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Bathroom Remodel

Laminate Flooring Vs Hardwood Flooring – What Should You Choose?

It’s come to that time. You want to upgrade the flooring in your home and you’re weighing up the options. You don’t want to bother with carpeted floors because they’re a nightmare to maintain, love gathering dust, fleas, and dirt, and just don’t have the modern feel that wooden flooring brings.
Your options have boiled down to laminate flooring and hardwood flooring because they both achieve that modern look you’ve always wanted. However you’re torn between the two and want some advice. Well, welcome to this article, where we’ll look at a couple of key differences that may help you reach a conclusion.
The price
Price is often an important factor when making a purchase of any kind. If money is no object then you may as well skip to the next section. However, if you’re part of the price conscious majority, then you should know that laminate flooring is much cheaper than hardwood. Typically, it will cost you twice as much to install hardwood flooring over laminate flooring. Sometimes, it can cost even more than this.
Installation
Now, depending on how much of a handy man (or woman) you are, will influence whether you choose to take the DIY route or enlist the help of flooring specialists. If you like DIY, then you’re going to have an easy ride with laminate flooring. Most laminate floors are designed to be easy to install, with no need for nails, and in most cases, no need for glue.
Hardwood, on the other hand, will require a particular level of expertise for a pain-free installation. Unless you really know your stuff and are a genuine handy man or handy woman, then you should use a professional for installing a hardwood floor.
Longevity
The longevity of your flooring will be another important consideration when you’re weighing up your options. Well, in this department, both flooring types are pretty good. Both laminate and hardwood floors can last for decades if looked after. However, laminate floors tend to be a little more resistant to scratching and fading than their hardwood companions. Nonetheless, a slightly faded and scratched hardwood floor can add a little personality and character to your home. So, in that respect, it is really down to your personal choice.
The looks
As expensive as it can be, there is no denying that hardwood flooring looks beautiful. It really brings that natural yet modern feel into your home. Although laminate flooring can also do its bit at making your home look tidy, hardwood flooring wins hands down in the aesthetic department. If you’re one that likes to impress, then hardwood flooring will be the sensible choice.…

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Bathroom Remodel

How to Save Lots of Money Doing Your Own Home Repairs

The secret that I’m about to share with you is something that very few people know anything about. I don’t think that most homeowners or do-it-yourselfers even take the time to ask a contractor or house repair professional, how they actually learned how to do certain types of home repairs.
If you’re really interested in saving lots of money by doing your own repairs, you should purchase some home repair books and ask other contractors for tips and advice. I worked for a gardener who knew quite a bit about landscaping, vegetables and plants, but very little about building repairs. This particular individual would often invite me and my family over for a barbecue and ask me all sorts of questions about house repairs and where I got my experience from.
This man saved himself a lot of money on building repairs and you can too, by asking the right questions and gathering the right information. If you don’t know anyone who can help you for free with your DIY repairs, you can take the next step and see if there is a book available that you can use as a guide to do your own DIY repairs.
I have been a contractor for a long time and have been doing house repairs even longer. I built my first room addition when I was 18 years old and got all of the information that I needed from other building professionals and books. I probably didn’t know any more than most people when I started doing house repairs and remodeling work.
By asking questions and reading books, I eventually became extremely inefficient at doing my own home repairs and I even get paid for doing home repairs for other people. If you want to save some money, you need to learn how to do the home repairs on your own.…

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Bathroom Remodel

Ideas for Redesigning a Kitchen

If attempting to redesign a kitchen to give it the right look and functionality, you often have to start with a well thought-out plan. A complete kitchen renovation needs to look at all aspects of the design, and not just the style or appearance. Functional aspects, such as the type of storage, cooking equipment, and available work space also need to be considered.
Here are some of the main features to look at when doing a full-scale kitchen redesign –
Floor Plan – common floor plan designs include those with the more typical U-shape or L-shape, but if you’re looking for a more unique designed kitchen you might want to look at the possibility of a circular styled kitchen. A circular floor plan is a perfect way to make the most use of the available floor space, which will mean curved work surfaces entirely surround you, and this make it super easy to reach any area in seconds.
Floor Surface – relaying the flooring in the kitchen is often seen as a quite large and expensive job, but it certainly offers a great way to renovate a kitchen, which not only improves on the aesthetics but can also make the work area so much more comfortable. If hoping to increase the comfort level, you might want to look at the various types of rubbing flooring, which comes in a wide-range of colors and is extremely easy on the feet. However, if you’re after an elegant touch, the slate or limestone floors are a popular choice. Solid wood floor can also look appealing in the kitchen; although with this floor type you would need to ensure it is well sealed and maintained.
Dining Area – if you are looking for ways to modernize the kitchen to give a more family oriented feel, you might want to look at creating space to install a nook-styled area with a table and benches or a long breakfast bar. If the existing design of the kitchen gives limit to no space for eating a meal, you might want to have a floor plan professionally designed, which is able to feature everything you desire.
Storage Options – one of the most significant features to a well-designed kitchen is to include the right size and shape of storage units to ensure all you kitchen ware has somewhere to go. Modern kitchen cabinets and cupboards are extremely versatile and come in wide-range of innovative designs. If the right kitchen layout is created, you shouldn’t have a problem in having the most important kitchen tools close to hand at all times.…

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Bathroom Remodel

Looking To Replace Your Kitchen Countertops? Go With Granite

There are a number of options for new countertops in the kitchen but the trend currently is definitely toward granite. The stone is extremely durable and will hold up well to the daily grind that comes with cooking. Granite will hold its luster for years with a minimal amount of maintenance and will add elegance to your home that will increase the value.
The number one drawback to granite is the cost. To have a slab of granite configured to fit your kitchen and installed will cost you at least $60 per square foot and can go up to over $90. A typical 3×12 granite countertop will cost you somewhere in the neighborhood of $3000. One of the most costly expenses related to granite is shipping it to your home. Granite slabs are very heavy and great care must be taken in moving them around because they can snap, especially if a sink hole was cut out at the factory. Because they can be difficult to handle, installation is best left to the experts.
Ten years ago, composite materials became very popular for use in the kitchen. Sold under name brands like Corian, Avonite and Swanstone, these one piece countertops provided a nice upgrade over conventional laminate which has been the industry standard for years. The materials though are not as durable as granite and cannot withstand high temperatures as well. A pot just removed from the stove can be placed on a granite countertop with no fear of it burning the surface. Granite when sealed properly is also much more stain resistant than the composites made from plastic resins.
There is also no substitute for the look of Granite. There is no material that is produced by man which can match the appearance of polished stone. Granite is made up of tiny crystals which are ground down using diamond studded pads to polish off the stone to a smooth finish. The surface is ground down to the point where it is completely flat and the shine comes from the way that the polished granite reflects the light.
There are enough color options available in granite to match any design or taste. While no two pieces are alike, slabs are classified into basic color groups of white, yellow, blue, green and brown. The White Granite tends to be more cream colored and often will have speckles of black or gray in it. The yellow granite is a brownish yellow while the brown granite tends to be a dark tan. The blue and green granites come in both dark and lighter shades of those colors. Each different color can be found with a wide variety of marbling. The most expensive cuts of stone are variegated granite pieces which have elaborate veins running through them. These pieces have been compared to pieces of art and give the illusion of movement throughout. Going with variegated granite will give your kitchen a look like no other and make it truly unique.…

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Bathroom Remodel

Where to Find Kitchen Renovation Ideas

If you’re ready for a change in the look and feel of your home, your kitchen is a great place to start. Not only is it a place where functionality is important, but it’s also the gathering place for your friends and family members. Your kitchen should be a beautiful place where you are comfortable and where you can work on creating meals easily and efficiently.
One problem that many people have with remodeling any part of their homes is that they just don’t know what they want to do. When it comes to kitchen renovation, you might already know a little bit of what you want. You know that you need the stove closer to the fridge, another sink, a better faucet with a spray nozzle, or whatnot. You may not, though, know how best to lay all these things out or how to decorate your kitchen so that it looks different yet still blends with the rest of your home well. Luckily, there are lots of places to find kitchen renovation ideas.
A great place to start is with magazines and online before and after pictures. These will show you the latest ideas for kitchens, including efficient layouts and beautiful decorations. Many times, you can actually get kitchen blueprints from specialty magazines and websites that will help you decide how to lay your kitchen out.
Another great idea is to look at friends’ homes. Is there a kitchen where you feel particularly warm and comfortable? What is it that you like about this kitchen? Ask about where the materials came from, and see if you can take pictures of the parts of the kitchen that you love most.
Once you start finding ideas, keep track of them. Clip out magazine pictures and pictures of friends’ kitchens. Print off pictures online, or at least bookmark links. Make an envelope or folder where you can keep all your kitchen renovation ideas.
When you have lots of ideas stored up, take them to a professional kitchen designer. This person will be able to help you put your ideas together in a cohesive manner. Some of them might not go together, but taken as a whole, they’ll give a good idea of the type of kitchen you want. When you have all your ideas together, you’ll be able to get good advice on the most efficient and practical way to remodel your kitchen from a designer who has been working on kitchens for a while.…

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Bathroom Remodel

Two Reasons to Buy Brazilian Hardwood Flooring – Beauty and Durability

Anyone who wants to install beautiful hardwood floors in their home needs to take a look at exotic Brazilian Cherry flooring materials. Not only does this wood have beautiful graining and natural color, but it also is one of the most durable woods available. It is especially desirable, because even though it doesn’t dent easily, if a time comes when you want or need to refinish it, it sands easily and takes stain well. These are all characteristics that make Brazilian cherry hardwood one of the most recommended solid wood floors on the market.
Everyone who installs hardwood floors wants them to be durable. You may have seen floors in some homes that are scratched and pitted and thought you’d never want to trade in your carpets for wood. Some woods using for flooring are soft, though, and become damaged much easier than others do. Brazilian cherry is the ideal material to use, because it is so hard. On the Janka Hardwood Hardness Scale, it has a rating of 2820 out of a possible 4000 which makes it one of the hardest woods around. In fact, you really wouldn’t want anything much harder, because even this hard cherry requires some extra effort in cutting and nailing.
Problems with cutting and nailing are obstacles that aren’t difficult to get around, though, so don’t worry. Special saw blades and pre-drilling of nail holes will help your cherry floors become a reality. Although this will create a bit more work in laying the floor, the beauty and durability of the finished product will make the extra effort well worth your while. After all, what’s the point of laying a floor that’s going to start looking tacky after a few months of family use?
Brazilian cherry flooring is available either pre-finished or unfinished. The wood itself can range from a dark orange to a reddish-brown in its natural state. When choosing a floor, you need to realize that the color will probably darken over time. In addition, exposure to direct sunlight can lighten it. Prefinished floors are finished with multiple coats of scratch resistant polyurethane varnish to increase the floor’s durability. After all, any floor will only be as tough as the top surface. Inferior varnishes will become badly scratched making your floor look dull, so make sure that your flooring has the best possible varnish, whether you purchase it prefinished or do the job yourself.…

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Bathroom Remodel

How To Make Your Home Improvement Project Look Professional

People may want to do a home improvement project for a number of reasons, some of them being making their home nicer, making a profit on selling their property or maybe they just want a change. You will find great advice to use if you are considering making changes to your home.

Put old things in shoe boxes for extra storage space. Use scraps of attractive fabric or wallpaper to cover the shoe boxes. They make terrific storage containers, and they can even give your room a little extra drama.

If you are looking to tile a floor on the cheap, pass on stone or ceramic tiles, and use vinyl instead. This peel-and-stick brand of flooring comes in a wide variety of colors and styles. It can look just like stone or wood, and it’s very tough, easy to clean up, and it can take a beating. Vinyl flooring is purchased in tile sets or in a sheet used for larger areas.

If you should happen to find a leak beneath the sink or underneath the tap, it is best not to attempt a repair on your own. Just catch water in a large container and talk to a professional plumber.

In time, the ceramic tiles on your floor may look grimy. Thankfully, all you need to clean it is a little water and vinegar. Just use an ordinary bucket to hold a mixture of your solution, then mop as usual. The vinegar will cut through the grime easily to help put a shine on your floor again.

Be creative when it comes to choosing a coffee table. Use an old steamer trunk, blanket chest, or other unusual bin type item as a coffee table that doubles as storage. If you want to improve the look of your coffee table, make sure that you top it off with some three-dimensional items that are strategically placed. You can do some amazing treatments, like throwing on a table cloth with a tea set for a countrified style.

When you select furnishings, don’t tie yourself down to pieces that have busy upholstery patterns. Florals, bright colors and geometric shapes can force your decorating hand. Purchase furniture in solid colors like black, brown, blue or green, and use accessories to highlight the furniture. Patterns are easier to take in small doses such as blankets and toss pillows.

Sealant strips and draft excluders are but two of your choices in preventing air flow escaping around your door frames. Draft excluders go under the door and keep air from going out or coming in. Sealant strips can be fitted around a door frame and they have the same functionality. You can easily find these things in most hardware stores.

Home improvement is for everyone! There is something to do for everyone. From remodeling a kitchen or bath, to applying a new coat of paint to the family room, your project can increase the worth of your home and provide you with a more comfortable living space. Use the advice given in the above article, and check out a local home improvement center for ideas on how to get started.…