The HomeWise Blog

Don’t settle for a contractor who disrespects women


Local remodeler, Jeb Breithaupt, shared his message about the importance of respecting women involved in the remodeling process and shares some advice.
WE DEFINITELY AGREE! General contracting and remodeling is an industry that is predominately male, but we have a woman on staff who helps to bring it all together for us at HomeWise Builders.

Read below the article by Jeb, published by the Shreveport Times.


I’m working with a homeowner on a major remodeling project who initially told me she was afraid to hire any contractor because she didn’t want to be disrespected. Her admission stunned me for a minute because I would think any contractor who met with a potential client and hoped for her business would be on his or her best behavior during that interview. But she told me she had worked with remodelers in the past — and so had her friends — who were downright patronizing, rude and dishonest with her. I asked her why, and she said she is sure it’s because she’s a woman.

Her perception of male contractors is they don’t believe women know anything when it comes to remodeling — even when it’s at their own homes. Her experience involved dealing with all kinds of subcontractors whom the general contractor sent to her house without introducing her. Also, he ignored her complaints. They left their lunch wrappers and cigarette butts all over her property at the end of every work day. All of that, she told me, felt like disrespect. She wants her house fixed up, but it would be easier to live with an avocado-green kitchen than endure months of disrespect by workers she was paying and to whom she had been nothing but pleasant and cooperative.

She did hire my firm to renovate her home, but she got me thinking about whether other women feel as she does about contractors and how they might avoid some of the unpleasantness they fear they will face if they hire the wrong contractor.


Jeb came up with a few pieces of advice for women homeowners who want to have a good experience with their remodelers:

• Search for a remodeling company that will assign a project manager to your job. This project manager should be your sole point of contact for progress reports, complaints, change orders and concerns and will be the one to arrange any meetings you need to have with another member of the team. This puts a buffer between you and the subcontractors who don’t have the authority or the knowledge to change something that might cost more or to answer a complaint that did not stem from their part of the job. A project manager will be well-trained in customer service, will treat you with respect and get your questions answered in a timely manner.

• Ask if the firm you hire has any women on the staff.  It can be comforting to know the contractor has women in positions of influence.

• Don’t take “no” for an answer if you feel something is going wrong. If you see sloppy work or you’re being charged more than you agreed to, don’t let a contractor bully you into settling. Go to the project manager or to the company president, if you have to, and work out a resolution. A few years ago, a homeowner told me she complained to a contractor who created deep gashes with a sander gone haywire in the beautiful, new hardwood floor he had just installed. His response: “Cover them with a rug.” Then, he sent her flowers. My advice: Send those flowers back and insist on a repair or replacement until you get what you paid for.

• Be careful about whom you hire. Most homeowners I know are busy and just want to get a guy in the house to start the work. But if you don’t do your due diligence and call the contractor’s references before agreeing to hire him, you’re setting yourself up for an unhappy experience. Ask him for the names of other women he has worked for, then ask those women, “Did you get what you wanted?” That will help you understand if this contractor will do what you ask without railroading you into settling for what he wants to do.

• Observe how the contractor behaves toward you during your initial meeting. If he is late, dismissive, disrespectful or condescending on the day he has to convince you to choose him for a job, imagine how rude he’ll be after you sign the contract.

• Be willing to walk away. One of the biggest mistakes people make when they hire contractors is they sign on with the one who’s available the soonest instead of waiting for the one who will do the best job and treat them with the most respect. Don’t rush into it.

• Don’t go overboard with criticism. It’s fine to point out eyesores or poor workmanship if the contractor really deserves the critique. But nobody is perfect, so expect high quality rather than absolute perfection.

• Realize a lot of contractors don’t have much practice dealing with customers. A lot of people in the remodeling industry come from the homebuilding trades. When they’re working on a brand-new — and empty — house, it doesn’t really matter if they leave their soda cans all over the place because the trash doesn’t bother anybody. Set some ground rules up front. If the contractor can’t agree to what you want, keep shopping.

HomeWise Builders welcomes your call – 318-626-7829 or CLICK HERE to start the consultation process TODAY!

Original Source: https://www.shreveporttimes.com/story/life/2014/03/21/jeb-breithaupt-dont-settle-for-a-contractor-who-disrespects-women/6666989

Luxury Kitchen Design Trends

https://www.2020spaces.com/blog-luxury-kitchen-design-trends/

The kitchen is arguably the most important room in the house. 

If budget isn’t an issue for you, you can delve into the world of luxury kitchen design. The possibilities are endless; you’re free to design a beautiful kitchen with high-quality materials and finishes, state-of-the-art appliances, and luxurious accents. 

Minimalism works well in luxury kitchens. You should focus on the quality of the materials and a well-balanced layout instead of overcrowding the kitchen with extravagant pieces. 

Custom cabinets


You can finally splurge on luxurious custom cabinets – hooray! These types of cabinets are typically defined as a combination of high-quality materials, quality workmanship and unique styles. 

Luxury cabinets are not made of particle board. They’re made of solid wood that is mainly used for the cabinet doors and of furniture-grade plywood for the box. 

As for the style of the cabinets, luxury doesn’t necessarily mean Corinthian columns and other detailed carvings (although there is nothing wrong with that). But if you’re looking for a more modern look, you can go for simple shaker cabinets or cabinets with no detail work whatsoever. 

If you opt for a simple design, you can add a bit of glam by choosing beautiful hardware such as brass or marble pulls, quartz knobs, or even leather pulls

High-end countertops

https://www.2020spaces.com/blog-luxury-kitchen-design-trends/

Nothing says luxury kitchen design like a gorgeous stone countertop. Not being restricted by a budget means you can use large slabs of marble, granite and quartz

These materials are long lasting and give any kitchen a luxurious feel. Quartz is the most durable of the three and does not require a coating as it is not porous. Marble and granite, on the other hand, will require some maintenance, which is something you should discuss prior to selecting the countertops. 

If you want to give the kitchen even more of an edge, you can use the same material you’ve chosen for the countertop for the backsplash. This will give the kitchen a sleek and streamlined look.

Sinks and faucets


A trendy kitchen sink is the perfect way to complement a luxurious countertop, wouldn’t you agree? 

There are many materials to choose from, including ceramic, fireclay, stainless steel, natural stone, copper, composite granite, and porcelain-enameled cast iron. Each of these, combined with proper function and a unique style is a great addition to any luxury kitchen design.  

You’ll also want to choose a faucet that matches the sink as well as the rest of the kitchen hardware. Keep in mind technology when choosing one; touch faucets are a must for any high-end kitchen.

Backsplashes

https://www.2020spaces.com/blog-luxury-kitchen-design-trends/

As mentioned, using the same material for both the countertop and the backsplash can give your client’s kitchen a beautiful, streamlined look, especially if the backsplash reaches the ceiling. But it’s not the only way to boast luxury. 

You can achieve a luxurious look by choosing materials such as ceramic and porcelain tile (handmade and imported if you want to be really fancy), natural stone slabs, exposed brick, marble, granite, etc. You can even play around with different motifs and textures to give the kitchen a striking look.

Lighting

https://www.oldtowndesigngroup.com/2020-interior-design-trends

Luxury kitchen design goes hand in hand with luxury kitchen lighting. If you’re designing a minimalist kitchen, adding a dazzling light fixture(s) can be a great way to fill the empty space.  

Choosing the right light will depend on the kitchen design style you’ve chosen. For example, an ornate chandelier with crystals might not be the best pick for a contemporary kitchen, and an industrial pendant light might not be the best pick for a traditional kitchen. 

In any case, make sure the lighting makes a statement in the kitchen and is made with high-quality materials. You can even opt for designer lighting that is one of a kind for a unique look.

Appliances

https://www.2020spaces.com/blog-luxury-kitchen-design-trends/

When designing a luxury kitchen, you want to make sure to consider the latest and greatest in terms of appliances. That means sleek, high-tech and even integrated

High-technology appliances can vary from a smart refrigerator with a touchscreen, camera, transparent doors and built-in recipes to a smart oven with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity, temperature control via smartphone, and compatibility with Amazon Alexa and Google assistant. 

If you’re not really into technology, consider gorgeous, high-end appliances that stand out as statement pieces, or integrated appliances that blend in with the surrounding cabinetry. 

Healthy design alternatives


Healthy design means you choose materials and finishes that do not contain any toxic chemicals. For example, you can use ultra-compact quartz for the countertops that is both eco-friendly and does not need a topical sealer (which often contains pesticides) to protect it. 

You can also opt for natural oil treatment for the kitchen floors instead of the usual polyurethane that can cause respiratory problems, you can buy a kitchen runner (if you’re planning on incorporating one) made of natural fibers which is free of the harmful chemicals present in pre-treated synthetic rugs, and you can use upcycled cabinet doors to reduce your carbon footprint.  

Built-in wine rack

https://www.2020spaces.com/blog-luxury-kitchen-design-trends/

A built-in wine rack may not be suitable for everyone, but it does convey luxury, especially when it becomes a statement piece in the kitchen. 

If you are a wine enthusiast, you can dedicate an entire wall (or half-wall) to wine storage. This will require custom work, and when done right, it can really add a hyper-luxurious feel to any kitchen. 

You can also opt for a wine rack or a wine cooler that is part of the kitchen island or under a kitchen counter. This option isn’t as impressive as a built-in wine rack, but it’s still a great addition for wine lovers.

2020 Bathroom Trends

The bathroom, just like the kitchen, is one of the rooms in a house that needs a facelift every decade or so to keep up with the times. Here are the top 2020 bathroom trends you can incorporate in your upcoming remodel.

Statement tiles

https://www.2020spaces.com/blog-2020-bathroom-trends/

When shopping for tiles, there are two things that matter most: quality and detail. Whether you’ll be using tiles on the bathroom floor, in the walk-in shower, or as a backsplash, 2020 bathroom trends call for textured tiles in different shades.

There are now gorgeous 3D statement tiles available that will add visual interest to any bathroom without being obnoxious. Geometric forms and other shapes such as hexagonal tiles and triangular tiles will also be trendy in the coming year.

Metallic accents

https://www.2020spaces.com/blog-2020-bathroom-trends/

Although the 2020 trends are moving away from blush and copper accents, metal is still very much in. As there is a rise in earth tones in the design world, metals such as brass, black and white will dominate bathroom designs.

You can use metallic accents on cabinet doors, drawer pulls, sconces, and even plumbing such as faucets and showerheads. Metal provides great texture and a sophisticated feel to a space, and it even adds visual depth if properly contrasted.

Matte black fittings

https://www.2020spaces.com/blog-2020-bathroom-trends/

Black matte fittings have been in style for quite some time now, and they’ll continue to be a popular choice for bathroom designs in 2020. When juxtaposed with clean tiling, black matte faucets, showerheads and other fittings will really stand out.

These black fittings are chic and are often associated with a minimalist design style. They’re a great way to add elegance to any bathroom, and it’s a trend that doesn’t seem to be going away any time soon.

Biophilic design

https://www.2020spaces.com/blog-2020-bathroom-trends/

One of the biggest 2020 bathroom trends is biophilic design, which focuses mainly on adding touches of nature to a space. Incorporating elements of nature indoors is huge right now and will continue to be so for years to come.

An easy way to add touches of nature to your bathroom design is to include lots of plants (even fake ones will do if there are no windows), bamboo wall panels, wallpaper showcasing greenery, and soothing paint tones such as whites, greys and greens.

Coastal elements

https://www.2020spaces.com/blog-2020-bathroom-trends/

Coastal design doesn’t only have to be reserved for California homes. We’re going to see a lot of coastal elements in bathroom designs in 2020, catering to clients who prefer an airy and fresh look.

You don’t necessarily have to choose a fish-patterned wallpaper to achieve coastal design. You can opt for beige, white or even glass cabinetry, natural stone, pastel wall colors, white wood wall paneling, and light flooring. The airier the space feels, the better.

Industrial chic

https://www.2020spaces.com/blog-2020-bathroom-trends/

Industrial design is not likely to go out of style, and we’ll be seeing even more of it in 2020 bathroom trends. Brass accents, black matte plumbing, subway tiles, the works.

Exposed shower plumbing will also help you achieve an industrial look in the bathroom. Using black matte or brass plumbing pairs beautifully with white, modern marble.

Terrazzo tiles


Terrazzo was a major trend in 2019, and it will continue to be popular in 2020 and beyond. Terrazzo porcelain tiles are suitable for bathroom floors, walls, countertops, and walk-in showers.

Terrazzo is a mix of natural stones, cement and marble which contribute to its timeless and unique look. It’s a durable and high-quality material that will stand the test of time and will endure ever-changing trends.

Minimalist lighting

https://www.2020spaces.com/blog-2020-bathroom-trends/

Light plays a major role in bathroom design. It’s practical and it also creates a certain type of atmosphere depending on where it’s placed and how strong the luminosity is.

Lighting in terms of 2020 bathroom trends is very minimalistic and linear, allowing other elements in the bathroom to stand out. Steer clear of big, statement lights and opt for smaller and simpler lighting such as linear sconces and integrated mirror lighting.

Technology

https://www.2020spaces.com/blog-2020-bathroom-trends/

The introduction of technology in living spaces has exploded over the past couple of years, and the bathroom is catching up to this trend. We’re not talking about a wall-mounted telephone beside the toilet or a mini TV screen next to the vanity.

Integrating smart technology in the bathroom consists of smart toilets (integrated bidet, bum dryer, self-cleaning), electronic controls in the shower, voice-activated lighting, built-in fireplaces, and more.

Help your home renovation go smoothly & stay on budget with advice from an expert!

Whether you work with a general contractor or act as one on your own project, getting a glimpse into the mind of a contractor can give you a new perspective into remodeling projects around your home. How do you know if you’re helping or hurting your project? Read on to find out and to see what can help simplify your home remodel.

1. Don’t delay decisions. If you want your remodel to go well, the best thing to do is make every single decision before work starts. A good builder can talk you through the list of situations that might come up on your job, but decisions about situations aren’t usually what cause delays.

Instead, most of the issues are related to decisions about things like paint, trim and faucet selection. These may seem small, but when your faucet is two weeks late, plumbers have to be rescheduled and the medicine cabinet door hits the faucet when it’s installed, you’ll see how something small can balloon into a week’s delay on a five-week project.

2. Don’t change your mind (too much). Even though it’s inevitable that you’ll change your mind about something on your project, know this: Every time you change your mind, it’ll result in a change order. Although the change may seem minor, there are always added costs — even if it’s only the time spent discussing the change.

Scheduling can be affected too. Everyone working on the job needs to be informed of the change so no one’s working on the old plan. Everyone makes changes, and that’s OK — just be aware of the potential to disrupt and delay the job.

3. Don’t buy your own materials. It seems like an obvious way to save money — a builder is going to mark up the cost of materials and pass that added cost on to you. That’s true, but the builder may get a better price than you to begin with, meaning that even after markup, you’ll pay the same price.

If you are a DIYer committed to doing your own shopping, here are 10 tips that can help.

4. Don’t put lipstick on a pig. Though a builder will rarely come right out and say this, some houses should be knocked down rather than have money put into them to fix them up. Though this is a rare situation, it’s common for people to put money into fancy cabinets for a house with a sagging foundation, or into a high-efficiency furnace in a house with no insulation. Listen to the professionals who come to look at your job. Be open to their suggestions.

5. Don’t work without a contingency fund. If you find out that the work you wanted to do costs more than you expected or budgeted, you’re in good company. It’s almost unheard of that a person sets a realistic budget for a project. But don’t eat into your contingency to stretch the budget. If you follow rule number one and make every decision ahead of time, you can probably get away with a 5 percent contingency if you have a good general contractor.

6. Don’t live in the home, well… try to “move” out of the way. Most people ignore this rule, and for good reason. Remodeling is expensive, and moving out just adds to the cost. If you can’t move out for the whole job, try to schedule some time away and set up a clean, comfortable place to retreat to when you can’t handle coming home to a messy and stressful construction site. Don’t let kids and pets get in the way. Though the people working in your home will often try to accommodate your pets and kids, they shouldn’t have to — it’s just not safe to have children or animals around construction.

7. Don’t be a distraction. It may sound harsh, but every minute someone working on your house spends talking to you, they are not working on your house. Is the conversation important and one that will have an impact on the job? That’s one thing, but the electrician on the job isn’t getting paid any more to spend 30 minutes talking about your vacation plans.

8. Don’t ignore what the house wants. Though some people can pull off wearing a pair of high-top sneakers with a tuxedo, it can also go horribly wrong. Houses are the same way. Can an ultramodern kitchen in a Victorian brownstone work? Absolutely, but make sure you can pull it off. This is not to say a house can’t evolve with the times. There are no hard and fast rules — just get to know your house, live in it and do your research before you pull out the sledgehammer.

9. Don’t work without a design. Some projects require an architect, some an interior designer, and sometimes a talented builder will get your aesthetic and help you come up with a good plan.

Whatever you do, don’t start a remodel without a detailed plan. A lot of elements interact in a space — put them all on paper and you’ll catch problems before they are built. You may be able to build a functional space without a plan, but if you want a functional and beautiful space, definitely hire a professional!

https://www.houzz.com/magazine

The Do’s and Don’ts in Outdoor Living Spaces

We live in a time where our daily lives are flooded with more options than we know with what to do.  From taking 10 minutes each morning to study and make sense of the Starbucks menu to the thread count options for the most comfortable pillow, it seems that we are inundated day in and day out; outdoor living is no exception.  While it is easier to choose our daily cup-o-joe, outdoor decisions are very important and your backyard should be treated with the same respect as inside the home.  What should you do?  What shouldn’t you do?  Great questions.  While some projects are bigger than others, it is always smart to consult a professional who has vision and expertise.  For now, if you are just trying to wrap your mind around what you want to accomplish with your plot of grass, here are some suggestions to consider, and some ideas to leave in the dust.

DO: INVEST IN A DECK OR PATIO

patio space

The first outdoor living feature that should be considered is a deck or patio.  Hardscaped spaces are an extension of the home, an additional usable living space that can be enjoyed by all.  Whether your property allows for a grand deck or just the right amount of space for a patio and your favorite bistro set, you will find that this will be the most used spot in your plan, it is literally the foundation for the rest of your outdoor design.  A hardscape will make your backyard feel like it has intention, instead of the disconnected plastic banquet table and fold up chairs in the lawn.  The best way to make your company feel comfortable is to provide a space where their heels won’t sink into the grass and they can enjoy the view.

DON’T: CLUTTER UP YOUR SPACE

don't clutter your yard

Speaking of view…keep it simple!  There is nothing worse than walking through a beautiful home and stepping outside to a see a backyard full of excessive concrete sculptures, whirligigs and whatever other outdoor clutter one collects.  The phrase “less is more” rings very true when it comes to outdoor living spaces.  Timeless design and good taste are reflected in neutral colors, clean lines, natural materials and open space.  So, if you want a beautiful backyard, leave all of the lawn tchotchke’s in the shed or at the store and opt for one or two simple ornaments that can express your unique tastes just the same.

DO: KEEP ALL ELEMENTS LOW MAINTENANCE

Low-maintenance materials are worth it.  While you will be initially investing more for low-maintenance materials, the energy, time and money saved in the long run makes up for it.  Take a pressure treated deck for example, the cost of installation may not give sticker shock, but every year you will have to sand, stain and possibly even repair the wood…this means annual dedicated time/energy and money out of your pocket.  Now, build that same deck with composite decking material, and there is no sanding or staining…just enjoyment as soon as the door opens and the fresh air falls upon you.

low maintenance landscaping

The same can be said for your landscaping as well.  Planting low-maintenance plants will keep the shears out of your hand and allow more time to smell the flowers than tend to them.  Don’t get me wrong, tropical flowers are a beautiful addition to any outdoor living space, but just remember that they can be finicky and are annuals in our neck of the woods.  So, if you want a Mandevilla vine present year after year, you will have to plant it, year after year.  If you would rather enjoy time in the yard with the kids rather than fighting through your landscaping, stick to low-maintenance plants like groundcovers and perennials.

DON’T: SKIMP ON LIGHTING

landscape lighting

We have written about lighting a lot in throughout our blog posts, but that’s because lighting is important!  For those who opt not to include landscape lighting in their outdoor living spaces, the space may feel only half alive.  When the sun goes down, the picture-perfect property also goes to rest.  With landscape lighting, not only will the property have a beautiful evening ambiance, but walkways are safer for travel and the outdoor living space will feel complete.  Landscape lighting is a way to extend the party into the evening hours rather than having to stop the soiree and retreat indoors.

DO: DESIGNATE AN AREA FOR COOKING

outdoor kitchen

For entertainers or those who like to spend ample time outside, an outdoor grilling station or kitchen is worth consideration.   Not only is grilling better for your health since an open flame and no unnecessary oils or fats are present, but it is better for the life of the gathering as well.  Without a designated place to prepare food outdoors, the host will need to go inside to prepare the meals, removing themselves from the get-together they painstakingly arranged…talk about a bummer.  With a grilling station or outdoor kitchen, all the amenities are outside where the action is and the feature combinations are only limited by your imagination.  Outdoor kitchens can include refrigerators, ice makers, wet bars, sinks, grills, burners, swim up bars…infinite possibilities! No matter how petite or packed, any outdoor cooking station is better than none at all!

DON’T: THINK YOU KNOW IT ALL

Driving around in an unfamiliar place for an hour because pride gets in the way of stopping to ask for directions is just silly; not everyone knows everything.  When looking to create an outdoor living space for you and your family to enjoy for years to come, it is important to talk to a professional.  Believe it or not, townships and municipalities do care what you are doing with your property.  While they may not see any renovations right away, without the proper setbacks from your property lines, permits and inspections, you may run into many issues down the road.  It should be the job of the professional you hire to account for all of codes and regulations in your area to ensure a flawless construction of your new space.  So before you put that shovel in the ground for your DIY outdoor fireplace, reach out to the pros and save yourself from future headaches and fees!

If you have the drive and desire to turn your outdoor dreams into a reality, reach out to the experts at HomeWise Builders. We love transforming outdoor living spaces into the perfect fit for you and your family.  We help to acquire all permits, schedule all inspections and manage scheduling and installation, so you don’t have to!  So, when you are ready to open the conversation about all of the potential for your property, we would love to welcome you into the HomeWise family.  Serving the Shreveport, Bossier City and surrounding areas; we are only a click or phone call away!

SOURCE: https://www.mymasterplan.com/blog/the-dos-and-donts-in-outdoor-living-spaces/

Do’s and Don’ts of Home Improvement

As a homeowner, you must have dabbled with the possibility of remodeling projects for your home. After all, in the long term, any home improvement adds value to the home — whether it is for reselling or just the overall market value.

However, before embarking on a home improvement project, regardless of which room or area you’re considering, it is important to understand the complexity of home improvement. Most homeowners start a project without realizing the actual requirements and end up flustered.

Here are some Do’s and Don’ts that you MUST know about before you undertake a remodeling project.


5 Do’s of Home Remodeling Projects


https://thehomeatlas.com/home-improvement-dos-and-donts/

1.    Understand the Resale Value

When it comes to making major changes in your home, a little forethought goes a long way. What may seem like a good decision now, may or may not end up becoming a pain point some years down the line. All home improvements affect the resale value of any home; hence any design decisions should naturally reflect it as well. For instance, average returns on a minor kitchen remodeling project tend to be around 87%, while a bathroom remodel recoups only 67.2%.

Always consider the return on investment and design the house accordingly. While it is tempting to give everything a personal and unique touch to everything, make sure to still keep it marketable and appealing.

2.   Spend Time Researching

Before embarking on any home improvement, take some time to figure out what you want out of it and how to achieve it. A key element is hiring the right contractor to do the improvements.

Your home is an important asset and home improvements are a big commitment — and a contractor is the ultimate bridge between good materials and a decent output. While selecting a contractor, make sure both parties are on the same page and have the same vision in terms of budget, time and design requirements. Disputes at a later stage can delay the project unnecessarily.

3.    Understand Budget Fluctuations

It goes without saying that having a budget plays an important role when it comes to any home improvement project, major or minor. However, more often than not, the actual expenses tend to go well above the budget. This could be because of delays, added expenses, and unforeseen expenses. Hence, you should always keep a buffer for any possible budget fluctuations.

4.    Always Have a Design Plan

Home remodeling isn’t something that can be played by the ear. One needs to have a solid floor plan and design plan in place. An expert interior designer or architect can help you with this as it requires a thorough understanding of various complicated elements and structural knowledge.

5.   Understand Your House

Every house is different and has a different architectural style. While remodeling, it can be very tempting to strip off the interior to the bare bone and give it a whole new look. Before doing that, consider the architectural style of the house. Use that as an inspiration and include cohesiveness and synchronize your design plans accordingly. The overall aesthetic value will be much more and will result in a higher visual and structural appeal.


5 Don’ts of Home Improvement


 1. Don’t DIY Everything

It is very tempting to DIY a remodeling project as a way of cutting costs, but it can quickly become a ‘D-I-WHY’ project.

If you don’t have the expertise or experience, it is best to not embark on a DIY bandwagon. Areas like bathrooms and kitchen have complicated plumbing and electrical requirements that require an expert to work on them.

It is OK to work on small parts of a large project but its best to steer away from major projects.

2. Don’t Hire the Cheapest Contractor

A contractor can make or break your home remodel. As tempting as it is to save money while hiring a contractor, people often neglect to factor in the real value they provide.

The trade-off that comes with hiring the cheapest contractor is often not worth it. It usually involves the use of cheaper materials, less experience and professionalism.

Look out for competitive prices and if you notice a huge gap, its best to stick to the ‘average’ ones rather than opting for the lower end.

3. Don’t Rush the Process

No matter what, do not rush the remodeling process. Home improvements require time, commitment and patience. There are a lot of moving parts when it comes to the home improvement process and the timeline is often underestimated.

If your project takes longer, be patient and remember that good things take time to manifest. There are always things out of your and your contractor’s control — and it is a good idea to go in with the mindset of any possible delay before you even begin.

4. Don’t Ignore Home Upkeep

Home maintenance and upkeep are often neglected aspects when it comes to massive home improvement projects. A small repair here and there can have a huge impact on the overall process. Before beginning any remodeling project, make sure to list any minor repairs down and get them done as well. General upkeep is also encouraged while the project is underway.

5. Don’t Get Frustrated

Home improvements are in no way a piece of cake. For those who haven’t done it before can find it extremely frustrating — largely due to small inconveniences that take place on a daily basis. In such circumstances, it is important to be calm and patient.

Even if there is a major hurdle, being frustrated won’t solve the problem at hand. Every problem, no matter how big or small has a solution, provided you approach the problem in a level- headed manner.

Going Through with a Home Improvement Project

The home improvement process is often unfamiliar territory for many, which is why it is all the more important to be informed and be aware of all aspects, positive and negative. Preparation can save you a lot of money, delays and regret later on. Be mindful of these do’s and don’ts, and your home improvement process is likely to be smoother and more pleasant.

COVID-19: SHOULD I CONTINUE WITH MY REMODELING PROJECT?

Covid-19 is a challenging time for all of us. We are all experiencing terror, panic, and emotions we have rarely felt collectively as a global community at the same time. We are all trying to make sense of what’s happening around us. To add to the woes, the majority of states in the country are in “Shelter in place” order, and we don’t know how long the situation will continue. It’s hard to believe that while the country is trying to revive from the unexpected jolt of Covid-19, there are home remodeling tasks one can undertake.

But it’s true! While one can make calculated stock investments at this time too, this applies, especially to the Home Improvement Industry. 

While the lockdown has impacted many remodeling projects — the truth is, you can actually benefit from the focused attention of your contractors right now. 

We understand that you and your family are just trying to get through each day right now. And it’s totally understandable if you are not up for making decisions about anything else at the moment. It’s fine. But if there’s a chance, you think you can take benefit from this situation, what’s the harm? 

It all depends on the particular stage of remodeling you were at before Covid struck. I know it’s a hard decision, and no one’s rushing you — we are merely pointing out both pros and cons of remodeling right now so that you can make the right call.

We understand the dilemma. That’s why we have a few guidelines, especially to smoothen the road ahead for you. These may help you to find out if it actually makes sense to give substance to your decision right now.

1. IF YOU’RE STILL PLANNING

PROS

Consider the time you have on hand if you are yet to start your home remodel. I mean, you have a world of options you can consider. And with all the free time you have, you don’t have to leave anything to fate anymore!

You can ask your friends for tips, exhaust the home design magazines tips, and look for home remodeling designs on the internet. You can even plan a trip down the home improvement showrooms to plan ahead. If you’d rather be home — HomeWise Builders is offering virtual consultations too.

CONS

At the end of the day, it’s all about money. In other words, how do you plan to finance your remodeling projectIf you’re planning to finance the task by borrowing money via a personal loan, home equity loan, or even a credit card, now is the time to review rates.

What if the already sinking economy has an impact on your job? How will you pay back the loan in that case? Alternatively, if you have enough savings to see you through the upcoming times, it makes sense to do this now as rates are trending to be much cheaper at the moment. 

2. IF YOU’RE ALREADY RENOVATING

PROS

If you’re already renovating, things are bound to be even more comfortable for you.

By now, you will have cleared the big hurdle of all the needed permits and plans. In other words, you’re in the “just started” stage of your renovation, which is the easiest to handle.

You’ve already given the blueprints to an expert contractor. And it’s up to him and his team to do the labor now. In all probability, you have already purchased every material needed for the job too. Basically, every step is definite after this, and all you have to do is to watch while it happens. This is, without a doubt, a more natural phase than the planning stage.

CONS

You might face a few setbacks with the Covid-19 situation at hand.

If you do go short of a product, there’s no guaranteeing if you’re going to get it. The particular state from which you’re procuring the product may be in quarantine, which may delay your project.

One way out of this mess is to let your contractor order all the needed equipment immediately to avoid delays later on.

 3. IF YOU’RE MIDWAY THROUGH THE REMODEL

PROS

This is the third stage of your remodeling project and the easiest one to tackle thus far.

You are already halfway and there’s no reason to look back now. Remodeling companies are listed as essential services in the USA, and can continue to work on your home remodeling project with added precautions. In fact, this is the time when your contractor will go out of the way to complete your project. Since there might be cancellations, efforts will be more focused on your project during this time.

In any case, you are already there. So what’s the point of starting to consider and reconsider at this point? You only need to look in one direction — and that’s ahead.

CONS

You may have to spend a little extra on saving your home from the infection. Depending on the kind of house you have, you may have to dole out extra cash for protection.

Besides, since at this point your contractor will be trying to finish the job as early as possible, you may have to pay for the fee sooner. If there are any illnesses or injuries among the crew, that may further delay the tasks.

There’s an easy way around it, though. Just check with your remodeling company if they give sanitizing tools to their crews and cover the cost of things like barriers, dust-fan etc. If they do, you don’t have to worry about a thing.

WHAT DOES IT ULTIMATELY DEPEND ON?

In the end, it all depends on the precautions that your remodeling company takes to combat the issue.

At the job site, you need to make certain that every needed precaution is firmly in its place. Plastic must be used to separate the job site from your home. The crew is expected to wash their hands after entering the worksite, exiting the site and after using the bathroom. Disinfectants must be used in public workplaces as well in the non-shared bathrooms twice a day.

Find out if the remodeling company can provide its workers with Port-a-Jon for sites where there are no extra bathrooms available.

CONCLUSION

Agreed that the present situation is not in our hands and it may take us a bit longer to get over the damage caused. But as far as remodeling or repairing your home is concerned, there is a lot you can do as per the exact stage you are in. There’s no reason why you shouldn’t go on with your original remodeling plan if all necessary precautions are being taken.

The final decision is ultimately all yours. Whether you want to make the best use of this time or wait for the worst to be over. Choose wisely!

A Guide To Budgeting Your Bathroom Remodel

If a gleaming, spa-inspired bathroom is part of your future, we’d love to help in achieving your vision. With hundreds of successful home remodeling projects in our portfolio, HomeWise Builders’s systematic approach takes the guesswork out of budgeting construction costs for your bathroom remodel.

So, “How do you develop a bathroom remodeling budget?” We’re glad you asked.

As one of the home’s most highly trafficked rooms, the cost of a bathroom remodeling project in Northwest Louisiana can vary wildly based on size, materials, your tastes, and your neighborhood. Don’t forget to factor in the higher cost of living and services in the Southern region too.

According to a 2019 report by Remodeling Magazine, the cost for an upscale bathroom remodel in Northwest Louisiana cost up to 60K+ on average, depending on the range and scale of your bathroom renovation. Now, here’s how that budget pie gets divvied up. Check out our Pricing Guide to learn more.

SLICING THE BATHROOM REMODEL BUDGET PIE

Bathroom Remodeling Budget

Using our proven Remodeling Process, we begin your bathroom remodel with a consultation. We evaluate the space and determine the scope of your project. Once we’ve assessed the site, a detailed outline of deliverables and construction costs is created based on factors like room size, quality of materials, labor, and types of fixtures and finishes, to name a few.

DEMOLITION BUDGET IN BATHROOM RENOVATIONS

The Demolition, or “demo” phase of a home remodel, is usually the bit you see on home improvement TV where the crew gets a little overzealous with their sledgehammers. Don’t worry, we won’t. Trust that your home will always be treated with the greatest care throughout the process—even when swinging a sledgehammer.

We factor in waste removal as part of the demolition budget, and employ environmentally-conscious  best practices, including dust management, and proper disposal of all construction debris. 

Once the original bathroom is down to the studs and construction waste is removed, it’s ready for the design vision to become a reality. On average, we recommend allocating 10-15% of your bathroom remodeling budget for demolition.

DEMOLITION BUDGET

Recommended Bathroom Demolition Budget Allocation: 10–15%
Actual Cost: 12%

PLUMBING AND ELECTRICAL BUDGET FOR YOUR BATHROOM REMODEL

Custom bathroom remodels will most likely involve changes to the room’s original footprint and. Bathroom layout changes usually require removal and replacement of existing plumbing and electrical systems, requiring more budget allocation towards this phase. HomeWise Builders suggests allocating 20–35% of your bathroom remodeling budget to plumbing and fixtures. Bathroom remodels sticking to the original footprint range on the lower end of the budget, however, for bathroom remodels involving relocation of bathtubs, showers, toilets, or sinks, expect to budget on the higher range. 

BATHROOM MECHANICALS, PLUMBING, & ELECTRICAL BUDGET

Recommended Bathroom Mechanicals, Plumbing, & Electrical Budget Allocation: 20–35%
Actual Cost: 22%

FRAMING BUDGET IN BATHROOM RENOVATIONS

The Framing phase of the project is where the space begins to take shape. To the uninitiated, it’s a confusing forest of 2x4s with conduit snaking through it. But to our HomeWise team, this is when the design comes alive. On average, we allocate between 10-20% of your renovation budget towards framing.

BATHROOM FRAMING, EXTERIOR & INTERIOR WALLS BUDGET

Recommended Budget for Framing, Exterior & Interior Walls : 10–20%
Actual Cost: 14%

SHOWER STALLS, FIXTURES & HARDWARE BUDGET FOR YOUR BATHROOM REMODEL

This is where the vision comes into sharper focus. We introduce the design elements like stone or glass, shower stalls, porcelain fixtures, and beautiful hardware that give the space a sense of purpose.

Depending on your tastes, you could use up to a third of your budget on high-end luxury bath fixtures and finishes. HomeWise Builders can help you choose quality pieces for your bathroom remodel from our trusted vendors, to give your bathroom a luxurious feel, without exhausting your budget. We advise clients to keep these costs between 20–35% of your total budget.

BATHROOM SHOWER, FIXTURES & HARDWARE BUDGET

Recommended Budget for Bathroom Shower, Fixtures, & Hardware: 20–35%
Actual cost: 19%

FINE BATHROOM FINISHES BUDGET 

Once your bathroom has reached this phase, our finish carpenters, painters, tile and flooring professionals are called in to bring your bathroom remodeling project to its beautiful conclusion in a well-coordinated dance. While each of these elements may vary due to size and scale of your bathroom remodel, we suggest using these guidelines to determine how much of your budget goes towards these specialists.

BATHROOM FLOORING BUDGET

Recommended Bathroom Flooring Budget: 5–10%
Actual Cost: 5%

BATHROOM CARPENTRY & CABINET BUDGET

Recommended Bathroom Cabinet Budget: 5–10%
Actual Cost: 9%

BATHROOM COUNTERTOPS & BACKSPLASH BUDGET

Recommended Countertops & Bathroom Backsplash Budget: 5–10%
Actual Cost: 6%

BATHROOM PAINT BUDGET

Recommended Bathroom Paint Budget: 5–10%
Actual Cost: 6%

BATHROOM REMODEL PROJECT MANAGEMENT BUDGET

All this magic doesn’t happen with the wave of a hammer. HomeWise Builders is known for our exceptional customer service and on-time, on-budget bathroom remodel projects. When you work with us, you’ll be working with a dedicated Project Manager who acts as a liaison between Team HomeWise, trade professionals, vendors, and suppliers responsible for making your bathroom design a reality. 

Many homeowners think this is where they can save money and do it themselves, but we encourage you to factor a Project Manager into your budget. It might be the best money you’ve ever spent. Your budget for a Project Manager to handle your bathroom renovation scheduling can average 5–10% of your total budget. 

BATHROOM PROJECT MANAGEMENT & SCHEDULING BUDGET

Recommended Bathroom Project Management Budget: 5–10%
Actual cost: 7%

So if it’s past time to bring that funky old bathroom into the 21st-Century, or you’re ready to indulge in a spa-inspired sanctuary, we can help turn your bathroom remodel vision into a beautiful reality.

Contact HomeWise Builders today to schedule your consultation

5 Tips For A Highly Functional Kitchen

A good kitchen design is more than what is aesthetically pleasing or modernized. New appliances, finished countertops, and quality cabinetry, is only half the battle. The other half that most kitchen remodels often overlook is how functional the kitchen is. When redesigning your kitchen space, here are 5 important things to consider in your remodel.

1. THE IMPORTANCE OF KITCHEN LIGHTING

Many older kitchens have a single light source in the kitchen. This can result in glaring, uncomfortable light close to the source, and shadowy poor light in other corners of the kitchen. The newest trends in kitchen remodels include plenty of dimmable recessed lights, also known as can lights, and under cabinet lights with accent pendant lights over the island or peninsula to give your kitchen remodel a sleek look. These light fixtures are also versatile and allows you to focus on each major area in the kitchen. The combination is not only functional, it also takes into consideration the kitchen’s ambiance. With the current energy efficient requirements, you can enjoy more light while also saving money and energy.  

2. A FUNCTIONAL KITCHEN ISLAND

Whether or not your kitchen remodel can accommodate an island depends on floor space. If your kitchen has the room for one, it can be a positive contribution to your kitchen remodel, but in spaces that are too small, a peninsula may be a better option. Removing a wall and building an island is a great way to open up the space. When entertaining guests, it allows you to be involved with your guests while preparing the meal. For optimal efficiency, HomeWise Builders can help with creative island designs that compliment the island’s function.

3. OPTIMIZING YOUR KITCHEN COUNTER SPACE

A functional kitchen space has three major sections to it. An area for prepping, an area for cooking, and an area for cleaning up. For the kitchen to be as efficient as possible, it is best to have a designated amount of counter space for each phase of the process. If you enjoy cooking and cook often, having a pot filler installed at your stove is a convenient feature to have. Appliance garages are also an ideal way to easily access your appliances while avoiding countertop clutter. They can be designed with built-in electrical outlets to make using and storing these appliances a breeze.  

Achieving a functional kitchen space that flows with your cooking process requires a good understanding of how you operate in your kitchen and a well planned kitchen design.

4. KITCHEN CABINETS & STORAGE

Gone are the days of practically crawling into your cabinet to find those little used items. HomeWise Builders can help you design and build, together with Bench Dog Design Co., storage spaces for your every need. For those who cook often, a pantry may be an essential part of your kitchen storage space. Otherwise, clever use of available space can help get the most out of your cabinet space.

With a wide variety of different types of easy glide pull outs, you can designate certain cabinets and drawers for the way you want to use your kitchen. From pull out pots and pans drawers to knife and utensil drawers, and even pet food bowl drawers, you can make the best use of all your storage space. And let’s not forget the Lazy Susan for those corner cabinets. The modern Lazy Susan makes any item within arm’s reach. The easy pull-out trash and recycling bins are a nice added feature.

Pro Tip: When building kitchen cabinets, extend it all the way to the ceiling. This gives your kitchen a custom feel, creates more storage and eliminates the wasted space gathering dust.

5. GENERAL KITCHEN WORKSTATION

One aspect of a functional kitchen most people don’t take into consideration is adding in a general purpose workstation. This is an area where your kids can do their homework, you can take down notes from a phone call, or you can sit down to work on your grocery list. The kitchen is often central to the home environment, and having a convenient location to allow your family to work out of the way of the cooking process while being in each other’s company can be a priceless addition.  

Include some data ports in a drawer at your kitchen workstation and you have a one-stop charging area for your phones and laptops.  

A kitchen remodel is your opportunity to transform a standard workspace into an area made specifically for you and your family. When you set out to remodel your new kitchen, take some time to discuss these five integral parts of a kitchen design with HomeWise Builders to achieve the most functional kitchen.

Creating A Budget For Your Kitchen Remodel

A kitchen remodel is a beautiful thing, especially if you’ve been cooking in a cramped, outdated, or just plain awful galley for longer than you care to recall. Team HomeWise Builders relishes the opportunity of taking an unlovable space and transforming it into the heartbeat of your home. 

It’s a lovely vision, to be sure, so now, let’s talk about kitchen renovation costs.  Our Pricing Guide can help provide a breakdown.

According to Remodeling Magazine, the average cost of a kitchen remodel in the Northwest Louisiana area is between $66–$131K+. If you’re going for an upscale and elaborate renovation that may include custom cabinets, built-in sliding shelves and other interior accessories, or commercial-grade appliances, prepare your budget accordingly. 

To soften the sticker shock, take the long view. This investment in your home adds significant value—especially if you’re adding square footage. As with any major home remodel, it’s important to understand how to allocate your budget.

SLICING THE KITCHEN REMODEL CONSTRUCTION COST PIE

Over the years, we’ve developed a streamlined and cost-effective approach to home remodeling projects. HomeWise Builders begins with a consultation within our service area of Shreveport, Bossier City & surround areas. We evaluate the space, get a sense of your vision, and create a plan, with you, to determine the scope of work.

Next, we develop a detailed plan—including timelines, deliverables, and costs, based on kitchen size, materials, labor, and room finishes, to name a few. Finally, we assist you in developing a realistic kitchen remodeling budge

kitchen-remodeling-budget.png

KITCHEN DEMOLITION BUDGET

Demolishing a kitchen looks like fun when you see it on the home improvement shows, and you’ll likely experience a bittersweet mix of nostalgia and schadenfreude watching that old kitchen go away, one sledgehammer swing at a time. 

But, never fear that made-for-TV-mayhem. HomeWise Builders ensures your home is treated with care and respect throughout the entire process, with all debris and waste disposed of properly.

DEMOLITION BUDGET

Recommended Kitchen Demolition Budget: 10–15%
Actual Cost: 12%


KITCHEN MECHANICALS, ELECTRICAL, & PLUMBING BUDGET

Many older (think South Highlands & Broadmoor) homes have never undergone a kitchen remodel, while others are on their second and third iteration. We won’t know what to expect until the curtain is pulled back. But, for the area’s numerous aging homes, it’s sometimes necessary to replace and upgrade all the mechanical elements, including plumbing, electric, and gas systems. Changes to the kitchen layout including moving the existing layout of major appliances, sinks, and functional islands typically require rerouting plumbing and electrical and will add to your remodeling costs. 

KITCHEN MECHANICALS, PLUMBING, & ELECTRICAL BUDGET

Recommended Kitchen Mechanicals, Plumbing, & Electrical Budget: 10–20%
Actual Cost: 13%

HomeWise Builders suggests allocating up to 20% of your kitchen remodeling budget to plumbing and fixtures. Remodels that stick to the existing footprint can typically range on the lower end of 10% while remodels that involve expanding the kitchen or changing the layout should allocate a higher percentage of the overall budget. The mechanicals are completed before framing and exterior and interior wall construction can begin. 

Custom bathroom remodels will most likely involve changes to the room’s original footprint and. Bathroom layout changes usually require removal and replacement of existing plumbing and electrical systems, requiring more budget allocation towards this phase. HomeWise Builders suggests allocating 20–35% of your bathroom remodeling budget to plumbing and fixtures. Bathroom remodels sticking to the original footprint range on the lower end of the budget, however, for bathroom remodels involving relocation of bathtubs, showers, toilets, or sinks, expect to budget on the higher range. 


FRAMING BUDGET FOR KITCHEN REMODELS

If you can see past the forest of 2x4s and snaking conduit, framing is the construction phase that provides the “bones” of the room, and the first visual clues of what your new kitchen will look like. Framing includes building out interior and exterior walls. We’ll often allocate up to 20% of your budget towards framing, however for this project we were able to keep the framing budget close to the minimum, allowing us to shift funds to high-end finishes.

KITCHEN FRAMING, EXTERIOR & INTERIOR WALLS BUDGET

Recommended Kitchen Framing Budget: 10–20%
Actual Cost: 11%


CUSTOM KITCHEN CABINET AND CARPENTRY BUDGET

From deceptively simple Shaker or classic raised panel, contemporary slab front, to traditional Mullion designs, your custom cabinetry built by HomeWise Builders in conjunction with Bench Dog Design Co. sets the tone (and personality) of your kitchen remodel. Custom cabinetry makes up the biggest portion of kitchen remodeling budgets. Plan on reserving up to 35% of your construction budget for this fine finish work.

KITCHEN CABINETS BUDGET

Recommended Kitchen Cabinetry Budget: 25–35%
Actual cost: 29%


FINALLY, KITCHEN FINISHES BUDGET 

The cabinets are in, and your once ugly kitchen duckling is well into its metamorphosis. This is when the artisans and specialists come in to “ice the cake” as it were. Tile and flooring is completed, counters and backsplashes are installed, and the painters literally apply the final touches, all in a well-coordinated dance. We use these guidelines to determine how much of your budget goes towards these craftspeople and specialists.

KITCHEN FLOORING BUDGET

Recommended Kitchen Flooring Budget: 5–10%
Actual Cost: 8%

KITCHEN COUNTERTOPS & BACKSPLASH BUDGET

Recommended Kitchen Countertop Budget: 10–20%
Actual Cost: 13%

KITCHEN PAINTING BUDGET

Recommended Kitchen Painting Budget: 5–10%
Actual Cost: 5%


PROJECT MANAGEMENT

All this choreography doesn’t happen on its own. HomeWise Builders is renowned for our exceptional customer service, quality kitchen remodeling projects, and countless remodels delivered on-time and on-budget. 

When you work with us, you’ll be working with a dedicated Project Manager who acts as a liaison between you and the HomeWise Builders team, trade professionals, vendors, and suppliers, who’s responsible for your project for its duration. 

Many homeowners think this is where they can save money by doing it themselves, but a contractor will help you save time and money as we frequently work with vendors who offer special discounts on labor and materials for our clients. It might be the best money you’ve ever spent.

PROJECT MANAGEMENT & SCHEDULING BUDGET

Recommended Kitchen Remodeling Project Management Budget: 5–10%
Actual cost: 9%

If you’re ready to to unleash your inner chef de cuisine in a cooking-show worthy kitchen, we’d be delighted to help you become Northwest Louisiana’s next big culinary sensation, at least among your friends and family. 

Call HomeWise Builders or send us a message to schedule your consultation and let’s get cooking!

HomeWise Builders Cares about COVID-19

What’s we’re doing to help keep our community healthy & safe!

To Our Valued Clients, Staff, Vendors, and Trade Partners,

Undoubtedly you are aware of the concern in our community and around the world due to the outbreak of the COVID-19 virus. We wanted to take a few moments to let you know how we are responding to the current situation.

We care deeply about our community, clients, staff, and trade partners and are committed to the health and safety of all! Although, cleanliness and safety are top priorities for us at HomeWise Builders daily, we have implemented the following precautionary measures:

Employees and Trade Partners
– Prior to the start of each day all employees and trade partners will be asked to check for fever and confirm that they do not currently have any symptoms associated with this virus including fever, cough, and shortness of breath.
– Any individual displaying these symptoms are required to stay home.

Working Locations
– We are taking extra precautions by disinfecting our work locations including; door handles, light switches, faucets, trash receptacles, work surfaces, and company vehicles.- – Gloves are being worn and disposed of properly following material runs, etc.
– We are asking that if anyone in a client’s home is displaying any possible symptoms of the illness that they will notify us immediately. Any work on a home with a possible infection will be suspended until there are no longer any chances of infection.

Office Environment
– Every individual will use hand sanitizer upon entering the office environment.
– All samples in the office are sanitized each time they are touched.
– All frequently touched surfaces will be disinfected at the beginning and end of each day using disposable gloves.
– Anyone displaying symptoms will be asked to immediately leave the office and anything that they have touched will be disinfected.

In addition, we will be offering virtual meetings using FaceTime, Zoom, or other video chat services on your phone, computer, or tablet where we can walk through your project together, answer your questions, and get a few simple measurements. Planning, design work and selection meetings can easily take place with respect to social distancing.
Let us know if you’re interested – no better time than NOW to get a head start on learning how to make the most of your space and Love Where You Live!

We share this information as we care about our community, clients, staff, and trade partners. We will continue to update our policies as the situation changes. Stay safe and healthy!

Cases & Latest Updates

Phone web browsing
Click image for CDC information as it becomes available, in addition to updated guidance.

SOURCE: Remodel AutoPilot

These Bathroom Ideas will make you GREEN with Envy!

Gorgeous Green Cabinet

Green is a calming, centering color—the color of rejuvenation—so it’s a great choice for bathrooms. Often overlooked, green is a somewhat unexpected, but often stunning shade for nearly any bathroom. From emerald to sage, this color can provide a moment of calm before you start your day or as you get ready for bedtime. Green is an incredibly versatile and flexible color, perfect for modern bathrooms or classic ones. Whether you want to splash a coat of paint on your vanity (like this stunning hunter green version from craven_haven) or you are into a total tile revamp, here’s some inspiration to make you want to go green. 

Hunter Green Paint

One of the easiest and most effective ways to use green in your bathroom is simply by repainting the walls with a rich, glorious shade like this one from kathrynlavin. Green paint comes in a wide variety of shades, but this earthy, moody hue is giving us major inspiration. Plus, when paired with the white fixtures and subway tile, it stays light and airy. 

Shiny Green Tiles

from jonathanbondphotography nearly stopped us in our tracks. The bold chevron-laid tiles surely make a splash (no pun intended) in this guest bathroom. We love the rich jade hue that feels sophisticated but still a little playful, especially when paired with a pop of pink and gold. 

Soft Mint Green

If you want to create a spa-like space in your home, this stunning bathroom from architectseat is the perfect inspiration. The light mint green tiles feel incredibly clean and refreshing, especially when paired with the teak wood details. Pair a light, airy green with bamboo or natural wood in the bathroom for a neutral look that still has a pop of color. 

Deep Green & Dramatic

This stunning green bathroom from divinesavages is incredibly moody and utterly chic. We adore the art deco wallpaper and the gold bamboo mirror. Thought it’s on the darker side of the palette spectrum, this bathroom gives off a luxurious and calming feel. We love this kind of tone for a powder room or a guest bathroom where you can truly impress your family and friends.

Deep Green Soaking Tub

What is more luxurious than a soaking tub? ​A dark green soaking tub, like this one from thehousepotnoodlesbuilt. This bathroom has just enough color to give it plenty of texture and depth, but the contrasting white walls keep it light and open. While black and white will always be a classic combo, consider mixing it up and swapping out black for a dark green instead. 

Wallpaper & Moody Tiles

This lovely bathroom pictured by beckykimball may be small, but it’s big on style. We love the pairing of the dark green tiles with the lighter, fresh, beach-y wallpaper. If you’re worried that a dark green will overpower your bathroom, pairing it with lighter greens, grays and tans will keep it airy and bright while still packing a punch. 

Pink & Green

We think it’s time that pink and green replaced black and white as the best color combo out there. The colors of this fun bathroom from maxmademedoit give off a tropical island vibe we can’t get enough of. The soft, muted pink walls are balanced and grounded by the rich green floors and bathtub in this room. 

Paint the Tub

If you want an easy way to add a pop of green to your bathroom, consider refinishing a tub. A vintage clawfoot tub like this one from postprentisdesign is the perfect canvas for a coat of paint. Plus, this is a fairly easy DIY to do again and again whenever you feel like updating your bathroom space. 

Focus on the Wainscoting

If your bathroom has beautifully detailed wainscoting like this one from Small Stuff Counts consider giving it a mini makeover with a fresh coat of paint. We love how this moody green paint transforms the whole bathroom and makes it feel totally new. The right color can give your bathroom a facelift without needing to spend a lot of money. 

A Classic Bathroom

Many of the green bathrooms so far are modern, but this sweet bathroom from melanielissackinteriors proves that the shade works for nearly any home decor style. We love the muted sage green wainscoting, especially when paired with the lovely floral wallpaper. There are so many shades of green out there that there’s bound to be a version that works for your style. 

Sophisticated Simplicity

Green is such a powerful color that it can make your bathroom look unique and interesting, even in a simply decorated space. This chic bathroom from  karynmillet features a lovely shade of hunter green and a geometric wallpaper that complements it perfectly. 

A Pop of Color

Green is one of those colors where a little goes a long way. This cozy little bathroom from thewhitepeppervintage proves that even a pop of green paint can totally transform a bathroom. Painting the back of a shelf or the interior side of a door is a great way to give your bathroom a mini-makeover without a lot of effort. 

Mermaid Inspired

Now is the time to embrace your inner mermaid and channel the deep seas. As in this beautiful bathroom from theoldpiggery_, green is a great color to create a nautical vibe that’s a bit different from the standard blue and white version. Pick dark greens with blueish undertones for an ocean-inspired look. 

Create Your Own Built-in

We love this bathroom from claire.a.ramshaw, which creates the illusion of a built-in shelving unit with a single coat of paint. This rich green not only makes the whole space appear larger, but by painting the shelf the same shade as the wall, it almost blends into it and becomes invisible. 
We often shy away from dark colors because we’re scared they will make small spaces feel claustrophobic, but the truth is that a deep moody color like green will actually push the walls out and give the room more depth. 

SOURCE: https://www.thespruce.com/green-bathroom-ideas-4149804

TIP: HOW TO CLEAN SOAP SCUM OFF GLASS SHOWER DOORS

How to Clean Soap Scum Off Glass Shower Doors - Sebring Design Build

Cleanliness is one of the most important parts of our lives and we spend a lot of time and money to clean our homes. We use our showers daily, but how clean is your shower? Does the glass door still look clean & transparent? If not, we’ll guide you through a few ways to clean your glass shower doors and make them sparkle again.

How to Clean Soap Scum Off Glass Shower Doors - Sebring Design Build

What is Soap Scum?

The most basic issue with the glass shower doors is the soap scum. It snatches the transparent look of your shower door and makes it look ugly and gross in no time. Soap scum is basically a white colored filmy layer or it sometimes appears as gray which is formed when soap is used in hard water. The hard water contains magnesium and calcium which forms a scaly layer when mixing up with soap, minerals, and dirt present in tap water.

How to Clean Soap Scum Off Glass Shower Doors - Sebring Design Build

Removing Soap Scum

Soap scum should not be ignored. Soap scum is a substance made up of minerals and dirt which make layers on any surface and if not cleaned in a timely fashion and can become harder like concrete. So it is recommended to clean it on daily basis. There are many ways to remove soap scum.  Here are just a few tested guidelines for removing soap scum efficiently.

How to Clean Soap Scum Off Glass Shower Doors - Sebring Design Build

Every Day Squeegee

First, a basic and simple way to keep glass shower doors clean and shiny.  Soap scum is a compound/chemical reaction so it gets harder when not cleaned on a regular schedule. To avoid serious problems down the line and avoid having to spend a whole afternoon scrubbing your shower doors, it is necessary to clean glass shower doors on a daily basis and a squeegee can do the task for you.

A squeegee is basically a t-shape blade which is made up of rubber or leather used to spread or wipe liquid over the surface.  A squeegee is the best to clean glass walls after every use, just rub the wet walls and all your cleaning is done. Make sure to rub so that walls are no longer wet. If you don’t have time to perform daily cleaning,  you could try a rain repellent and protect the walls of your glass shower doors.

How to Clean Soap Scum Off Glass Shower Doors - Sebring Design Build

Cleaning Soap Scum with Vinegar

Vinegar solution contains a small number of acidic solutions (varying from 5%-20%) which are formed by fermentation of ethanol with acids. The solution can dissolve minerals in it so this could serve best to remove soap scum from glass doors. All you need is a spray bottle, vinegar and dish detergent that can fight grease.

Mix 1 part vinegar with 1 part dish detergent and spray the liquid on the glass door. Allow the liquid to work on the scum, wait for about 20-30 minutes and rinse with a clean cloth and make sure to completely dry out the surface.  You can also choose to use a dish cleaning scrubbing wand and fill the wand with this solution and keep this in the shower for daily (or almost daily) scrub downs.

How to Clean Soap Scum Off Glass Shower Doors - Sebring Design Build

Soap Cleaning Scum with Ammonia

How to Clean Soap Scum Off Glass Shower Doors - Sebring Design Build

If you are suffering from severe issues caused by soap scum then use of ammonia is recommended. Ammonia is a pungent compound made up of nitrogen and hydrogen.  This cleaning aid is normally called in to serve serious cleaning problems.

To clean your shower, all you need to do is take a spray bottle, water and of course ammonia. Fill the bottle by mixing 1 part ammonia and 3 parts water and drizzle it on the affected area. After about 5-10 minutes, take a scrubbing brush and scrub the surface to loosen the soap scum. After scrubbing all the scum, wipe it with water and dry it completely. Never ever skip this step.

Precaution: As ammonia is a highly pungent compound do not forget to wear plastic or rubber gloves. Keep your face at a secure distance from the place you are going to apply the solution.  Make sure the area is well-ventilated as well.  Always carefully mix given quantities of ammonia and water.

How to Clean Soap Scum Off Glass Shower Doors - Sebring Design Build

Cleaning Soap Scum with Baking Soda

Baking soda is a white chalky powder that has a wide range of uses from baking to cleaning. To get the best results for cleaning your shower doors, mix it with borax (another abrasive compound associated with cleaning). Mix equal amount of borax and baking soda and add water to make a paste. Then take a wet sponge, add the mixture and apply it on the area covered with soap scum. Remove all the scum and paste and dry the surface completely.

How to Clean Soap Scum Off Glass Shower Doors - Sebring Design Build

Safety Measures to Take

Cleaning your glass shower doors can be a big task and also requires a few safety measures to remember.  Always make sure to avoid creating a toxic environment and check before mixing cleaning products–there are many cleaning products that should never be mixed!  Use of both bleach and ammonia at the same time is prohibited. The vapors of ammonia and bleach create a toxic gas called chloramine which causes shortness of breath and chest pain.

How to Clean Soap Scum Off Glass Shower Doors - Sebring Design Build

Tips to Keep your Shower Doors Scum Free

  • The key to keeping your shower doors clean and scum free is to keep it dry. Make it a habit to dry glass shower doors after every use.
  • A lot of the soap scum mess is due to hard water–reduce the chances of soap scum by finding ways to soften hard water.
  • In the designing phase, always select a design which allows airflow properly so that the drying process is easy to accomplish or it will become a headache for you.
  • Shampoos and conditioners with oils are good as hair products but they are not good for the health of your glass shower doors, use less oily products as possible.
  • Soap scum is mainly caused by soap and especially bar soaps–try to use liquid soaps and body washes, as liquid soaps are more easy to dissolve.
  • Last but not least, always keep a towel and spray bottle in or near your shower, do a fast scrub/wipe down after every use and keep the walls dry.

SOURCE: https://sebringdesignbuild.com/how-to-clean-soap-scum-off-glass-shower-doors/

What Would You Prefer?

THE REAL RISK IN HIRING SOMEONE TO COMPLETE A PROJECT IN YOUR HOME IS NOT IN SPENDING TOO MUCH; INSTEAD, THE REAL RISK COMES FROM PAYING TOO LITTLE AND THEN ACCEPTING AND LIVING WITH THE POORLY BUILT & DESIGNED END RESULT…

+ Estimated low price. (what’s not included?)
+ Vague scope of work.
+ Poor workmanship.
+ Unmet expectations.
+ Poor communication.
+ Questions not asked that would improve your project.
+ Lack of best practices.
+ Lack of loyalty to trade partners.
+ No design expertise.
+ Inexpensive, unproven products & materials used.
+ Total chaos during the project.
+ Your home left messy.

= Pain and dissatisfaction from undesired results.

OR

+ Fixed all-included price. (knowing allowances before project is started)
+ Transparency. Clear and documented scope of work.
+ Excellent communication
+ Questions asked that can improve your project.
+ Quality craftsmanship.
+ Quality, proven products & materials used.
+ Best practices
+ Loyalty to trade partners.
+ Design expertise you can see.
+ Clean, organized workspace.
+ Your home left better than it started.
+ Met expectations.

= Pleasure of enjoying your new space for years to come!

The answer seems pretty simple to me, but ask yourself…
“What would you prefer?”

Kitchen trends for 2020

Discover the top design
trends for the new decade

Eager to find out the latest kitchen trends for 2020? Look no further. This year it’s all about making a statement with rich colours, stormy shades and open shelving. We’ve done our research to get the low down on which design trends and kitchen styles the public have been scouring the internet for.

Natural materials and earthy tones are due a comeback, and we wave goodbye to rose gold as we welcome brass accessories back into our kitchen. Read on to find out the latest kitchen design ideas that are set to make an impact in 2020.

1. Midnight blue

kitchen trends 2020

Luxurious and dramatic, midnight blue has been storming the kitchen style charts in recent years – but always with a designer price tag to match. This stylish hue is going mainstream. Marble and brass beautifully complement this popular shade. Brass taps and marble effect worktops finish the look.

2. The stone age

garcinia matt stone kitchen

2020 is all about getting back to nature, with a sharp rise in searches for natural materials – particularly stone. The matt stone finish of this kitchen is extremely versatile and can be perfectly suited to a traditional or a contemporary kitchen. Pair with earthy tones, wooden chopping boards and lots of greenery for a kitchen that’s inspired by mother nature.

3. Merlot magic

pasilla matt carbon kitchen

Rich and indulgent, wine inspired kitchens are having a moment in 2020. Popular looks include pairing charcoal cabinets with deep, plummy tones or adding extra dramatic flair by giving your whole kitchen a bold refresh with cabernet inspired cabinet paint. This carbon kitchen is perfect for hosting decadent dinner parties.

4. Bold as brass

brass kitchen tap

With the increasing demand for dark kitchens, a rise in the popularity of brass accessories is predicted in 2020 across lighting, taps and handles. Brass stands out spectacularly well against a dark background, creating a classy and sophisticated look in your kitchen. Industrial brass taps are an easy way of giving your kitchen a contemporary edge and off-setting stormy shades.

5. Show-off shelving

white artemisia kitchen

Open shelving has had its time in the spotlight, and it’s being taken to the next level as we move into the new decade. Glazed cabinets with integrated lighting allow you to show off your glasses and plates, as well as making a style statement.

SOURCE: https://www.diy.com/ideas-advice/kitchen-trends-for-2020/PROD_npcart_100982.art