6 tips for planning a summer home renovation

A summer renovation is just the thing that a home needs after a long winter. People can fix things outside and inside their home as people enjoy the fresh, clean, summer air. If you are planning a renovation, they are probably looking for some tips on the best way to get things done. 

Here are 5 best tips for planning your summer home renovation. 

Start in the Early summer 

Upgrades and renovations that take place outside are ideal for summer renovations. People can soak in the sun and fresh air while crossing some things off of their to-do list. The earlier in the summer people start, the more motivated people will be to complete their list. 

It is also important to have a comprehensive list of things to do. The best thing to do is to check your home thoroughly to spot any unsatisfactory parts. Before making any additions or improvements, you can even fix the lasting problems you have been procrastinating on. For example, the leaking faucet, noisy fridge or shaking dryer. Simply give a local appliance repair company a call to fix any issue right away.  

Consider the Style 

Making changes to your home is exciting, but you also need to make sure that any new changes are consistent with your current style. Or if you want to completely change your home style, you need to make sure that everything matches it. For example, the color is the one of the most obvious factors you can think of. If you plan to get a custom drape for your living room, you want to make sure it matches your new flooring or ceiling tiles. So does other furniture in your living room.  

Order Materials and Labor in Advance 

Renovations take place across multiple stages and the earlier people start planning, the more prepared they will be. It takes time to pick out a contractor and get materials delivered. To make sure people have everything set up and ready to go by the time they want to start their project, people will want to book these things months in advance. The good part is that there are promotions or deals from all kinds of stores like flooring stores or window companies. You can take advantage of them before they go away.  

This is also important when it comes to permits. For example, if people want to build a fence, they might need a permit from the city. These take time to get approved, so file in advance. 

Research Contractors 

We’ve all heard stories of people hiring contractors that take their money and do an awful job, or completely flake. To avoid this, homeowners will want to spend plenty of time researching the person people are going to hire. Read reviews of other people who have hired them to get a feel of how they work.  

Consider Return on Investment 

When people are thinking about any kind of renovation, it is important to consider the return on investment. Even if selling their home is not on their list at the moment, people should consider how the renovation will increase the value of their home. 

Consider Budget 

Budget is extremely important to consider before people start their renovation. people will need to think about every task that will be completed so people can create an accurate budget for the project. Keep in mind that people might want to paint, replace doorknobs, or resurfacing their cabinets.  

Another point that people may ignore is that the budgeting is only related to the projects itself, and it is more related to the overall expenses of the family. You need to take into account any possible big expenses like family vacations or clear teeth aligners for kids, etc.  

Taking on projects by themselves will save people money, leaving people more room in their budget for the actual renovations. 

** This was a contributed post.

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acreage renovation: a basement play and rec room

This was a big renovation that we had no intentions of undertaking until a few years down the road. That is, until our basement flooded in December! Once it did, we were left with no other option but to renovate our entire basement- the majority of which is made up by this playroom and recreational room!

We began by having our old laminate flooring, trim, and bottom portion of the drywall removed. My goodness, was it dirty! The smell alone was that of rotten eggs, and there was just so. much. dust. Fans and heaters were set up to completely dry it out, and it was after a few days. Finally, we were able to start picking out new flooring and baseboards!

Initially I wanted to go with carpet so our basement would feel cozier. However, because of our cistern being located in our basement, there is always a threat of it flooding again. If it did, carpet is one of the hardest types of flooring to dry out- so I was advised against it. Laminate also gets instantly destroyed when wet, as we have discovered. Hardwood was not in our price point, so we ended up settling on a vinyl plank glue down floor. That way, if we do have another flood, we can lift up the flooring, dry it out, and glue it back down. How convenient is that?

We had the vinyl professionally installed as well as much larger baseboards. We also hung shiplap panelling on the one wall. We bought new door handles and switch plates. Then we painted, painted, painted. We painted all of the walls, the doors, shiplap, and stairs! It took a very long time, but eventually, we we were done.

I purchased climbing holds for a rock wall off of Amazon, and we spray painted and hung a makeshift ladder that came with my husband’s vanity on the wall. Now the kids have their own wall that they can just climb on!

We also bought pine shelving, a wood rod, and white brackets from Home Depot. This wall is dedicated for all of their toys, since I didn’t want any of them on the floor. The hangers for their costumes are from HomeSense, the wood crates are from Michaels, and the baskets are from JYSK.

One of the hardest items that I had a tough time settling on was a rug for the rec room. It took me months to find the perfect one. I actually purchased a much larger and greyer rug from Rugs USA, but after putting it under the couch, it just didn’t look how I wanted it to. Then a short time ago I went to HomeSense and was determined to come home with a rug that day. I found two that I liked, and so I FaceTimed my husband and we went over which one we thought would look best. It was between this one and a black and white one. I am soooo glad that we settled on the one that we did! It is just so cute and playful, I feel like it nicely ties in the colourful playroom with the more modern rec room.

I also now have a dedicated spot to get work done, and the kids have a crafting area.

That is our basement renovation in a nutshell!

Emory

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let’s talk doors

Before.

The biggest question that I am aiming to answer here is whether or not you can install a 2”x4″ exterior door in a 2”x6″ wall? Also, what is the price difference?

When we purchased our acreage it was bank-owned. As far as we knew, it had sat vacant for many months before we ended up moving into it. To deter people from entering, the property manager had duct taped signs to both exterior doors. Have you ever tried removing duct tape from painted doors? It can’t be nicely done. Either the paint chips away, or the duct tape stays.

Fast-forward nearly two years, and we finally hired a contractor to replace our doors. What a process it was. Because I had never done this before, I thought that I would explain our process, and how we ended up saving a lot of money. If you are interested in replacing your doors but are worried about the price of doing so, it can be done for cheaper than you think (with a bit of research and determination)!

Originally, I had really wanted wood doors. My mother and step-father installed one at their acreage and it was just gorgeous. So about a year ago, I called around to many manufactures in Saskatoon and asked for quotes. What I was getting back was around $10,000 for two exterior wood doors plus install. These were their cheapest prices.

Because we renovating our entire home on essentially one income, I set a budget for $3000. This would have to include the price of doors and installation. So I scoured online for wood doors. After weeks, I came to the conclusion that if we wanted a wood look we were going to have to settle for woodgrain fibreglass doors.

Next, I went to Home Hardware and Home Depot and obtained quotes in person. Home Depot has a beautiful line by Masonite. I ended up with a quote of $2,219 for Craftsmen-style doors that were on sale. That seemed reasonable to me! I went to Home Hardware just to compare. Two of their doors was going to cost just over $3000. So at the time, I settled on Home Depot.

Then we had a small black window installed next to our side door. At the time, we now had mostly white windows, one white door, one red door, and one black window. All of those colours and different styles were putting my OCD into overdrive. I told Geoff that we had to choose one colour and stick with it. 

Because our style is more Scandinavian-farmhouse-modern, I knew that I wanted to keep with a black and white theme. So totally scrapping the wood door idea, we were now aiming for really modern black doors. Ones that would let in light, but also offer privacy. 

To make a long story short, we found exactly what we had in mind at Lowe’s. Made by JELD-WEN, each door was just over $400, totalling about $850. The only problem was they were 2”x4″ jambs rather than the 2”x6″ jambs that we needed. What’s the difference? Thousands of dollars. Because the 2”x4″ black doors were so common and in stock, they were such a good deal. To order the same or a similar door in a 2”x6″ construction, it would have been considered special order. Hence, the price went up to over $1000 per door. Inevitably, 2”x4″ doors are generally much cheaper than 2”x6″ doors.

Having our hearts set on the 2”x4″ doors by JELD-WEN, I sent our contractor a text and asked him if there was any way that we could purchase those doors. To my surprise, he said that we could! We just needed a door extension kit, which ran for about $75 each. Um, SOLD!! 

We ended up buying the doors, brick mould, and extension kits for less than $1000. So far, so good.

It took our contractor a few months to finally have a few days off in his schedule. Then, it took him a day and a half to install them. His final price for install was $1300. 

After.

I ended up selling our old doors for $300. In total, we spent around $2000 on our front and side door renovation. After all of the unknowing and change of minds, it ended up being way under budget. I am so happy about that, and so happy with the results! If you are wanting to save money, I highly suggest exploring all options, such as a smaller framed door. Also, don’t quit until you are happy with the price. It may take forever and a day, but you don’t need to spend a lot of money on exterior doors if you don’t want to.

We still need a new exterior light, doorbell, to paint the white brick mould black, and are planning a wraparound deck this summer. But for now, our acreage is slowly but surely coming together.

Emory

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6 budget-friendly renovation ideas to spruce up your home interior

Having a luxurious, sophisticated home can be challenging, especially if you have a limited budget. Luckily, there are budget-friendly ways to achieve a superb look and feel for your abode.

When planning for the redesign of your home interior, consider design secrets from experts that can make your residence look stunning without breaking the bank. From getting a fresh coat of interior decorative paint to installing the latest type of flooring and window treatments, these are some affordable solutions you should know and seriously consider.

1. Add pillows

Pillows serve two primary purposes – they can add elegance and a cozy feeling to a room and provide added comfort when you use your sofa, chair or bed.

When picking out pillows, consider ones in a bigger size so you can sit and rest on them whenever you want to. Also, lavish pillow inserts filled with down are considered the best options.

2. Use crown molding

Details matter in making your home appear custom-made and high-end, and crown molding can help you achieve it. It helps bring together the walls and ceilings to attain an elegant look. This finishing touch can make a room look finished and expensive.

Luckily, crown molding is affordable and available in different sizes. But for a greater impact, consider crown molding with wider trims. Install it on high baseboards, chair rails, ceiling medallions, columns, and ceiling beams.

3. Choose interior decorative finishes

Adding or changing the paint color can immediately make your home look refreshed and good as new. And for this task, it’s best to use decorative paint finishes.

Using decorative paints has become popular over the years because of the many benefits it provides. These include:

  • Low volatile organic chemical content
  • Ability to replicate the natural look of surfaces like stone, wood, and marble
  • Can add texture and dimension to a flat surface
  • May be used to fix wall irregularities like patching holes and levelling depressions

Compared to home wallpaper, decorative finishes don’t peel off. The surface is washable, and it doesn’t have any seam lines. More importantly, the walls can breathe, so moisture won’t get trapped beneath it.

Interior painting involves several important considerations, including selecting the most suitable type of finish and color for your home. If you find it hard to cherry-pick, reputable paint companies in Dubai and around the world can help you make the right color selection.

4. Light each room adequately

Lighting makes a huge difference to home interiors. It does not just brighten up a room but can also affect your emotions. It can make you feel productive and relaxed and even lift your spirits.

It is ideal for every room to have a mix of lighting fixtures: task, accent, and overhead lights.

For instance, consider using downlights to gently wash the curtains and walls with warm brightness in your living room. Use accent lights to highlight art and position table lamps close to seating to add another layer of lighting.

As for your kitchen, bright lights are highly recommended. Install recessed lights beside the edge of the ceiling and hang overhead pendant lights over your kitchen island. Place LED light strips on the bottom area of your upper cabinets to create a well-lit counter space for food preparation.

In your bedroom, use a bedside light with a movable shade and a dimmer. This offers more flexibility should you want to redirect the light elsewhere.

Make sure you consider the orientation of every room. Install more lighting fixtures if a room does not receive direct sunlight. But don’t overdo it because this can just be a waste of your time and money. To save energy, use LED bulbs.

5. Use the right window treatments

Window treatments add elegance to your property, on top of some much-needed privacy. For curtains or drapes, stick with elegant materials like cotton, linen, and silk.

But if you don’t want draperies, consider wooden blinds or woven bamboo shades. The goal here is to dress your windows because window treatments can make your home appear well-designed and elegant.

6. Accessorize

Most homeowners think that accessorizing their property is an expensive venture, but there are ways to do it while staying within your budget.

For instance, think gold! 

Featuring gold in your home interior helps create a feeling of elegance and richness. You can accessorize with gold mirrors, gold picture frames, or gold-legged tables. However, make sure not to put too much gold-toned materials in one place as you’ll run the risk of having a home interior that looks overdone.

Indeed, there are plenty of affordable and effective ways to elevate your home’s appeal and comfort.

So, if you’re planning to redo or refresh your home interior to make it look more elegant, cozy or welcoming (or all three), make sure you implement the above tips. 

Author Bio:

Ralph El Eid is the Business Development Manager at COLORTEK – Wall & Floor Fashion. EQUIPAINT is the franchise owner of COLORTEK in Dubai (U.A.E.) and Doha (Qatar); an international paints manufacturer specializing in the widest range of decorative paints and seamless concrete & resin flooring, with a unique showroom concept, and thus an ideal destination for homeowners, consultants, architects, interior designers and paint applicators.

acreage renovation: wilder’s own room

This post could also be titled “turning a girl’s bedroom into a shared room and back into a boy’s room.” All within 6 months. Whew.

It all began here, when we made-over Remy’s room. We loved the results and they loved sharing a bedroom for the first time. Then just before the coronavirus hit, they both became extremely ill with pneumonia, bronchitis, ear infections, fevers, the flu, allergic reactions to medicine, and more. From January until March, it was two solid months of them being just so incredibly sick. As a result, Remy slept in our bed with me, and Wilder slept in their room with Geoff. We wanted to separate them at night so that they would stop passing their germs back and forth.

That was during the beginning stage of their room sharing. It was then that I was starting to doubt our decision to join their bedrooms. I thought, will I have to separate them each time they catch a cold or get sick? Then came COVID.

Aside from preschool and gymnastics ending, having to stay home 24/7 was not a big change for us. I already stay and work part-time from home. Having a four- and one-year-old meant that they also pretty much stayed home all of the time. Luckily, the weather was becoming nicer so we were able to spend more time outdoors. When we weren’t, we were playing inside. That’s when their fighting began.

Remy is still getting used to having to share her toys as Wilder is only now becoming interested in them. They are so close, loving, and gentle with one another, until it comes to toy-sharing. She was often playing in their room with her toys, and he would come in and grab them. Then she would get mad, tell him to leave, and close the door so he couldn’t get in. He would stand outside the door and bang on it. Because we couldn’t leave the house, it was driving Geoff and I insane. There were only so many times that we could break up the fights over toys, explaining to her that it is nice to share and that he has to be gentler with objects. Finally, and having a newly renovated guest bedroom, we decided to temporarily move her toys in there. That way, she could play in peace in a room by herself, and he could do the same in his.

It worked. They went back to not fighting at all, and our sanity was once again restored. Then Remy asked if she could sleep in the “big bed” at night. We agreed. One night turned into two, then three. Everything was going so smoothly that we quickly decided to make it a permanent move. The new guest bedroom would become her room, and their shared bedroom would become Wilder’s own room. We have not looked back since.

This is what Wilder’s bedroom now looks like. We did not have to modify much in order to turn it into a little boy’s room. We changed the rug, I purchased different curtains, and switched out the toys.

I also moved the crib from one wall to the other and hung his photos above the crib. I did end up buying a “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” sign, wood picture frames, and a shelf that I saw at the dollar store (of all places). The former is one of his favourite songs.

I put the little IKEA chair that was in the basement in his room, hung his “Wanted” poster that we got in BC, and made him a reading nook in the corner. He loves to read. The faux leather pillow I purchased here.

Finally, we bought him a pine shelf to replace the barn wood shelf that was originally in the room. It all suits him so well!

This parenting thing, you learn as you go along. Right?

Emory

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  • Welcome, friends! My name is Emory. I am a wife and mother to four (two on earth, one in heaven, and growing another). This is our life on the Canadian prairies.
    email: helloscarlettblog@outlook.com

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