From concept to construction, HartmanBaldwin Design/Build pushes the boundaries of sustainable artchitecture and construction. Check us out, we’d love to work with you, and create something beautiful together.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010


Traditionalism.  Modernism. Revivalism.  Most of those words are recognizable to homeowners.  However, a new word is coming into the public’s glossary: performalism.  The “ism” denotes a design movement, but what does it exactly mean for architecture to perform?

Well, at HartmanBaldwin, we believe that homes should not just be beautiful masterpieces of design and style.  Your home should be a stunning success you would put on display - but also a tool of efficiency.  What can be more inspiring and fantastical than form meeting function, showmanship meeting utilitarian use, design meeting needs? 

So, at the end of the day, we ask ourselves: How do we know that the beautiful buildings we create are performing for us?  Are they durable, sustainable, and energy efficient?  Following the protocols outlined by Home Performance with Energy Star, a national program developed by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Department of Energy (DOE), HartmanBaldwin Design/Build presents clients with a whole-house approach to maximizing homes performance in health, comfort, and energy-efficiency.

By taking a look at the facts, we’ve learned that the building sector is the single largest contributor to global warming.  Buildings are responsible for 48% of all energy consumption and global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions annually.

By making a commitment to reducing the overall energy use of your home you can reduce our nation’s reliance on a dwindling supply of oil and gas.  Also, living a greener, more ethical lifestyle leads to great boons: Home Performance with Energy Star can allow you to keep your home perfectly comfortable for $0.10-$0.20 per sq. ft. per year.  It can also reduce your energy consumption by 30-60%, protect you from “green washing,” identify and eliminate health safety issues, and make a zero energy home more affordable. 

More than half of the over 66 million single-family homes in the United States were constructed before modern energy codes existed.  The solution?  Rebuild and remodel homes for maximum energy efficiency.  Homeowner Jamie McCoy of Pasadena, CA originally didn’t sign up for this retrofit, having originally contacted HartmanBaldwin to remodel her kitchen.  However, she changed her mind and signed up for a whole-house energy retrofit.  By increasing insulation, sealing the attic air-tight, replacing leaking windows, and adding a ventilation fan, Jamie was able to reduce air conditioning, cut air leakage from 13,523 cfm50 to 7400 cfm50, and cut her electricity bills in half. 

To find out more about making your home greener and cost-efficient, visit our website or give us a call.  We’d love to change the way you live. 

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Sustainable Preservation

Our passion for architectural preservation “has won us many reward and a reputation for being the go to…firm for recreating class structures that retain their original essence,” as stated in this month’s Arroyo Monthly. HartmanBaldwin is proud to be a part of this magazine’s monthly focus on historic preservation and sustainability. For many residents who live in older, character homes, creating a more ecologically intelligent and technologically advanced environment simply doesn’t fit the design. However, there are reasonable means to preserving the historical integrity of the home while upgrading it with new environmentally friendly technologies.

At the end of the day, HartmanBaldwin understands that the greenest home is the home already built. However, prolonging the life of a historic home also means upgrading the systems and building envelope so it can withstand the elements as the years pass. This type of remodeling requires meticulous attention to detail and research that are important and specific to restoration projects.

Do you have “green” on the brain now? Learn more about how we can restore and improve your current historical jewel of a house into a durable, comfortable, and energy efficient home that exemplifies environmental responsibility. Check out HartmanBaldwin’s Green Your Home Seminar and learn how greening your home increases its resale value, reduces long-term maintenance costs and utility bills, as well as reducing your home’s carbon footprint. If you’re running a little short on time than take a look at 10 tips to green your home and the ways we integrated green design into the Darling-Wright Residence, as featured in the L.A. Times blog.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Remodeling Project on the Mind?

       HartmanBaldwin Design/Build wants to change the way you think about home remodeling, show you a smarter way to live in your home, and how together we can improve your community in the process. That’s why every other month we offer The Home Remodelers’ Survival Guide Workshop. This free and enlightening workshop is part of a regional community outreach and education program provided by HartmanBaldwin that presents our time-tested insider tools and tips to help you take control of your remodeling project and budget.

       We know how poorly planned remodeling projects can get stressful and overwhelming, not to mention the nightmare that can occur if you hire the wrong person for the job. That’s why we’ve created this workshop and are here to put your late-night worries to rest. We’re confident that participating in this workshop will illuminate your proverbial light bulb, remove that big remodeling chip on your shoulder, and get you off the pot (so to speak) so you can get going on that dream home you never imagined possible.

      To learn more, register online or request more information visit our website at or just check us out, we’d love to get an opportunity to meet you.

Happy Remodeling,

Your Friends at HartmanBaldwin Design/Build

Monday, April 19, 2010

Remodeling Kick-Start Kit

Are you thinking of of pursuing that remodeling project you've always been dreaming of? As exciting as this is for any homeowner, it can seem a little daunting. However, with a little help from a designer or a contractor, the decision making process can be smooth and enjoyable! I mean, who doesn't want to make their house into their ideal home?

HartmanBaldwin just recently wrote a fast & easy guide to kick-starting your remodeling project. Quick refresher: look to your favorite places! Look at colors, lighting, textures, and overall style that makes you go "ohh" and "ahh." What abour aura, you ask? Well, add some sophistication and character to your home with arched doorways and exposed ceilings.

Want to add timelessness? Add sophistication with arched doorways, exposed ceilings, or give your flight of stairs a facelift! Trying to be green? Then make your home eco-friendly by using materials that are recycled, renewable, or sourced from environmentally responsible companies. Love being outdoors? Well, why not enhance the exterior of your home? When remodeling, make sure you always keep in mind the goal. Always remind yourself of why you wanted to remodel, what you were unsatisfied with, and what can make it better. Make a list of activities you already perform in the space and what you'd like to facilitate through your remodel. This list will ultimately help your architect find out how to create the most efficient and beautiful home for you and your family.

Friday, April 9, 2010


 These are the last things anyone wants to hear.  However, if you're prepared, these natural disasters don't have to be as scary as they are.  If you’ve committed to a remodeling project, be sure to talk with your builder about incorporating disaster-ready alternatives into your home construction. Just making small adjustments in building materials can protect your home from natural disasters in the future. Think about disasters that are common to your area.  Fires?  Why not use cellulose insulation, a green material made from recycled paper and treated with non-toxic fire retardent additives?  Southern California homeowners, this is a definite must have for you since our wild-fires are quite frequent and temperatures are getting higher every year.  Also, think about  fire-proofing your roof and siding.

A lot of rainfall?  Hurricanes?  Flooding?  Consider the following to protect your home against water and wind damage:
  •  Impact-resistant glass can save your windows and doors from hurricane-related damage.
  •  Carpets are ruined by flooding. Install tile instead for flooring with a longer life-span.
  •  Installing electrical outlets 24 or 36 inches from the floor (rather than the conventional 16) will lessen the chance of water damage.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Think About Your Favorite Places

        The goal of remodeling is to create the perfect space for you.  Look around at the places where you live, work, and visit.  Think about what you like about these places and ways that they can be integrated into your dream home.
        So go visit your favorite places!  Is it a bookstore with great lighting and chairs you can just throw yourself into?  Perhaps it's the outdoors with beautiful greenery?  Or maybe it's your local coffee shop with that cool bohemian feel?  Take notes and pictures of the the things that you are immediately attracted to and try to find patterns and similarities.  Also, if you're running short on time, take a peek through pictures in magazines, books, or websites for colors, styles, items, or buildings that catch your eye. 
        For a quick start, how about taking a look through HartmanBaldwin's very own designs and see the homes we've created.  From avant-garde to a Spanish-Mediterranean style, find the design that best represents who you are and how you live.  Look through the photos, find your favorites, and don't worry about having too many!  When creating the home of your choice, don't edit your like and dislikes - go with your instincts.  The most inspired spaces usually meld multiple style sources, making your home truly unique and personable.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Will Remodeling Increase the Resale Value of Your Home?

      For most homeowners, increased resale value is a good reason to remodel your home.  That can be true, but much depends on the kind of work being done and the neighborhood itself.  So, keep in the mind the following:
  • Kitchen and bath remodels usually experience the most immediate return.
  • Eccentric designs could make the house less appealing to future buyers.
  • Consider your neighborhood.  Will your improvement bring your home's resale value in line with your neighbors property?
      Once you've considered this and you're well on your way to designing your dream house, look for some innovative and stylish ways to making your home unique and personable.  Builder Magazine had some great ideas with the "8 Hot Kitchen Trends for 2010."  Or, if you're looking to re-do your bathroom, make sure to consider bathrooms for him and her.  We all know men and women want different things, but what greater fusion can you get when it comes from within your home!  And always, consider The Finishing Touch - and by this, of course, I mean the painting on the wall.  Our homes are our pride and joy and we want them to represent who we are - so when considering the color of paint look at paint quality, the effects of natural light, and the interior and exterior surroundings for a holistic effect.

     Nice first blog.  See you when we find more interesting tips of the trade!