February 19, 2016
Simple DIY Decorating Projects You Can Do This Weekend!
There are a lot of benefits to tackling household projects yourself, especially when it comes to the financial aspect.
Start with simple projects that are easy enough for every skill level, and save a considerable amount of money buying the materials from a local hardware store.
Each of our ideas can be completed within a weekend from the beginning to the end.
Freshen Up the Flooring
Whether you have a hard surface or cushioned carpet throughout the house, adding area rugs and runners is a cheap and easy way to add style. This is the perfect project when winter is around the corner because rugs add comfort and insulation in any room.
Add Crown Molding
Make any room seem larger than it really is with the easy addition of crown molding. Hardware stores usually have corner pieces that simplify the do-it-yourself installation to complete a very clean look. It might be a good idea to update the existing baseboards to look more modern and match the color of the crown molding.
Clean and Decorate the Fireplace
The majority of the year, the fireplace only serves as a decoration in the center of the room. Once the cold weather has passed for the year, thoroughly clean the fireplace so that it can be decorated with indoor plants or artwork. If you are up to a larger project, you could take the opportunity to change the appearance of the fireplace with paint.
Organize and Redecorate Shelving and Bookcases
If you are like most homeowners with cluttered shelves, spend the day organizing all of the videos and books. It is going to be a major improvement when the shelves look tidy, and it will be much easier to locate specific items. Don’t be afraid to throw anything out that you no longer have an interest in using to free up some space.
Change up the Lamp Shades
Some of the most beautiful lamp shades look like a carefully planned art project. There’s no reason to spend a lot on new lamp shades with a few artistic additions to your existing decor. Add new fabric or adorn the lamp shades with beads so that it adds more uniqueness to the entire room.
Update Cabinet Hardware in the Kitchen
Antique knobs and handles can start to look drab if everything else has been updated. There is an entire aisle in the hardware store dedicated to cabinet and drawer hardware that you could easily install within a few minutes. The most time consuming part of this project is choosing between some of the great looking styles that are available.
Install a Tile Backsplash in the Kitchen
A longer weekend project involves picking out ceramic tiles to create a brand new backsplash. It might start off slow, but it should move along steadily once you get the hang of the installation process. Placing your own tile is going to cut a lot of the cost out of make a major improvement in the kitchen.
Make Picture Frames Uniform
Collecting new frames throughout a few years is pretty much a guarantee that they are mismatched. Without going through the trouble of replacing each of them with new frames, take everything down and add some paint. When everything is a unified color, they will give off the impression that they are all matching.
Redesign the Bedroom Decor
Pick out a few items that you would like to change in the bedroom and start redecorating. It doesn’t take long to add a fresh coat of paint, and then you can find matching curtains and a new comforter. By updating major visual elements, it will freshen up the entire room in as little as one weekend.
January 17, 2014
The Value of Purchasing Replacement Windows
If the windows in a home are fifteen to thirty years old, the homeowner may want to consider replacing them with more cost efficient ones. This can not only save money, but add value to the home if the owner is thinking about putting the house on the market. There are several other reasons for purchasing replacement windows such as:
The current windows are outdated or in disrepair
Older windows can become worn or faded and begin to look outdated. This can hurt the overall appearance of the home.
Outside elements are affecting the windows.
As a home settles and ages, areas around the windows can form small gaps. Rainwater sometimes enters through the windows, causing damage to the home’s interior. Condensation can also form between the glass panes of the window due to the rainfall or from the varying degrees of temperature inside and outside the home. This can also cause mildew to form, making the windows appear dirty.
- To make the home more energy efficient.
Energy efficient windows can literally save the homeowner hundreds of dollars a year by reducing overall heating and cooling costs.
How to Get Overall Energy Efficiency When Replacing Existing Windows
There are a few factors to consider when replacing windows in the home:
Look for an NFRC label
The National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC), is a non-profit independent organization that has a recognized performance rating system for doors, windows and skylights. An NRFC label means a window has been tested and approved by the organization as energy efficient. Listed on the labels are measurements that can help in determining the overall energy efficiency of the window. The U-factor, which refers to the window’s insulating properties and the Solar heat gain co-efficient (SHGC) rating. The SHGC indicates amount of heat the window can block out that comes directly from the sun.
Consider double or triple paned windows
Both double and triple paned windows help to greatly reduce heat loss because each kind comes with a vacuumed and sealed insulating air space between each layer. Make sure the windows also have glazing and coating which can help to further reduce heat loss or gain.
Hire the right contractor
Although there is several methods available for replacing existing windows, hiring a competent contractor will ensure the new windows are installed to be as energy efficient as possible.
Replacing windows is a huge investment. However, if done correctly, it can literally save thousands of dollars in energy bills over the years and can also significantly improve the overall appearance and value of the home.
November 8, 2013
How to Plan a Home Renovation
Undertaking a home renovation is a big decision, but one that more and more people are choosing. There are a couple main reasons for this. One reason is that people are more motivated to sell their homes, and so want their house to look its best. But the other, perhaps more important reason is that they want to stay in their home, but want to change it to suit their needs better.
There are countless home improvement ideas out there, and so it is possible to change just about any aspect of a house in order to turn it into what the homeowner really wants – whether that is giving the outside a facelift, or completely repurposing an interior room.
But as was mentioned, this is a big decision, and a lot goes into a home renovation, so planning the process out is critical. Thankfully there are steps homeowners can take to make sure they are doing it right.
One of the biggest problems with many home improvement ideas is that they are vague. A homeowner might say “I want a more efficient kitchen.” or “I want to give my house more curb-appeal.” But these are vague ideas that will not yield good results.
Homeowners need to make sure they write detailed descriptions of what they want to achieve, and do their best to draw out what they are envisioning. This way by the time they are talking to architects or remodeling contractors, their ideas are clear.
When planning a remodel, homeowners need to make sure they are being realistic. This includes being realistic about how much time and money they can put into the project, how much space they have and can utilize, and what they can do themselves.
A lot of homeowners start thinking about home remodeling ideas and convince themselves that they can do all the work. Doing the work themselves can be less expensive at face value, but the reality of the situation is that most homeowners do not have the time, tools, and expertise needed to do a renovation properly.
Looking into remodeling contractors really is a good idea, since a good contractor will help the homeowner to make good decisions on design, materials, and what the homeowner should outsource vs. doing on their own.
Obviously there is a lot more that goes into fleshing out home remodeling ideas, but these are two of the biggest stumbling blocks that homeowners encounter. By being detailed with their plans and being realistic about what they can and cannot handle, homeowners are setting themselves up for smooth sailing when it comes to renovating their house.