Home Renovation – When to Call the Pros

How To Faux Wood Grain Paint Walls

Posted by on May 24th, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How To Faux Wood Grain Paint Walls

If you want a different look for your walls, consider faux wood grain painting. Faux wood grain painting gives the look of real wood without the expense. Faux wood grain painting sounds intimidating, but it is an easy remodeling project for a beginning DIY enthusiast to do. Here are some tips to faux wood grain paint walls. Prepare to Work For this project, you need : work gloves face mask screwdriver plastic sheeting painters tape drop cloths box fan clear acrylic glaze rags 6-inch and 12-inch paint tray 6-inch and 12-inch paint roller 5-inch wood grain rocker ( tool with a curved textured pad) two shades of brown latex paint extension pole angled paint brush Cover doors with plastic sheeting to keep paint fumes from spreading, and lay drop cloths on floors and furniture. Apply painter’s tape to window casings and molding. Use the screwdriver to remove outlets, then cover the opening with painter’s tape. Open a window to ventilate, or set a box fan to blow outside. Apply the Base Coat The base coat is commonly two or three shades lighter than the wood color. Some colors you can use for a base coat include eggshell or beige. Pour the base coat into the 12 inch tray, then apply it with the 12-inch paint roller. Let it dry according to manufacturer’s instructions. Paint the trim and molding with the angled paint brush. Add the Glaze The top coat of brown paint should be two or three shades darker than the base coat. Combine equal parts of clear glaze to the second brown paint color in the 6-inch tray, then join the paint roller to an extension pole. You may prefer to practice the technique with the wood grain rocker on a scrap piece of wood or cardboard. Starting on the left edge of the wall, make a six-inch stripe running from the top to the bottom. Set the wood grain rocker on the middle of the stripe; ensuring the handle points to you. Create a flame pattern with the wood grain rocker by turning the handle as you move the rocker down the wall. The wood grain rocker removes everything but the glaze. Repeat the technique making 6-inch stripes until the wall is covered, then allow the glaze to dry. Alternate patterns on each stripe by using the notched edge of the rocker. If you make a mistake, apply a fresh coat of glaze. When the glaze dries, apply a coat of polyurethane sealer. Faux wood grain will give your room a new look. If you don’t trust your skill, hire a remodeling...

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Four Items To Always Have In Your Sunroom

Posted by on Apr 18th, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Four Items To Always Have In Your Sunroom

If you’re a homeowner who is adding a sunroom onto the side of the house, no doubt you’re having a great time considering layouts, furnishings, and other decorations for the room. Sunrooms can be relaxing spaces that let you look out on your garden without the dust-, dirt-, and leaf-based distractions that porches can bring. Sunrooms are also often easier to clean and easier to control climate-wise. However, when you plan the sunroom, be sure you add these four items. Ceiling Fan Regardless of what type of climate control you put in the sunroom, be it central air conditioning, a wood stove, or a portable heater or cooler, add a ceiling fan. Even in sunrooms with glass-panel ceilings, you can find spaces through which to run wiring and to hang a small fan. Sometimes the issue with the environment inside the sunroom is not that it’s too hot or cold but that it’s too stuffy. If the weather that day is humid, rainy, or another type that makes you not want to open your windows, a ceiling fan will provide a breeze that can break up the stuffiness. Curtains While the point of a sunroom is to have a sunny place to sit that’s still indoors, sometimes direct sunlight can be too much. Curtains will help you block that out. Curtains can also make the sunroom feel a little more secure if you decide you want to sit there at night, when you can’t see out but others can see in. Sheer curtains that let in light but block the view are good for days that aren’t too hot, but heavier curtains may be better for days when direct sunlight is just too hot. Plants If you use the sunroom a lot, you should have some plants in there. Plants in general look nice, but if you use the room as an office, study, or another place to concentrate or unwind, plants can have a beneficial effect. Texas A&M University notes that plants can increase concentration and information retention, and they can be calming as well. Security If the sunroom will have windows that open or doors leading to the yard, be sure you add proper security. In addition to the regular latches that come with the windows, add pin or thumb locks to the tracks. Doors should have deadbolts. If you have anything in the sunroom, it could become a target for theft, so add proper security to reduce the chances of someone getting inside when they’re not supposed to. If you want more ideas for your sunroom, contact sunroom designers and window specialists, such as those at Another Estimate LLC. The latter, especially, can help you with window security issues and...

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Three Things To Get Rid Of During Your Next Kitchen Remodel

Posted by on Apr 4th, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Three Things To Get Rid Of During Your Next Kitchen Remodel

Are you starting to plan a remodeling project for your home’s kitchen? If so, you’re likely looking at things you want to add and where you want to put them. However, you should also take care to remove items or situations that don’t work well for you. That sounds obvious, but sometimes people put up with more than they have to because they think changing the situation will be too hard or too expensive. A kitchen remodel is the perfect time to tackle these issues, including these three things that really shouldn’t make it into your new kitchen design. Vents Above the Stove This has become rather common in newer apartments and homes with central air and heating; a vent is placed in the ceiling right above the stove. On one hand, you’d think that this would help keep you cool when you have to cook in hot weather. But what that cool air blasting down onto the stove can really do is cool down the food you’re trying to heat up. While you could eventually get the food to the right temperature, it would likely take longer, thus using more energy from the stove. You could always turn off the air conditioner before cooking, but that’s an extra step you shouldn’t have to take. Another issue is that, if your home’s ducts are rather dusty, that dust is going to get blown out onto the stove and possibly into the food. That’s a side effect you really don’t want. When you design your new kitchen, try to move the stove away from the vent, or have the vents moved themselves. Spaces Above Cabinet Tops Upper cabinets generally have two styles: Those with open spaces up top and those that seem to be set into the wall with part of the wall right above them (so you have the ceiling, then a beam that looks like the top of the wall, and then the top of the cabinets). Try to install new cabinets that don’t have that open space. While that space can occasionally be a handy storage area, it can also be a handy path for mice and other winter pests trying to make a home in your warm kitchen. Unless you definitely have a reason for wanting an open storage space that’s near the ceiling, close off that space by installing either larger cabinets that reach up to the ceiling, or an extension of the wall that meets the tops of the cabinets. Dead Cabinet Spaces Inside the cabinets often isn’t much better because of dead spaces like the backs of lower corner cabinets. These turn into relatively scary spots that gather dust if you don’t use them. Instead, either design your new kitchen so that you don’t have these remote back corners, or design the cabinets so that they have pull-out racks that let you easily access the back spaces. If you want more suggestions for how to remedy these three issues, or if you want to get more suggestions for other remodeling changes, contact a kitchen remodeling company. The designers there will help you plan out a fully functional...

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A Grand Galley — How To Maximize A Long, Narrow Kitchen

Posted by on Mar 24th, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on A Grand Galley — How To Maximize A Long, Narrow Kitchen

Remodeling a narrow kitchen can be a design challenge. The long, skinny space — often called a galley kitchen — is not conductive to many of the standard kitchen layouts and designs. But you can have a successful remodel by following a few design tips perfect for narrow kitchens. Don’t Waste Counter Space Counter space is precious in a small, narrow kitchen, so don’t waste it on small appliances, dish storage or extra knick-knacks. Use built-in cabinets with standard or flip-up doors for storing things like the coffee maker, microwave and food processors. Rather than placing spices on the counter, use a wall-mounted or magnetic hanging spice rack system. You can even get a wall-mounted faucet system so you can opt for a larger sink.  Use All the Nooks and Crannies It’s even more important to try to avoid wasting any space in a galley kitchen. Built-in banquette furniture can be used to add a small eating space with storage underneath. Add more storage by mounting cabinets end-to-end underneath the countertops. Use pull-out racks and drawers to make use of small spaces like beside the range. And don’t forget the space above cabinets — try adding a long, open shelf above eye level on which you can store little-used items.  Clean Lines and Light Make the kitchen look neater, larger and more inviting by creating a clean overall look with a limited color palette. Neutrals, whites and pastels make a good base color for walls, countertops and cabinetry. You can accent this single-color system by using a complementary accent color for trim, a backsplash or light fixtures. Be sure to include as much natural lighting as possible to help make the space look larger. If you can’t add windows (or don’t want to lose the cabinet space), try a skylight or skylight tube.  Create a Single Focal Point While keeping your galley kitchen simple and uncluttered is a good way to open it up, you still want to make something fun and interesting about it. You can add a focal point for guests and family by installing a bold or patterned backsplash, hanging a charming and unique pendant lamp or painting one end wall with a personalized design.  Create Zones Reduce traffic in your limited space and increase efficiency by creating work zones within the kitchen. A zone can be a certain triangle on both sides of the galley (for example, containing the stove, sink and refrigerator) or it can encompass only one side of the kitchen (reducing cross traffic). Separating the kitchen tasks (cooking, snacking or cleaning up) will help you do more with less room.  By making the best use of space, adding a lot of storage and keeping your kitchen uncluttered visually, you can create the kitchen of your dreams no matter what its shape or size. Contact a kitchen remodeling service for more...

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4 Ideas To Improve Your Builder’s Grade Home

Posted by on Feb 26th, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 4 Ideas To Improve Your Builder’s Grade Home

Unique features are what can make a house a home, but many homes come with the standard builder’s grade components. This means boring but functional doors, cabinets and trim, along with other key features. The following are a few home improvement ideas to make your home go from boring to amazing. Idea #1: Update the Doors Plain hollow core doors, usually in a color that matches the rest of the wood trim in the house, are the standard fare in many homes. You have two options for updating these – replacement or a facelift. Replacement is the simplest choice and can be completed in an afternoon once you have your doors picked out. For a facelift, purchase narrow wood and cut it to make square or rectangular frames. Next, attach these to the doors with wood glue, creating a faux panel inset. Finally, sand the entire door and then paint it the color of choice. It’s easier to take the door down for this entire process, and then rehang it when you are done. Idea #2: Improve Your Cabinetry This is a good idea for both bathroom vanities or kitchen cabinets. The simplest DIY option is to sand and repaint the cabinets. You can also simply have the old cabinets ripped out and you can replace them with new. For an in-between option, consider refacing the cabinets with new doors. You can keep everything else the same or repaint it. Then, simply pick out doors or have some custom made to fit your cabinet, in the design you like. If you opt to repaint your existing doors instead, you can use trim to create faux paneling, cover them in decorative beadboard, or replace the knobs and hardware for further improvements. Idea #3: Upgrade Your Baseboards Trim, and sometimes the lack there of, can be one of the most obvious builder grade choices in a home. Sanding and repainting the trim can provide an instant improvement over the plain wood options in many homes. You can also add a decorative topper strip to your current baseboards to make them more attractive, or simply replace the baseboard and door trim with something you like better. Idea #4: Add Some Trim Don’t overlook your windows. Many windows have narrow trim. Adding some decorative molding to the top of the window or just beneath the sill can add more wow and make a window look larger. Crown molding on the ceiling is another way to take your home from builder’s grade to amazing. If you need help with any of these improvements, contact a contractor in your area, such as Latocha Builders & Renovations Inc. ...

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Don’t Skimp On These Features When Fixing Up The Kitchen

Posted by on Feb 10th, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Don’t Skimp On These Features When Fixing Up The Kitchen

After buying an older home, you likely want to tackle remodeling projects that will help you get the biggest return. One of the best ways to improve the look and function of the home is by focusing on the kitchen since the kitchen is one of the rooms that most home buyers will prioritize. If you’re uncertain about how to divide your budget when remodeling the kitchen, consider some of the top features listed below. Proper Lighting —  Natural or Artificial Nobody wants to be cooking in the dark, making it a good idea to include as much proper lighting as possible in the newly remodeled kitchen. You can opt for artificial light provided by various light fixtures or natural light provided through a skylight or other windows. Skylights typically cost between $150-$500 for materials alone and the installation adds on another $500-$3000. Since it could be an expensive project, it is important to consider whether or not you really want this. Quality Appliances Even if the kitchen already has a stove, dishwasher, or other appliances, they may not be performing as well as they should. In fact, many of the newer models of kitchen appliances are much more energy efficient, helping to save electricity and water each month. By installing some new appliances with modern touches, potential home buyers will be more drawn to your kitchen when you decide to sell your home. You may even get a tax return for the purchase of some energy-efficient appliances. Durable Flooring to Last for Years If you intend on replacing the flooring in the kitchen, it is vital that you focus on flooring materials that will last for many years to come. While it can be tempting to go the cheaper route and choose laminate or vinyl, tile and hardwood are much more sturdy choices and can help improve the value of your home considerably. Countertops It’s a smart idea to install new countertops so you’ll have plenty of space to work in when cooking. Newer countertops may also be easier to clean. If your budget allows it, consider using granite due to its durability. Another durable option is butcher block. Remodeling the kitchen should be on the top of your priority list when remodeling a fixer-upper home. Consider the above features so that you can enjoy your home while you’re in it and get a good return when you sell it. If you need help with your remodel, consider a company like Woodharbor Kitchen &...

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How To Remodel Your Kitchen Cabinets On The Cheap

Posted by on Jul 28th, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How To Remodel Your Kitchen Cabinets On The Cheap

Remodeling your kitchen cabinets is a great way to make the entire room look much more up-to-date. Of course, it is also a great way to make your kitchen customized to your daily cooking and storage needs. But a full-scale kitchen cabinet remodel is beyond the budget of many homeowners. Luckily, there is a great option for customers who have a limited budget. This article will explain how to remodel your kitchen cabinets by changing the doors and molding. It will also show how you can make the remodel even more affordable by doing some of the preparation work on your own. The Important Design Elements If you look at most cabinet systems, you will notice that there are three basic elements: the cabinet boxes, the doors and the molding. The cabinet boxes are usually just simple and square. The most important and defining design elements on the cabinet will be the doors and the molding. So, you can change the doors and molding, and keep the main cabinet box to give your kitchen a completely different look without costing too much money. The best part of this remodel project is that you can do much of the work on your own. Removing the Doors Removing the doors is very simple. You just need a power drill so you can remove the screws from the hinges. There are usually two screws in each hinge. If you are installing new doors, you might as well also install new hinges. You can enjoy the greater functionality and convenience of modern, soft-closing hinges. Removing the Molding Removing the molding is slightly trickier. First, you need to cut away any caulk along either edge of the molding using a utility knife. Then, lightly hammer a small flat head screwdriver underneath the molding and try to pry up. You might need to pry with two screwdrivers at once to get leverage. The difficulty of removing the molding will depend on how many nails are used, how large they were and if adhesive was also used. Once the doors and molding are removed from your cabinet, it will basically be ready for the new products to be installed. First, you want to have a cabinet specialist come to your house and examine your cabinets. They will be able to bring sample doors and molding so you can decide which will look the best in your kitchen. Of course, you will save a little more cash on labor since you already did the prep work yourself. To find out more about kitchen cabinets, contact a company like Olson Cabinets & Woodworking...

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Four Tasks That Need To Be Done To Prepare Your Home For Replacement Windows

Posted by on Jul 14th, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Four Tasks That Need To Be Done To Prepare Your Home For Replacement Windows

If you are ready to have replacement windows installed in your home, there is a lot of work to be done. You will need to measure the windows and find out where replacements can be used. You may also need to do repairs and improvements to the casings before new windows can be installed. You may also want to add insulation and paint the opening before you have new windows installed. Here are some tasks that you will need to do before replacing the windows in your home: 1. Checking Window Openings To See Where Windows Can Be Installed Before you start ordering all your replacement windows, you will need to see which windows can be replaced. Replacement windows are meant to be installed in standard size windows that have casing in good condition. Windows that are custom sizes and with extensive damage to the opening may need to be completely replaced or use an alternative like window film. 2. Preparing To Work On Windows By Removing Interior Trim And Hardware There may also be work that needs to be done to window openings. You may need to do things like level windows and repair casing. To make doing these repairs easier, you will want to remove interior trim and hardware from the windows. You may also want to remove any screens. You can leave the windows in the frame until you are ready to replace them. 3. Adding Insulation To Window Openings To Improve Energy Efficiency If you do not have any insulation between the windows and wood framing, you may want to add it while you are doing other repairs. This is something that you will want to do after you level the windows and check them for square. You can use batten insulation and a ruler to insulate between the windows. Do not use spray foam because it can expand and damage openings, making it difficult to install new windows. 4. Adjusting, Repairing And Painting Windows Before Replacements Are Installed Before you have new windows installed, you will want to adjust and paint the casing. Windows should be level and square. You will also want to fill in any damaged wood or replace it. To paint windows, you can remove the old ones and paint everything. When you are done put the old windows back until you are ready to have the new ones installed. These are some tasks that you will want to do before you have your windows replaced. If you are ready to have your new windows installed, contact a window replacement contractor, like Jerry Newman Roofing & Remodeling, Inc., to get the help you need installing new windows in your...

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Refinishing Your Hardwood Floors? Learn How To Refinish Your Steps By Hand

Posted by on Jul 6th, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Refinishing Your Hardwood Floors? Learn How To Refinish Your Steps By Hand

If you have carpeting throughout your home that you are looking to rip out so you can refinish the hardwood, chances are that the steps in your home have carpeting on them too. Steps can be one of the most frustrating parts of the hardwood refinishing process, because so much of it needs to be done by hand. Follow these tips to learn how to refinish the steps on your own. Preparation You’ll start by removing the old carpeting on the stairs that was previously nailed or glued down. A pry bar works great for lifting up each area of carpeting, which will give you enough leverage to rip it out by hand. It’s important that you remove every single nail or patch of glue left behind on the wood, because it can potentially ruin your sanding equipment later on. Even the tiny staples will need to be removed with pliers if there is a sharp end still stuck in the hardwood. Glue residue can be scrubbed away with a commercial glue removal product and a scrub brush. Dry the steps off with a rag when finished. Sand And Stain Since a large floor sander is out of the question, you will need to use a small hand sander to sand the stairs. Stairs are one part of your home’s hardwood that can be a little bit rougher, because stairs that are too slippery can cause a person to slip and fall. Only use sandpaper with a grit that is no finer than 60, which will help give people in your home some much needed traction when going up and down the stairs. The goal of sanding the steps is to remove any imperfections in the wood. In the end, the steps will be smooth and even, but still retain enough traction to prevent slipping. You’ll also be sanding off the existing finish as well, which is why you need to sand the vertical backs of the steps too. Once you’ve finished sanding, you can apply a stain with the color you desire using a paint roller or brush. Always stir the stain so that it has a consistency that is even. Apply your stain in a back and forth motion with the grain of the wood, and let the stain dry according to the manufacturer’s directions. Finishing A coat of polyurethane can be applied to the steps if you want the wood to have a shiny look. It will also add a layer of protection that will prevent scuff marks from being left on the wood, and prevent the stain from naturally fading over time. The polyurethane coat should be applied in the same way as the stain, using long brush strokes along the grain of the wood.  If these directions sound too difficult, feel free to contact a hardwood flooring professional, like those at Front Range Interiors, that can handle this time consuming process for...

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Ways To Brighten Up A Basement

Posted by on Jun 29th, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Ways To Brighten Up A Basement

In many homes, basements are overlooked. Homeowners often think of them as dark spaces that are only good for storage. However, basements can add a lot of value to a home. They can act as a separate entertaining area, make great in-law suites, and can even be used as a work out space or home office. The key to making the basement a functional part of any home is making sure that it is as light and airy as any other room in a home. When remodeling or finishing a basement, getting enough light into the space is very important. Take Advantage Of Windows When going through the process of basement finishing, it is important to work with any features that are already in place. Many basements already have windows. The problem is that these windows are often small and high up which makes getting sufficient natural light difficult. Replacing older basement windows is often a great solution to this problem. New windows that let in more natural light can be chosen. Windows can also be added or existing windows enlarged in order to let in more light. If this is not within the renovation budget, then there are other ways to take advantage of windows. By using lighter window treatments, a basement can be made brighter. Heavy drapes and blinds should be avoided since they block out natural light. Have Enough Lighting Sources Indoor lighting plays a very big role in determining how light and airy a basement feels. Getting the right lighting sources is key. During a basement remodel it is important to install sufficient lighting on the ceiling and to make sure that there are other alternative light sources. Basements often have low ceilings which makes them ideal for track lighting and recessed lighting. These lower profile lighting sources bring light to a room without adding bulk or making the room seem shorter. Lamps are also a great thing to have in basements since they can be an additional source of light. It is also a good idea to have enough wall outlets to accommodate extra light sources. Color Scheme One thing that can make a basement seem smaller and darker is the wrong color scheme. A light color scheme is the best way to make the basement seem larger and lighter. Painting the walls a lighter color will make the room seem bigger. Lighter furniture is also a good choice for a basement. Dark and heavy furniture can make a room feel darker and smaller than it actually is. Creating a light and airy basement that flows with the rest of the home is possible. By making smart lighting choices, taking advantage of windows, and using a light color scheme this can be achieved. Contact a company like Marvelous Basements & Remodeling LLC for more information....

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