Archive for the ‘Kitchen Remodeling’ Category

Kitchen Remodeling

Saturday, October 10th, 2009

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 Kitchen Cabinet Trends

Appliances kitchen

Marble and Granite; the Ultimate Choice for Durability

Kitchen Remodeling For Selling Your Home

Kitchen Cabinetry and Built-Ins

 Kitchen (Installation & Repairs)

7 Major Kitchen Remodeling Trends

Creative Kitchens that only Look Expensive

Kitchen Remodeling Contractors

Natural Stone Offers Unique Choices for Kitchen Counter Tops

Kitchen Renovation – Replacing the Floor, one Step at a Time

Kitchen Renovation Basics – Understanding the 5 Objectives

Designing a New Kitchen Layout

Ideas and Tips for Small Kitchen Remodeling

Organize Kitchen Space – Alternatives to Costly Kitchen Renovation

Home Improvement; Guidelines for Selecting a Contractor

Engineered Stone Kitchen Counter Tops

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Kitchen and Bathroom Solutions

Monday, October 5th, 2009
by: ARA
 Home improvement has become one of our country’s greatest pastimes. Americans spent an estimated $214 billion on home improvements, maintenance and repairs in 2001, according to Harvard’s Joint Center for Housing Studies research report issued in February 2003. Just how and where that money is spent can make a big difference when it comes to investing in your home.Of all the rooms in your house, bathrooms represent the greatest and fastest return on your remodeling investment. According to Remodeling Magazine, more than 80 percent of your bathroom remodeling expenses can be recouped within a year of resale. Not every room in the house offers such a return. Surprisingly, kitchens are sixth on the list with just over 60 percent of the costs returned. Only bathroom additions beat bathroom remodeling with returns over 90 percent.

Despite today’s homeowner remodeling craze, you should weigh the pros and cons of taking on an entire bathroom project alone. Knowledge — including admitting your strengths and weaknesses — is the key to successfully completing any project on time and under budget. Ask yourself the following remodeling questions to ensure you are making the best decisions for your investment.

Is it a Remodel or Makeover?

“The first consideration should be the scope of work,” says Rick Peters, remodeling expert and author of “MoneySmart Makeovers: Bathrooms.” He asks: “Do you understand your home’s plumbing systems, such as where the waste/vent stack is?”

If the remodeling project involves more than cosmetic fixture replacements or surface redecorating, it may be time to call in an expert to assess your home’s plumbing and pipe placement. Peters suggests the following checklist:

Call a remodeling contractor when:

* Moving a toilet, sink, tub or shower

* Removing or adding walls

* Installing venting that runs through the roof

All of these projects require specific skills and knowledge of your local building and plumbing codes.

Try the following makeover projects yourself:

* Replacing a faucet, sink or toilet using existing plumbing

* Installing shower or shower-tub combination doors

* Installing new accessories, such as shelves or light fixtures

* Painting, tiling or wallpapering

These projects require some skill base, but even a first-time do-it-yourselfer may be able to complete them in a reasonable timeframe.

What’s the Real Deal on What You Want?

Tempted by what looks good? Check out the quality. Does that new faucet have rubber washers or plastic valves? A client of mine bought a faucet five years ago with plastic valves and it lasted exactly four and a half years. Cheaper versions of the real thing are not repairable and have to be replaced entirely. This means you are spending twice as much in 10 years as you would once in a lifetime for a better faucet.

Look for quality fixture manufacturers such as American Standard. The company’s Champion Toilet featuring America’s Best Flushing System, includes a Worry-Free Decade Warranty that covers the whole toilet inside and out. American Standard’s faucets come with a lifetime warranty on the washerless watertight seal, the function and the finish. Most of its sinks and toilets are made of vitreous china that resists dirt and bacteria. Even the acrylic tubs are made tougher with a fiberglass bonding for extra strength.

Bottom line: “Your bathroom takes a daily beating,” says Peters. “Buy quality.”

Is There a Great Cover-up Waiting for You?

A number of times, I’ve ventured into bathrooms that have been madeover by covering damaged tiles or walls with acrylic panels. “Sure it looks better, but the problem is still there,” says Peters. “In fact, panels like these hold in moisture and mildew that was the problem in the first place, and now it will get worse. Make sure leaks and damage are repaired and not just covered up.”

Peters also suggests using a mildew resistant drywall. “Standard drywall can’t stand up to the moisture in the air, even with proper venting,” he notes.

What’s your pay-off in investing time to answer these important questions before you start? You’ll end up with a successful bathroom remodeling project that adds to the value and enjoyment of your home.

Kitchen and Bathroom Solutions

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Kitchen Designs

Monday, October 5th, 2009
 
It has often been said that the heart of the home is the kitchen. If that is really true, then why is it that some kitchen designs just don’t seem to support more than one cook or guest at a time? You can turn your kitchen into a functional and beautiful workspace and gathering place for the entire family. Even if you have limited square footage, there just may be more room for expansion, storage, and oh yeah, cooking in your kitchen than you think.
 
Counters & Cabinets
 
Storage is definitely a consideration in designing a functional kitchen. If you are limited by floor space, just look up. There is often a great deal of space between the counter tops and ceiling that just isn’t being used in a kitchen. Look at the space above the refrigerator. Is yours just collecting dust or take out menus? If so, add a cabinet and you’ve got a great place to store seldom used platters or treats you want to keep hidden from the children.Kitchen cabinets also don’t have to be limited to one side of the countertop. If your kitchen design has a peninsula or island, you can use the ends and back side for more cabinet storage space.
Kitchen cabinets come in more styles and finishes that you can imagine. However, if your budget is limited then you don’t need to replace them for an entirely new look. Cabinet refacing lets you select cabinet patterns that are up to date and beautiful.

New countertops don’t always need to be included in this home improvement project either. Laminate countertops come with repair strips that will give new life to a worn surface.
 
Laying Out Completely New Kitchen Designs
 
If your budget calls for a complete renovation, then now is the time to really think about layouts and maybe calling in some specialist. The basic theory is that there should be no more than 2 steps between work stations. That means you should be able to go from the sink to stove in 2 steps; from the range to the refrigerator in 2 steps and so on. However, with today’s extra large sized kitchens that’s not the case any more. You still should choose layouts that consider how much time it takes to accomplish the normal tasks of putting dishes away from the dishwasher or getting foods from the refrigerator to the stove.

The newest gadgets in these mega kitchens make timesaving and energy efficiency into an art form. There are refrigerator drawers right next to the range and microwaves that brew your coffee while making your toast!
 
Fixtures and Furniture
 
The finishing touches are what make kitchen designs more inviting than ever. The furnishings, light fixtures and even the cabinet hardware can make kitchens into real living rooms. Look for task lighting that can highlight work spaces and then radiant lighting for atmosphere. You can even turn the legs of old furniture or newel posts into bases for centre islands to make you kitchen furnishings blend with the rest of the house. Get creative and enjoy doing much more than cooking in your new kitchen.

Guy Morris

Kitchen Designs

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Free Home Improvement Quotes

Sunday, October 4th, 2009

Post Your Project And Get three Free Quotes From Local Home Improvement Contractors.

Register FREE, and post your home improvement project online at HomeContractorsDirect.com. Our user-friendly tools make it quick and easy. Receive bids from qualified remodeling contractors in your area. Reliable contractors with experience handling the same type project as your own.

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