Briks Back To Business

Returning Back to Business

To our valued clients,

As the world begins to focus on restarting the economy post-COVID-19, and politicians debate if, when, and how to get Ontario back to work, many businesses are trying to determine what standards, laws, and precautions will apply and need to be taken when restrictions are eased or lifted. At BRIKS Design-Build Group, we have our own process of re-opening that involves strategies that correlate with the government’s COVID-19 guidelines. We value all of our clients and that includes their safety, which is why we have put together a brief letter that outlines our goals for re-opening our high-end construction services.

Click here to check out Ontario’s plan for reopening post-COVID-19.

Safety is our main goal

We all want to get back to work as soon as possible, but that involves returfing to work in a safe manner that limits the risk of contracting COVID-19 for everyone. BRIKS Design-Build Group will be adhering to all the safety guidelines put forth by the Ontario government. These guidelines include:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water or alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Sneeze and cough into your sleeve.
  • If you use a tissue, discard immediately and wash your hands afterwards.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home if you are sick.
  • Avoid high-touch areas, where possible, or ensure you clean your hands after.
  • Where possible, wear gloves when interacting with high-touch areas. Do not touch you- face with gloved hands. Take care when removing gloves. Ensure you wash your hands- after removing them.
  • Wash your clothes as soon as you get home.
  • If you are ill: notify your supervisor immediately, complete the self-assessment, and follow the instructions you get.

Timeline

With the easing of self-isolation and shut down rules in Ontario easing slowly, it is very realistic to expect that not all projects will be able to continue immediately. If there are renovations being considered at this time, they have to be carefully and thoughtfully planned out with professionals that are Renomark members that follow a strict code of ethics and are familiar with COVID protocols. Additionally with that, it is best to initiate the design-build process earlier than later, and have all necessary drawings ready for submissions to municipalities, as there will be longer than anticipated wait times as municipalities struggle to get back to applications being processed and catching up on a backlog.

Our thoughts…

For the most up-to-date information regarding the Province’s reopening process, please refer to this link.

BRIKS Design-Build Group is dedicated to providing the utmost care and safety with our client’s projects. Returning to work in Ontario will be a process, but we are fully committed to working with the government and deploying strict safety guidelines for all of our job sites and projects. If you have any questions regarding the continuation of your project with BRIKS Design-Build Group or about our plans for a safe return to business, we encourage you to get in touch with us here.

We have all done a valiant job with substantially flattening the curve in Ontario. Now let’s continue the fight and return to work in a safe but effective way for everyone!

Sincerely,

covid-19

How BRIKS Design-Build Group is Tackling COVID-19

The times have gotten crazy, haven’t they? COVID-19 has hit our shores with vengeance and it is turning lives upside down in many ways. Not only are people’s personal lives being touched by this horrible virus, but also the business sector is being heavily impacted.

What Canadians need is a glimmer of hope in these dark times. Our governments are doing everything in their power to help businesses and Canadians stay afloat in these unstable times. Could the government be doing more and at a quicker rate? Maybe.

But these are unprecedented times that are calling for unprecedented measures unlike anything Canada has ever seen before and we need to be patient while complying with our governments and top health officials’ advice to self-isolate and social distance to help flatten the curve.

At BRIKS Design-Build Group, we are doing our part to help fight COVID-19. While our daily business operations may be slower and more calculated due to government restrictions and regulations for the virus, we are still making it our mission to provide our clients and the general public with informative content about the industry.    

In this blog by BRIKS Design-Build Group, we take a different approach to previous blog content on this site. Continue reading to find out more information about the COVID-19 virus and what BRIKS Design-Build Group is doing to keep our employees on the job site and the public safe. 

What is COVID-19?

In January 2020, a novel (new) coronavirus (COVID-19) was identified as the cause of an outbreak of pneumonia originating in Wuhan, China.

The situation is rapidly evolving and Public Health Ontario, along with the Ministry of Health, is closely monitoring the outbreak, conducting surveillance and appropriate laboratory testing, and providing public health and infection control guidance. Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that originate in animals but are known to cause respiratory illness in humans, particularly during the fall and winter months.

Other novel coronaviruses have included Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV). Human coronaviruses are common and are typically associated with mild illnesses, similar to the common cold. COVID-19 is a new disease that has not been previously identified in humans.

Rarely, animal coronaviruses can infect people, and more rarely, these can then spread from person to person through close contact.

How are COVID-19 symptoms detected?

There are laboratory tests that can identify the virus that causes COVID-19 in respiratory specimens. Provincial and local public health departments have received tests from CDC while medical providers are getting tests developed by commercial manufacturers.

All of these tests are Real-Time Reverse Transcriptase (RT)-PCR Diagnostic Panels, which can provide results in 4 to 6 hours. Not everyone needs to be tested for COVID-19. Here is some information that might help in making decisions about seeking care or testing.

  • Most people have mild illness and are able to recover at home.
  • There is no treatment specifically approved for this virus.
  • Testing results may be helpful to inform decision-making about who you come in contact with.

If you have symptoms of COVID-19 and want to get tested, try calling your provincial or local health department or a medical provider. While supplies of these tests are increasing, it may still be difficult to find a place to get tested.

Click on this link to see COVID-19 Health & Safety Guidelines for active job sites.  

How to deal with COVID-19 if you have tested positive?

It is important to know what to do if you think you have come into contact with someone who has COVID-19 or you have tested positive for the virus. The whole idea is to limit the spread of the infection. You can do that by following these guidelines provided by the CDC:

Stay home except to get medical care if needed:

Most people with COVID-19 have mild illness and are able to recover at home without medical care. Do not leave your home, except to get medical care. Do not visit public areas. Call before you get medical care. Be sure to get care if you have trouble breathing, or have any other emergency warning signs, or if you think it is an emergency. 

Separate yourself from people in your household:

As much as possible, you stay away from others. You should stay in a specific “sick room” if possible, and away from other people in your home. Use a separate bathroom, if available.

Wear a facemask if you are sick:

You should wear a facemask, if available, when you are around other people (including before you enter a healthcare provider’s office). If the person who is sick is not able to wear a facemask (for example, because it causes trouble breathing), then as their caregiver, you should wear a facemask when in the same room with them. 

Clean your hands often:

Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. This is especially important after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing; going to the bathroom; and before eating or preparing food. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol, covering all surfaces of your hands and rubbing them together until they feel dry.

Monitor your symptoms:

Common symptoms of COVID-19 include fever and cough. Trouble breathing is a more serious symptom that means you should get medical attention. If you are having trouble breathing, seek medical attention, but call first. Call your doctor or emergency room before going in and tell them your symptoms. They will tell you what to do.

What is BRIKS Design-Build Group doing to help flatten the curve?

The COVID-19 pandemic and its attendant effect on markets and commercial activity will likely present a range of challenges to the construction industry, challenges that could deepen depending on the severity and length of the crisis in Ontario, Canada, and globally.

However, one thing’s for certain, and that is BRIKS Design-Build Group is staying totally compliant with government regulations and restrictions during this COVID-19 outbreak. Currently deemed as an essential business, the BRIKS Design-Build Group is staying vigilant in the way that we protect our team and our clients in the following ways:

  • Hand washing and sterilization has been increased substantially on job sites. 
  • Symptoms are closely monitored by all managing staff and foreman on the job sites.
  • Social distancing everywhere on the job sites has been implemented.  
  • Office staff have been deployed to work from home indefinitely and are in constant contact via video conference platforms.

Click on this link to see the standard protocols for all Canadian construction sites. 

The BRIKS Design-Build Group will continue to comply with provincial and local government regulations as the COVID-19 outbreak continues to unfold. It is our understanding that government regulations will continue to increase which could end up putting a temporary halt on business operations entirely. We will do everything in our power to keep our clients and our team informed on further actions. 

If you have any questions about COVID-19 and how BRIKS Design-Build Group is handling the outbreak, or if you have any inquiries about our construction services, we encourage you to contact us. 

We are all in this together as Team Canada! Let’s all do our part to flatten the curve and beat COVID-19. Be safe and stay well.

Sincerely, 

Custom Homes Burlington

The Advantages Of Building Custom Homes In Burlington?

Building a custom home takes a lot of work and planning. However, the entire process and the end result can be very pleasurable, especially if you are working with a custom home builder. Building a dream home is a perfect way to bring your vision of your ideal home to life. It can be an exhilarating experience, but with all the matters that go along in building a house, it can be frightful too at times.

Even if with all the hardships, building a custom home is a project to stamp your personality all over. If you are considering building your own dream home and you are looking for a professional company that builds custom homes in Burlington, then you have come to the right place! The BRIKS Design-Build Group is prepared to lend their expertise to your custom home build in the Burlington area. In this blog, we talk about some of the advantages of working with a company like BRIKS Design-Build Group for custom homes. 

There are many different reasons why people choose to build a custom home. Along with total comfort, you can also create it in a location you want and even customize its amenities according to your requirements. You can also save money on future renovations when you have the ultimate home that will fit your lifestyle and style. Additionally, working with a professional and experienced custom home builder can yield many benefits. Let’s take a look a few of them now:

Experience a seamless design and build process 

Working with BRIKS Design-Build Group allows for a smooth transition from planning and designing to the build phase. When you are building your dream home, it makes perfect sense that you will want to have full control over each aspect. Our team can assist you in each phase in order to help you achieve your ultimate goal: To live in your dream home that has everything you and your family has ever wanted inside!

Realize a dream with custom homes in Burlington 

Finally, you can have the dream home you have always wanted, courtesy of your custom home builder who works tirelessly to create it. When you are working with a builder like BRIKS Design-Build Group, you can give as much input as you want to make sure that no design plans are being left out, or even if you would like to change something up from the original plans. Building custom homes in Burlington involves letting your custom home builder do all of the heavy liftings while you monitor the progress and go over design plans frequently. 

You can live where you want with a custom home

One of the bigger advantages of building a custom home in Burlington is that you get to live in a big city like Burlington. If you have had your eyes on the Burlington house market for a while, but nothing has caught your eye or the prices have not been appealing, then building a custom home could be a great alternative strategy. 

Custom Homes Burlington

Custom homes in Burlington can actually save you money

Building customs homes can save you money in the long run in a variety of ways. By investing in a custom home, you will create the exact dream home you want. No messy home installations, fewer basic repairs, and no additions are necessary. From the beginning, you and your custom home builder will design the home together. Your ideal space, realized! 

You can choose your own materials for your custom home in Burlington 

Arguably one of the most fun phases of the custom home build process is the design phase. During this phase, you get to plan out how your new home will be laid out and what materials will be used in each room. Choosing your own materials can be incredibly beneficial to your home in order to save money, be energy efficient, or create a certain feel and look.

You will also have the opportunity to use the most efficient and sustainable materials available right off the bat! You can discuss possible material and appliance options to cut down on maintenance as well as to achieve the look you desire. You’ll be surprised how much you can save. By working with your BRIKS Design-Build Group contractor, you can consider all your options to have the best dream home possible.

Why choose BRIKS Design-Build Group for custom homes in Burlington?

BRIKS Design-Build Group is a leading Burlington based Boutique Design-Build and Construction Management firm offering unparalleled General Contracting services to our Clients for all types of Residential and Commercial projects.

BRIKS Design-Build Group is a full-service Design-Build Firm, specializing in Architectural Design & Permits, New Build Construction, Custom Luxury Homes, Major Renovations & Additions, Remodeling and Interior Design. Our Commercial division caters to clients in the Hospitality, Retail Boutiques, Automotive, Healthcare, Institutional, and Office market segments.

There are many distinct advantages of building custom homes in Burlington. At BRIKS Design-Build Group, we encourage you to continue browsing through our website to get more information about our construction services. Additionally, on our website, you can click here to view our brochure. 

Click here to find our contact information or click here to book your own design consultation! 

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How Millennials are influencing custom home building

In the custom home building industry, it’s important to be at the leading edge of innovation and design trends. Quite simply, to meet the demands of constantly evolving lifestyles.

The newest home buyers on the horizon are Millennials. Since they don’t have the same lifestyle of their Baby Boomer parents, they have different home design tastes and preferences.

Many Millennials are focused on functional design. Think low maintenance, energy-efficiency, environment-friendly materials and beyond.

The good news is, Millennials plan to own a home within the next five years

Millennials are having a surprising effect on custom home building and in 2018 alone Millennials made up half of Canada’s first-time home buyers.

In fact, the cross-Canada survey conducted by Leger found that 87 per cent of Canadians aged 25 to 30 believe homeownership is a good investment. More so, 69 per cent hope to own a home in the next five years.

This home buying generation has unique requests.

Millennials care more about function than square footage

Convenience and connectedness are the new square footage to the Millennial generation. From technology to neighborhoods, wellness amenities and social networks, Millennials want to build their home where they can feel connected and part of a community. To this generation, a new home represents an opportunity to connect and socialize with friends and family.

Many Millennials opt for urban city dwellings over the sprawling suburbs for their first home. As the saying goes, Millennials want to “be where the action is”. At this stage, they don’t want “too much house” since it requires more upkeep than they want to do.

Less house to maintain means more time for the social scene.

Some Millennials also perceive smaller homes to be less demanding on the environment. Further, Millennials want design elements and home construction materials that have been ethically sourced and are eventually biodegradable, recyclable, or good for the environment.

Smart homes infused with technology

Having a SMART home is also important to this high-tech generation. Jill Waage, an editorial director at Better Homes and Gardens, said during a presentation at the 2015 International Builders’ Show, “Our research shows that women 35 and under see value in owning a home and their attitudes toward making space livable through smart technology and integrated design are significantly stronger than those of their older cohorts. The next generation of homeowners will lead the way in adopting new technology — making features like the ability to preheat an oven or unlock the front door from a smartphone the new norm in home convenience.” 

More and more homes being equipped to support SMART home technology. It’s a no-brainer that this technology needs to be supported starting with the new home construction process. From properly wiring the electrical throughout the house and insuring WiFi connectivity is strong and consistent from room to room.

Multifunctional spaces to maximize on space

Millennials care about minimalism and maximizing space for functionality with clever design.

Top of the list for design strategies includes capturing and creating opportunities for sunlight from various areas in the home.

As well, fluid and open floor plans, lots of windows, half-wall dividers and translucent or clear glass-paneled doors that allow light to travel more deeply into the interior of a home are desired.

Light naturally expands smaller spaces which makes this a great design strategy to make the space look larger than it actually is.

Flexible space is key

Aside from adding light to a room, multifunctional spaces that are flexible in their use are key.

Incorporating movable elements such as doors on tracks rather than swinging open, and cabinetry or storage on wheels are all ways to be more space-efficient.

With Millennials choosing smaller spaces, they’re able to indulge in high-quality finishes and interesting features in their home. For example, even with less square footage, they’ll opt for a eucalyptus-infused steam shower with rainforest shower heads.

In this article by New Home Source, it’s surprising to learn what the most desired features are that Millennials want in a home.

Turns out, features related to energy efficiency topped their list of interests. A separate laundry room was also on the most-wanted list, with 55 per cent saying they wouldn’t buy a new home without one. Believe it or not, exterior lighting came in second, with 88 per cent saying it was essential or desirable. Storage also made the top 10 list, with linen closets, a walk-in pantry and garage storage also being important.

The least likely features Millennials claimed to care about? Outdoor kitchens with plumbing and appliances and two-story foyers and living rooms. However, entertaining outdoors is important to Millennials and living room like settings are key. But anything beyond having a barbecue for grilling hasn’t really been deemed as necessary.

Regardless, your custom home or renovation should represent your personal style. And reflect who you are and what you want the space to embody. Millennials are proving to have unique tastes which makes for an exciting future in home building and design.

suburban aerial shot of real estate homes custome home build design build firm

Here’s Why Millennials Should Build Their Homes Instead of Buy

Millennial homeownership. It’s not news to anyone that Millennials aren’t buying homes in the same way that the previous generation did.

You might be thinking… Fact or fiction?

Turns out there might be some truth to this. But it doesn’t mean they don’t still have dreams of “millennial homeownership”.

In fact, in Canada, Millennial homeownership rates are consistently higher compared to other countries.

Naturally, Toronto and Vancouver markets have some of the highest ownership rates, among other cities like Calgary which surprisingly has the highest percentage of homeowners under 35.

The report goes on to indicate, that Millennials ultimately need more housing options. So it’s not so much about not having a desire for millennial homeownership. But rather, more so to do with college debt and rising home prices, and the 2008 recession that has left many Millennials choosing to live at home longer instead.

While that’s enabling them to save up longer to make a down payment on a home, it’s still increasingly getting more difficult to get into the real estate market today.

Urban city dwellings make renting look more attractive because that way their lives can remain “Instagram-nomadic”. While there’s a strategy to this, it’s important to consider both sides of the coin.

On the one hand, renting allows you to be more adaptive to changing jobs and cities frequently.

On the other hand, you’re missing out on a lucrative opportunity to establish equity in a home and plan for a future.

There’s no denying that getting into today’s real estate market is difficult. Which is why in so many ways, building a home is the best option for Millennials.

Here’s why.

The cost of entry is generally much lower

New homes are generally more spacious, with a medium size of about 2,500 square feet.

Which means the ballpark cost per square foot is around $100 give or take. This is significantly lower cost per square foot than what you would pay in square footage for an established, existing home.

Additionally, if you’re building a home you only pay for what you want.

If you end up choosing to buy resale, you inherit a number of existing features that you pay a premium for. Even if you don’t want them!

You can custom-tailor every detail to your liking

This is probably one of the most attractive reasons to build a home for Millennials.

Who wants to live with someone else’s structural problems or taste in décor?

For the same amount of money (or less) you can build a home that’s completely custom to your own style and preferences.

More than that, you can include any special requests that are specifically tailored to your lifestyle.

While renovating an older, resale home is possible, you can’t make changes to the floorplan too significantly. Oftentimes, general contractors will come up against structural barriers and other issues that restrict your creative design wants.

More than that, while the renovation process is the right choice for many. In some cases (especially ones that require extensive maintenance) it can indicate other damages that have been done under the surface in an older home.

The fact of the matter is, while it’s always possible to renovate an older home, you just can’t get full customization like you can when you build from the ground up.

For Millennials, building a new home means that you can also leverage the latest in industry trends and SMART home technology. [link to internal post]

By ensuring that your home is built with the latest materials, Millennials can benefit from more durable and energy-efficient options that save them money and positively impact the environment.

Maintenance is less expensive

It’s pretty much a no-brainer, older homes have more wear and tear.

Which means certain elements of the property may need more maintenance.

Even worse, you may purchase a new home that has a laundry list of features that need to be replaced or are on their last legs. That sounds expensive.

If you build your home, there’s considerably less upkeep — which is one of the primary benefits to new construction.

Everything in your custom home is new and under warranty. Sometimes, your entire home can be protected for up to 10 years before you have to pay out of pocket. Win-win.

Financial programs are available to new home buyers

At the end of the day, there’s no wonder Millennials aren’t wanting to buy homes. You’ll need to consider having enough savings for a down payment, ensuring that your credit score is in good standing and that your job qualifies you to apply for a mortgage securely.

With many Millennials are harboring large student debt loans, there’s no wonder that buying a home and making a large financial investment feels overwhelming.

The truth is, it is possible for you to get into the real estate market.

Connect with a well-informed mortgage agent who can fully explain the entire buying and financing process. You’d be surprised to discover that building a home is much more affordable than you think.

From a financial perspective, once you have a plan and budget laid out, you’ve already figured out half the battle.

With all of the tax savings and first-home buyer incentives explained, building a home is a much smarter way to invest your money than rent.

Renting a property is like flushing money down the toilet.

Your money isn’t going back into the equity of the home, you don’t have any assets and you’re essentially helping someone else to pay their mortgage.

When you reframe home ownership to look at your property as not only a place that you live but a save planning; home ownership becomes the clear, most-advantageous choice.

Building your dream home doesn’t just mean you become a homeowner.

It means freedom. As in, financial freedom.

As a Millennial, you likely want to resist the confines of what’s expected of you.

Whether you remain lusting after a nomadic “Instagram lifestyle” or plan to put down roots for a while.

Build a home instead.

books shelf under stairs

Paying attention to details – staircase design

Designing and creating a new home involves a lot of attention to detail, sometimes the small details can get blocked out by the larger focus-pulling decisions. But it is important that you consider every aspect of your new home including something small such as your staircase design. That is why Posche, the best construction contractors, believes it is important to pay attention to blossoming trends for all aspects of your new home. So lets explore what’s new in staircase trends.

 

  • Bookcase Staircase

Add character to your home through the unique trend of having your staircase also act as a bookcase. This trend makes better use of your space and will give your home a unique look that will have your guests in awe.

 

  • Glass Staircase`

Update your staircase with this versatile staircase. With it’s simple glass paneling this staircase will suit any style home and it is perfect way to add a sleek and modern touch to your home.

 

  • Floating Staircase

This minimalistic staircase will make you feel like you are walking on air. The clutter will be no more with this space freeing addition to your home, not to mention that your guests will find this simple staircase unforgettable.

 

 

 

So let BRIKS, Canadas best renovation contractors, help you install your unique staircase today.

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The Top 5 Trends for Fall

It seems like a scary word, but the truth is fall is just around the corner. With the days becoming cooler and the home trends changing, there is no doubt that home décor will be making a splash this fall with new colours and gorgeous home trends. We have rounded up our 5 top trends for fall, making its way to a home near you!
1. Woven Textures: Fall reminds us of warm blankets and cozy pillows. It also reminds us of hand woven details like baskets. This trend has real intentions of making a big impact with woven details being incorporated not only in storage as baskets, but as wall décor. We can’t wait to see this trend make its mark this fall.

2. Quilts: This trend really made its mark during the last fall/winter season and it once again is back in full force. Forget the bulky duvets as people’s top bedding choice. Quilts are here and they are here to stay!

3. Dark Paint: Everywhere you look nowadays, homeowners top wall paint choices are neutrals in whites, beiges and at times nudes or blushes. If there is a hint of dark colour, you only seem it come about with accent walls. However, the trends are changing and bold impactful wall colours are now in! Don’t be surprised if you see dark tones in blacks, greys, reds or greens as the preferred colours of choice.

4. Decals: Throughout Canada, home decals have been in and its much credit to a Vancouver based company Urban Walls! No need to take a paint brush to a wall to significantly impact the décor of a room. Decals are now the easier alternative to upping the décor game without having to do very much. What’s even better is that the decals provided by Urban Walls are easy to install and even easier to remove! Looking to up your home reno & design game even more? Contact the best construction contractors today!

Image: http://www.uwdecals.com/products/half-order-lavender-yellow-garden-flowers
5. Velvet Everything: Probably our favourite trend for fall: Velvet! As they say what was once in will be in again, and that definitely is the case now! Velvet home pieces are all the rage right now, with everything from velvet coffee tables, to sofas and more. Hop onto the latest trend and grab your favourite velvet piece. Up the trend game by going for a bold colour too!

Image: https://www.google.ca/search?q=velvet+home+decor&rlz=1C1VFKB_enCA739CA739&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwimwvmj0PLVAhWK0YMKHVGUAFcQsAQINg&biw=1920&bih=1014#imgrc=RPKhT-yNiV6BbM:

Looking to take your home to the next level this fall? Contact Canada’s best renovations contractors. We’ll make your home trendy and gorgeous!

office room

What’s big for your home flooring this season?

What’s big for your home flooring this season? From classic wood flooring to smooth and sophisticated tiling, let us look at 3 fresh trends that will have your flooring ready to go for 2018.

1) Dark Stained Wood Floors

The dark stained wood flooring will keep any space in your home looking elegant and up to trend. The darkness of the wood adds a richness to the room that can be nicely contrasted by a variety of furniture décor. So when it comes time to switch up that old leather couch, feel free to go light or dark, with these versatile wood floors the sky is the limit.

2) Cement Style Tile

This season gray has made a big debut in many up to trend homes. A simple, but unique way to bring gray into your home is with a cement style tile. This smooth tile gives your flooring a clean look while adding a subtle gray hue to your home. This is an industrial style flooring that could be the bold change to get you ready to go for 2018.

3) Eco-Friendly Carpet

For any and all earth lovers making a change to their home flooring, try a carpet made up of partially recycled materials. In the end, you will have a durable and environmentally friendly carpet that will always be on trend because making the choice to go green never goes out of style.