was successfully added to your cart.

All Posts By

Admin

Grillin’ and Chillin’ for July 4th!

By | Just for Fun | No Comments

Happy fourth of July everyone! Get ready for some grillin’ and chillin’ for the holiday. Randy will be cooking up his famous brisket so we thought we would share the celebration with you.

When it comes to good Texas brisket, Randy knows the key is cookin’ it low and slow. Roast at 1 hr to 1:30 minutes per lb. at around 225 degrees, until the internal temperature is around 200-205 degrees. See below for a borrowed recipe from Epicurious. If you want Randy’s secret brisket recipe, you’ll have to ask him yourself!

YIELD: Serves 12

INGREDIENTS

For dry rub
1/2 cup paprika
3 tablespoons ground black pepper
3 tablespoons coarse salt
3 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons chili powder
1 7 1/2- to 8-pound untrimmed whole beef brisket
For mop
12 ounces beer
1/2 cup cider vinegar
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons minced jalapeño chilies
5 pounds (about) 100% natural lump charcoal
4 cups (about) oak or hickory wood smoke chips, soaked in cold water at least 30 minutes
1 cup purchased barbecue sauce (such as Bull’s-Eye)
1 tablespoon chili powder
PREPARATION

Make dry rub:
Mix first 5 ingredients in small bowl to blend.

Transfer 1 tablespoon dry rub to another small bowl and reserve for mop. Spread remaining dry rub all over brisket. Cover with plastic; chill overnight.

Make mop:
Mix first 6 ingredients plus reserved dry rub in heavy medium saucepan. Stir over low heat 5 minutes. Pour 1/2 cup mop into bowl; cover and chill for use in sauce. Cover and chill remaining mop.

Following manufacturer’s instructions and using natural lump charcoal, start fire in smoker. When charcoal is ash gray, drain 1/2 cup wood chips and scatter over charcoal. Bring smoker to 200°F. to 225°F., regulating temperature by opening vents wider to increase temperature and closing slightly to reduce temperature.

Place brisket, fat side up, on rack in smoker. Cover; cook until tender when pierced with fork and meat thermometer inserted into center registers 185°F., about 10 hours (turn brisket over for last 30 minutes). Every 1 1/2 to 2 hours, add enough charcoal to maintain single layer and to maintain 200°F. to 225°F. temperature; add 1/2 cup drained wood chips. Brush brisket with chilled mop in pan each time smoker is opened. Transfer brisket to platter; let stand 15 minutes. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cool 1 hour. Wrap in foil; chill. Before continuing, rewarm brisket, still wrapped, in 350°F. oven about 45 minutes.) Combine barbecue sauce and chili powder in heavy small saucepan. Add any accumulated juices from brisket and bring to boil, thinning sauce with some of reserved 1/2 cup mop, if desired.

Thinly slice brisket across grain. Serve, passing sauce separately.

Recipe originally shared on Epicurious.com.

 

Cool House Tour 2017

By | Cool Homes | No Comments

On Sunday, June 11, Barfield Home Inspection’s owner and founder Randy Barfield had his home featured as part of the 21st Annual Cool House Tour, a collaboration of Austin Energy Green Building (AEGB) and the Texas Solar Energy Society (TXSES).

A home inspector like Randy Barfield sees thousands of houses each year and since 2003, Randy has seen it all. When it comes to homes, he knows what to look for. It’s only natural that he decided to build his own home with his wife Keri a few years ago. It has been a lifelong dream to build an eco-friendly home with sustainable materials on land where he can relax and watch the sunset after a long day of home inspecting. Randy and Keri have spent years perfecting the floor plans and layout for their eco-friendly, modern home at 1100 Rutherford Drive in Driftwood.

The design of this home captures the wide open space of the Texas Hill Country in the midst of a rural subdivision. Each detail was planned and thought out using Randy’s knowledge of what makes a home durable and long-lasting. The street facing side of the house has a double stone wall with minimal penetrations for privacy. The rear elevation features northwest oriented glass facing a 500-acre greenbelt that provides protected views and additional sanctuary. The northwest windows and sliding doors offer natural daylighting as well as indoor/outdoor living space with minimal heat gain. The southwest facing 16.5” thick stone wall blocks summer sun exposure, keeping the interior temperature stable, providing both comfort and lower energy bills. A carport/workshop/courtyard on the west side also protects the house from heat gain and provides future live/work flex space. A 10kW solar array complements the energy saving passive design and provides for most of the home’s energy needs. A standing seam galvalume shed roof was designed to collect water efficiently and supply a 24,000 gallon rainwater harvesting tank for potable water and irrigation.

See photos and videos from the Cool House Tour on our Facebook page here: facebook.com/barfieldhomeinspection.

 

 

Le Casa Desnuda: A Home Inspector’s Dream Home Come True

By | Cool Homes | No Comments

By Randy Barfield

I have had a dream for many years to build not only a dream home but a home that was built around energy efficiency with solar and rainwater collection, while at the same time being low maintenance. My wife Keri and I also wanted to build a home that would be a retreat—a welcoming place for everyone who came to visit. That is when “La Casa Desnuda,” The Naked House, was born. The name, for us, meant leave all your worries and troubles at the front door—come in, relax and enjoy.

(left to right: Native Builders, Keri and Randy Barfield, Lévy Kohlhaas Architecture)

I have inspected more than 10,000 homes in my 14-year career as a Texas Real Estate Commission (TREC) professional home inspector and owner of Barfield Home Inspection. I have also worked on many homes as a builder and remodeler. I was also trained under the Austin Energy Conservation Audit and Disclosure (ECAD) program, Austin Energy and the Building Performance Institute. With this experience and knowledge acquired, it was the perfect next step to build the home of our dreams.

We knew we wanted a unique house, one that was not only energy efficient but was also an expression of what we valued in a home, a bright open space with friends and family, an oasis of birdsong and beauty. In order to achieve this, the first step was to find the right place to settle down and then the right people to make our dream a reality.

We purchased a beautiful piece of property in Driftwood, Texas five years ago. Located in the heart of the Texas hill country, we had the views, the sunsets and the wildlife. It was the perfect location.

Kimberly Kohlhaas was a friend and architect of two mutual friends who also had homes on the Cool House Tour. We knew she had to be the one to design our house. Kimberly discussed with us all of our dreams and ideas for the house and began the design with her partner Francois Lévy in the architecture firm Lévy Kohlhaas Architecture. We then had to find a builder that could take our ideas and dreams and designs and make them a reality.

5 Tips for Buyers to Have a Successful Home Inspection

By | Uncategorized | No Comments

By | Contributor, U.S. News & World Report
(Originally published on Oct. 18, 2016 in U.S. News & World Report)

FE_PR_091112Sellhomewinter_Inspect.jpg

Attend the home inspection to learn more about the property you’re interested in buying. (ISTOCKPHOTO)

 

Throughout the homebuying process, you will encounter a number of expenses including, but certainly not limited to, an appraisal, transaction fees and a survey – but none is more important than the home inspection. Dollar for dollar, there is no better use of your money, as a home inspection will not only outline the strengths and weakness of the house you are buying, but will show you how to operate it.

Choosing the Right Type

When you sit down with your real estate agent to prepare your offer, he or she will go over the different types of inspections you can choose from. While there are different inspection options – radon, pest and mold, among others – you first want to steal with a standard home inspection.

There are primarily two different types of home inspections – the home and general inspection (the names may differ depending on your location). There’s no difference in the way the inspector approaches the property or with the report he generates – it’s how that information is used that makes it unique.

A home inspection is arguably the more classic option. Based on the report you receive, you will send a notice to the seller asking for either certain items to be fixed prior to settlement, or a dollar amount be credited toward your closing costs.

The general inspection, on the other hand, is for informational purposes only. While it allows you a full inspection and often gives you the right to walk away based on those results, it does not provide an opportunity for items to be fixed or a credit given in negotiations.

Choosing Your Inspector

Every individual involved in the homebuying process must be top-notch. This is likely the biggest investment of your life and understanding what you are getting yourself into is of the utmost importance. With this in mind, be sure you choose a tried and true inspector you can trust to overlook nothing and provide your report in a timely, organized manner.

The first person to talk to for referrals is your real estate agent. Most agents have likely encountered the good, the bad and the ugly of the home inspecting world and found a few professionals they trust. Make sure your inspector is actively licensed and a member of a trade association, like the National Association of Certified Home Inspectors or American Society of Home Inspectors, and other local professional groups. Members of professional organizations are often held to a higher standard and have gone through more rigorous training to be associated with an industry group.

Finally, ask if the inspector will allow you to see a sample inspection report. While you’ll receive all the information during the time of the inspection, the sheer amount of details can be overwhelming. Seeing a report in advance helps to prepare you for the information to come, and how it can be used as a negotiation and recordation tool as well.

Owner’s Manual

Whether this is your first home or 10th, each house offers its own quirks and there’s no owner’s manual provided. It’s highly recommended you attend the inspection, as the inspector will provide useful information throughout the process of not only the pros and cons of the property, but show you how everything works as well.

An inspector will give you a plethora of information, from which way to point your air filter to where the main water shutoff valve is and how old all your major systems are. While the age and condition of many systems and appliances will be noted in the report, an explanation of how to use everything isn’t standard in written form. Bring a notepad and jot down useful information throughout the process.

Using the Report

After the inspector has gone through the entire property and provided the report, take time to review it carefully and ask any questions to either your agent or the inspector so you fully understand what you’re reading.

As you read the report, it’s important to remember the inspector is acting as a primary care physician, and should anything need further evaluation you’ll be referred to a specialist. If the home inspector finds evidence of mold or a pest problem, for example, they’ll recommend to you talk to a mold abatement specialist or exterminator to discuss the work needed to alleviate the problem.

Every negotiation is unique and should be handled as such. That said, there are general guidelines when handling a post-inspection negotiation. First, if there are any major components that are obviously broken and in need of major repair or replacement – such as heating and cooling systems, roof and windows – go after those and don’t sweat the small stuff. You want to make sure you take care of the important items that are needed for your house to function optimally.

If there aren’t any major items to take care of, it’s time to sweat the small stuff. Create a list in order of what you consider most important to least, and present it to the sellers and make sure they understand where your priorities lie.

Finally, if you prefer to oversee the repair or update work yourself and opt for a credit from the seller, make sure you’re able to ask for the amount per the guidelines of the loan by consulting your lender. There is typically a percentage (commonly 3 to 6 percent) you are allowed to receive in total credits. Should the amount be in excess of what you need, you simply won’t receive it and it goes back in the seller’s pocket.

Keep in mind … It is important to remember several things during and after your inspection. First, inspectors can’t see through walls. While their inspection is certainly thorough, it does not include things they can’t see. Also, an inspection assesses the property as it is that day. Things change, and so do the components within the house.