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Home Improvement Contractors

Bathroom Remodel: Improve Storage and Appeal

Ask any real estate agent and he or she will tell you how important a well-designed and updated bathroom is to the resale value of your home. A bathroom remodel allows homeowners to design and create a room that is both beautiful and functional. By replacing appliances, expanding storage, and improving the overall appearance of the room, you are able to make a wise investment in your home.
Homeowners who want to remodel their bathrooms should take some time to determine what sorts of features they want most. Taking account of what you like and don’t like about your bathroom helps you as you create a plan for your renovation project. Look through magazines for inspiration or make a list of any styles, colors, or designs that you are particularly fond of. Many homeowners lean toward designs that create a relaxing and spa-like atmosphere.
We all know what it is like to walk into a bathroom that is cluttered and crowded. A lack of storage space can make your bathroom appear smaller and diminish the look of your room. Storage space allows you to store your linens, supplies, and cleaning products where they are hidden from view and out of your way. Decluttering your space allows for better use of your room and improves the style and appeal of the whole bathroom.
One of the most effective ways to improve your bathroom is to install custom cabinet solutions to expand storage space. Custom cabinetry allows homeowners to add storage to their bathroom that is specifically designed to compliment the unique space of their room. Custom cabinets can be created to fit small or irregular spaces. This means that even the smallest bathrooms can be fitted with adequate storage. Because the cabinets are made according to your specifications, you can choose materials and colors that best compliment your individual taste and style.
Aside from cabinets, new flooring will make the biggest impact on the overall look of your bathroom. You want to look for flooring material that will withstand high humidity and provide a surface that is not slippery. Tile and stone flooring are among the most popular choices. With so many colors and styles available, homeowners are sure to find a flooring product that will make their bathroom look luxurious and elegant.
Often overlooked, bathroom lighting is crucial to the functionality of the room. Many times, bathrooms are small spaces that may or may not have a window. It is important to have good lighting for shaving, applying make-up, brushing your teeth, and all of the other tasks you may perform while getting ready for the day. Good lighting is also essential for safety. Without proper illumination, you could slip and fall and this could result in a serious injury.
Showers, tubs, and toilets are available in high efficiency models that may help you save money in water and energy costs over time. Specialty fixtures and accessories help homeowners design a bathroom that will impress their guests and add value to their home.
Be sure that you work with a bathroom remodeling professional who is experienced and skilled in bathroom design and renovation. A custom cabinetry specialist will allow you to create the bathroom storage you need to improve the overall look and function of your room.…

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Home Contractors

Thinking Outside The Box With Duravit Plumbing Fixtures

Designer plumbing fixtures are hardly new on the scene. Plumbing fixtures that designers use are a totally different beast. Duravit fixtures are being utilized throughout the world in the top spas, hotels, public buildings, and ultra-modern residences. The company boasts of a “tradition of innovation.” Since the company has been around almost 200 years, they’ve earned their longevity, but what about innovation?
When a manufacturer transforms designer plumbing from its humble indoor uses to the outdoors, they are certainly thinking outside the box. Duravit doesn’t believe that spa living should be confined to the inside. Their Blue Moon and Sundeck line of pools and tubs install wherever there is a hot water connection. Suddenly, you’re not just going for a dip in the hot tub, but a luxurious excursion to a garden spa, all without having to leave home. The only limitations of such fixtures are your own or your designer’s imagination. Such innovation alters the concept of the bathroom from the mundane to the magnificent.
Duravit also has changed the idea that bathroom fixtures, accessories, and furniture are separate entities. Anyone who has gone through the bathroom remodeling process knows that plumbing fixtures are chosen from one retailer; then the cabinets–bought from another source–must be matched to the style of the fixtures; and finally the customer either goes back to the original retailer to pick out the accessories, or perhaps, by that time, the whole enterprise seems just too complicated, and the homeowner settles for just about any old product that “kinda matches.”At Duravit, the plumbing is the furniture, and there are accessories to match. Instead of making remodeling or new construction more difficult, the company simplifies the procedure.
Designing a bathroom with Duravit products changes the idea that your own bathroom has to suffer in comparison to the bathrooms at a top hotel. Want a steam shower? They’re available. Want a tub for two? No problem. How about a whirlpool style bath; real wood bathroom furniture; over-sized basins; ultra-modern toilets; or even a kitchen sink? Duravit has them. There’s no need to settle for second best. A company doesn’t last two hundred years by making a product that fails to satisfy its client?�le in both design and function.
So, if you are considering remodeling a bathroom, building a custom home, or a commercial building, and you want a product that not only operates seamlessly, but is beautiful, think Duravit. Their fixtures are being used today in hotels and public buildings throughout Europe, the Middle-East, and Asia. Whether it’s a new concert hall in Iceland, or a hotel in India, designers know a quality product that stands out. The possibilities are unlimited. Don’t worry about thinking outside the box or outside the home, Duravit is on board.…

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Home Repair

Kitchen Cabinet Refacing & Cabinet Refacing

Cabinet refacing is a great way to add a new look to your kitchen. Maybe you are bored with your current kitchen and looking for a way to spruce it up? Are you hoping to transform your kitchen without spending a lot of time and money? Cabinet refacing may be the perfect solution for you. There are a couple of different methods you can use to reface your cabinets. The methods are both relatively simple and both require about the same amount of knowledge, material, and time. Both methods are also very reasonable in price and offer you the opportunity to transform your kitchen. The method you choose is completely up to you and comes down to personal preference.
Before you begin you may want to consider the doors of your kitchen. Are they in good condition? If the answer to that question is yes, then you may wish to veneer them along with the cabinets. If your doors are in poor condition, it may be wise to purchase new ones if money permits. Simple fixes such as doors and cabinets allow for a quick transformation when remodeling your kitchen.
The first type of method you can use for cabinet refacing is self-adhesive veneer sheeting. You can find self-adhesive veneer sheeting in almost any hardware store. A convenient thing about veneer sheeting is that it offers a lot of variety in the area of design. If you always dreamed of having cherry wood cabinets, you can make that happen with the help of self-adhesive veneer sheeting. You can purchase sheeting that mimics the appearance of real wood. You do not need to worry about the durability of veneer sheeting. It is actually very strong and resistant once finished. You can also veneer the cabinet doors once you do the actual cabinets. Once you finish all of the veneering, you can buy new handles and knobs to compliment the new design.
The next type of cabinet refacing is to use self-adhesive printed vinyl papers. Similar to the previous method, you can find printed vinyl at nearly every hardware store. You can also special order various designs to better suit your personality. This method is best used on flat surfaces. If the doors of your cabinets have carved features, the vinyl will not be able to dry neatly on the bumpy surface. The vinyl paper comes in rolls and is extremely easy to apply to the right type of cabinets.…

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Home Renovation

Can I Really Power My Home With Wind Energy?

The Federal Tax Credits currently available in the US for upgrades for residential energy efficiency are significant enough to have many people thinking about energy efficiency remodeling. There is much discussion around the cost benefits of installing solar energy systems and even geothermal heat pump systems. But many homeowners are still asking, “Can I really power my home with wind energy?” The answer is “Yes!”
When most of us think about wind energy, we flash on images of huge turbines lined up in mid-western or off-shore wind farms. We see pictures of turbines 150 yards in diameter that sit 3000 feet above sea level. But wind technology is advancing daily. In fact, turbine design is advancing so fast that some of the wind-energy web sites are having difficulty keeping up! 
 
Many farms and other residential and industrial facilities in rural areas have been using wind turbines for years to provide all power for their needs. But as interest in powering homes with wind energy grows, new technologies are producing quieter, more attractive, turbines that can be effective at lower elevations. In fact, there are new turbine designs that can be incorporated into landscaping design around homes. 
 
The economics of wind power depend on where you live, how much wind is available on a continuous basis at what elevation, and whether you plan to invest in batteries to store excess energy. The economics of wind power also depend on whether you plan to install a stand-alone system to provide all of your energy needs or you plan to connect to the electric grid serving your area and use a wind energy system to generate power that you supply to the electric company in exchange for free energy. Either way, a small wind system could provide all of the power your home needs with wind energy. 
 
You can now purchase a wind generator from and from several other online retailers. You can also purchase complete wind systems from the manufacturer. At the very least, you can do your homework online before you start talking with a local contractor. Most states currently require that wind power systems be professionally installed by certified contractors. Before you purchase any equipment from any source, you should discuss your options and what kind of systems are working for other homeowners in your area with your contractor.
 
Choices of turbines are generally based on the amount of wind power generated by the system. This is measured in kilowatts. For example, a 1.2kW turbine produces 1200 watts. A turbine of this size installed where there is an average wind speed of 12 mph will produce about 2000 kilowatt hours of electricity per year. The cost of a wind system usually ranges from $3,000 to $5,000 per kilowatt connected to the grid. The cost could be lower for an independent system not connected to the grid. Turbines are expected to last about 20 years. 
 
In most cases, the installation cost for a 10 kilowatt residential system will be about $35,000 to $40,000. In an energy efficient home, this system could meet all energy needs, eliminating the electric bill. The amount of time needed to recover the cost would depend on current average monthly electric bill (e.g., a home using $200 of electricity per month, would recover $2,400 of the cost each year) and the available purchase incentives. The incentives would begin with the current Federal Income Tax Credit of 30% of the cost of equipment and installation or $10,500 – $12,000. Many states also offer such incentives as investment tax credits, sales tax reductions, property tax reductions, and financing assistance. Many utility companies also offer a variety of incentives, including net metering, to wind system installation.
 
In short, it is entirely possible to completely meet the energy needs of an energy efficient home with a wind power system that could be expected to pay for itself in as little as 10 to 15 years.
Copyright 2009 by ABCD Publishing…

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Home Contractors

Kitchen Remodeling Ideas

Have you ever walked into your kitchen and felt something was missing? More than likely, you feel this way because something is missing. Often, this is because the look of the kitchen is a little old. It needs to be spiffed up and made to look unique once again. The best way to do this would be to remodel it. But, wouldn’t that cost a lot of money? Honestly, it could cost a lot of money but you need not feel that you must spend a great deal on it. There are a variety of ways that the kitchen could be effectively remodeled on a minuscule budget.
Repainting is always one of the best ways to remodel a kitchen with little cost. You can paint the walls as well as the cabinets. (You could also consider wallpapering the kitchen as well) Painting is probably the cheapest strategy to follow provided you do it yourself. In this instance, you would need to only pay for materials. Hiring a painting crew would certainly run up the costs.
And speaking of cabinets, you do not need to replace the entire cabinet if you want to make a change. You can always just replace the doors of the cabinet and this could have a great impact on the kitchen. And it will certainly prove to be much cheaper than replacing the entire cabinet.
Have you considered replacing your appliances? When you have old and outdated refrigerators and dishwashers they can really wear down the look of the kitchen. Taking these old appliances out and installing new ones would be a wise idea. Then again, some may wonder if this can be done cheaply. As long as you kind find affordable resources for kitchen appliances, you will be able to take part in this plan without a huge expense. Buying used (but well maintained) appliances could also be an available option.
A new floor can totally revamp the look of a kitchen in a stunning manner. Of course, there will be those that will say redoing the flooring is not easy to do cheaply. Again, the cost saving venture comes into play when you do what is needed by yourself. Many flooring system have been designed for those with limited flooring skills to be able to install the flooring on their own with limited difficulty. Purchasing such kits will definitely help the cause of remodeling without great expense.
The windows of a kitchen can often be altered in various ways to improve the style of the kitchen. This could involve installing new windows or merely just adding nice curtains to the windows. Does that sound minimalist? Well, it may seem minimalist on paper but when actual enacted it can deliver great results.
As you can see, it is not all that tough to remodel a kitchen without great costs. A few simple “tricks” can deliver some amazing results.…

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Home Remodeling

Kitchen Design Tips – 5 Ideas You Can Do In A Weekend

Looking for kitchen design tips that will add character and charm, but won’t break the bank? The secret to innovative yet inexpensive kitchen renovation ideas is in the finishing touches. Try these 5 kitchen design tips and see what a lift attention to small details can bring.
1. Open your uppers – Remove the doors on your upper cabinets to give a more contemporary and a more spacious and sand down holes left from the hinge paint or finish natural.
Paint or finish the interiors to match the lower , paint the cabinet interiors an accent color for some extra flair.
2. Splashy Seconds – Transform the look of your kitchen with a new full height tile back-splash. By full height, I mean the space between the top of your lower cabinets to the bottom of your uppers–usually about 18 inches (45 – 46 cm).
Because the area is relatively small, material costs for your back-splash will normally be , you can really cash in on some high-end savings by buying seconds. These are tiles with imperfections–most of them barely noticeable, if at all. I have found great deals on some of the more expensive tiles. Many outfits sell these tiles by the pound…usually 50% to 80% off.
Some clients even request seconds because they feel the flaws and blemishes bring character.
3. Vintage-look Flooring – Add some pizazz with a new floor made of old-school material: linoleum.
Linoleum tiles are easy to to , naturally anti-microbial.
Take a look at what Marmoleum has to offer. Their tiles come in a ton of different shades – including brights like greens, reds and blues. They average about $4.99 US per square foot. Also check out tiles by Mannington and TrafficMaster.
4. Hardware Heaven – Update your cabinets by changing out the knobs or pulls as we call them.
If your cabinets have a natural wood finish, you’ll probably want to find new hardware with the same “footprint” as your old stuff, so that the new pulls cover the old screw holes. If your cabinets are painted, you can fill and touch up any old holes or marks. If there are no pulls currently on your cabinets then the world’s your oyster.
You’ll be amazed at how this simple kitchen design idea can update things. It’s like putting on the right jewelry. Check out your local Home Improvement Center, most have good try an online store like Restoration Hardware for a truly impressive selection of cabinet pulls.
5. Rack Em Up – Install a pot rack and save on valuable cabinet space.
This design idea takes a couple hours. It adds a touch of class to any , I love them because I can always find the pot I’m looking for instantly. Also at Restoration Hardware and available too through Crate and Barrel where they start at $120.00 US.
I hope these kitchen design tips inspire you. I want you all to realize that you can work on your own spaces even though you don’t have a lot of time or money right now. Think of your home as your canvas. Work with the materials you have and enjoy the process.…

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Home Remodeling

Kitchen Renovation: Heart Surgery For Your Home

When it comes to home renovation, there is no greater return on your investment than renovating your kitchen. The kitchen is the heart of the home. It is a place where the family gathers and is nourished both physically and mentally. The renovations you make to your kitchen will depend on the reasons for renovating, budget constraints, and your future plans.
If you are renovating to sell, updating the kitchen will make your whole house more appealing. Basically, when renovating to sell, keep it simple. Scrub instead of paint. Paint instead of replace. Make the kitchen as appealing as you can without spending a lot of money.
Moderate or minor kitchen remodels are the wisest choice when renovating for potential buyers. Chances are the new homeowner will make changes of their own anyway. The following are areas that can be tweaked:
1. The ceiling and walls of your kitchen should be clean, free of dirt and grease and painted in neutral colors.
2. Countertops should be cleaned or replaced if damaged. If they need to be replaced, use a laminate instead of more expensive granite or stone finishes.
3. Cabinets can be very expensive to replace, but existing cabinetry can be resurfaced or repainted depending on the finish. New hardware is an inexpensive way to update cabinetry.
4. Appliances, fixtures and floors should be modern, sparkling clean and in good condition. If not, repair or replace them.
If you plan to remain in your home for a long time, then your kitchen renovation is only limited by your imagination and budget. Any kitchen renovation guarantees at least a 100 percent rate of return on your investment in case you ever decide to sell. The average kitchen renovation is about $45,000, but a good guideline is to set your renovation budget at 15 percent of your home’s value. If your home’s value is $200,000, then your renovation budget should be $30,000.
The biggest expense will be cabinets, followed by countertops and appliances. Other expenses will include flooring, electrical and plumbing labor costs, electrical and plumbing fixtures, design costs and permits. Moving a sink’s or stove’s location may significantly add to your costs since lines and pipes will have to be rerouted. Consulting a kitchen design specialist may add to your cost, but save you from costly mistakes.
Spend a little or spend a lot; a kitchen renovation is a solid investment adding to your home’s value and your family’s pleasure and comfort.…