5 Kitchen Remodeling Factors to Consider before the Project Begins

Remodeling a kitchen presents a number of aesthetic and layout challenges. You might be considering a larger countertop, more storage space and new light fixtures. To make the changes that improve the look and functionality of the space, keep these factors in mind as you start planning for the project.

  1. The remodeling budget. The final look of the kitchen rests on how much you can spend. If you have a small budget, consider doing some of the work, and focus on small changes with a big impact. Seeking financing is another option, and you may be able to apply for a home equity loan. If your goal is to put the house up for sale, a kitchen remodel can boost the value. An increase in the budget is a good idea in this case.
  2. Do you need more space? People often decide to remodel their kitchens due to space concerns. However, knocking out walls and expanding the founding can raise costs significantly. This should not be at the expense of quality kitchen finishes. If the budget is not big enough, look at additional storage options to keep the space clutter free. You might also be able to expand inward to an adjoining room.
  3. Lighting. Poor lighting can make the kitchen dreary, and detract from even the most beautiful finishes. Consider larger windows to get more natural light for a cheery atmosphere. Look at different options to layer the lighting and improve functionality. Consider whether he kitchen can benefit from additional lighting in cupboards and under cabinets.
  4. Do you need new appliances? New appliances are often added to kitchen remodeling projects as some of them provide cost savings long after the project is over. Some, like range hoods, improve functionality and comfort. Other types, like refrigerators and dishwashers are more energy efficient and will help to lower your utility bills. The style and finish of appliances can also contribute to the look of the kitchen.
  5. Does the layout work? Flaws in the layout decrease efficiency and can make working in the kitchen uncomfortable. Adjustments to the layout may include repositioning cabinets or moving large appliances like the fridge. In a few cases, it may be necessary to reroute plumbing, wiring or gas lines to accommodate a layout change. However, this can be expensive, so generally it is best to leave them in place if possible.

You may consider other factors as you start planning for the kitchen remodel. The goals should be to strike a visual balance, and to make the space more functional.

 5 Bathroom Remodeling Tips for 2019 Projects

With a new year comes the opportunity to finally get around to some of the remodeling jobs you have been putting off. The bathroom is one space you should not ignore if it needs an update. A new look not only adds beauty to the home, it also increases is value. Here are some useful tips to give your bathroom a 2019 update.

  1. Be realistic about cost. Even a small remodeling project can be costly, so you need to know all the changes you want to make to create a budget. After that, you have to start thinking about financing if you can’t do it out of pocket. A home equity loan is usually the most convenient and quickest option.
  2. What do you want? Bathroom remodels do not only come up when this space is in disrepair. Sometimes the goal is to update it and keep up with modern trends. Taking the whole bathroom into account will create a fuller picture of your remodeling plan. Any spots with rot or mold growth should take priority over aesthetic changes, especially if the budget is limited.
  3. Plan for the inconvenience. It is likely that the bathroom will be out of commission while the work is ongoing. This can be tough for the household if there is only one other bathroom. So some organization will be necessary to keep the family’s routine on track.
  4. Think about the layout. Changing the bathroom layout is sometimes necessary, but this can be expensive. It usually involves moving the plumbing and electrical wiring. Do this sparingly if at all, if you want to keep your costs down.
  5. Should you refinish or replace? Your first instinct may be to replace tub or shower, but this is not the only option. Minor damage can be easily repaired and this will keep costs down. Discoloration of an old tub can detract from the look of the bathroom, but consider refinishing instead of replacing it. Another option is to buy a liner specifically made to fit the bathtub or shower, making it seem like you spent big on the remodel.

Before you remodel the bathroom, make sure that there are no areas of dampness which will cause rot and the growth of harmful bacteria. You can find many great ideas online to inspire the look of your bathroom for 2019.

How Much Will This Project Cost?

Clients deserve a straight answer, but getting it requires an honest conversation,

Everyone wants to get as much value as possible for their investment and that makes the balance between cost and value a high priority for many remodeling clients. Not surprisingly, a lot of people approach the remodeler with costs gleaned from internet articles. Those articles typically say it should cost X dollars for a simple bath, from Y to Z for a full kitchen remodel, and so on.

We encourage people to do their own research, but we also caution that such numbers should be considered a starting point.

Some clients get fixated on the online numbers but don’t take the time to define exactly what products and details those numbers represent, or how closely the products and details match the products and details the clients want in their home. This is a recipe for miscommunication.

We understand the need to simplify a complex subject like estimating costs, but there’s also a more fundamental issue at work. Yes, clients want to know if they can afford a given remodeler, but they also want assurance that the remodeler will be a good steward of their budget, their vision, and their home. It’s up to the remodeler to provide that assurance.

While a professional remodeling company relies on proven, scientific management systems, creating an accurate budget is still as much craft as science. No ethical company will quote a hard price before asking for more information, because doing so would risk misleading the client.

The remodeler is tasked with helping the clients realize a very personal vision for their home. Because each vision is unique, estimating the cost of that vision requires the clients to answer some questions.

First, we need an overview of what the project will include. Will the proposed kitchen remodel include relocating walls or removing the ceiling to create a cathedral? Do the homeowners want stock cabinets or custom ones? Do they want the new space to match the other rooms in the home? A colonial-style home with intricate moldings will have different material and labor costs than a modern structure with minimal trim.

We also need to define the level of interior finishes the homeowners want. Generic terms like “medium grade” aren’t too helpful, but we can clarify expectations by starting with some easy questions, like their preferences between two levels of plumbing fixtures, flooring, windows or siding.

After creating this baseline, we can then show plans and photos from completed projects. And we can often provide a ballpark estimate of what it would cost to do something similar in their home.

The conversation is also a chance for the remodeler to clarify the clients’ expectations, as well as learning about their remodeling history. For instance, if their last project went over budget, we can explain how taking time up front to write clear specifications can eliminate that problem. If their home wasn’t treated with the care they expected, then we can demonstrate how our processes ensure that it will be.

Ultimately, what most people want is assurance that they’re working with someone they can trust. A good remodeler earns that trust by investing the time and effort needed to understand all the variables involved, by using that information to calculate an accurate price, and by making sure all the clients’ concerns are addressed before work starts. Clients deserve nothing less.

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