Remodeling

Distressed Property Investments: Renovation Tips

Real estate investments can have you reaping bountiful harvests in record time, but that’s only if you know how to put your money in the right spot. For instance, you might want to consider investing in distressed properties for sale. Continue reading

Budget-Friendly Bathroom Renovations: Half Bath

It’s no surprise—what with the current state of the world economy—that multitudes look for affordable alternatives to just about anything. While many opted to completely do away with renovation projects, some chose to be smart about it instead: adding a half bath instead of a complete bathroom, for one. Continue reading

Remodel Your Basement into a Woodworking Shop

Wood is an excellent material not only for framing houses and other sturdy structures, but also for sculpting artistic works and crafts. If you are a woodworking hobbyist, you might want to consider turning your basement into your very own woodworking shop. Continue reading

Choosing the Right Remodeling Contractor

Home renovations can be long and painstaking. However, with the right contractor, many of the problems associated with home remodeling can be avoided. Here are a few tips on how to find the right contractor for the job.

  • Consult with friends and family. The best way to start is to ask your friends and family about their own home remodeling experience. If there’s anyone you can trust to give you a straight answer it’s your relations. They’ll be able to steer you to those who manage to give good work.
  • Credentials are important. Check out if the contractors you’re looking at are qualified to do the sort of work you want for your home. There are several national organizations like the National Kitchen & Bath Association, the National Association of the Remodeling Industry and the National Association of Homebuilders who can verify the membership of contractors with the experience to perform certain renovations or constructions.
  • Talk with your potential candidates. It’s not enough to know about your contractor’s capabilities. A phone or face-to-face interview should be part of your vetting process. You’ll be working with this person for the entire project and you’ll need to decide if you feel comfortable with him and his team. You’ll have to decide also how comfortable you feel about the company’s rates and schedule.
  • Get bids. You’ll have a short list of candidates by now. Show them your remodeling plans, ask them their rates and compare prices. This helps in planning your budget and making your final choice.

Good Bathroom Remodel Ideas and Habits

In a home remodeling project, it’s wise to keep in mind that the results shouldn’t only be pleasing to the eye and kinder to your energy budget, but should also have added value to your home at resale. Here are several bathroom remodeling ideas (and habits) that will help through the process without having to regret a thing.

Setting up a contingency

Hidden water damage is a common problem in bathrooms—whether from a running toilet or leaking shower pipe. Visible leaks are fairly easy to fix; hidden problems are more troublesome as they often require reserve funds, given that such problems have already gotten worse over time.

Hiding the toilet

A truly stylish master bath can also be discreet. It’s still much nicer to hide this fixture away; say, behind a half wall or in its own “room-within-the-room” space. Pieces of furniture like armoires or dressers can also do the trick.

Being precise with dimension measurements

Never just estimate the measurements of the fixtures you need to replace, especially when it comes to sections that involve plumbing. There’s nothing worse than pre-buying all the pieces for your bathroom renovation project only to find out that the pieces don’t fit. Even a few centimeters can spell the difference between the right and wrong fit.

Creating and sticking to a plan

Making up your design as you go will likely get you ending up with something like the Winchester Mystery House—full of pseudo-rooms, staircases, and doors which are merely aesthetic, and not functional at all.

Basic Troubleshooting for a Concrete Porch

Concrete is one of the sturdiest materials for your porch or deck, but this doesn’t mean that it’s impervious to wear and damage. Concrete commonly cracks, chips, and splits because of weathering or because of overbearing weight and pressure on it over time. If you’re looking to repair simple cracks on your porch, look to these following tips.

Cleaning

Before any repair job, the first step is always to clean up the work surface. Run a vacuum through your porch, especially around the spots with the cracks. Patching up chips or cracks without getting rid of debris first won’t yield as good a result.

Patching

Small cracks about three-eighths of an inch wide should be quite simple to patch up; all you’ll need is a tube of commercial vinyl patching material, a wet rag, and a soft bristled brush. Brush off any remaining debris inside the cracks and apply the patching material, making sure that you follow the manufacturer’s instructions.

Edge Repair

Sometimes, the edges of your concrete porch might also get chipped or break off. If you can still retrieve the separated portion, apply some epoxy which is formulated for bonding cement (again, following the manufacturer’s instructions). Press it into place and allow to dry before releasing.

Perks of Finishing Your Basement

When people think about their basements, the word “storage” usually isn’t far off—especially if the basement is unfinished. Indeed, many basements become nothing more than oversized storage areas for old and forgotten possessions.

However, basements are actually one of the most versatile spaces in your home. If you’re willing to remodel it, you can use a basement for both functional or recreation purposes—like a spacious laundry room or maybe a high-tech home theater, for example. Aside from adding more usable space to your home, finishing your basement also offers many other benefits, such as:

Increased Home Value

When it comes to home improvement, people often have kitchen remodeling or landscaping at the top of their list. With regard to return of investment though, few projects are as rewarding as basement remodeling, which provides up to a 150% return on your expenditure.

Additional Income

Want an extra source of income? Then you might want to convert your basement into a rental property. Most basement apartments rent at 75% of your monthly mortgage payment, which means it’ll pay for itself soon enough and help you pay off your house quicker.

Protect Your Health

An unfinished basement is often infested with mold and mildew, both of which can trigger allergic reactions and other health issues. When you finish your basement, you also eliminate the moisture problems that encourage the growth of these intruders.

Remodel to Make the Most Out of your Attic Space

If your house has an attic, chances are it’s being used as a storage room and not as a functional bedroom. Old books, seasonal clothing, rarely used appliances, and your child’s old toys may all be stored in the attic to save space in bedrooms and other living spaces in the house. Commonly one of the areas in the home with a wide floor area, the attic can be utilized in many other ways to maximize the space.

You can choose to turn it into a man cave, an entertainment area, or an extra bedroom for guests staying overnight. Working with Chicago remodeling contractors, you can have your attic turned into just about any kind of space you like. Unlike simple furnishings and decorations, a team of professionals can transform your attic into a very functional and comfortable area in your home.

Apart from the aesthetic benefits, a professional contractor can help ensure that your attic is properly insulated, saving you a significant amount in heating and air conditioning bills, as well as ensure that lighting and other fixtures are installed safely.

With real estate prices currently on the rise, experts suggest expanding current properties to get more space instead of buying a bigger house. By remodeling your attic, not only do you provide additional living space for your family, you also increase the overall value of your home.

Plan with a Bathroom Remodeling Pro

A bathroom renovation is one of the most significant investments you can make. According to real estate experts, you can easily recoup as much as 80-90% of the remodeling cost when you sell your home. The added comfort and enjoyment from its use however, is priceless.

However, before you embark on the actual remodel, careful planning must be done. Poor preparation and rushing through the process is the leading cause of cost overruns on any home improvement project, and is more likely to happen when you choose to skimp on skilled labor. A do-it-yourself approach may also seem like an affordable way to get the job done, but eventually having the project re-done due to shoddy workmanship will be more costly down the line.

By working with trained and experienced Chicago bathroom remodeling contractors, you are assured that your bathroom looks and functions exactly the way you envisioned it to. Professional contractors can also provide great value on the materials that will be used, as they know where to source materials that are aesthetically pleasing, long lasting, yet reasonably priced. Their expertise is also beneficial in finding fixtures that are cost-effective, ensuring that you save more on water and energy utility bills. Contact your local contractor to find out more about how they can help you get the most out of your bathroom remodeling project.

What Porch Repair Experts Do

Disaster can strike your home at any moment and unexpected weather changes can deteriorate and destroy your porch. Luckily, there are companies that specialize in porch repair and remodeling.

Here are the things to expect when you hire a professional to repair your porch’s flooring:

1. The builder is going to prep the area by removing all the pre-existing tongue and groove boards.

2. Next, a sand and mortar mixture will be made to match the existing foundation.

3. A stainless steel mesh will be added to allow air to circulate properly.

4. A proper pitch will be constructed as a support for the new porch flooring.

5. A subfloor will be laid perpendicular to the joist.

6. After the pitch is placed, the tongue and groove composite planks will be added.

7. A temporary straight edge will be tacked down to serve as a guide for the saw.

8. Once everything is set, the new floor will be painted according to the color of your choice.

Porches are the first visible structure that people notice when taking a look at your home from the outside, so it’s only natural for you to want to hire someone who’s experienced in porch repair. Don’t forget that regular maintenance is also necessary to keep your porch in excellent condition.