Our Favorite Laundry Room Ideas

Nowhere is the difference between high-end new construction/remodeling clearer, than in laundry rooms. These once simple utilitarian spaces have become large, decorated rooms incorporating many great features. Features like drying racks, built-in ironing boards, craft areas, wrapping areas, offices, and mudrooms with gleaming machines. Today, we share some of our clients practical laundry room solutions.

Hanging rod. A must for hanging clothes after removing them from the dryer or for drip drying clothing on hangers. Having the rod located above the sink is ideal. The drips from the clothing just fall right into the sink.

Pull down drying rack. A pull-down drying rack is designed for drying delicates directly on the rack, or for drip drying clothing on hangers. The pictured rack is strategically located over the sink so no messy drips to clean up.

Custom sink insert. The covered laundry sink provides space for the client to fold laundry in this small, single-wall laundry room.

Custom Cabinets

Cabinetry, cabinetry, cabinetry. Almost all of our clients want custom cabinetry in their laundry rooms. Featuring things like open shelving for frequently used products and supplies, and plenty of countertop space for folding.

Customized Laundry Room Storage

Laundry basket storage. What better way to store your laundry baskets! When a client works with a custom cabinet maker, they are able to design the laundry room of their dreams.

High-end laundry center

Master bedroom closet laundry center. What’s more handy than a laundry center in your master bedroom closet. Think of all the steps you’ll save when it’s time to put away your clothes! The master bedroom laundry center shown, features a pull-out ironing board (disguised as a drawer), pull-out folding station and his and her pull-down hampers.

Pull-out ironing board

Pull-out ironing boards. Meet the pull-out ironing board, disguised as a drawer. It’s no longer necessary to take up wall-space to have the ironing board hidden away.

Large laundry room

Multiple Appliances. Client’s with large families, are opting to build homes with large laundry rooms, featuring multiple appliances. Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc. also builds homes with multiple-level laundry rooms (especially in lake homes). Multiple level laundry rooms save footsteps, backs and time on laundry day.

Multi-Purpose Laundry Room

Multiple-purpose laundry rooms. Client’s often opt for multiple-purpose laundry rooms. Think offices, mudrooms, craft-rooms, study rooms, pantries and more.

These are just a few of the laundry rooms in the homes remodeled or built by Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc. Looking for more ideas? Visit our website or our Houzz profile.


Finding the Right Home Builder

The importance of choosing the right home builder for your project can’t be overstated. Your home builder will be involved in every facet of the process, so you want to establish a great working relationship and an open line of communication right up front. Here is a great checklist to help you select the very best home builder for you:

  • Contact your local home builders’ association for the names of member builders: NAHB: Finding A Local Association . You can also ask family, friends or coworkers for recommendations. (Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc. is a member of the Builders Association of Elkhart County.)
  • Make sure the builder has a permanent business location and a good reputation with local banks and suppliers. (Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc. office has been located at 26262 County Road 40, Goshen, Indiana for nearly 50 years.)
  • Find out how long they have been in the building business. It usually takes three to five years to establish a financially sound business. You want to make sure they will be around after the construction is complete to service any warranties. (Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc. was established in 1965.)
  • Check out the company’s rating and if there have been any complaints filed with your local Better Business (Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc. has an A+ rating with the BBB.)
  • Make sure the builder has sufficient workers compensation and general liability insurance. If not, you may be liable for any construction-related accidents on your (Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc. carries all insurance and conducts weekly safety training.)
  • Ask the builder/remodeler to provide you with names of previous customers. If they won’t, beware. If they do, ask the customers if they would hire the builder/remodeler again. (Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc. will provide you a list of past clients, a great deal of our business comes from referrals!) 
  • Ask if you can see the builders work, both completed and in progress. Check for quality of workmanship and materials. (We are proud of our work and will be happy to show qualified parties completed and projects in progress.)
  • Do you feel you can easily communicate with the builder? Remember you will be in close contact with them throughout the construction process, and afterward, as you live in your new home. (We recognize the investment our clients make in their homes; therefore we provide unparalleled service throughout the project.)
  • Make sure the builder/remodeler provides you with a complete and clearly written contract. The contract will benefit both of you. If you are having a new home built, get and review a copy of the home warranty and homeowner manual as well. (Written contracts are provided on every project; a home warranty and an extensive homeowner manual are provided on each new construction project. Martin Brothers abides by/or exceeds the Indiana Quality Assurance Builder Standards.) 
  • Be cautious of unusually low-priced bids. If the builder is unable to pay for the materials and labor as the project proceeds, this may indicate a potential problem. Keep in mind that less expensive does not necessarily mean better! (Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc. will be happy to discuss with you our policy regarding payment. In most instances we pay all suppliers and subcontractors before invoicing a custom home client.)

Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc., of Elkhart County, Indiana, is known throughout Michiana as the area’s premier, upscale, custom home builder and remodeler. Our award-winning homes are crafted with detail in mind from start to finish by our experienced team of career carpenters and construction management professionals. Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc. serves clients within a 50 mile radius of their rural Goshen, Indiana address.

Find more helpful advice on home building and remodeling at www.nahb.org/forconsumers orhttps://www.nahb.org/en/consumers/homeownership/remodeling-your-home.aspx

Best of Houzz 2018

Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc. of Goshen
Awarded Best of Houzz 2018
Over 40 Million Monthly Unique Users Nominated Best Home Building,
Remodeling and Design Professionals in North America and Around the World

Goshen, IN, January 19, 2018 – Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc. of Goshen, Indiana has won “Best of Customer Service” on Houzz®, the leading platform for home remodeling and design. The premier custom home builder and remodeler, located in Northern Indiana, was nominated by their clients and chosen by the more than 40 million monthly unique users that comprise the Houzz community from among more than one million active home building, remodeling and design industry professionals.

The Best of Houzz is awarded annually in three categories: Design, Customer Service and Photography. Design award winners’ work was the most popular among the more than 40 million monthly users on Houzz. Customer Service honors are based on several factors, including the number and quality of client reviews a professional received in 2017. Architecture and interior design photographers whose images were most popular are recognized with the Photography award. A “Best of Houzz 2018” badge will appear on winners’ profiles, as a sign of their commitment to excellence. These badges help homeowners identify popular and top-rated home professionals in every metro area on Houzz.

Best of Houzz 2018

“We are honored to stand among the distinguished professionals, who have won this award” states Jeff Martin, President of Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc. “Throughout every project we manage, we are committed to providing every client unparalleled service. It is something we instill into our team members from the person who answer the phones, to the guy who frames the walls.”

“The Houzz community selected a phenomenal group of Best of Houzz 2018 award winners, so this year’s recipients should be very proud,” said Liza Hausman, Vice President of Industry Marketing at Houzz. “Best of Houzz winners represent some of the most talented and customer-focused professionals in our industry, and we are extremely pleased to give them both this recognition and a platform on which to showcase their expertise.”

Follow Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc. on Houzz at http://www.houzz.com/pro/martinbrotherscontracting/

About Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc.
Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc., of Elkhart County, Indiana, is known throughout Michiana as the area’s premier, upscale, custom home builder and remodeler. Our award-winning homes are crafted with detail in mind from start to finish by our experienced team of career carpenters and construction management professionals. Licensed to build in the State of Michigan, we serve an area within a one-hour radius of our rural Goshen, Indiana address.

About Houzz
Houzz is the leading platform for home remodeling and design, providing people with everything they need to improve their homes from start to finish – online or from a mobile device. From decorating a small room to building a custom home and everything in between, Houzz connects millions of homeowners, home design enthusiasts and home improvement professionals across the country and around the world. With the largest residential design database in the world and a vibrant community empowered by technology, Houzz is the easiest way for people to find inspiration, get advice, buy products and hire the professionals they need to help turn their ideas into reality. Headquartered in Palo Alto, CA, Houzz also has international offices in London, Berlin, Sydney, Moscow, Tel Aviv and Tokyo. Houzz and the Houzz logo are registered trademarks of Houzz Inc. worldwide. For more information, visit houzz.com.

Kitchen island by Ayr Custom Cabinetry in kitchen addition by Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc.

Kitchen Islands

This week’s KBtribechat was focused on kitchen islands.  We at Martin Brothers’ consider the island one of the most integral parts of the kitchen. The kitchen island serves as a prep space, a cooking area, storage space, a social hub and may even strategically separate or connect other spaces. We have been super busy with new project starts, and have been unable to participate in chats recently, so we thought we would take a few minutes to answer the questions posed this week by KBtribechat.

  1. What materials, finishes and details are currently popular for kitchen island cabinetry and hardware? Painted wood cabinetry and islands of a contrasting color are the most popular choice. Our client’s tend to upgrade on the countertop selection for the island whether that be natural stone or hardwood. Decorative hardware tends to be high-end and very stylized.Kitchen island in home addition by Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc.
  2. Do you like to match the kitchen island to the perimeter? Why or why not? We do not influence the selection of cabinetry since we are strictly a custom home builder/remodeler. This is left to the client and the client’s designer and/or custom cabinet supplier.The selection of the island cabinetry depends on the look and feel the client is wanting to achieve. We would say that contrasting islands are more the norm.Kitchen island in addition by Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc., Goshen
  3. Are waterfall counters still popular?  What is trending for island countertop materials and edge details? Our client’s tend to be more traditional, so we have not seen waterfall countertops in our homes/remodel projects. Natural stone tops with a honed finish are very popular with our clients. Quartz is definitely a popular choice as well. The sky is the limit as far as edge detail. Everything from inset tile to corbels on the edge.Kitchen island by Ayr Custom Cabinetry; kitchen remodel by Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc.
  4. Island countertops with an overhang for seating are popular. What design solutions do you like to add style to the eating bar side of an island?  Decorative door panels, furniture styling, corbels and hidden storage underneath the seating area. Kitchen island in kitchen remodeled by Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc.
  5. What are the pros and cons on designing in a sink and dishwasher or cook top on the island? Pros are obvious: extra sink; extra storage; duplicate appliances or freeing up of perimeter cabinets for storage; extra serving space; ability to prep food while visiting with family and friends. Con it takes up valuable prep space if the island is small; cook tops too close to seating can be a danger to small children. Providing plumbing and electrical to a kitchen island in a new home is a breeze. However, if you are remodeling, and never had a sink or appliances in your island, there will be added cost to provide utilities to the island. Depending on the size of the island/kitchen the client may want to use it strictly for prep space.Kitchen island by Bremtown Cabinetry; kitchen remodel by Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc.
  6. What features are nice to have or useful on a kitchen island? Share pictures! Specialty sinks, specialty storage, built-in appliances, deep drawers, seating, shelves.
    Mixer stand; kitchen island in kitchen remodeled by Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc.
    Roll-out storage; kitchen remodel by Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc.
    Kitchen island in home remodeled by Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc.
    Kitchen island in home addition by Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc., Goshen, IN

If you are in the Michiana area and in need of a kitchen remodel, please contact Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc. at 574-862-2142.

Great room addition by Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc., Goshen, IN

Secluded Beauty

This 470 sq. ft. great room addition opened up the home to a view of a beautiful wooded glen. The addition allowed for a storage garage below, yet preserved the exit to the lower level patio. The old deck was removed and a modern stamped concrete patio with octagon shaped gas fire pit were built for family entertainment. Included in the patio update was a new brick gas grill cooking area with a granite top.

To view more of the before and after photos, please visit The Great Room Addition on our Facebook page.


Great room addition by Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc., Goshen, IN

New patio area; addition by Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc., Goshen, IN

New grill cooking area with granite cooktop

Interior of great room addition by Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc., Goshen, IN

To view more of the before and after photos, please visit The Great Room Addition on our Facebook page.

With every remodeling project we complete, Martin Brothers considers it a privilege to work closely with our homeowners. We understand that a remodeling project is sometimes a stressful venture and we strive to provide our clients with a stress-free experience. We have a top-notch project management team in place to oversee the activity of a project and trained carpenters provide the attention to detail needed to turn every vision into reality. From design to completion of a project, we are committed to providing our clients with a personalized, five-star experience. We invite you call us at 574-862-2142 or 877-862-2142 to discuss the Martin Brothers difference.


Amenity Packed Kitchen

It’s Martin Brothers’ Monday & we bring you the transitional kitchen in the  1,568 sq. ft. addition to the Italianate home along the St. Joseph River.  The painted, birch, full-overlay, custom kitchen by Ayr Custom Cabinetry  features luxury appliances, dolomite tops and backsplash, luxury lighting, wet bar, walk-in pantry and built-in storage upgrades. Red oak hardwood floors were installed by Hoosier Hardwood Floors. Super white dolomite tops and backsplash by Z Stone Creations.






Architectural design by Helman Sechrist Architecture; interior design by Jill Henner; general contracting by Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc.; photography by Marie Kinney.

To see additional photos of this project, please visit our Facebook page.

St. Joe River Addition

Today we are featuring a 1,568 sq. ft. addition and renovation of  an Italianate home tucked into a beautiful park-like setting along the St. Joseph River.  Addition included a new 235 sq. ft. pool house, outdoor dining area, outdoor grilling area, porch, renovation of the garage and extensive hardscaping on the exterior. Interior addition included new kitchen, powder room, laundry, great room, master suite, fitness room, child’s bath, study, sitting room, renovated powder room, renovated dining room, and renovated foyer entry.

Today (9/12/16) we are sharing exterior photography. We will share interior photos at a later date.

Architectural design by Helman Sechrist Architecture; interior design by Jill Henner; general contracting by Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc.; photography by Marie ‘Martin’ Kinney

To see more photos of this project, please visit our Facebook page.



Riverfront view before the addition

Riverfront view after the addiiton

New poolhouse

New pool and patio

Renovated front entrance



Jobsite fire extinguishers used by Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc., Goshen, IN

Fire Extinguishers In Your Home

Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc. had our fire extinguishers inspected this week by Koorsen. We keep a fire extinguisher in all Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc. owned vehicles, on our jobsites and of course in all of the Martin Brothers buildings.  Fire safety is an important part of our safety program. Keeping our jobsites safe is a priority. Well run, safe jobsites are important factor to consider, when determining which builder to hire for your project.

Today we would like to share with you an article written by Kidde, about choosing a fire extinguisher for your home. We thought it was a timely article, since we had our commercial fire extinguishers inspected this week.

Choosing a Fire Extinguisher for Your Home

At home, place the power to put out small fires in your hands and within your reach. 

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), someone in the United States dies in a house fire every three hours, averaging approximately 3,000 deaths each year. Arm yourself with the right equipment to help prevent a small self-contained fire from spreading out of control.

Kidde is world-renowned for our expertise in manufacturing reliable, high-quality fire safety products, including fire extinguishers. In fact, with a history spanning nearly 100 years, we’ve been making them for longer than any other company. Here we’ll give you some tips on how to choose them – and how to use them.

Choosing a fire extinguisher

Below are minimum recommendations for the home from the National Fire Protection Association.

  • Step 1: Choose primary extinguishers for your home. These include solutions for your living area and garage or workshop, and they’re pieces of equipment that you absolutely must have according to the NFPA.
  • Living area – For your main home protection, install a 2-A: 10-B: C rated living area unit on every level of your home. No more than 40 feet apart. Class A-B-C
  • Garage/Workshop – Due to volumes of flammable liquids in the garage, you should install a higher rated unit such as the 3-A: 40B-C Garage/Workshop unit. Class A-B-C
  • Step 2: Choose supplementary extinguishers for your kitchen and areas with a higher likelihood of electrical equipment fires. These are not required, but are highly recommended.
  • Kitchen – The kitchen is the likeliest place you will have a fire. Protect your home with a 711A extinguisher in the kitchen area.
  • Electrical – Ideal for tackling fires involving energized electrical equipment with a rating of 1-A: 10-B:C. Class B-C

(Rule of thumb is that you should have a fire extinguisher for every 2,500 square feet, Martin Brothers recommends that a home of over 10,000 sq. ft. be equipped with a fire suppression system.)

How to use fire extinguishers

Stand 5 feet away from the fire and follow the four-step PASS procedure recommended by the National Fire Protection Association:

  • P – Pull the pin and hold the extinguisher with the nozzle pointing away from you.
  • A – Aim low at the base of the fire.
  • S – Squeeze the lever slowly and evenly to discharge the extinguishing agent. (When the agent first hits the fire, the fire may briefly flare up. This should be expected.
  • S – Sweep the nozzle from side to side, moving carefully toward the fire. Keep the extinguisher aimed at the base of the fire.

When to use fire extinguishers

It’s important to remember that fire extinguishers are only one element of a complete fire survival plan. Only use your extinguisher after making sure:

  • All residents of the home have been evacuated to safety
  • The fire department has been notified (call 911)
  • There is a clear exit behind the person using the extinguisher

Use your extinguisher only to keep a small self-contained fire from growing, only when the room is not filled with smoke, or to create a safe pathway out of the home. Be sure to read the instructions and become familiar with your fire extinguisher’s parts and operation before a fire breaks out.

Continue reading “Fire Extinguishers In Your Home”

Step-by-Step Guide to Designing Your Bathroom Vanity

An exceptional vanity design requires careful planning and attention to detail. There are plenty of decisions to be made, from the layout and style to the types of sinks and countertops. This six-step process gives you a game plan to follow as you’re designing your new vanity space. Read the entire article by Sam Ferris, Houzz Contributor, below.

1. Determine the Bath Layout.

blue cabinets

2. Determine the Number of Sinks.


3. Choose the Vanity Style.


4. Find the Right Countertop.

Bath in remodeled home by Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc., Goshen, IN

5. Determine the Type of Sink


6. Select the Fixtures. Select your cabinet hardware, faucets, lighting and mirror.


For your bath remodel or to talk to someone about building an upscale custom home, call 574-862-2142 or visit our website at MartinBrosContracting.com


Best Home Builder of Elkhart County 2016

Best of Elkhart County-2016

The Elkhart Truth announced today that Martin Bros. Contracting, Inc. has been selected the BEST HOME BUILDER and FAVORITE HOME REMODELER/DECORATOR. We wish to thank all those that took the time to vote for The Best of Elkhart County! We appreciate the support our clients, friends and family have shown us. Our success is not possible without your support. Thank you so much!