Choosing Remodeling Contractors Remotely: Tips and Strategies

Cooking With Cash: Choosing Tough, Low-Cost Cabinet Materials For Budget Kitchen Renovations

Posted by on Sep 19, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Cooking With Cash: Choosing Tough, Low-Cost Cabinet Materials For Budget Kitchen Renovations

Renovating even the smallest, most basic of kitchens can be an expensive endeavour, and those of us with limited budgets may be tempted to cut a little off the price tag by choosing cheap cabinets made from inexpensive materials. However, going cheap doesn’t necessarily mean choosing low quality materials, and kitchen cabinet makers offer a range of inexpensive yet highly durable materials for cabinet making, ensuring that budget kitchen cabinets can still enjoy attractive looks and excellent durability. Here are a few of the best: Wood Wooden kitchen cabinets provide a classic look that never really goes out of style. However, many high-end kitchen cabinets are made from expensive and relatively rare woods, such as mahogany or ipe. If you want the look and feel of solid wood on a tight budget, consider going for a cheaper wood such as pine, birch or spruce. While these woods are softer than tropical hardwoods and may dent or scratch more easily, they are still highly durable materials, and can be treated with a variety of stains and surface treatments to provide excellent resistance against fungal mould and wood-boring insects. Alternatively, you might opt for engineered wood, which generally cost a fraction of the price of solid wood. However, there are several types of engineered wood to choose from: Chipboard is also known as particle board, and is made from wood chips bound together with adhesive resins. Chipboard is very cheap, light, and comes in a variety of finishes and veneers. It is, however, quite fragile, and damaged cabinets must generally be repaired rather than replaced. MDF is made in the same basic way as chipboard, but uses wood fibres rather than chips. It is much stronger than chipboard and provides a more convincing weight and feel, but is also more expensive. Plywood is made from sheets of wood glued together and covered with real or artificial wood veneers, giving the outward appearance of solid wood. It is remarkably durable, and looks and feels indistinguishable from solid wood without close inspection. However, it is also the most expensive form of engineered wood, especially if you choose plywood with real wood veneers. Plastic laminate Like engineered wood, plastic laminate is a composite material, in this case made from recycled paper, which is combined with plastic resins under intense heat and pressure. The result is a cheap, tough and practically maintenance-free material that is highly suited to a number of kitchen installations and surfaces, including cabinets. A variety of colours and finishes further increase its versatility, allowing you to find laminate cupboards that fit any kitchen design choices you come up with. Cleaning plastic laminate is also very easily, requiring little more than a damp cloth. However, while plastic laminate can be made with convincing wood and stone veneers, it is still unmistakably plastic and may look out of place in more traditionally-styled kitchens. Like chipboard it also does not take well to repairs, and although plastic laminate cabinets can take a severe beating they will need to be replaced if they become badly damaged. Thermofoil Thermofoil kitchen cabinets generally consist of an inexpensive core material (such as chipboard or MDF) which is coated in a durable vinyl ‘skin’. The vinyl is applied to the core under intense pressure and heat to create an extremely durable outer...

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Tips When Repairing a Laminate Kitchen Benchtop

Posted by on Apr 13, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Tips When Repairing a Laminate Kitchen Benchtop

A kitchen benchtop can offer both style and function and be the design focal point within this space. It is possible for your kitchen benchtop to be made out of many different materials, but laminate can be a popular and affordable option for the surface of the benchtop. The only downside to using laminate is that it can easily wear or burn due to high heat. This means that if you accidentally place a hot pan directly on the surface of the laminate kitchen benchtop without anything underneath, it is possible for a heat bubble to appear. If you have a mark on your laminate benchtop where the laminate material has been scorched, it is possible to patch the spot. Before you begin fixing your laminate benchtop, you need to be aware of the most helpful tips designed to make the process simpler. Prep The first thing that you will need to do when you want to patch the laminate surface of the benchtop is to make sure that the surface is prepped. This means that you need to cut away the bubbled section of the laminate completely and make sure that that all edges are even. You will also need to use a cleaner that is alcohol-based to clean the area before you begin the patch. Just place a small amount of the cleaner on a soft rag and wipe down the surface of the laminate where the patch will need to be made. Make sure that inside and around the cut that you made is completely clean. Sugru When you are patching a laminate benchtop, it is a great idea to use sugru. This is a type of moldable glue that you can find in a number of different colors. This means that you can create a shade that is a perfect match with your benchtop and then use this moldable glue to create a patch. Always make sure that your hands are clean before you handle the sugru. Once the sugru is the right color to match your benchtop, you can press it into the section that you have cut away at the heat bubble. Make sure that you press this moldable glue down firmly into the surface of the benchtop. Once you have the moldable glue completely level, you can wipe away any excess that is not needed. Allow the glue to dry for a few hours and your laminate kitchen benchtop should be as good as new and heat bubble...

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How to Inject Fun Into a Home Renovation

Posted by on Mar 17, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How to Inject Fun Into a Home Renovation

When most people undergo a home renovation, they want to increase the sense of space they have, create a more elegant and refined look or perhaps add value to their home. But how many people say that they want their interior design to be fun? It’s almost unheard of, but why shouldn’t your home take on some personality? Being surrounded by minimalism might be sleek and chic, but where’s the joy in that? Here are some ways that you can inject a bit of fun into your renovation. Colour is everything. The antidote to a boring interior is colour. This doesn’t mean that you need to paint your house every colour of the rainbow, but you certainly shouldn’t be scared about bold colour choices. Accents like a bright yellow rug or a deep teal accent wall will breathe life into your house. And because colours affect people’s moods, you can also change the way you feel with colour. Bright hues such as yellow and orange add vibrancy to a room and can make you feel more cheerful as a result. Enjoy art and photos. A house with nothing on the walls is a boring house. Fill up those walls with anything that would make you smile. And you don’t have to invest in expensive works of art to do this — you can also put some of your kids’ drawings on the wall, crowd every surface with your favourite holiday snaps from years gone by and don’t forget flat surfaces, which you can put sculptural artwork on as well. Things like kids’ drawings inject the unique personality of your family into the space, so get hanging those pictures. Have fun with texture. Yes, colour adds new dimension to a home, but people often forget about the role that texture plays within interior design. Something like natural stone, for example, has a natural, gritty texture, which somehow speaks of seriousness. But you can get playful with textures and experiment. If you are thinking of painting a colourful accent wall, why not use high gloss paint so that it has a shiny finish? You can also have fun by purchasing fluffy cushions, or maybe by installing a glittery countertop in your kitchen. It’s important to remember that while interior trends can offer inspiration, you have to live in your house every day, and it should be somewhere you love to be. So get brainstorming, enjoy all the colours on the colour wheel, and let your creativity run...

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4 Essential Laundry Room Features You’ll Want to Include in a Renovation

Posted by on Jan 29, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 4 Essential Laundry Room Features You’ll Want to Include in a Renovation

When you’re ready to renovate your home’s laundry area, you want to take your time to think about all the features you’ll include. Your laundry room should be much more than a simple closet to house your washer and dryer, but if you don’t really design the space and take full advantage of the features available to you, it might be a wasted opportunity for you and your family. Note some of the best features you’ll want to include for your laundry room renovation.  1. A desk or workspace If you want to keep an eye on the kids or check your email while folding clothes, create a desk or workspace area. The kids can do their homework or you can chat on Skype while minding the laundry. A desk or workspace can be very small, just slightly wider than a chair, and you can create it with shelving rather than a full desk if you have limited space. 2. Delicates area You shouldn’t need to wash your delicates in the bathroom sink and then hang them from the shower curtain rod if you’re renovating your laundry room; take advantage of the opportunity to create a “delicates area.” This can include a small sink in which you can wash the delicates and then a set of shelves made with netting so you can lay out those items and allow them to air dry. 3. Fold-up or sliding ironing board You shouldn’t need to wrestle with opening and then folding up a cumbersome ironing board, but when renovating your laundry area, opt for one that folds up against a wall when not in use. This board opens and then folds up again very easily, using just one hinge and a clip to keep it attached to the wall or inside a door. There are also boards that slide under a counter when not in use. Either of these can mean not having to open and close an actual ironing board or having to use part of the laundry room for an ironing board that you always want available for you. 4. Lots of lighting Be sure you put lots of overhead lighting in your laundry room as well as lighting under any cabinets you have and above any folding or laundry prep area. Spot lighting and LED lights are good for laundry rooms. This will not only keep the laundry room looking bright but can also help you see spots and stains, loose threads, and other areas of your clothes that need...

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Going Native: 3 Environmentally Friendly Native Woods For Kitchen Cupboards And Cabinets

Posted by on Jan 29, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Going Native: 3 Environmentally Friendly Native Woods For Kitchen Cupboards And Cabinets

A set of well-built wooden cabinets and cupboards brings timeless class and reassuring durability to any kitchen. However, installing new kitchen cupboards in this day and age involves more complex issues than price and aesthetics — the impact of your kitchen renovation on the environment should be taken into account as well. While classical wood choices, such as mahogany and teak, are attractive and tough, they are also taken from endangered trees, felled in some of the most delicate and important ecosystems in the world, and exported to Australia by fossil fuel-burning ships or planes. If you’re the environmentally conscious type, this is less than ideal. Fortunately, some superb woods for kitchen cabinets can be found on your own doorstep. Australia’s isolated and undeniably harsh environment has spawned some remarkably strong and attractive woods, and since they don’t require polluting importation their green credentials are much more robust. Many are also grown in managed, sustainable plantations. If you want a beautiful kitchen with a clean environmental conscience, consider the wood species listed below:  Jarrah Jarrah is a species of eucalyptus that fits every criteria for a good kitchen wood you could imagine — it is immensely strong, richly coloured and grained, and relatively inexpensive. It is also practically immune to termite and woodworm infestation, and responds well to oiling and waxing, which tends to bring out the vibrant red colour of the wood and make graining more prominent.  All fine properties to have, and that’s before you get to jarrah’s environmental friendliness. Jarrah is a common tree that grows throughout southwestern Australia, and the tree is commonly cultivated in sustainable plantations. It is also widely available as repurposed wood taken from building demolitions and renovations. However, actually finding kitchen cabinets made from jarrah, or finding craftsmen who work with the wood, can be difficult. Jarrah is an extremely dense and heavy wood that tends to quickly blunt woodworking tools, making it difficult to machine especially in custom-ordered kitchens. Its weight may also make it unsuitable for wall-mounted cupboards. Silvertop Ash This tree is also known as black ash, but is not actually an ash at all. Instead, it is a south-western eucalyptus species related to the jarrah. Despite this, the two woods could not be more different — silvertop ash has a robust but lightweight wood, with a pale silvery colour quite unusual amongst Australian woods. Silvertop ash also tends to be liberally marked by growth rings, sap veins and knots, giving panels an eye-catching and distinctive look. Sadly, plenty of the silvertop ash you’ll find on the market is taken from old growth, but silvertop ash is widely available as plantation growth, and many plantations are overseen by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC). If you plump for silvertop ash, however, you should be careful to inspect the wood you’re going to be purchasing before money changes hands. Wood from different trees can vary significantly in colour, particularly when trees are from different locations. Charming imperfections such as knots can also badly undermine the strength of a panel if they are too closely packed or too large.   Tasmanian Myrtle Another misleadingly named wood, Tasmanian myrtle is actually a species of southern beech, and is sometimes referred to as myrtle beech to reflect this. It is, however, Tasmanian, and also grows in Victoria and...

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Is Bamboo Flooring Right for Your Bathroom?

Posted by on Dec 11, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Is Bamboo Flooring Right for Your Bathroom?

If you are undertaking a bathroom renovation, you will have to think very carefully about the material you choose for the flooring. Of course, the floor in a bathroom is going to be exposed to both heat and water, but you also want it to look good, so there is more than just functionality to take into consideration. Bamboo is a material that is gaining popularity in homes and gardens. But there are conflicting opinions over the use of bamboo as a flooring material in a bathroom. Here are the pros and cons. The advantages of bamboo bathroom flooring First of all, with a chemical treatment bamboo can be water resistant. This means that the general splashes that occur in a bathroom shouldn’t be harmful for bamboo flooring. Another major reason why people choose to invest in bamboo is that it’s a very ecologically sound material. Climate change is a much-discussed issue today, and choosing sustainable materials helps to look after the earth’s resources. Bamboo is actually a grass and not a wood. This means that it grows very quickly, and bamboo that is cut down can be easily replenished. Additionally, bamboo is also a wonderful choice when you want to achieve a natural and organic look for a bathroom renovation. Accent the floors with small pots of bamboo plants and you’ll create a serene atmosphere that makes being in the bathroom a pleasure. The disadvantages of bamboo bathroom flooring Although bamboo is resistant to water and therefore things like mildew and mould, it’s still not totally immune to water, even with a protective layer of polyurethane. This means that bathroom splashes should pose no problem, but if your bathroom springs a leak or the bath overflows and this gets into your bamboo, the whole floor could potentially buckle and would need to be replaced entirely. It’s also worth taking into consideration that bamboo is not 100% stain proof. Fortunately, the bathroom is not a room where there is huge potential for staining like a kitchen is. The use of harsh soaps on the floor and even spots of water that aren’t mopped up quickly could, however, still cause some stain damage. This means that bamboo might not be the best material for a bathroom in a family home where there will be lots of splashing from bath time with toddlers. Armed with this information, you can make a decision as to whether bamboo is right for your...

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Bathroom Renovations | 3 Winning Strategies To Remodel Your Bathroom Intelligently

Posted by on Oct 19, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Bathroom Renovations | 3 Winning Strategies To Remodel Your Bathroom Intelligently

The average cost of bathroom renovations is anywhere between $9,000 and $12,000, but this could vary dramatically depending on the scale of remodelling you’re planning. Since bathroom renovations could potentially eat into your savings, you’ll want to get the job done perfectly with your remodelling contractors. Here are some winning strategies to plan your bathroom remodel intelligently. Follow a Similar Layout Keep in mind that you’re not constructing a new bathroom, so you don’t want to disturb your existing plumbing pipes –– you simply want to enhance the look of your bathroom. Changing your entire bathroom footprint will cost you a fortune, so you’ll want to stick to the same layout as much as possible, while introducing brand new fixtures to elevate your bathroom’s appearance considerably. Sticking to the same footprint with new plumbing fixtures planted on existing plumbing pipes and systems will save you plenty of dollars in demolition and reconstruction. You’ll also reduce the time spent on bathroom renovations, while cutting down on dust and debris in your home. The idea is to optimise the existing bathroom space by planning clever fixtures to open up the area for a more luxurious feel. For example, adding frameless glass shower cubicles to replace drab shower curtains will transform your bathroom into a plush haven. Similarly, replacing an oversized and outdated vanity with a sleek pedestal sink will expand your movement space. Prioritise Ventilation Too many homeowners focus on replacing fixtures and applications without paying attention to ventilation during bathroom renovations. Bathroom ventilation may not be in direct sight, but it must be given priority –– this is because good ventilation removes excess humidity and moisture from the air. Excess humidity causes foggy mirrors, peeling paint, damaged cabinetry, slippery floors and mildew growth, so you’ll want to give adequate priority to ventilation to maintain healthy bathroom air quality. For better ventilation, install an exhaust fan near your shower or bathtub area to draw moisture outdoors. The shower or bathtub area produces the most moisture because of the hot water you use for bathing. Modern exhaust ventilation fans come with humidity sensors. These sensors detect excess humidity and automatically activate the exhaust fan to remove moisture for a more comfortable environment. You’ll also want to make sure that your bathroom window is large enough to ventilate the room. Stress on Storage Storage in a bathroom is the biggest challenge because of the small size of this space. After installing a shower, bathtub, toilet and sink, there’s little room for hair products, toilet rolls, towels, toothpastes and deodorants. Try to utilise underused vertical wall spaces by installing open shelves for storage. You can also use the spaces between walls to create convenient niches for holding toiletries. You can also introduce stylish woven baskets to hold towels. You can also add a sliding tray to your vanity to give you full access without sending infrequently used items to the back. When planning bathroom renovations, use these winning strategies to remodel your bathroom as intelligently as...

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Three Elements to Consider When Choosing Artificial Grass

Posted by on Sep 23, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Three Elements to Consider When Choosing Artificial Grass

The popularity of synthetic turf in residential landscaping is on the rise because of the diverse benefits associated with the choice. There are no extensive maintenance requirements linked to artificial grass. You will not need to mow the lawn, water the plant regularly or perform fertiliser treatments. In addition, the grass is not vulnerable to stains or pet damage, so you can preserve the aesthetics easily. You should also note that this lawn is better for the environment because it reduces total water consumption and eliminates use of chemicals. But if you want to install synthetic grass in your property, it is vital to select high-quality turf. Here are the main elements that can help you identify the perfect product. Pile Height The pile height of artificial turf is an important property because you cannot trim the material after installation. In simple terms, this is the measurement of the real height of the glass blades. It will determine the aesthetics as well as the durability of the synthetic lawn. Ideally, taller grass is more aesthetically pleasing because it has a lush and greener appearance. However, the blades are more vulnerable to bending, so you will notice more signs of unattractive wearing within a relatively short time. On the other hand, you can choose considerably shorter grass for more durability with regard to the visual impact. Turf Backing The backing of synthetic turf refers to the base material on which the blades are attached. This aspect will affect the stability of your lawn as well as durability. Basically, if the backing is made from poor quality materials, the grass tufts will be dislodged. This will lead to accelerated degradation and poor property landscaping. You can choose the most appropriate backing from a wide range of materials. The common backing layers in the market are latex and polyurethane. You should inquire about proprietary materials of the available products in the shops before making your final choice. Additionally, you should know that there are backing layers made using woven fabrics to promote drainage. These are perfect for your property with dogs because they minimise odour and promote easy cleaning. Grass Density The density of grass is a property that refers to the measurement of artificial fibres per unit area. If the synthetic lawn has more yarn within a small square area, your lawn will look greener and last longer. However, high density translates to increased total weight after installation. This can be a limiting factor if you install the grass on the roof, so be cautious. For more information, talk with remodeling contractors, like Australian Lawn Wholesalers, that install artificial...

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Handy Tips to Making the Most of Small Kitchens

Posted by on Aug 25, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Handy Tips to Making the Most of Small Kitchens

If you love to cook, then a large kitchen would be your dream come true. However, this may not be within reach, especially if you are living in an urban area where space is a premium. If you are renting the space, you probably do not have permission to engage in radical renovations to create space either. However, this does not mean that you can now relegate the kitchen to simply reheating food and storing wine. Making the most out of your small kitchen will bring back the joy of cooking into your home. Here are some handy tips that you can use to make the most of the space available to you. Your oven can provide storage space It is rare to find a homeowner who will use their oven every single day. People tend to indulge in baking when there is an event coming up or perhaps as an occasional special dessert. What people do not consider is that while the oven is not in use, it provides plenty of storage space. You can opt to sore all your baking items in the oven such as cooling racks, your baking sheets, your cake tins and more, thus leaving room in your cabinets for other items. However, always remember to take them out before preheating the oven! Hooks are your best friend Having a small kitchen space means having to make the most of what is already available to you. Since you already have walls in the kitchen, make the most of them by investing in hooks. Sturdy hooks can be used to store a variety of items ranging from cooking pots and different cooking tools. You can also hang lighter items such as your oven mitts, strainers and more. Not only does it make these items easily accessible to you, but you also get a solution for lack of enough storage space in the form of drawers. Extend your cabinetry to the ceiling One of the things homeowners do not contemplate is the space between the tops of their cabinetry and the ceiling. This dead space can be maximized through using it for additional storage space, which can come in handy for minimal kitchens. You could opt to either have cabinets installed in the dead space or choose to buy portable plastic storage containers. Since this additional space is out of reach, it would be best suited to items that are not frequently used, such as large platters. However, you should also consider investing in a sturdy stepladder if you opt to extend your...

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