New Years Resolutions: Add Lasting Value to Your Home with these 5 Home Improvements

Thinking about that home renovation project you never got around to? Dreaming of those little changes that you can make to your home for the new year? If you have a list of things that you want to work on around your house, this is a great time to start on those New Year’s resolutions.

While some projects may require more money, there are easy ways to make simple changes that can increase the value in your home and make it visually appealing. So let’s take a look at a few home improvement projects that you can work on now to increase your home’s value:

1. Add New Siding
New siding can give you more curb appeal and increase your home’s value by up to 10%. Whether you choose a vinyl siding or a fiber cement version, some appraisers find that the new look draws buyers in. Vinyl is a low-cost and easy installation. It’s also low maintenance. Vinyl siding increases the overall value of your property.

Fiber cement siding, on the other hand, is more expensive and still raises the value of the home. Potential home buyers will look at the overall quality of the home based on research from the National Association of Home Builders.

2. Upgrade Your Kitchen
If you’ve watched any of the kitchen remodeling shows, then you know that regutting a kitchen can be very expensive, but there are ways to keep costs down and still have a new look that adds value. Minor kitchen remodeling work can be done over a weekend and can include great features like a new floor, new counter tops or a new island in the center of your kitchen to increase your counter and storage space. Kitchen upgrades can run on average about $40,000-60,000, but the lasting effect is what’s important. While it may increase the home’s overall value, it can be aesthetically pleasing for you and your family.

3. Upgrade Your Deck/Patio Space
Like the idea of an outdoor living space? Want that new brick patio or an outdoor fire pit? There are several great ways to turn your outdoor space into a tropical oasis or fun family play area and you can do it on a budget. The American Institute of Architects suggests that more people are looking for ways to enjoy their outdoor living spaces whether it’s making changes to their patio and grounds or adding a new deck.

Upgrading these spaces is also on the rise because you can make all kinds of changes that are relatively cheap. To upgrade your patio or deck, you may find that you can find a new finish that will run anywhere from $8 up to $150 per square foot. That gives you a lot of room – and selections for that new addition.

4. Adding a New Bedroom or Office
Big on everyone’s list is more space, or changing your current space to make it more comfortable. Whether you want a new bedroom or a new office space, your home is your retreat and you spend a lot of time here. Whether you section off a wall or add a new addition on your property, you can add value to your home and increase the price when you’re ready to sell.

With adding rooms, you may need to find out about the specific code restrictions in your area to have a true bedroom if you plan on reselling your home and you want to convert your attic space, so talk to a contractor and speak to your realtor.

5. Adding a New Garage Door
This is an easy project that increases the curb appeal and can add value to your home. You’ll also find that the costs are relatively low for a new steel door. On average, it may run you about $2,000 and it can be done in one-day if you’re looking for a short-term project. You will have a host of different finishes and styles, so the possibilities are endless.

Whichever project you take on, you will be able to increase the value of your home and make it more enjoyable for you and your family. So get started with your list of resolutions and visit your home improvement store to get started on these fun ideas – Your home will look fantastic!

Ultimate Playroom Remodeling Ideas

Creating the ultimate playroom may seem like a tall task. But really, once you have a few key elements in place, you’re well on your way to creating a place that your kids will love. Whether you’re using part of a refinished basement, a spare bedroom or some other under-utilized space in your home for it, the ultimate playroom is a part of your home that your kids will enjoy for years to come.

Plenty of Storage

Before you get started with your playroom design, the first thing that any playroom needs is plenty of storage. Ideally, you want the kind of storage that at the end of the day is easily accessible and kid-friendly. Of course, kids don’t always pick up after themselves, so having toy bins and easy to pull out drawers to throw toys into at night makes cleaning up much easier.

 

Choosing a Theme or Themes

Once you know where you’re going to put everything, discuss with your kid or kids about what themes they would like to have in their playroom. A jungle theme is particularly popular, but there are limitless themes that you can choose from. Mixing and matching themes in different parts of the playroom is a good idea, too. Sticking too closely to a single theme can be an issue as kids grow out of certain phases in their lives, so mixing it up keeps things interesting for a longer time. Otherwise, you’ll find yourself remodeling for different themes all the time. If you want to stick to a single theme, try to stick to something timeless such as a treehouse or space theme.

Unusual Attractions

Based on the theme that you choose, you may want to build structures that fit with the theme, but can also be repainted or easily reconfigured in some way to serve different purposes. This could include a “theme” wall, which incorporates painted characters or other artworks. It could also be a mini-playground type of structure, such as a playhouse, complete with swing and slide. As kids get older, those smaller pieces can be removed and the house part expanded to serve as a sort of fort or clubhouse.

Mini Library

One of the most important things to have in a playroom is an area that promotes literacy. Having a mini-library with a small seating area is a great addition to your kids’ play area. It can also serve as an area to play board games or do arts and crafts. The more function you give this area, the more the kids will use it. Give your kids plenty of opportunities to be creative and learn in their ultimate playroom.

books-colorful-harry-potter

Entertainment Center

Of course, sometimes kids are going to need a colorful distraction, such as a movie or video game. Depending on your theme, you can get creative with the entertainment center furniture. Again, since kids tend to go through phases when it comes to interests, make sure you do something adaptable.

The trick with the ultimate playroom is to make it unique but also allow it to grow with your children. Don’t over commit to a single theme or you may find your kids growing bored with it, which is the last thing that you want.

 

What would you include in your ultimate playroom?

How to Build the Best Home Theater for Your Family

Are you looking for a better way to make use of the space in your basement? When you’re looking to finish your basement, you may consider creating a multipurpose entertainment room. One of the main functions of such a room should be a home theater. Here are some tips to create the best home theater in your basement for your family to enjoy.

Necessities for a Home Theater

If you have a smaller home, making a spot in the basement for a home theater perfect for your family. Having a comfortable spot to enjoy movies and video gaming is especially great for entertaining friends and other guests.

The bare necessities for a basement home theater include a flat screen TV, a solid home sound system, entertainment equipment, and comfortable chairs and/or sofas. You could take a step further and have a refrigerator. Also, installing a half bath in the basement will make necessary bathroom breaks take far less time and much more convenient.

Maximize the Function of Your Home Theater Space

When not being used for your home theater, the space can also serve as a game room or den. You can set up your music equipment, gaming consoles, and perhaps even pool tables or pinball machines. You could also have a fold out table with folding chairs to give you an area to play card and board games. Also, you may want to create a reading nook for avid readers, complete with a charging station for phones and tablets. Make sure you have proper storage for all of these item.

Home theaters can also double as a playroom. You’ll want to have storage for kids toys and perhaps a smaller TV to enjoy their own programs. This helps you keep the young ones entertained while you watch movies that they may not be interested in.

What else should you do to create the best home theater? Properly soundproofing the walls and installing acoustic ceilings will give the best sound quality and minimal infiltration of sound into the rest of the house.

Carpet for Comfort or Vinyl for Durability?

Another important question you may have is what to do for flooring. Concrete floors are usually fine for basements, but in a home theater you may be considering something else. Carpet is a popular option for comfort reasons. However, some people instead consider vinyl flooring for better durability and easier cleaning.

Concrete is also durable and relatively easy to clean, but vinyl is a more comfortable surface to walk on than concrete. Also, vinyl comes in just about every imaginable pattern and is available in rolls, planks, or tiles. Concrete can be stained as well, but can get very cold to walk on.

Keeping these things in mind, you are well on your way to creating the best home theater for your family. Even if you have a larger home, having the basement space makes for a more dedicated space you, your family, and friends can enjoy for years to come.

Home decorating and decor trends

For the year 2016, there are plenty of home decoration designs that have proven to stand out among the rest. This year, many home owners are looking for designs and styles that not only make their living space comfortable, but also stylish. Here are some of the most common home decorating and décor trends that are spicing up many homeowner’s living space.

 

  1. The use of graphic tiles

This is one great trend that may come to pass with time, but not any time soon. Graphic tiles help homeowner’s make their living space have that ‘big statement’ effect. With graphic tiles, the limit to the colors and patterns that can be implemented in home décor are infinite. As a homeowner, one should find graphic tiles that they can live with for a long time because they are quite durable. They are an art and investment that graces the walls of the living space for years.

 

  1. Adoption of kitchen islands with seating

Incorporation of kitchen islands with seating space into kitchen decoration is one of the most common trends in 2016. Unlike the traditional homes where the kitchen’s sole purpose was cooking, today’s kitchens have many purposes. A well designed and furnished kitchen island not only works as the perfect kitchen décor, but it also provides additional seating space where the family can have breakfast at.

 

  1. Use of sectional sofas

Today, people are designing their living spaces in ways that they can be easily used. People are doing away with the traditional form of a formal living room. Homes are now opting to create spaces where the owners can hang out with their friends and family in a comfortable way, unlike in the case of a formal living room.

 

  1. The use of statement light fixtures

In many cases, light fixtures are known to be exceptional pieces of art. One can have some very simple living space, but the moment an artistic and stylish light fixture is added to it, it automatically boosts the room’s atmosphere and presence. The use of statement making light fixtures is a common trend in 2016’s homes decoration and it seems like it’s here to stay.

 

  1. Open and airy living spaces

Most families today are opting for open living spaces where for example, you find that a person sitting in the living room can easily see and communicate with another in the kitchen. This is because today’s families are very busy and multitasking has become the norm. They are therefore looking to have clear views of what’s going on in the home from anywhere.

 

Stay tunes, as we deliver more Interior Design Trends on our new website: Emily’s Interiors, Inc.

How long does it take to choose a paint color?

We recently ran a poll on Houzz: How long does it take to choose a paint color?

We received over a thousand votes and comments ranging from 1/2 hour to a “long time”. Choosing a color for your walls is no easy task. It is all about selecting a color scheme that will pull design elements together to create harmony and balance as well. The duration it takes a person to settle on a given color will vary from one person to the other. There are those people that will make their decision right there and then and there are those that might take months to settle.

There are those people that will make up their mind immediately. This group of people has a specific look in mind that they want to achieve. They will therefore have their mind made up on what they should get. For some it only takes them a couple of minutes to have their mind made up on what they want. Some suggested picking an inspiration and stick to it.

Some take a few days to make up their mind. One respondent said she chooses three sample paints them on the walls, one very well lite and the other dark. This way, even after selecting she does not get surprises after selecting. By narrowing down your choices you will have a smaller selection to choose from and you will not drive yourself crazy.

When there are other factors to consider such as a spouse, it might take even longer than a month. A certain respondent said she paints samples behind art and with time she takes the art down to see how the paint looks during various times of days and different weather conditions. This could make the decision making process take longer.

You might simply start simply looking at different colors, after which you start looking at the different tones and you just get even more confused. With time you start canceling off color shades that you least like and your choices become narrow with time. A particular responded suggested taking pictures of your furniture and trying to find a color that could go with your furniture. For a certain respondent it has been two years and she has not settled on a color yet.

When it comes to choosing a color, a lot of factors come into place. Some will be affected by their indecisive nature, making the process longer. Others know exactly what they want and the decision takes minutes. In the end there is no standard time, take your time to find what is right for you.

Using Design Build to Find the Best in Reclaimed Building Materials

One of the greatest home remodeling trends in recent years has been the rapidly growing use of reclaimed and recycled building materials. There are so many materials available today that it can be very hard to choose. If you work with a design build firm, however, it’s quite likely that they will have connections that will hook you up with the best deals available. Not only will this save materials from the scrap heap, but put a lot of money in your pocket. Read more

Don’t Get Lost in the Design

In today’s home remodeling world, there is such a plethora of design options that it can quickly become extremely overwhelming trying to decide what is right for you. It’s extremely easy to become lost in the design process. This is where a design-build contractor can come in and simplify things. But some people are worried that if a designer is brought in, then they will try and force their ideas on them. Finding the right contractor is all about finding someone who will take your likes and dislikes, wants and needs into consideration that you can trust. When it comes to the kitchen, often the heart of a home, you need to know that will all work out in the end.

Organizing Your Design Ideas

Many people will advise you to create an idea folder or make virtual boards on Pinterest to help get your ideas in order. This is an excellent idea and a great starting point for meeting with a contractor to discuss what you’re looking for in your space. There are so many design resources both online and offline that you should have very little trouble finding visualizations of the essential things that you’re looking for in your kitchen. This helps you to build a design vision, or a general conception of what you want the primary design elements to be in your space. Having these visual cues is extremely helpful for both you and whichever firm you decide to work with.

Helping Form Your Design Vision

What if you don’t think you have a design vision? This is where a design-build firm really comes in handy. Find someone you can trust to take your favorite design elements and make them all work together. Whether you’re looking for a traditional, contemporary, or more modern feel, you want to find a firm that specializes in one or all of these styles. The best result tends to happen when you mix a bit of everything and design-build firms are experts on making the most out of your budget while giving you everything you need and most, if not all, of everything you want within reason.

Finding the Right Design Build Firm for Your Vision

If you find in your initial meeting with a firm is trending in the wrong direction, then that design-build firm is probably not right for you. Typically, the norm for design-build firms is to work towards your goals – so if you’re having things pushed on you, then you might just not be working with the right team. It doesn’t mean that there’s anything actually wrong with that firm – you’re simply not seeing eye-to-eye on design vision.

The important thing is to not lose yourself too much in the design. You don’t want to become so overwhelmed that you simply never start – which is what can happen sometimes. That’s why finding a design-build firm is a good idea much of the time, even if you’re pretty sure that you know exactly what you want. Having design and build under the same roof makes sure that communication issues are kept to a minimum and that you know that designer and builder will work together well.

Turn Your Basement Into an Indoor Sports Gym

Looking for time and space so you can play your favorite sports year-round? Not enough commitment or desire to run back and forth from local sports gyms? Try repurposing your basement space to create an indoor sports gym. Which sports you include are up to you. Some ideas include an indoor basketball court, an indoor football field, boxing area, fencing area, martial arts area, mini golf, and more. Be creative, as well as practical when choosing the sports that work best for your home.

Finding a  Reputable Contractor

The first step in creating your indoor sports gym is finding a reputable remodeling  contractor, such as Remodel Werks. A licensed contractor who is experienced in basement remodels is necessary for this kind of project. Permits will need to be pulled and any construction needs to be up to code. Experience is also important, due to the fact that specific materials need to be used for flooring and other aspects of a project, such as this one.

Decide Which Sports to Accomodate

How much space do you have? Discuss with your contractor what’s possible and choose the number of your favorite sports that will work for the area. Consider what you’re most likely to play, as well as what friends and family would participate in. Many people choose sports like bowling, mini golf, swimming, or basketball. However, a basement sports gym can be remodeled to include just about any sport.

Consider Usage, Space, and Lifestyle

When planning for your new basement sports gym, think about the way you intend to use it. Should it be designed for mostly your own personal use, for a family, or for a large number of friends? Will you need an extra living space or a place to relax, in addition to the sports area? Discuss your lifestyle, as well as the space available with your licensed contractor. Together, you can come up with something that incorporates various aspects of your lifestyle and usage of the space.

Remember Small Details

Whether it’s the type of flooring you prefer, a question about something your contractor suggested, or a change that seems tiny, communication is key. Keep a notebook with every detail, both large and small. This will help you remember the small details you’d like to discuss and have incorporated. Mention these items as soon as you can for the best results. Even small details are important to factor into the whole equation and can make all the difference in a successful outcome.

Enjoy Your Home Sports Gym

Once you and your contractor have discussed the way things should go and everyone has a clear picture, construction can begin. This is an exciting phase of remodeling, as you can see your dream coming together. As soon as this process is complete, the only thing left to do is enjoy your new home sports gym. Be sure to invite your favorite people over to show it off too…err, play your favorite sports with.

Call your contractor today to discover the possibilities of creating a home sports gym in your basement.

 

Why Design Build is Best For a Custom Home Library

When planning and building a custom home library, there are many things to consider. From sufficient space, to usage, design, comfort, and more, there could be a great deal to think about. This is where an experienced design build contractor will come in handy. In fact, there are many reasons going with the design build process can be the best choice for your personalized in-home library.

Proper Licensing and Communication

Some aspects of building your home library may require a permit and proper licensing. This is especially true if you will be changing the structural layout or adding/finishing rooms. For certain things, these permits can only be granted to a properly licensed contractor. Communication is key throughout the process, for this and other purposes. It’s extremely important that both the homeowner and contractor are clear with each other on what will take place.

Experience and Synergy Designing Custom Living Spaces

Design build contractors have experience planning and creating a multitude of spaces for a variety of reasons. Because they have knowledge regarding the whole picture, it eliminates the need for hiring an extra designer. The designer works on the same team as the contractor and, in some cases, may be the same person. This will often help prevent confusion regarding the end result, since you are not working with more than one company. Communication within the same company is much easier than with several outside sources.

Ability to Preview Possible Outcome

A design build contractor is involved in your entire project and can show you previews of the intended finish. Unlike some remodeling methods, a clear picture is given with discussion and input from you before and during the process. There are many effective ways to achieve an end result. However, having the ability to preview what your custom home library will look like can give you some peace of mind. From there, leaving the hard work up to the contractor can be much easier.

Whole Space Design

With design build remodeling, the whole space is taken into consideration. Your home library will be customized based upon what your space will look like at completion. Anything that is built takes into consideration area usage, other items that will be in the room, your style and needs, and more. For some, this benefit makes design build the perfect choice, in comparison to other methods. Customizing the design around the whole space, rather than just the area that needs to be constructed helps ensure the finished space is exactly what you want and need.

Your Personal Style and Needs Are Met

Speaking of wants and needs, one of the main purposes of design build is to focus on exactly that. Your design build team will be sure that the new space fits what you envisioned. They will do this by discussing the plans with you throughout the process, as well as giving you previews of what’s to come. Your home library will be designed with your exact input in mind (and is previewed and approved by you before construction. Because of this, the end result is highly likely to be exactly what works for you.

 

When You Realize That You Need More Space

Getting married and starting a family is an exciting time in everyone’s lives. It is around this time that many decide to take the extra step of buying their own home. Home ownership is one of the rites of passage kinds of things that make most men and women truly feel like an adult. The combination of being a parent and owning your own home is like the ultimate American dream come true.

While owning your own home is a great thing, it also comes with its challenges. The biggest of these is when the planned family size is exceeded, especially when it is greatly exceeded. Many couples decide to have just two or three kids, but destiny deems that more is in store for them. When they have four their four bedrooms home simply isn’t able to accommodate the larger sized family.

What becomes such a problem is that many couples cannot afford to sell their current home to get a bigger one. That is an expense they simply cannot take on, especially since they have more children than what was expected. There are options that make sense, and the best one of these is the home remodel.

Remodeling your home can usually be done at a reasonable cost, keeping your financial security safer than deciding to buy a new home and move. One of the best places to start is to look at larger sized rooms and see if they can be turned into two smaller rooms. While some space is taken away by an additional wall and a new door, the fact is that two children get their own space, or four kids can share two rooms instead of just one room.

You can also look at great rooms you may have. Many families have a basement or downstairs living room that could be turned into rooms. A simple addition of walls and even a bathroom can do the trick for you and give you the added number of bedrooms that you need.

The unfinished basement is one of the best places to remodel, usually because they are made to do with as you please. Many are just big open spaces with some support beams around spread evenly around. These support beams make it easy to add walls and build the additional rooms you need.

There are times where that may not work. You may not have extra space like that, and so you will need to add space to your home. This can be costly, especially if you do not have a lot of property to build off of. For many the solution is to look at the garage as an option. The garage can be used in one of two ways to solve your problem. If you do not need to park in the garage you could turn the garage into a room or two. Frequently there is water access in the garage so a bathroom can be added as well.

If you need to have your garage space, then look into putting the room above the garage. This is obviously more costly, but is a way to use the space you have to accommodate your needs.