Trends You Need to Know About Remodeling and Contractors

Kitchens: Trends You Could Consider When Renovating

It is not uncommon to find that some homeowners consider their kitchen to be the heart of their home. As such, if they are contemplating renovations, this would be one of the rooms that they would start with. However, renovating your kitchen is not simply about replacing old and worn hardware. You should also consider incorporating new design elements that would give your kitchen an updated appearance. Below are some of the different trends that you could consider when embarking on a kitchen renovation.

Trend 1: Opt for timber cabinets

Although stock cabinets tend to be an economical option, you will find that they are more susceptible to succumbing to wear and tear. This is because the materials used are not premium materials. If you are looking to add a touch of class as well as durability in your kitchen, you should consider switching to timber cabinetry. These cabinets come in organic tones that will provide your kitchen with a warm colour palette. Some of the trending colours you could consider are chestnut or honey, which complement any type of interior décor. Opting for timber cabinets will not provide you with long lasting cabinetry but you will also be creating a country-chic design in your kitchen.

Trend 2: Opt for metallic fixtures

Another trend that would add both functionality as well as visual interest in your kitchen are metallic fixtures. However, this does not mean that you should opt for the conventional aluminium taps. Instead, use metals such as brass, chrome or copper that are reflective, hence enhancing the lighting in your kitchen. You could even choose to use two different colours of metals so as to enhance the overall aesthetics. For instance, copper knobs on your cabinetry can go well with brass tapware. Moreover, these metals have a classic appeal so you do not have to worry about them going out of style.

Trend 3: Install a trough sink

When it comes to kitchen sinks, the traditional design is white and shallow ceramic sinks. If you would prefer something different that will stand out, you should consider installing a trough sink made from natural stone. There are several advantages of this type of sink. Firstly, the natural stone is highly scratch resistant and durable, which will ensure your sink stays in pristine condition for a prolonged period of time. Secondly, the deepness of the trough sink provides you with additional space when cleaning your dishes, which saves you the trouble of having to pile dishes next to the sink.

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How to Utilize Various Cabinet Styles and Finishes in Your Home

Kitchen design does not have to be about following a particular design or pattern. Rather, it can be customized to fit your style and add a personal touch and feel to the space. The best way you can achieve this is by mixing cabinet and door styles and finishes. However, this has to be done carefully to avoid creating an unpleasant mix-and-match situation in your kitchen. Here are some useful recommendations and tips that will help you mix various styles and finishes to give your kitchen cabinets a distinct and appealing look.

Proper placement is the key

The way in which you place your mixed cabinet styles and finishes will determine the overall look of your kitchen. Using contrasting cabinet finishes and patterns in the wrong way can overwhelm your kitchen and make it look busy and small. The most popular combination involves contrasting the styles for the upper and lower cabinets.

When using paint with contrasting colors, the lighter color should always be used on the upper cabinets and the darker and bolder one on the lower ones. This gives the kitchen a dramatic but appealing look without overwhelming it. However, if you use the darker color for the upper cabinets, they won’t look balanced with the lower ones, and this could throw off the overall appearance of the kitchen.

Choose finishes wisely

When it comes to finishing wood cabinets, you can either go for solid paint colors or wood stains. Both options can transform the look of your kitchen when used individually or together.  Proper choice of shade is essential when mixing paint and stain finishes. One of the most popular trends is pairing white painted cabinets with dark stained ones. This look is particularly suitable for the wall and island cabinets, that is, white wall cabinets and stained island cabinets. This look creates a modern classy style that is almost timeless. You can also explore other paint shades and mix them with stain finishes.

Contrast cabinet door styles

Besides mixing styles and finishes for your cabinets, you can also consider different door styles. The key to pulling this style off is using complementary door styles. For instance, if you have a modern look going in your kitchen, go for a door with a modern style. You can design some doors with more detail than others to create contrast. The same applies if your cabinets have a traditional or rustic look. Avoid using different colors or stains for the doors, as this can be too overwhelming for the cabinets.

Thinking about mixing up your cabinet styles and finishes for your next remodeling project? Have these recommendations in mind so that you can have functional and aesthetically appealing kitchen cabinets.

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Bathroom Renovation Ideas That Add Value to a Home

If you’re planning on staying in your home indefinitely then of course your bathroom renovation ideas should suit you and your family, and you may not be concerned with how those ideas will affect your home’s value. However, if you’re sure you’re going to put the home on the market one day, you want to think of how your plans will affect the home’s value and your ability to sell. Note a few bathroom renovation ideas that may actually add value to a home and increase its appeal to future homebuyers.

Double sinks

If the bathroom has the space, invest in double sinks and preferably double mirrors as well. Two sinks decrease crowding in the bathroom and allow a couple to get ready in the morning more easily, or allow children to share a bathroom just as easily. Opt for smaller, apartment-size sinks or get them custom made if you can and if you need to accommodate a smaller space in the bathroom.

Storage

Added storage almost always makes a home more attractive to homebuyers, so forego the pedestal sink if you do opt for a single sink, and choose a vanity with more storage. Cut out more space in the shower area for insets, and add these same insets to the walls of the bathroom for storage. If you have double sinks with two mirrors, add insets to the wall space between them for all those small items everyone needs in the bathroom, keeping them organized and close at hand; potential homebuyers may appreciate this small but important feature in your bathroom.

Easy maintenance

When choosing the surface materials for your bathroom and are considering how it will affect its future value, note the ease of maintenance of any choice. Natural stone may be very beautiful but small pits and holes may hold dirt that needs professional cleaning regularly. Real wood floors may require consistent sealing to keep the wood from absorbing moisture and warping. Porcelain and ceramic tile might also need sealing and professional cleaning.

Laminate can be more durable and need less maintenance over time; this can be especially appreciated in homes with children, so if your home is located in a residential area popular with families, you might consider laminate or vinyl tile and a laminate surface for the vanity. This will ensure the material is easy to care for and maintain and it may be more appealing to potential homebuyers down the road.

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Easy Ways to Make a Small Bathroom Look Bigger

Very few homes come with large, luxurious bathrooms. If yours is rather small and cramped, you might feel that the only way you can improve it is by knocking through a wall and physically extending the space. However, this probably isn’t necessary. Bathroom renovations don’t have to be that complicated; there are lots of simple, affordable ways to make this part of your home look and feel larger than it really is.

Go for a pale colour scheme

White is generally considered the best colour choice for tiny areas of a house, as it reflects the light and thus helps to make a room appear bigger and brighter. Opting for a white wall paint with a satin finish, along with some glossy white tiles, will further intensify this colour’s light-reflecting properties.

If the idea of an all-white space doesn’t appeal to you, you can still create the illusion of a larger bathroom by sticking to another pale shade; beige, grey, pastel blue or lilac will all work well. Using the same light hue for the walls, ceiling and floors will give the space a streamlined, airy look and make even the tiniest bathroom seem more spacious.

Choose open shelving

In a small bathroom, storage is absolutely essential. However, cabinets, baskets and cupboards serve as both visual and physical obstructions, which make the room harder to navigate and negatively affect the overall aesthetic. The solution to this is to replace these items with open shelving, which won’t visually impede on the space. You can take this idea a step further by investing in mirrored, glass or white units; reflective, transparent and light-coloured materials will blend in with their surroundings and further enhance the open and airy feel that this type of shelving creates.

Keep the window unadorned

If you want to create the illusion of spaciousness, it’s important to pay attention to the window, and do what you can to ensure that the maximum amount of natural light gets into the space. This might mean you need to rearrange the furniture, shelving or even the bathroom suite, if any of these items are blocking out the window.

If you have to use window dressings, it’s best to opt for something minimalistic, such as a set of fully-retractable shades or a sheer white fabric panel, as these won’t affect the amount of light that reaches the room. If the current window panel is made from standard glass and you’re concerned that you won’t have enough privacy if you leave it completely unadorned, you may want to consider switching to frosted or decorative glass, which will prevent anyone from seeing in, whilst still allowing lots of sunlight into the space. 

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What to Remember When Choosing Stone Benchtops for Your Kitchen

Stone benchtops are a favourite choice for many homeowners as they offer a natural look that is timeless and classic, and which works with any type of décor. They can also provide a solid surface for food prep, so you have less worry about your benchtops holding germs, bacteria and the like. While stone benchtops may be a good choice for many homes, you do need to understand a few challenges in having them installed and ensure you opt for the right type of stone for your home. Note a few things to remember and discuss with your contractor when choosing stone benchtops for your kitchen.

Maintenance and care

Stone benchtops are very durable and very strong, but they do need regular sealing to keep the surface from getting damaged. You may need to seal your benchtops every year or every few years, depending on your use and the stone you choose. Be sure you understand this added cost when choosing a stone benchtop.

You also need to ensure you care for your benchtop properly. As durable as they are, you cannot use them as a workbench as the stone may still crack or break due to excessive pounding, dropping a heavy object on it, and the like. Marble, limestone, and soapstone are softer than granite so they may be more prone to breaking under excessive weight or wear, so ensure you manage your benchtops properly rather than assuming they’re indestructible.

Engineered versus natural stone

Engineered stone is made in a factory and is meant to look like natural stone, but it’s more durable and may be more lightweight than the real thing. If your kitchen benchtops see a lot of use and abuse, engineered stone might be a good option. You might also find a shade or tone of engineered stone that better suits your taste, as granite in particular has its own unique appearance and obviously cannot be painted over or stained to create a look you like, as you can do with wood or another material. A contractor might be better able to create a specific shade or hue with engineered stone, so discuss that with him or her if necessary.

Consider replacement costs

Most stone benchtops, because the stone sections are very unique, may be difficult to replace with a similar piece if you should damage a section or area. Some contractors will set aside a remnant of granite for your future use or you might buy an entire section and store that remnant yourself, so it can be cut and fabricated to replace a damaged section of benchtop in the future. This can save you from having to get an entirely new benchtop when just one section is damaged.

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3 Things You Don’t Need For a Beautiful Bathroom Remodel on a Budget

Bathroom remodelling can be quite costly, especially if you want to go all out and remove all fittings and fixtures and get new ones fitted. However, you’ll often find a big difference between what you want and what you can afford. If that’s you, the good news is that there are a number of ways you can improve your bathroom even on a tight budget. Below are three things you don’t need to replace to get a cool new bathroom.

1. New tub

Replacing a tub is a huge commitment – as the biggest fixture in your bathroom, a lot of work goes into its placement, so replacement can be expensive. However, you can choose to refinish the tub, leaving it looking as good as new. In reglazing, the refinisher seals surfaces around the tub to avoid over-spraying and then removes caulk around the tub. The tub is then swathed in hydrofluoric acid to remove the old glaze and prime the surface for the new glaze. He or she finally installs new caulk then sprays two epoxy coats, using a fan to dry them in between. The tub is then sanded and polished, and in 4-6 hours, you’ll have a new-looking tub for a fraction of the cost of a new one. Reglazing involves use of toxic chemicals and should be done professionally in a well ventilated room.

Another option is using tub liners where the installer measures your tub precisely to give custom measurements used to create liners exactly fitting your bath. The old tub is first cleaned using alcohol, the old drain and overflow are removed and the liner is fitted in and trimmed to fit accordingly before a new drain and overflow are installed and seams are caulked. The entire process takes less than a day once the custom liner is made and delivered.

2. New tiles

It’s one thing if your tiles are loose, chipped and almost falling out. However, if you have good-looking tiles surrounded by ugly, rimy caulk, don’t go for full replacement just yet. You can simply replace loose or missing tiles and keep the rest, and refresh the grout and caulk. Adding clean lines of caulk is cheap and can give your tiles an instant facelift. Tiles can also be refinished/reglazed along with the tub if they’re in good condition. You can change up the look by changing the glaze or adding a few accent tiles in select places. Shop around for tile sales, which can save you big bucks.

3. New mirror

If the mirror isn’t broken/old, don’t think about replacing it. Simply talk to the contractor about framing the mirror as it is. Mastic adhesive can be used to install a tile frame around it, or you can tape the mirror and place the tiles with unsanded grout (regular grout may scratch the mirror during installation). You can also go for creative wooden frames or moulding or have one customized for you. Add inexpensive sconces to both sides of the mirror to brighten the space and remove shadows when looking into the mirror.

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Why You Should Choose Custom Over Ready-Made Kitchen Cabinets

You are finally remodeling your kitchen, and all you can think about is getting new kitchen cabinets. You have the choice of going for ready-made or custom made ones. Custom cabinets are the ideal option for your kitchen remodeling project. Having doubts about them? Here are some reasons why you should choose them over their ready-made counterparts.

Accurate measurement and sizing

You can never go wrong with custom cabinets when it comes to measurements. Ready-made cabinets can be bigger or smaller than your existing cabinet space. In this case, you will need a carpenter to adjust the cabinets to fit your space if they are too big, or add filler in the space left behind by smaller cabinets. Such modifications can be expensive. Your storage space can also be reduced, not to mention reduced physical appeal due to adjustments made. However, with custom cabinets, exact measurements of the available space are taken to ensure a perfect fit.

Versatility in style and design

Ready-made cabinets come in particular styles, design, finishes, and accessories. They can limit your options when choosing the ideal texture, finish, style, and design. However, getting custom kitchen cabinets allows you to be creative with all these aspects. There are numerous designs to choose from, and you can even come up with your own. You can choose from an array of finishes, types of wood, colors, and cabinet hardware. Also, if you have a personalized theme going in your home or kitchen, you can have your custom cabinets made to match it.

Quality control

The quality of ready-made cabinets compared to custom ones may vary considerably. The latter may be manufactured from low-quality materials such as laminated particle board with inexpensive hardware. Cabinet makers choose high quality and durable wood that will withstand warping and weather elements for years. They also use high-quality hardware and accessories including rollout shelves and drawer slides that match the quality of the wood. Furnishes used are also longer-lasting, eliminating the need for regular refinishing.

Installation requirements

If you buy kitchen cabinets at a local store, you may be required to install them yourself or pay extra for a professional to do it for you. However, with custom ones, the installation may be rolled out in the cost. Even though you may have to pay for installation, most cabinet makers will take care of any quirks encountered during installation. In case modifications are necessary, they can be made at no extra cost.  

Going custom with your new kitchen cabinets is an ideal solution for your remodeling project. Custom cabinetry and custom joinery services offer versatility in style and design among other benefits that you will not get from ready-made kitchen cabinets.

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