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Renovation Costs

The Kitchen Is the Heart of Every Home

The living room might be the part of your house wherein you get to entertain and welcome your guests but actually, the kitchen would actually be the “heart” of every home as this is the place wherein family would bond as well as their guests. This is where they would talk about their dreams while having a breakfast, lunch or dinner. This is where they would talk about what’s happening with their lives, the new things that transpired in their individual lives.
So, for some, the kitchen is a very crucial place and it needs to look good always. Nowadays, a lot of people are trying to remodel their kitchen in order to improve its appearance and the famous design so far is what they call as the contemporary kitchens.
Contemporary kitchens should also have contemporary kitchen cabinets. The best thing about such kitchens is that it’s not only for attraction purposes but also it has functionalities which would improve the purpose of having a kitchen. It makes it more organized and neat. One would be saved from having to run around the entire place trying to find that china ware or that matching utensils. It is always to keep things organized. Such kitchens will have pull-out shelves or user-friendly drawers. Having such features will give you a clutter-free kitchen and you’ll end up doing all the kitchen chores perfectly well.
If you go for modern kitchens or custom design kitchens, you need to make a research first. You could try to go online and get more information about such kitchens. You also need to choose the perfect contemporary kitchen cabinets and you have a lot of choices to choose from: glass, metal (stainless steel) and wood. Glass cabinets give this certain elegance to your kitchen and you could either have the transparent or the frosted one. Metal are also being chosen by many as it puts this sharp look to your kitchen. Wood cabinets give this antique look and the advantage of it that should you change the look of your kitchen again, wood kitchen cabinets are far more easy to remodel than any other kitchen cabinets.
Now, once you made up your mind as to what type of kitchen design and cabinets design you’d have then it’s time to choose the design specialists. You could also make a research when it comes to choosing the right design company who would take care of your kitchen. Also, it is suggested for you to talk to those who already worked with specialists as first-hand experience is a very good review.
Once you’ve carefully followed the steps mentioned above, then, you are on the right track in fulfilling that dream of yours.…

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Home Remodeling

Planning Cabinets In Your Kitchen

The kitchen is one of the most functional areas in any home. For the most part, it is where a family’s meals are prepared. Therefore, it is a must to keep this area clean and organized in order to provide the best environment for whoever is tasked to prepare the food. A lot of diseases can be acquired from improper food handling brought about by an unsanitary kitchen environment. One of the best ways to manage the area is to have certain spots allotted for certain things we keep in it. Cabinets are surely a great help because they allow us to segregate food items and utensils accordingly. Without the organization that these cabinets provide, a kitchen can easily be a mess and even compromise the family’s health.
If you’re planning to install some new cabinets or change the overall cabinet layout in your kitchen, first you must assess what you don’t like about what you currently have. Pinpoint the problems. Are your current cabinets too small or too large? Do you think you could need more of them or do you think there’s too many of them that the purpose of organization seems to have been defeated? The more you know about what problems you have, the more you’re likely to end up happy with the changes or additions you’ll make.
Of course, the existing theme of your home or kitchen will play a part in the type of cabinets you choose. If your design is Victorian-inspired, you cannot put modern cabinets which are very minimalistic and the exact opposite of Victorian design. You have to be consistent with the rest of the style that your existing kitchen comes in. This also helps put a sense of organization and compactness in your environment as you move around the room while doing your tasks.
The kind of material used will also matter, both in the functions that you are making the cabinets for and in the style. Different themes will look good in different materials. For modern designs, plain wood panels or metals will be good, but for more artsy designs, certain materials should be used to allow for the same freedom in the styles that the cabinets will come in.
Most of all, make sure your cabinets are created not only to look good but to be fully functional. Before you create the design for your cabinets, think about what you’ll be using them for. Think specifically about the things you will need to store in the kitchen. Do not have too many cabinets as this can tempt you to keep things which you won’t really need. Think of things you’ll have a clear use for and stick to planning for them. Of course, a few extra cabinets will be good, but keep them to a minimum.…

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Remodeling

How To Buy Kitchen Worktops

When it comes to designing your kitchen, choosing a worktop is one of the most important decisions you’ll make. Not only does it have to look good, it has to endure heavy use. So before you buy, consider whether you’d be prepared to put in some effort to maintain its look, or would rather have something more durable. Then think about aesthetics.
‘Your choice largely depends on the style of your kitchen,’ says Lizzie Beesley, conceptual designer at Second Nature Kitchens. ‘If you want to create impact with your units, you may want a toned-down work surface, but if you have neutral doors, the worktop material can make a real statement.’
Work surfaces such as stone and stainless steel need to be templated by the manufacturer to fit your kitchen exactly, with cut-outs for the sink and hob, and this will affect your budget.
But it may well be worth it. ‘The right choice is a good investment and can turn a modest kitchen into something special,’ says Annette White of Chiltern Marble. So which surface is right for you? Read on to find out.
KITCHEN WORKTOP TRENDS
‘The polarisation in the thickness of worktops is still a major direction – there’s no middle ground, worktops need to be either deep or shallow,’ says Anjum Ahmed, product and marketing director at Magnet. ‘The slim worktop sector is dominated by glass and compact laminate, while thicker worktops tend to appear in oaks and dark timber or specialist materials.’
There is a huge trend for mixing materials,’ says Max de Winter, project designer at Poggenpohl. ‘It’s not unusual to find two, three or even four different surfaces in one kitchen. As kitchen and living areas are now more integrated, one material throughout the space would feel too overpowering. Instead, use a warm wood on a breakfast bar for example, stainless steel in a prep area and coloured glass as a highlight.’
Edging, be it glass, timber or coloured acrylic, is a top trend. ‘For a very modern look, style up a standard laminate with a contrasting edge in wood or stainless steel,’ suggests Jude Keenan, kitchen planner at John Lewis. ‘This is possible on both square and curved-edge tops.’
‘A big trend at the moment is a 50mm worktop with a 30 degree bevelled edge,’ says Boffi’s Steven Salt. ‘This can be in any material, and the tapered edge means the surface appears to be floating above the units, giving the ultimate minimalist look.’
The profile (ie the edge) of the work surface can also make a difference to the overall feel. The rounded edges of the Eighties and Nineties are a thing of the past, and the latest surfaces have a completely square edge, a pencil round (where the edge is just slightly rounded) or a chamfer where just a tiny bit of the corner is shaved off.
LAMINATE WORKTOPS
Modern laminate worktops are a world away from the Nineties surfaces that tried (and more often than not failed) to imitate their natural counterparts.
‘Laminates have moved on so much, even in the last three years,’ says Simon Wilde, head of marketing at Formica. ‘New textures, finishes and printing techniques have given them added dimension and depth.’
Choose from hundreds of colours and finishes, including realistic wood grains, polished and matt stones, sparkling faux granites, concrete, high-shine surfaces and bright, solid colours. Laminate is now also available in thicknesses of up to 60mm.
PROS: Low maintenance and low cost. Laminate is one of the cheapest ways to get the look on a budget, and can be a fraction of the price of the real McCoy. If you’re handy with your power tools, you can cut and fit it yourself.
CONS: Some laminates can get scorched and scratched if not cared for properly, and laminate surfaces can have conspicuous seams. They’re non-repairable if damaged.
WOODEN WORKTOPS
Hardwood worktops such as oak, cherry, maple, walnut, teak and mahogany are the best way to bring a warm, rich quality to a kitchen.
‘Costs vary depending on the wood you choose,’ says Lizzie Beesley. ‘A simple oak surface will cost a lot less than exotic, on-trend zebrano, wenge or walnut.’
Finger-staved wood tops, where little planks are glued together, are a less pricey way to get the look. Remember to buy from a sustainable source.
‘We’re even using wood reclaimed from mountain chalets,’ says Steven Salt, showroom manager at Boffi. ‘These surfaces have a chunky, rustic look, which provides an amazing contrast in an otherwise clean-lined, modern kitchen.’
Wipe wood after food prep, mop up any spills straight away to prevent staining and avoid abrasive cleaning products.
PROS: With inherent natural antibacterial properties, wood is a hygienic option. Relatively simple to install and repair, it can be sanded down to remove blemishes. It can also …

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Home Improvement Contractors

Top 5 Kitchen Remodeling Questions

By now we are all well aware that a kitchen remodel is not only one of the most popular home improvement projects – it’s also a great way to invest in your home. To give you an idea of how important kitchens are to the value of a home – here in the US, the kitchen remodeling industry is a $15 billion dollar/year business. And even in today’s market you could expect to yield a return on investment of 75-100%.
So weather I’m designing a major kitchen renovation or a moderate upgrade for my clients our initial conversation and the questions that follow are often the same.
1. Q: Where do we start? – What comes first? A: Educate yourself and focus on the styles of kitchens and interiors that speak to you. Grab some kitchen design magazines and tear out the pages that inspire you in some way. Start an inspiration file and share it with your designer during your initial meetings. It’s also a great idea to begin researching appliances at the same time. The options available are endless and you definitely need time to do some research in that arena.
2. Q: How much should I expect to spend on my kitchen? A: Obviously the cost of a new kitchen is dependent on many factors. The scope, size and complexity of each project varies – but typically you should expect to spend anywhere from 10 – 25% of your home’s current value. For example: If your home is valued at $500,000 (and you plan on living there for another 5+ years) then budgeting 75-100K would be considered a reasonable investment.
3. Q: What makes a kitchen more or less costly? A: Your selection of cabinetry, appliances, counter tops, flooring, as well as the electrical and plumbing will determine the cost of your kitchen remodel. Cabinetry alone accounts for close to 50% of the total cost of the project – eating up half of your budget before you even blink. Stock, Semi-custom and custom cabinetry each have different price points, so making that selection will be based on your home’s value and your budget.
4. Q: How do I ensure my kitchen won’t become dated? A: Investing in the services of a professional designer will definitely help guide you – by planning the space, designing the details and selecting materials and finishes that best suit the architecture of your home and your family’s personality. Selecting timeless door styles and specifying quality products will extend the life of your dream kitchen. Just realize however, that all high traffic and well-used kitchens will eventually wear 10-15 years down the road.
5. Q: How long does a kitchen remodel typically take? A: Depending on the overall scope of the kitchen remodel the time commitment will vary. It could take anywhere from 4-6 weeks for a light and simple face lift or upgrade – or 4-6+ months for a major kitchen renovation where major construction is involved. With large kitchen remodeling projects, there are a series of stages to progress through. From the planning and development phase, through the bidding process – it could take weeks or months before your contractor even picks up a hammer.
Just remember that a quality kitchen remodel will give you and your family years of enjoyment and increase the overall value of your home.…

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Home Maintenance

Remodel Or Upgrade Your Kitchen, Bathroom, Or Entire Home

As time passes, every homeowner begins to get tired of some aspect of their house.  “The kitchen’s too small” or “The bathroom is not a place for a relaxing bath” are some of the common complaints.  Every home could always be better; more attractive and functional.  How does one achieve the results they desire?  Which room or rooms should be given priority for remodeling?
Most real estate agents and builders will recommend that remodeling a kitchen and bathroom will maximize any increase in the home’s value, especially if selling the home is a potential reality within the next five years or so.  Even if the homeowner is not planning to sell, it still makes perfect sense to improve the home just for their own enjoyment.
With all the new and exciting kitchen and bathroom upgrades available on the market such as whirlpool tubs, imported tile, efficient green light fixtures, and so on, it’s not surprising that people are itching to spruce up their own abodes.  Currently the trend for upgrading and remodeling a home has been with a strong focus on efficiency and the use of “green” materials.
As more builders recognize individual’s concerns regarding the environment and future generations, options for remodeling any part of the home are opening up.  What once was viewed as impractical or expensive is now acceptable due to individual lifestyle changes being made by homeowners in order to be more efficient and cost effective.
Many of the more common place “green” items available for bathroom remodels are dual flush toilets, LED lighting, and recycled tiles. Pedestal sinks have been making a comeback as well, as more homeowners are trying to achieve a more classic feel.  Many such fixtures can be reclaimed from older home sites that have been demolished or remodeled themselves. 
By reusing older fixtures and recycled materials, landfills are being spared the increased burden of more needless waste and pollution and many of these salvaged elements can be found at great savings to the homeowner.  Finding these treasures isn’t always easy though as builders tend to have more resources to find them for clients than the individual homeowner. 
That doesn’t mean an individual can’t perform their own remodel, but having a builder working for the homeowner will save a lot of time, hassle,  and frustration.  Many homeowners simply lack the knowledge, skill, and experience regarding remodeling or building a bathroom, kitchen, or even a simple stairway.  The large benefit of utilizing a builder for a stairway or a more complex remodel such as a kitchen remodel or bathroom remodel is that the project will be completed in a timely fashion ensuring a minimal disruption to daily life.…

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Home Renovation

The Easiest Way to Remodel Your Kitchen

To get started, go through kitchen magazines or search online to define your unique style. The design process includes many stages with attention to detail every step of the way. When you remodel a kitchen it is not an exact science, it’s a creative process. Things can change while the kitchen is being built, so be flexible and if things do change, look for easy solutions.
Begin with the budget, but remember, the budget represents materials with delivery charges, then time and labor costs. Whether you select hi-end products or are more budget conscious, the cost of a kitchen remodel can start to add up if you don’t have a plan. The first stage is to plan and design the space, then the selection and purchase of the materials and after that you must schedule all materials to be at the jobsite on time.
You can DIY and act as your own General Contractor. This is a way to save money, but if this is the first time you are remodeling your kitchen it may not be the easiest way. In this case you have to sub-contract out, the electric, plumbing and carpentry to skilled tradepeople. It is an ambitious challenge for your first kitchen remodel.
If you are first timers the easiest way to remodel your kitchen is to hire a General Contractor that has his own sub-contractors. It usually is more expensive, but using a GC can offer fresh ideas with new approaches and a valuable learning experiences.
The kitchen design business is a fun business, but it is the type of work, where the details are so numerous for the first time Do It Yourselfer or novice kitchen designer. Even with a GC you are still responsible to select all the wonderful materials that will make your kitchen your own… A master list of all the categories should be included in your budget so you can then see how you can save money. It is fun, and can be easy if you have a plan.
Whether you act as the general contractor yourself or you hire one, the coordination of materials and labor to remodel, includes more than just installing the kitchen cabinets. Remodeling and upgrading the old kitchen appliances, cabinets, counter-tops, lighting, plumbing fixtures and flooring, is a major part of the project. There are so may choices to be made, your head will spin…
Even with the help of a good general contractor engaged in the success of your remodeling project, as a home owner you will still want to know the process. If you do hire a GC, they should have references available and be licensed and insured.
Stay in charge of your kitchen remodel with helpful tools that will guide you as you design your own new kitchen, update your old kitchen or help others do the same.…

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Renovation Contractor

Final Checklist Before A Kitchen Remodel Begins

You are ready for a new kitchen and cannot wait for the remodelers to come in and start ripping out all those old cabinets and counter tops to replace them with something newer, more elegant and far more functional.
Before they do arrive though take one last look at your kitchen design plans, as there are several factors that homeowners can often overlook, especially if they have done much of the planning work themselves.
Some points you should definitely consider in your review include the following:-
Is there going to be enough room to open all the drawers and cabinets in your new kitchen properly?
Is there going to be adequate counter top space between the sink, stove and refrigerator?
Is the microwave going in right place? If there are kids in the house is it low enough for them to use safely?
How well will your new kitchen flooring match with that in adjoining rooms?
Do you have enough lighting planned? Under cabinet lights are often overlooked but they are incredibly useful in most kitchens and really should not be forgotten.
Is the work flow between all the appliances going to be smooth? Transit between them all, including the dishwasher should be as easy and clutter free as possible.
Will you have enough storage space?
Are you really happy with the overall design plans?
If, after you have asked yourself all these questions, you are still happy with the planned design that is great, let the work commence.
However if you have any nagging doubts, even if the kitchen plans were drawn up by a kitchen remodeling expert, voice them now.
Changing something mid project can be an expensive headache and derail the project’s timeline by days or even weeks. It is your kitchen, your money and ultimately it is up to you to make sure that the design is exactly what you wanted it to be.…