pragmatiska och produktiva Cloud-baserade lösningar. Det första steget är att förstå våra kunders behov och sedan utforma rätt strategi – oavsett om det är SWC Cloud, Amazon Web Services (AWS) eller Microsoft Azure.

SWC Cloud | Programvara
Flytta ett program till molnet kan ge effektiviteten av en lyhörd och skalbar infrastruktur och möjligheten och tillgängligheten i den mobila marknaden. På SWC arbetar vi med våra kunder för att arkitekten och leverera en tydlig, pragmatisk och framgångsrik väg till molnet med hjälp av marknadsledande lösningar, såsom Microsoft Azure och Office 365.

SWC Cloud | Återhämtning
Planering för en katastrof är smart. Tills nyligen var det också dyrt. Möjligheten att återhämta sig från en katastrofal händelse har traditionellt krävt nära dubblering av en hel miljö på en avlägsen plats. Idag erbjuder SWC Cloud ett betydligt billigare och lika tillförlitlig lösning.

SWC Cloud | Nätverk
Kostnaden för att köra ett serverrum behöver inte vara kostnaden för att göra affärer. Flytta din infrastruktur till SWC Cloud kan ge din organisation med möjlighet att ”komma ut ur hårdvaran verksamheten” – sparar dyrbar kapital och samtidigt förbättra den tekniska skalbarhet och prestanda.

Best Neighborhood Holiday Light Displays in St. Louis

If you’re lucky enough to spend your holidays in St. Louis, you have many incredible options for holiday light displays – from the Missouri Botanical Gardens to Wild Lights at the St. Louis Zoo, but the unsung heroes of this festive season are the homeowners who spend days stringing lights, synchronizing songs and blissfully arranging lawn inflatables for your entertainment. Below is a short list of some of the best home holiday light displays in St. Louis.

Ladue Pines Home: Toys for Tots Christmas Show

The light show, in the Ladue Pines neighborhood, 1/2 mile west of I-270, east of 141 is perhaps the most impressive single-home display in the region. The house boasts 125,000 lights timed to a soundtrack that broadcasts via radio frequency, incredible video features, and a firmly captivated audience of cars most nights during the season.

The house is the only residential collection point for Toys for Tots donations in the region, and often has a Marine volunteer on hand on the weekends to assist in collection of donations. Last year, the Christmas display collected more than 3,000 toys for the needy during the season.

Patch was there in early December, when the Marines were there in person to collect donations, along with Santa, while a private party in the decorated back yard was also bringing in donations by the carload. Click here for more information on the display.

Candy Cane Lane: St. Louis Hills Neighborhood

St Louis Christmas LightsLocated in the 6500 block of Murdoch, the St. Louis Hills neighborhood lies squarely between two St. Louis greats – Francis Park and Ted Drewes custard stand. The neighborhood kicks off the holiday season with a Christmas Tree lighting each year on the Sunday after Thanksgiving. Neighborhood residents are so eager to participate in the annual tradition that dozens of volunteers help the elderly or otherwise busy with trimming their homes to ensure that holiday cheer shines from every home. Every visitor to the 6500 block of Murdoch receives a candy cane on weekend evenings, and there are frequently showings of holiday favorite movies on the laws of nearby neighbors. Prizes are awarded for the best decorated house and best block in the neighborhood.

Don’t forget to bring along money when you go. The neighborhood association collects more than $ 10,000 each season for a rotating list of charities. Click for directions to Candy Cane Lane.

St. Charles County Home: Never Enough Christmas Lights

2013 RGB SnowThis St. Charles County House, shines bright with more than 71,000 lights, which, if stretched end-to-end, would stretch well over 4.2 miles. The lights, connected with more than 300 extension cords, take the homeowners around 18 days to assemble each year. The homeowners are now in their 9th year of synchronizing Christmas lights and songs to create a spectacular display that attracts hundreds to St. Charles County each year, and have named their annual project “Never Enough Christmas Lights.” The home at 607 Calamar Court is located off Highway N, across from the Wehrenberg Theater. A donation box set up next to their sign collections donations for Hope Ministries Food Pantry.

The show runs nightly Sunday through Thursday 5 pm to 10 pm, Friday and Saturday 5 pm to 11 pm, through New Year’s Eve.

Click here for driving directions to the home.

What Christmas light displays do you wait all year to see – in a nearby neighborhood or otherwise? Share them below in the comments section. Happy Holidays from Hibbs Homes to yours!

It’s The Custom | St Louis Home Builder Hibbs Homes

High Performance Building: Better Homes Through Better Walls

High performance home building reimagines the entire home building process from the studs out. There are many problems with conventional framing that prevent a home from performing at it’s peak efficiency. In conventional framing, a traditional 2×4 stud is used which gives little to no room for insulation, and there are several points of thermal exchange between the inside and outside, driving up utility costs and driving down indoor air quality.

When Hibbs Homes builds a high performance home, we scrap conventional framing techniques in favor of improved methods to create a better envelope with controlled fresh air exchange system, preventing thermal exchange, and promoting better indoor air quality. Here are a couple of the most common techniques we use when building better homes using high performance walls.

High Performance Walls

Our Active House USA project utilized SIPs panels to bolster the home’s outstanding air quality and efficiency.

SIPs Panels
Structural Insulated Panels (SIPs) are taking hold in the high performance building industry. Constructed using a layer of insulating foam between layers of strand board, SIPs panels are cut to dimensions and fabricated off site then pieced together by a skilled crew during the framing process. With less seams and ready-made insulation, thermal exchange opportunities are dramatically lower with SIPs panels making them one of the more popular high performance wall options.

 

 

 

High Performance Walls

This may not look like much, but these 2×6 walls coupled with a proper caulk and seal package and insulation have a big impact on a home’s performance.

Advanced Framing
Another option for high performance walls, advanced framing uses less wood and allows for greater insulation opportunities. The method is one of the easier to adopt, and was created in the 1970’s. Advanced framing uses 2×6 studs and adapts the way windows, doors and joints are constructed to create less air infiltration and accommodate more insulation. Insulation such as blow-in cellulose and spray foam insulation dramatically improve the home’s R value when used in advanced framing, and the use of cement fibercement siding prevents air exchange that much more.

As a dedicated custom builder we have become skilled at adapting and applying the science of high performance building to the unique needs of each home we build, so there are other techniques and materials that might be right for one home and not another.

If you’d like to learn more about high performance building and how it can save your family money on daily living and maintenance costs, call me at 314.581.8205 or email me at kim@hibbshomes.com to schedule a complimentary consultation.

It’s The Custom | St Louis Home Builder Hibbs Homes

Eight Design Ideas for Building a Multigenerational Home

Eight Home Design Ideas for Multigenerational Homes | Hibbs HomesOnce seldom seen, an increasing number of Americans are living with more than one generation under one roof after years in a single-family household. Reasons range from financial to comfort to alternatives to nursing homes. In fact, a 2012 study found 61% of Americans have friends or family who have lived with their parents, and 32% of adult children expect to share their home with their parents in the future. These numbers are showing a sharp increase over years before.

There are many ways a custom builder can accommodate a multigenerational family, or assist you with building a new home you can easily transition to a multigenerational household. When you are working with your builder, architect, and interior designer explain to them that you’d like your home to include spaces that can flex to accommodate multiple families. Here are right ideas your custom home builder can help you elegantly incorporate into your floor plan:

1. Design a study that easily transitions to a second master bedroom
2. Install A.V. and a small bar in a loft space to create basic apartment living
3. Expand your staircase and hallway width to accommodate a chair lift
4. Include a second entryway for an attached home
5. Add a private bathroom for every bedroom
6. Place the master suite and multiple bedrooms on the main floor
7. Three car garages and large parking pads to accommodate multiple vehicles
8. Multiple family-room style spaces that can be closed off via french doors to offer privacy

Building a custom home is an ideal solution for creating a home flexible enough that is can be managed as your family shifts. There are many benefits to multigenerational living, and if you build your home to fit your future you can take advantage of the benefits while cutting back on some of the privacy issues and other strains of living as one big family.

It’s The Custom | St Louis Home Builder Hibbs Homes

Make Your Home More Energy Efficient in Fifteen Minutes

energyefficientbuilderEven the most energy efficient home is likely wasting energy every minute of every day. Why? Many of us have a massive amount of small appliances and devices that are called “vampire” products because they never turn completely off. That clever term is used because they suck power the entire time they are plugged in, and for some appliances that means all day, every day.

But, it doesn’t have to be that way. You can turn down the juice on these hogs, and in some cases save almost 10% on your energy bill in doing do. Here’s a quick simple plan on how you can decrease your energy bills in just fifteen minutes:

Unplug the following appliances when not in use. You can plug these all into a power strip to make it easier to turn them on and off when not in use.

  • Computers. You can reduce its energy usage by as much as 250 percent by unplugging and turning off your laptops and desktops when not in use.
  • Toaster. Keep this guy off the outlet until it’s time for your next pop tart and save energy.
  • Cell phones. Once you’re battery is fully charged, unplug the entire charging mechanism to save power.
  • DVR and cable box. Unless you are planning to DVR those infomercials, unplug your DVR and cable box to save power, especially when you will be leaving town.
  • Coffee machine. If you are trying to save money by brewing your own cup, save energy as well by unplugging it when your brew is over.

Find additional vampire appliances lurking in your home. Purchase an energy wattmeter that you can plug a device into (you can find them online for less than $ 20 online), and measure the amount of energy it is drawing.

With these tips, fifteen minutes, and less than $ 20 you can take your high performance home‘s energy consumption even lower. And don’t forget to get creative. Though you can’t unplug your fridge and A/C – the biggest energy consumers in many homes, especially homes that aren’t built using high performance construction practices – you might be surprised by the amount of energy you can save with the simple pull of a plug or flip of a power strip switch.

Want to learn more about how high performance home building can take your home’s energy consumption to near zero? Call us today to schedule a free consultation at 314.581.8205

It’s The Custom | St Louis Home Builder Hibbs Homes

Proud Green Home St Louis Breaks Ground

Proud Green Home St. Louis

The front elevation of our Proud Green Home St. Louis project.

Green homes are statistically more durable, comfortable, and cost effective for homeowners, so why isn’t everyone buying or building one? Industry professionals and scholars have found the biggest stumbling block in mass adoption of green homes is the lack of education, not only among home buyers but also among those in the building industry.

Like the energy efficient home renovation we completed in Olivette, MO and Active House USA, Hibbs Homes has found another opportunity to work with an outstanding client and team to build a home to help address that educational gap. We have teamed with Proud Green Home, a comprehensive online resource on green home building, to build the second Proud Green Home project in the country and Hibbs Homes’ third high performance building showcase home here in St. Louis.

Proud Green Home St. Louis is a custom home under construction in Wildwood, MO that will operate as a virtual classroom during construction and after closing. Our clients, who are relocating to St. Louis from Texas, chose to build their home green because their child has severe allergy and asthma issues that will tremendously benefit from the healthier indoor air quality inherent in a high performance home.

During the construction of the home, Hibbs Homes is teaming with specialized manufacturers to create objective educational content on science and systems that are being relied on to make this home high performance, which will be collected for research and educational purposes on the Proud Green Home website. We are also planning special community and industry events on site to give people the opportunity to learn about high performance building components first hand.

The first Proud Green Home, Proud Green Home at Serenbe, was built in Georgia and has been recognized by the National Association of Home Builders as a 2014 Home of the Year, and by the Department of Energy in a case study as the first Zero Energy Ready Home in the state of Georgia.

We will be sharing our experiences and the content created around this home as well as announcements about events and milestones on our social media, here on our blog, and on ProudGreenHome.com. We can’t wait to share what we are doing.

It’s The Custom | St Louis Home Builder Hibbs Homes

For New Single Family Home Builders, NGBS Takes a Lead Over LEED

NGBS versus LEED Homes Chart

This chart from eyeonhousing.org show how LEED and NGBS compare. The blue bars represent single family homes.

When you build a new home there are a few major decisions to make before you start turning dirt: where to build, who to build with, and how to build. These big decisions help to shape many aspects of your project, even when building a custom home.

Many of the new homes being built today are green (they are also called high performance homes), and if you decide to build a new high performance or green home you are likely exploring the different green building certifications and what they mean for your your new home, the finances of your project, and the building process.

At Hibbs Homes the green homes we build that are certified generally go through the National Green Building Standard (NGBS), but there are several other certifying organizations we work with including Energy Star, WaterSense and Indoor airPLUS to name a few. You have likely also heard about LEED certifications either in articles or from other builders. (Read about the differences between the NGBS and LEED certifications.)

Both are valid residential building certification methods, but the National Association of Home Builders is reporting that NGBS certified homes are outpacing the number of LEED certified homes in the single resident home building market (Read more about the report). Part of the reason for this could be the lower costs for NGBS certifications coupled with the NGBS system being tailored to and more responsive to residential building – making it a favorite with new home builders like us who actively focus on green building.

What does this mean for our clients? We speculate that as the green housing market continues to grow in St. Louis there will be more buyers looking specifically for certified homes. We believe that as the number of NGBS homes continue to grow it will operate as a name brand for green housing certifications like Energy Star and other well know high performance product standards. This ideally will help lead to better education and wider adoption of green building – a situation that is both good for green builders and for green homeowners.

If you’d like to read about and see pictures of some of the green homes we’ve built around St. Louis, including the first Active House in the US, head over to our new homes portfolio. You can also call us at 314.581.8205 with any specific questions you may have.

 

It’s The Custom | St Louis Home Builder Hibbs Homes

How Proud Green Home St. Louis Helps Ease Family’s Allergy Issues

Proud Green Home St. Louis Framing

Matt Belcher, Verdatek Solutions, discusses the home’s benefits as framing takes place on the Proud Green Home St. Louis.

When the Keuntz family began planning their move to St. Louis they knew the risk of moving into an older home with dust or mold potential was out of the question because of their son’s struggle with allergy issues. After speaking with some builders from their hometown in Texas they discovered that high performance, green homes was an ideal solution for building a home in which their entire family could thrive.

While there are structural and financial benefits to building a new home using high performance techniques, what was especially important was the cleaner indoor air due to product selection and methods that will not affect their son’s allergies. There are two key points about the Proud Green Home St. Louis that, like other green homes we build, contribute to the better indoor air quality:

VOC’s
Traditional building practices utilize paints, adhesives, stains, and flooring and other materials that release volatile organic compounds (VOC’s) as they cure and will continue to release these chemicals into the air during the life of the materials. VOC’s are what create that “new,” plastic-like smell in homes and cars, and are the smell you detect in a freshly painted room or with new furniture. They will also trigger allergic reactions in the respiratory system and can aggravate asthma conditions, and can be a contributing factor to health conditions that developer over the long term.

In addition to making prudent choices in keeping with green building standards that eliminate VOC’s in the home, the Keuntz family is being given product samples in jars that they can then give to their son to determine if he is at risk for a reaction.

Sealing & Barriers
We are closely controlling the exchange of air in the home from the external environment by using high performance framing, causing and sealing methods throughout the home. By controlling the air exchange the temperature and humidity inside the home is better controlled, and allergens such as pollen and mold are kept from entering the home through ventilation systems or via gaps in the thermal envelope that are found in traditional homes.

Proud Green Home St. Louis is the third high performance showcase home the Hibbs Homes and Verdatek teams have collaborated on, and there are several other high performance practices being employed throughout the home that we will be discussing and documenting on our site as well as proudgreenhome.com. Watch for an upcoming post where we will dive a little more deeply into the thermal envelope of the home and what makes it unique.

It’s The Custom | St Louis Home Builder Hibbs Homes

Test Your Green Home Building IQ

This year Hibbs Homes is celebrating our tenth year as a St. Louis home builder, and many of those ten years have been focused on green and high performance building. Since we started back in 2004 there has been a lot of change in the green building industry and the perception of green building has shifted as well.

When we started the idea of building a green home was generally steeped in the environmentalist culture, but we knew there was so much more benefit for homeowners than feeling like you’re doing the right thing. Studies were beginning to make their way into the hands of consumers that showed the financial benefits of green building because of the energy efficient aspects of green homes, and as the demand for green home products began to rise the costs for going green began to fall.

Since we first began turning dirt ten years ago there have been marked developments in the art and science of green home building and consumer education. Though we still have a little ways to go in educating the industry and homebuyers, it has been great to watch the demand, interest and knowledge in green home building grow.

Think you know the basics of green building? Test your Green Building IQ and let us know how you did:

It’s The Custom | St Louis Home Builder Hibbs Homes

Building a Better Thermal Envelope for Proud Green Home St. Louis

Proud Green Home St Louis High Performance Framing

Here you can see the ZIP System and advanced framing used in Proud Green Home St. Louis

Just like the computer you are reading this on, the technology that keeps your home humming is always evolving. With the introduction of design innovations and due to basic wear and tear, a home’s HVAC system is a system component that most homeowners will upgrade after about 15 years or more, depending on the system you’ve invested in. This being the case, investing in the design and details of the bones of your home – the studs, joists and other behind the walls systems that you don’t see that create your home’s structure – makes a lot of financial sense.

One high performance building principle the guides Hibbs Homes, and that we have relied upon for the design of Proud Green Home St. Louis, is controlling building and maintenance costs and protecting future equity position to ensure a home’s current and future sustainability. To that end we dedicated a lot of time to the sheathing and framing of Proud Green Home St. Louis to make sure that the home’s thermal envelope will consistently out-perform that of a conventional home for decades, no matter what HVAC system is installed.

Thermal Envelope Components
The roof and wall sheathing used in the Proud Green Home St Louis is Huber’s 7/16” ZIP System, and we designed and framed the home using advanced framing techniques. We will get into the finer details of what that means in a moment, but together these building choices create a durable, efficient building envelope than can be found in a home built using traditional framing and sheathing techniques.

Advanced Framing Techniques
To further optimize Proud Green Home St. Louis’s energy performance, and to reduce waste and lumber costs, we used advanced framing techniques, also known as Optimal Value Engineering, during design and construction. Advanced framing eliminates framing redundancies, creating more room for insulation without compromising the structural and architectural integrity of the home, and still surpasses building codes. We also used raised heel trusses, also know energy trusses, in the home’s construction. These trusses are oversized to increase the height on exterior walls, also allowing more room for insulation on the outside of the home.

 

ZIP System
If you ever played with a modeling kit as a kid the ZIP System will make a lot of sense to you. Like a model kit, the home’s exterior is composed of a series of panels that were manufactured off-site using precise measurements from the building plans. Each panels is made of a layer of highly efficient insulating foam sandwiched between two layers of engineered oriented strand board. They are shipped to site and fastened to the home’s frame and taped at the seams using a permanent adhering tape made by the manufacturer. These large, continuous panels reduce the number of seams in the thermal envelope to create a better barrier against air and moisture exchange, also know as thermal bridging.

The thermal envelope is one of the most important systems that works in conjunction with other home components to create a home that operates as a holistic high performance system. We will continue to share videos, photos, and blog posts discussing other components of Proud Green Home St Louis as construction continues both here on our blog and on ProudGreenHome.com.

You can also learn more about this project and other high performance showcase homes we’ve built in St. Louis by calling us at 314-581-8205 or visiting our new homes portfolio.

It’s The Custom | St Louis Home Builder Hibbs Homes