Posted by & filed under Interior Design.

The colours that you decide on for the interior of your home will define it’s personality in a very powerful way. Colours influence our moods and perceptions and their placement within a home can make us feel comfortable or disconnected. In order to create a sense of harmony and continuity throughout your home, you need a balanced colour scheme with a good visual flow that seamlessly connects one room to the next. You can create continuity by selecting hues of colours with similar undertones that creates a smooth flow.

Colour flow can be easily achieved by using the principles of architectural features in the home along with your personal style. One of the most effective ways that you can transform a room with colour is to highlight the molding, mantels, windows, doors and doorways. Even a built-in bookcase is a structural element that can be highlighted to create a distinctive eye-catching effect. According to Sheri Thompson, Director of colour marketing and design for Sherwin-Williams, painting molding or doorways just one step lighter, or darker, than the primary wall is a subtle shift in color, but it really brings your eye to the detail.

Even in today’s open concept designs, where kitchens, living rooms, and dining rooms are often one shared space, colour is primarily used to define these sprawling areas and create focal points. Your aim here is to create an integrated color scheme that shares a natural relationship to each other and works for the entire space. You should consider sticking with muted colours for an open floor plan because over time you may tire of bold paint colours. By choosing muted tones, you will have a more visually livable area that can stand the test of time.

Interior Paint Colours

There are many ways to enhance your home’s appearance and bring out its personality, but the trick is figuring out which colors to use and where to put them. Here are a few tips:

  1. Most people like to buy clothes in colours that they like to wear and think they look good in to complement their appearance, so study the colour of your clothes. Similarly, decorate your rooms in colours you look good in and feel good around. If you look sickly in yellow, don’t buy a yellow couch or paint your walls in any of these hues.
  2. Start with the main floor’s formal areas of the house, such as the entryway, living room and dining room. Choose your colour scheme by selecting three to five favorite colours and then alternate the primary, secondary, and accent colours. Pull one colour from the scheme for each room or extend one colour throughout. An example of how you choose the colour is to pluck a tone out of a patterned upholstery, rug or artwork and use it as a backdrop on the different walls. For neutral paint colours, choose one of the whites or beiges in the pattern and alternate the shade or let it flow as one colour in the different rooms.
  3. If you like colours that have deeper tones, a good formula to follow is to decorate your space from dark to light vertically. This means that the floor beneath your feet is like the exterior environment, which is generally darker like mother earth. A medium value is when you look straight ahead at the walls, like buildings and trees and the lighter value is looking upward toward the ceiling, like the sky.
  4. Another simple formula is to divide the space into three components. Use 60 percent for the dominant colour, followed by 30 percent of a secondary colour and finally 10 percent of an accent colour. Walls will most likely have the majority of the colour with colour tones from the upholstery as the secondary. The accent shade can be picked up by accessories in the room, such as throw pillows, window treatments, artwork or floral arrangements.

Whatever interior paint colour scheme you decide on for your home, you are setting a mood and creating a personality for each room that you paint. It’s important to have continuity throughout the entire house, but at the same time allow for each space to be to be distinct in its own right. Colour is key to how the décor of home is perceived and ultimately people should really follow their heart. If you love colour and you take into considerations some of these simple tips, don’t be afraid to use it to define your home’s interior personality.

Posted by & filed under Home Renovations.

Flooring is one of the more expensive investments you’ll make when decorating the interior of your home. There are many choices when selecting types of flooring for each room and the link between them is colour, creating a consistent appearance throughout the house.

There is a general rule to follow that is referred to as the “rule of three”. It means that you should see only three different types of flooring from any one point in your home. You want the flooring in these rooms to be visually appealing and functional and to flow into one another seamlessly. A look of continuity regarding type of material, colour and feel will result in a uniform appearance instead of a haphazard look.

Basement hardwood flooring

Foyer

Foyers are the welcome entry to your home and a high traffic area. Choosing a flooring material for this space must take into consideration its durability and ease of maintenance, yet is designed with the rest of the house in mind. The foyer sets the stage for your home’s interior. In most homes, you’ll find tile, stone, slate and mosaic as an appealing and weather resistant choice. There are unlimited options, such as size, colour, patterns and even textures. Of course, solid wood is classic and never goes out of style. If properly maintained, a wood floor can be timeless, even in this high traffic area. The key for the entryway is to pick a colour or hue that will blend with the rooms that it connects to, such as the living room or staircase to the second level.

Living Room

If your living room and dining room are open to one another, you can create two visually distinct spaces so that they flow easily from one to the other for a unified look. The easiest and most common way is to use the same material for both spaces, but with some small variations to make them different. An example is hardwood flooring, which works well in both places for a traditional look. To create the distinction between the two rooms and get the best visual result, use the same patterned rugs in the center of both floors to tie them together, or choose two different rugs in similar shades or designs. If you’re going for a softer appearance, wall-to-wall carpeting works well and it can pick up the tone of colour from the foyer.

In larger rooms, you can use different flooring material in the dining room and living room to add dimension and character to an open floor plan. However, if you’re concerned that the different materials will make the space appear too busy, choose something that is similar in colour but different in texture to create a cohesive look, such as hardwood, tile or mosaic in the dining room and carpeting in the living room.

Kitchen

When it comes to kitchen flooring, you definitely want something that is practical, durable, comfortable, water resistant and makes a major design statement as well. That might sound like a tall order, but with today’s endless choices of fabrications, colours and textures, all you really need is a little imagination to get the perfect look for your home. Here are some suggestions from HGTV’s list of flooring choices for the kitchen.

  • Stone or tile is an excellent choice.
  • Ceramic tile is durable and available in assorted colors and styles.
  • Limestone is a natural stone that offers an Old World look.
  • Cork is a durable, versatile material available in a variety of colors.
  • Wood is a popular choice for today’s kitchens.
  • Vinyl offers a variety of styles and colors for those on a budget.

Bedrooms

You can be a bit more creative with flooring for the bedrooms since they tend to be away from the main part of the house, but you still want to have some uniformity. With the harsh beating and spills that children’s and teen’s bedrooms take, a hard-surface floor like laminate is practical since it will stand up to the wear and tear. The master bedroom can be more luxurious with plush carpeting, hardwood or tile. If you go the hard surface route, accent with soft area rugs for a warm foot path. Many master bedrooms have an ensuite bathroom, where ceramic, mosaic or stone tile is a preferred water resistant flooring material. Whichever you prefer, remember to carry your colour tone from the bedroom into the bathroom.

Posted by & filed under Home Renovations.

Sunrooms have become a popular home improvement because they are cost effective, versatile and enhance the look and curb appeal of your home. When a sunroom fits your home’s design and lifestyle, it can add a touch of luxury to your environment. Besides adding additional space to your home, sunrooms have a completely different look and feel from traditional room additions because of the amount of glass installed. Homeowners who decide to invest in a sunroom say it’s their favorite room in the house.

A sunroom is also referred to as a solarium, patio room or Florida room. It can be either a screened (or glass) three season room or an insulated glass all year outdoor living enclosure. The additional space and the added home value are important factors, but there are personal paybacks too. Sunrooms bring the beauty of the outdoors inside and allow you to enjoy the physical benefits of natural sunlight. Sunrooms provide a sense of comfort and relaxation and most people outfit them with comfortable furnishings that encourage stress-free living.

3 Season Screened Sunroom:

A screened sunroom continues to be one of the most popular choices because of its low investment costs and utilizes your existing patio or porch roof. It allows homeowners to enjoy the benefits of feeling like they’re outdoors while being sheltered from the harsh elements like sun, rain and bugs. They also provide visibility without the glare of glass.

Today’s screens are made of durable aluminum components that never warp, rot or sag like traditional fiberglass. According to thisoldhouse.com, aluminum can last 30 to 40 percent longer than fiberglass and the new black aluminum is almost invisible when you look from inside to out. It allows you to breathe in the fresh air flowing through the space. The one disadvantage of the screened sunroom is that it cannot be used in regions with cold weather climates or harsh winters.

Lady painting in a sunroom.

3 Season Glass Sunroom:

Although it’s difficult to tell from a distance, there are several distinctions between a 3 season glass sunroom versus a 4 season sunroom. A 3 season glass room is more economical to build because it can also utilize an existing patio or porch roof. It is generally an aluminum framed structure featuring floor to ceiling glass. If the aluminum structure is a separate addition requiring an independent roof, the “r” value (insulation) is lesser in quality than a four season room. In a 3 season glass sunroom, the windows have single pane tempered glass, which offer minimal energy efficiency in comparison to a 4 season with double-paned windows. A 3 season glass sunroom may come with double roller windows that provide ventilation out of both sides. It does retain heat better than a screened sunroom, but like a screened sunroom, harsh temperatures prevent its year round versatility.

4 Season Glass Sunroom:

A four season sunroom is a spacious and elegant home addition. It allows the enjoyment of year round comfort with the benefits of natural light with a climate controlled interior. Aluminum sunrooms have been the popular material choice for decades, but vinyl sunrooms are gaining ground even though they cost more. Vinyl is durable and thermally efficient, offering double-pane glass for the best insulation for year-round use.

In a 4 season sunroom, additional insulation is installed in the walls and floor. An R30 or higher insulation is installed in the roof, and a generous placement of windows and patio/ glass doors on all three sides. The added insulation helps to keep the room warmer in winter and cooler in summer, extending its usability in any weather condition. Some 3 season glass sunrooms might have a HVAC unit (heating, ventilation & air conditioning); however, in a year round sunroom, HVAC is standard during the design and installation.

A 4 season sunroom can have either a conventional roof or a glass roof. Both have pros and cons and it is really about the buyer’s preference. However, a conventional shingle roof is more energy efficient because it is built with rafters or trusses. It outperforms the glass roof in the winter from an energy conservation perspective and prevents the sun’s infrared heat from penetrating during the summer.

Whichever type of sunroom you decide to add to your home, you will enjoy serene bliss by bringing the outdoors in while comfortably lounging in this versatile room.

Posted by & filed under Home Renovations.

As more Hamilton and Burlington homeowners choose to stay in their existing homes and renovate, they’re looking for ways to expand their living space using the least expensive or invasive ways possible. Well, look no further and look up, because attic renovations have been on the rise for the past five years. An attic renovation offers a lot of advantages since it can increase the square footage of a home without adding a major and costly side addition. It makes better use of existing space, reduces your energy bills and increases your home’s value.

Since attics are already under the same roof as the rest of the house, there is no need to build a new roof or to worry about the change in the configuration of the home. It can be converted into so many different types of useable space, such as a new bedroom, an entertainment area, a reading lounge, sewing room, office or playroom for the kids. So grab a flashlight and peek inside to see if it’s a potential remodeling candidate for you and your family.

Insulation:

Regardless what you plan on ultimately doing with the space, there are several factors that you need to consider before renovating this upper portion of the house. Although attics are already insulated to a certain degree, you will need to add additional insulation to the walls and roof. This extra insulation can lower your energy consumption for the whole house and save you a significant amount of money.

Staircase:

Generally, there are two ways of getting up to the attic. If you have a set of solid steps or you have a staircase, you have already tackled this obstacle. If your entry into the attic is through a pull-down trap door, you will have to build a permanent staircase to access the room. Since a straight staircase takes up a good deal of space, consider a spiral staircase, removal of a closet for added width for the stairwell or a narrower staircase. Another idea is to build a set of stairs on the outside of the house with a separate entry into this part of the home. If you choose to do it this way, you can include additional entry-points to the lower floors of the house.

Mansard RoomCeiling Height:

When you’re considering an attic renovation, the ceiling height inside the space will be determined by your roof frame. Most homes have a standard A-frame roof, which means that the roof has a pitch from the front to the back of the house. This type of roof leaves a peak in the middle. The first thing to check out is the building code in your area because they vary by locale. A building inspector can provide you with a list of applicable codes and inspection requirements. In most instances, requirements call for a minimum of seven feet of ceiling height that covers one-third to one-half of the room for the space to be deemed useable. Some experts suggest that a minimum floor area of 70 square feet is a good rule of thumb to consider enough space for a renovation.

Light and Ventilation:

Flooding the area with light is another important factor to take into account for the renovation. You can do this by adding one or more dormers with windows that not only raise the roof over a portion of the attic and provides more useable space, but offers natural light that creates an open and airy feeling. Adding a skylight is another option that provides plenty of natural light in the space. If you do not choose either of these choices, you’ll want to extend the electricity throughout the room so that there are a sufficient number of outlets for task lighting and lamps.

You will also want to have a comfortable room that’s climate controlled. This can be accomplished by using ceiling fans and extending the heating/air conditioning system into this room. Of course, the fresh air that comes through the windows or skylights will help with air circulation.

Cost:

According to a survey by the Home Improvement Research Institute, one in five respondents said they planned to finish an attic room in the next few months. Their gain in popularity is due in part to the fact that a finished attic has the same appeal as a finished basement with an excellent return on investment. In Remodeling Magazine’s annual Cost vs Value Report, a mid-range attic bedroom remodels’ return on investment is more than 84% of the original cost. The cost and return on investment may vary by region, contractor and material costs, but renovating an attic is a common and smart way to renovate your home without the hefty expense of a major addition.

Posted by & filed under Skylights.

As homeowners think about what upgrades will increase the value of their home while reducing energy costs, skylights should be on the list because they’re a good investment. Adding skylights to a home offers many aesthetic benefits. Not only do they provide an architectural interest to the visual appeal of the home, but they improve mood, reduce heating costs and add value to your home.

Although some homeowners might consider skylights a luxury that they can’t afford, skylights are reasonably priced and easy to install when using a professional contractor. So, let’s take a look at some of the basics and why adding skylights are more of a necessity rather than an extravagance.

Natural Light:

Skylights are a tremendous source of flooding the home with natural light. This abundance of natural light can provide an airy quality to your home by bringing the outdoors inside. The feeling of openness tricks the eye into perceiving that the interior area is larger and more spacious, thus increasing the overall appeal of a given space. By bringing natural light into your home, you will improve the appearance of your surroundings. It will be comfortably bright without the need to use artificial lighting throughout the day, and natural light makes colours appear more true and resilient.

Allowing sunlight and fresh air to filter into your home improves overall health. The natural light eases eye strain and headaches during the day while the added light and sunshine helps to improve your mood. There have been numerous scientifically proven studies that indicate that the warm, natural feeling of the outdoors can lessen levels of depression, especially during the long winter months. The sunlight coming in through the skylights helps to boost Vitamin D production for a more robust immune system, which results in better health and more energy.

Since the natural light reduces the number of artificial lights needed during the day, skylights conserve electricity. Installing skylights can easily be one of the most energy efficient improvements you can make to your home to reduce your monthly energy expenses.

By placing skylights in the best locations to maximize their capability, they can significantly reduce your heating and air conditioning costs. This savings occurs because the sunshine coming in helps to heat your home in the winter months and vented skylights allow heat to escape at night during the hot summer months. Even a few degrees up or down can make a dramatic impact on energy savings during the year.

According to Energysavers.gov, the skylight size should never be more than 5% of the floor area in rooms with many windows and no more than 15% of the room’s total floor area for spaces with few windows. Also, always check for energy-efficient skylights with the ENERGY STAR® seal because it has an established minimum energy performance rating criteria by climate.

Fixed skylight versus vented skylight:

roof skylightA skylight is a glazed window that is installed on your roof. Glazing can be either plastic or glass, but more expensive skylights use glass, which is more durable and do not discolour. They come in a variety of shapes and sizes, such as rectangular, circular, oval, diamond, triangular, multi-sided, and tubular. The glazing can be flat, arched, domed, pyramidal or warped plane (flat on the low side and concave on the high side).

Skylights can also be fixed or vented. Vented skylights are usually opened using an electric motor with a remote control. They can also be opened or closed manually using a control rod with a smooth turning handle. Some skylights give you the added convenience of having a timer and built-in rain sensor that automatically closes once rain is detected. For those times when you want to limit the direct amount of sunlight coming in, roller blinds are an option to allow diffused light to enter the room. Diffused light is often desirable in places such as the kitchen and bathrooms because you can enjoy the benefits of the natural light without any glare.

In the End:

Installing skylights can provide homeowners with many benefits. When properly selected and installed, energy-efficient skylights can help minimize your heating, cooling, and lighting costs while improving the amount of natural light and ventilation within your home. They are a great investment that will provide you with a pleasing visual environment, improved health benefits and increase the value of your home.

Posted by & filed under Kitchen Renovation.

The most important question every homeowner should consider is whether a renovation will pay off and bolster the value of their home. In today’s tight real estate market, the answer may even be a determining factor as to whether the house will sell quickly or linger on the market.

Remodeling projects do add value to your home, improve your family’s quality of life and attract future buyers. The final return on investment will vary by locale and what a buyer is willing to pay in comparison to other homes in the area. You do not want to have an overblown renovation project that makes your home the most expensive house in the neighborhood. It’s important that the style, size, and quality of the renovation fit in with the rest of the house. If you plan on selling your home within the next five years, keep potential buyers in mind before you start on any major remodeling job.

kitchen renovationThe Heart of the Home:

Since the kitchen is the heart of the home, it is the single most important room in the house relating to valuation. Each year, the Appraisal Institute of Canada surveys its members and compiles a list of renovations that yield the best return on investment. Year after year, renovated kitchens top the list for renovation pay-back. As such, it is crucial that you invest in having a modern, fresh and desirable kitchen. The cost of remodeling a kitchen can range from $15,000 to $45,000 and return on investment (ROI) is between 75-100%.

The Makeover:

A major kitchen redesign may not be required if the space only requires a facelift. You don’t have to gut your kitchen completely if it’s in good working shape. Installing stone or granite countertops are a good investment and they are fairly easy changes to make that improve the aesthetic appeal of the space. Upgrading your appliances to stainless steel with the energy-star rating is not only better for the environment, but you also get the immediate benefit of recouping your investment. They also help you to recapture the ROI because potential buyers often look for ways to save money when shopping for a new home.

Refacing existing cabinetry, under cabinet lighting, backsplash tiling, a sparkling new faucet, shiny knobs on cabinets and new light fixtures will all significantly increase the value of your home too. Also, some fresh paint in modern neutral colours goes a long way in updating the look of the kitchen.

If the kitchen does need a full-scale remodel, such as cabinets that are structurally unsound, then invest the extra time and money to replace them to transform the overall appeal of the kitchen. Choose stock cabinetry rather than custom designs to help keep the cost down and the budget on track.

Another kitchen upgrade that dramatically changes the whole look of the kitchen is the concept of knocking down a half or full wall so that you can connect the kitchen to a den or living room. By expanding the square footage area, the kitchen feels and looks more spacious. This trend has gained popularity in recent years. It allows couples to entertain in one area where people can be seen and heard during gatherings, or keep an eye on the kids while they’re playing.

The Final Comment:

In the end, regardless of the economy and market conditions, kitchen renovations can increase a home’s overall value. They command higher prices than homes in the area that lack similar updates. While the price of a remodel has increased, and the return has fallen slightly, the kitchen is the one room in the home that potential buyers focus on first. If you’re living with an outdated kitchen and you do plan on moving in the foreseeable future, a kitchen renovation is a smart investment. The cost will be recouped if you sell your home within the next five to seven years.

Posted by & filed under Bathroom Renovations.

Canadians are investing in home improvements like never before and while most plan to spend a reasonable amount of money, others plan on going all out.

According to an Ipsos-Reid survey, two-thirds of homeowners intend to undertake some sort of renovation this year and for many, a bathroom renovation is high on their list. Bathroom renovations continue to be one of the most popular perennial home improvements because the renovation has a return on investment (ROI) of 75-100%.

Bathroom renovation The Cost:

How far you want to go is dependent on your budget and the necessary changes that will make your bathroom fresh, attractive and functional. A remodeled bathroom can potentially make or break a deal when buying or selling a home, so as you renovate, keep in mind potential buyers. Future home buyers are looking for rooms that require little or no work and an updated bathroom can make the biggest impact on your resell value. The cost to remodel a bathroom can vary anywhere from $8,000 to $15,000.

The bathroom can be one of the most expensive rooms in the house to renovate because the costs depend largely on the design, products, types of additions and accessories you want to add. For most homeowners, it’s also a moderately sized tricky space with lots of moving parts crammed into a tight footprint. In addition to the expensive elements involved, such as cabinetry, tile, and fixtures, there is the cost of hiring a professional contractor who is knowledgeable about design, plumbing, tiling and electrical work.

The Features:

As you get ready to remodel, you want to think about what works for your family as well as the remodel’s resale value. You may want to consider only a walk-in shower since a tub is seldom used by your family. That extra space can include an oversized double vanity or large storage cabinet. However, the best of both worlds is to have a bathtub and shower combo. This combination still leaves plenty of space for a large double vanity with cabinets below for storage, which is always in demand. Wall-mounted cabinets are another option for providing additional storage.

To get the best rate of return on your renovated bathroom, selecting interesting materials and high quality elements will help you to get the biggest bang for your buck. Even on a budget, skimping on featured materials will result in a bathroom with lesser appeal, so shop around for the best prices on designer trends and products to make your bathroom stand out.

Most bathroom layouts, vanities and storage options are pretty standard, so for the most part, you can pick off-the-shelf vanity tops that are made from the same materials as custom countertops. If your vanity base is a standard size, you can simply update the look with a top swap. There are models to accommodate any sink installation with popular materials that include laminate, marble, cultured marble, solid-surfacing and quarts-surfacing.

You can also add some pizazz to your bathroom with additional items like tile. Tile offers a wide variety of colors, patterns and styles, which makes it a popular flooring choice, while mosaic tiles are commonly used in showers. Just like in the kitchen, a popular design trend today is to install a catchy looking tile backsplash above the vanity. Last, but certainly not least, are the cabinet pulls, the shower heads and the faucets. The hardware in a bathroom allows you to add bits and pieces of your own personality.

Final Thoughts:

Home improvement projects are giving home owners a greater return on their investment and in today’s competitive real estate market, renovations offer a relatively affordable means to boost your home’s value. Bathroom renovations will certainly add to the comfort of your lifestyle and you should enjoy it while you’re living there, but ultimately you want future buyers to envision themselves there too.

Posted by & filed under Kitchen Renovation.

For many households, the kitchen is truly the hub of family and social gatherings. The kitchen is a room filled with energy, aroma and texture and improving the kitchen’s appeal is a worthwhile endeavor.

Kitchen remodeling increases the value of your house more than most renovations and offers the highest average return on investment. Even if you have a limited budget for a total re-do, one or two trendy updates can create pizazz in your kitchen and bring it into the 21st century. Today’s kitchens reflect a more diversified style of living, so give your kitchen a facelift in 2014 with these modern trend designs.

Modern Kitchen Designs1. Add shine and instantly update the look of your kitchen by installing granite countertops. Granite countertops continue to lead in popularity. They make a statement to the entire look and feel of your kitchen with their uncompromising beauty and elegance. They are naturally durable and easy to clean. Granite is followed closely by quartz composite solid surfaces, which will serve you well if you are leaning toward a more modern style kitchen.

2. Once you have decided on which type of countertops to install, the trend is to add tile backsplash as a colourful customized accent to your kitchen. A beautiful backsplash can be the most striking element of a kitchen’s design. There are many choices of backsplash to select amongst, such as stone, metal or glass. Your selection will depend on your style preferences. Many people go with glass or mosaic tiles because they have a great depth of rich colour and a variety of looks.

3. Kitchen sinks are typically made from stainless steel, enamel-coated cast iron, solid surfaces and composites. For people who choose solid surface counters like granite or stone, a stainless steel sink is a good choice because of its under-mount capability. There are several types of the newer composite sinks on the market now, with polyester/acrylic being just one of them. Most kitchens feature a double-bowl sink; however, one oversized bowl or an oversized bowl with a smaller bowl combination is another stylish option.

4. With the great number of faucets available today, there is a design for everyone and style is strictly a personal taste issue. The hottest trends include modern, minimalist designs, classically cool models and rustic farmhouse-style faucets. Single-lever faucets with a spray arm are the most popular in the kitchen. The best finishes are chrome, polished nickel, brushed nickel or pewter. The new bronze finish is also very fashionable today.

5. Styles of cabinets are endless, but Shaker style cabinets still remain popular; however, there is a growing interest for natural textures and grains. Light colored stains like whites, off-whites and natural finishes can make your kitchen appear larger and open. Some modern style kitchens are being remodeled without any upper cabinets. In their place, homeowners are installing backsplash tiles all the way up to the ceiling and adding glass-front cabinets or really unique shelving. If new cabinets are beyond your budget, but you want your kitchen to look trendy, paint your existing cabinets a two-toned colour with the lower cabinet’s one colour and the uppers another to create a focal point of interest.

6. Updating your cabinet hardware is an easy way to change and refresh the entire appearance of your kitchen. They can elevate ordinary cabinets into something distinctive and unique. The freshest trends range from sleek and modern like stainless steel to classic like rubbed-bronze, rustic pewter and brushed nickel. Warm metals that are the shades of iron and graphite are getting the nod because they look fantastic against granite countertops. There are also numerous vintage-inspired hardware collections with unique painted patterns that can complement traditional or country kitchens cabinets. Even the eclectic looking beaded kitchen hardware is a visually appealing alternative to traditional knobs and pulls.

7. Putting the spotlight on your kitchen’s design includes new styles and trends in lighting. With the ongoing trend of fewer upper cabinets in the kitchen, more space is opened for decorative task lighting like the popular scones. Task lighting is an important part of any kitchen design, whether it’s over an island or counters. Oversized fixtures are gaining in popularity. They make a dramatic statement while under-counter lighting is always a good choice to brighten countertops. Another fresh feature for lighting is to have halogen lights inside one or two cabinets to showcase cherished collections.

Check out some of our work to inspire you and feel free to contact us to discuss any ideas you may have.

Posted by & filed under Backyard Renovations, Basement Renovations, Bathroom Renovations, Home Renovations, Kitchen Renovation.

As homeowners have watched the real estate market go through major fluctuations in recent years, many have decided to renovate the house that they love as a cost-effective option. In 2013, a CIBC poll revealed that more than one-third of Canadian homeowners plan to take on some form of home renovation project with an average renovation cost of just over $15,000. Also, thirty-nine percent plan to renovate their home in the next twelve months.

Costs can vary widely depending on materials, labor and how extensive the project, but renovations can improve the look and comfort of your home. Here are some examples of renovation costs and what you can expect from updating your existing dwelling while increasing its value.

Bathroom:

The cost to remodel a bathroom can vary anywhere from $8,000 to $15,000. According to Remodeling magazine, a mid-range bathroom remodel is approximately $10,499. A mid-range remodel is defined as putting in a new toilet, tub with a tile surround, an integrated solid-surface double sink and vanity, recessed medicine cabinet, a ceramic tile floor and paint or wallpaper. An upscale remodel might include expanding the room, moving fixtures, a 4 x 6 foot tiled shower, a bidet, stone countertops in the vanity with two sinks, linen closet, tile floor, lighting and other amenities. It’s easy to spend to the top range $15,000 and beyond, so think about what you most want to change.

Kitchen:

The kitchen is the heart of the home and a major factor in determining its increased value. The cost of remodeling a kitchen can range from $15,000 to $45,000. According to the National Kitchen and Bath Association, cabinets make up one-third to one-half of the total remodeling budget. Choosing stock cabinetry rather than custom designs will make the biggest difference in costs. After labor, appliances eat up about 15% of the budget. Countertops are next at about 10% and flooring makes up approximately 7%. Lighting, tiling, plumbing fixtures, doors and windows, walls and ceilings are the smallest expense at about 5% each.

Basements:

When planning a basement renovation, the cost is determined by how you decide to use the space and for what purpose. A remodeled basement can provide an additional living area and improves your resale value. Basement remodels start around $30 a square foot. The cost for remodeling a basement can range from $10,000 and $35,000. For homeowners who are seeking to fully remodel, the size and shape of the basement is the first factor in determining costs. The second biggest expenditure is the plumbing and electrical work. The last consideration is the cost of the flooring selection and the finishing materials.

Exteriors: (siding, fascia, trough and windows)

Exterior renovations like siding are determined by the contractor calculating the area to be covered for the amount of material needed. Soffits, gutters, downspouts, corner pieces, inner-corner pieces and fascia also need to be included in linear footage. Depending on the size of the house, the cost for a siding remodeling project can range from $10,000 to $20,000. The cost to replace windows depends on locale, window material, type of glazing, installer, and the number of windows being replaced. A whole-house replacement job can cost a homeowner anywhere from $10,000 to $20,000 for a whole-house window renovation job.

Outdoor Deck and PergolaDecks and Outdoor Living Spaces:

A deck can improve both the functionality and overall appearance of your home. It adds future resale value. The cost of a new deck varies depending on square footage, the type of materials that are going to be used and whether you choose to hire a contractor or do it yourself. The type of deck boards you use and where you locate the deck also factors into your overall cost because you might need concrete pilings for support pillars. If you don’t want a raised deck, consider an outdoor entertainment patio installed with flagstone or poured concrete. Both require excavation, design, leveling and tamping of large ground sections. Decks and outdoor living spaces can range from $8,000 to $25,000.

If you are ready to improve the look and comfort of your home, please contact us by phone or email.

Posted by & filed under Home Renovations.

There are many benefits to renovating your home, and creative home remodeling can be an exciting venture. Renovating is your opportunity to express your individuality and style through your home. With a plan, a dream and an understanding of the benefits for upgrading your property, anyone can accomplish their desired renovation.

Whether your project is a simple home improvement, updating one or more rooms or even adding a new addition, remodeling your home can be a rewarding and profitable experience. The money that you decide to spend on renovating will be a long term investment in the comfort and enjoyment of your house.

Choose a Qualified Expert

Since many homeowners are overwhelmed by the choices and decisions in the early planning stages, a professional, licensed, and properly insured contractor can help you through the maze. They can assist you in determining how to create a custom lifestyle for each individual’s needs. When you’re working with qualified expert, the renovation becomes more enjoyable and it will reduce your stress.

Kitchen renovationIncrease Your Property Value:

The purchasing of a home is the largest investment most people make. It is an important part of your life and it’s essential that it suits your purpose. Upgrading your dwelling is one of the most profitable decisions you can choose since it adds value to your home. It also provides a sense of accomplishment because a renovation can improve your home’s size, layout or design so that the space more pleasurable and functional. Neglecting to look at a remodeling project from a buyer’s perspective can result in money lost when it is time to sell your home.

Upgrades influence the aesthetic appeal of your home. The longer you stay in your home and enjoy whatever improvements you make over time, the more weight this factor contributes to your overall return on investment. Renovating or remodeling your home is a sure way to increase the value of your home and property.

Renovate for a Custom Lifestyle:

Although one of the main reasons why most people renovate is to increase the resale value of a home, there are other motives too. You may wish to renovate your home because of a preferred lifestyle change, such as extra space to accommodate an expanding family, or simply to add a sense of spaciousness.

Perhaps you have a desire for a room with a special purpose, like an office or games room. Maybe the gourmet chef in the family has finally decided that it’s time to remodel the kitchen. If you love to entertain, you might want to add an outdoor living space, such as decks, patios and lounges. This adds to the livable space your home offers, making it jump in value.Whatever your particular motivation, altering your current home to suit your changing needs and tastes is a lot easier than moving.

Reduce Maintenance and Utility Costs:

Among the many other advantages of remodeling a home are the benefits of reduced maintenance and utility costs. Home repair costs often increase significantly when maintenance is ignored or postponed too long, but by starting an improvement project when a problem first appears, it will often save you from additional expenditures. Replacing windows, doors or siding will result in greater security and a higher level of energy efficiency. When you replace outdated and insufficient insulation with newer and more efficient materials, your energy savings will be substantial over time too. Even the addition of a sunroom can reduce energy consumption and lower the operating cost of a house.

Remodeling is an excellent way for homeowners to add increased functionality and beauty to a property while increasing its value. By choosing the right project to enhance your living space, a significant portion of the expense can be passed on to future owners in the form of increased property values. However, the ultimate reason why you should take on any home remodeling project is the enjoyment you and your family receive from living in an updated home.