Remodeling a house is often necessary once the property becomes outdated and has a lack of functionality. As a homeowner, it is necessary to plan for a remodel if you want to increase the value of the house and boost its appeal. You also want that process to be as easy and stress free as possible, without breaking the bank. Here are a few important tips to follow to take the headache out of an upcoming home remodel.
Plan, Plan, Plan!
Planning each step of the remodel is necessary to avoid mistakes or complications that can occur. Whether it is choosing the features that will be upgraded or the design of the rooms, you will need to have a detailed plan in place and write out a clear timetable. Fortunately there are a number of apps that can help plan out a room's look. Using apps can allow you to save images for inspiration, create a checklist, and even write out a budget to make everything easy to access on your smartphone or tablet wherever you are.
Get the Proper Help
One of the most common mistakes homeowners make is attempting to remodel their property without the help of trained and experienced contractors. Although hiring trained professionals may be an investment, it can allow you to avoid stress and costly mistakes throughout the process. For large projects, you will need more people than you realize. Although you may be able to break down a few walls or paint, you will need to hire professionals to perform the electrical wiring or plumbing, which are more complicated parts of the remodel that are best left to the pros. Get referrals from friends and research reviews online to ensure you can find contractors you trust while getting estimates.
Budget for Issues
Although you may know how much money you have to spend on your remodel, it can be easy to exceed your budget due to unexpected expenses that arise. You may find mold in the walls or electrical issues, which will require spending more. Make it a point to set aside a portion of your budget for potential issues to ensure that you can resolve the problems without having to stress.
Knowing how to plan for an upcoming remodel can allow you to avoid unnecessary stress and headaches as you transform the look of your property. With the right tools and professionals used, you can have a smooth and successful process that yields beautiful results while improving the quality of your home.
Painting is one of the easiest and most impactful DIY projects for homeowners to quickly update their homes. Whether it’s a new look in a master bathroom, adding a pop of color to the guest room, finishing off a basement remodel or anything in-between, a fresh coat of paint provides a fresh spin that’s all your own. To make your painting project go smoothly, consider following these important steps before diving in to your DIY painting project.
4 Steps for DIY Paint Project Success
(Family Features) Painting is one of the easiest and most impactful DIY projects for homeowners to quickly update their homes. Whether it’s a new look in a master bathroom, adding a pop of color to the guest room, finishing off a basement remodel or anything in-between, a fresh coat of paint provides a fresh spin that’s all your own.
To make your painting project go smoothly, consider following these important steps. Take this task list from the experts at Purdy Professional Painting Tools into account before diving in to your DIY painting project.
Find inspiration. Having a final design in mind before starting your project can help you plan. From the obvious wall color to more intricate details like painting trim, doors, the ceiling and more, starting your project with a plan can help you avoid multiple trips to the store.
Remember, the details are important: incorporating the correct types and sheens of paint, using complementary colors, buying the proper amount of paint and more.
Collect the right tools. Part of the planning process includes ensuring you have the proper tools for the project. A paint brush, roller cover, roller frame, paint tray and extension pole are the basic essentials for your project’s success. From step ladders and putty knives to wood filler and drop cloths, it’s crucial to have everything you need.
However, keep in mind that not all tools are created equal. For example, when you use a high-quality paint brush, you’re more likely to paint straight lines when cutting in to corners and walls. You may also notice a much smoother finish, one without unsightly brush strokes, which means a more visually appealing result with less effort, too. One option is Purdy Brushes, which are specially designed and hand-crafted to ensure you get professional-quality results every time.
Prepare the area. Proper planning for your project depends on which room in the house you’re painting. The main rules of thumb include removing everything from your walls – including curtains, decor and switch plates – using drop cloths to cover floors; removing or lowering light fixtures from the ceiling; and emptying the room of tables, lamps, furniture and other movable objects. If this isn’t possible, push all the pieces to the center of the room and cover with drop cloths.
Don’t forget to prepare the surface you are going to paint. Patch and sand any holes or imperfections. Then wipe down surfaces you plan to paint with warm water, which helps remove dirt and dust that can sometimes prevent paint from adhering. If possible, open windows for better ventilation once you’re ready to start.
Clean up. When the painting process is finished and you’re appreciating the hard work, don’t forget the job isn’t done until you’ve properly cleaned up. Paint brushes and roller covers should be washed promptly after use to ensure they can be used again. Use warm water and mild detergent to clean then let air dry. If you end up with leftover paint, it can be helpful to save some for future touch-ups. One helpful tip is to write on the can what room or walls you painted, the date and color name. This information can be beneficial should you need to purchase more paint at a later date.
Find a tool selector to help you find the best brushes, roller covers and painting accessories for your project at purdy.com.SOURCE:
Bathroom and kitchen upgrades are among the most popular home renovations, but not just because the improvements are likely to increase the home’s value. Renovations to these high-use areas can enhance the practical enjoyment of your home while adding aesthetic appeal and style.
Home Upgrades that Really Work
Ideas and inspiration to create more functional spaces
(Family Features) Bathroom and kitchen upgrades are among the most popular home renovations, but not just because the improvements are likely to increase the home’s value. Renovations to these high-use areas can enhance the practical enjoyment of your home while adding aesthetic appeal and style.
A Better Bathroom
Aging and Accessibility
Create a New Kitchen
It’s the hub of the home, so it’s no surprise that many homeowners start with the kitchen when they’re planning functional upgrades. New appliances, countertops and tilework all add to the style and function of a kitchen, but don’t overlook these highly functional features that can make your home more enjoyable.
Find more ideas and inspiration for your kitchen or bathroom upgrade at jcpenney.myhomeprojectcenter.com.
Planning Your Project
Define your desires. Although obvious, many homeowners find this to be among the most challenging aspects of a renovation. Start by determining the scope of your project. It may be just a new tub or shower, or it may be the entire kitchen. Some homeowners find it helpful to consider their project in terms of must-haves and nice-to-haves so it’s easier to make adjustments as obstacles or finances require.
Set a budget. The easiest way to overspend on a renovation is to go into it without an established budget. If you specify what you can afford from the outset and plan against that budget every step of the way, you’re more likely to feel satisfied with your investment in the long run.
Expect the unexpected. If possible, review a blueprint of your home (or have your contractor take a look) to identify details behind the wall, like the layout of the plumbing and electric lines, which can be costly to relocate. It’s also a good idea to take a thorough inventory of your current space so you’re aware of any damage or wear that will need repaired before you begin.
Hire the help (or not). With some preliminary information on the complexity of the job and a better idea of exactly what you’re hoping to accomplish, you should be able to make a decision about whether the project is something you’re prepared to tackle on your own or if hiring professionals is more likely to provide the results you’re seeking.
Monitor progress. Even if you’re handling the project on your own, it’s a good idea to continually monitor the project in terms of budget, timeline and quality of work. It’s easier to make corrections as you go than to get to the end and discover a problem that needs reworking.
Photo Courtesy of Getty images (Main image Kitchen with brown chairs)SOURCE:
JCPenney Home Services
Apprehension and inexperience keep many homeowners from pursuing renovation projects that would make their homes more functional, enjoyable and comfortable. Getting your hands dirty on the front end – with some planning and preparation – is the best blueprint for a successful home remodeling project. To help you start your remodel on the right track, consider these tips.
A Handy Guide to Starting a Home Remodel
(Family Features) Apprehension and inexperience keep many homeowners from pursuing renovation projects that would make their homes more functional, enjoyable and comfortable. Getting your hands dirty on the front end – with some planning and preparation – is the best blueprint for a successful home remodeling project.
To help you start your remodel on the right track, consider these tips from Gary White with JCPenney Home Services.
Start with a plan
Although it may sound obvious, the first step really is to decide what you hope to accomplish with your renovation. At the least, begin to outline rough ideas to discuss with an expert. Reaching out to contractors before you’ve determined a basic idea for your project can waste time and money. Spend time listing the features you must have, as well as some nice-to-haves if budget allows. Also think about overall functionality, design and layout. If you get overwhelmed or need ideas, don’t hesitate to turn to online showrooms or magazines for inspiration.
Set a budget
If the sky is the limit, skip ahead, but if you’re like most homeowners, money matters. Have a clear idea of what you can afford to invest in your renovation before you get started, and if necessary, research the financing options available to you. Look for financing that provides deferred interest or low monthly payments to help manage the project cost. Setting a clear budget can help keep your contractors accountable, and it goes a long way toward ensuring you can enjoy your finished project without regret.
Draw up the plans
To help set your plan in motion, there are numerous online tools you can utilize to simplify each step of the process including design, budgeting and more. If you’re planning a home remodel, a comprehensive resource like JCPenney Home Services offers a one-stop-shop for bathroom remodeling, countertops, custom window treatments, flooring, heating and cooling, water heaters and whole-home water treatment. You can find unique landing pages for each service that provides product information, complimentary in-home consultations and online pricing quotes at JCPenneyhomeservices.com.
Involve a professional
Unless you have the time and skills, you’ll want a licensed and insured contractor to lead the project when you’re ready to get your renovation in motion. It can be wise to solicit multiple bids, not only to ensure you get the best value, but also to find someone whose work, style and experience is most in line with the needs of your project. After all, this person will be a big part of your life during a fairly stressful time period. Always check references and verify the contractor’s standing with local associations.
Get ready for work
Remember that you’ll need to create a work environment that is safe for your contractors and protects your valuable possessions. Establish a clear path to the project space for easy access and removal of debris. Furniture, appliances, room furnishings, valuables and breakable items should be removed from both the path to the work site and the work site itself. If your renovation project will involve an essential room, such as the kitchen or a bathroom, make alternate arrangements such as creating a makeshift kitchen with the bare necessities in another part of the house.
Kitchens and bathrooms are among the most common renovation projects, and countertops are often a focal point of these redesigns. However, choosing the right countertop can be overwhelming. To help make the difficult decision a little simpler, JCPenney Home Services experts offer insight on two of the most popular choices:
Granite countertops have long been the mainstay of a beautiful kitchen or bathroom. Granite is a natural stone, quarried from large stone deposits around the world. It can have many different variations of patterns and colors, giving each slab a unique appearance that is visually rich and dynamic.
In addition to its distinctive beauty and classic elegance, granite is also extremely durable. Granite is highly resistant to heat and scratches and, with proper sealing, offers good water and stain resistance and is easy to clean.
Granite typically needs to be sealed, both prior to installation and at least once per year. If properly maintained, a granite countertop will last for as long as you own your home, making it a potential long-term investment.
Quartz is another popular choice for countertops due to its durability, stain resistance and ease of maintenance.
Quartz is one of the most durable countertop materials and one of the easiest to maintain. It is highly resistant to heat, water and stains, including stains from coffee, wine, lemon juice, olive oil, vinegar and more. Unlike granite, quartz does not need to be sealed, making it easier to maintain over time.
To aid in the planning process without the need for a salesperson, a resource like the Countertop Wizard at JCPenneyhomeservices.com lets you scope out the project and order samples online. Simply enter measurements, browse and select materials and options to get instant quotes.SOURCE:
JCPenney Home Services
Summer storms are often accompanied by damaging hail, high winds, heavy rain and lightning that cause widespread power outages affecting homeowners’ peace of mind, and their pocketbooks. Get ready for the chance of inclement weather and power outages ahead with these tools and resources.
Plan Ahead for Power Outages
(Family Features) Summer storms are often accompanied by damaging hail, high winds, heavy rain and lightning that cause widespread power outages affecting homeowners' peace of mind, and their pocketbooks. Homeowners can prepare for possible power outages by establishing an emergency plan for their families.
"The coming of storm season often motivates homeowners to start thinking about how to keep the power on and avoid the costs and inconvenience associated with power outages," said Dan Roche with Briggs & Stratton.
Get ready for the chance of inclement weather ahead with these tools and resources:
First aid. Assemble a basic first aid kit with assorted sterile, compression and adhesive bandages, rolled gauze, adhesive tape, disinfectant, antibiotic ointment, tweezers, scissors and instant cold packs. Add pain relieving medications (including children's strength, if applicable) and a few days' worth of any regular medications you take.
Emergency kit. Include items such as a flashlight, battery-powered weather radio, bottled water, non-perishable snacks and personal hygiene items. Don't forget extra batteries that fit your devices and keep a portable cell phone charger on hand. The compact Rayovac Phone Charger, which is compatible with most USB-powered devices, holds enough power to recharge a mobile phone up to three times (depending on device) and holds its charge up to four months. Find more devices ideal for your emergency kit at rayovac.com.
Comfort items. What constitutes comfort likely varies depending on your family composition, but may include things like stuffed animals, soothing blankets or small toys for little ones and more practical items, including pillows and sleeping bags, for older family members. Remember that a storm may leave you huddled in a confined space or without power for an extended period, so diversions such as travel-size games and cards can help pass the time.
Backup power. Portable generators provide a solution during an emergency power outage to power essential items, such as refrigerators, sump pumps and lights. An option such as Briggs & Stratton's Storm Responder Portable Generator is equipped with a digital control panel that provides everything owners need to know, including the amount of power being used, total lifetime hours of the generator and maintenance reminders. Ideal for first-time buyers, the Storm Responder features step-by-step start-up, shutdown and storage instructions, as well as a safety guide printed directly on the unit. Be sure you have a transfer switch installed in your home so you are ready to safely restore the power to your home in the event of an outage. To learn more, visit briggsandstratton.com.
While portable generators can provide users with flexibility and comfort, homeowners and renters should only use portable generators outside in order to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning. Visit TakeYourGeneratorOutside.com to learn more about portable generator safety.
Information guide. In the aftermath of a storm, having emergency information at your fingertips is one less stress to fight. Compile contact information for family members, friends and close neighbors, along with your insurance agent. Also include any relevant medical contacts or information. Stash your guide along with your emergency and first aid kits so it will be within easy reach if you need it.
Seasonal weather can bring unpredictable dangers to your home and family, but assembling the right materials ahead of time will help ensure your family is well prepared to ride out the storm.
Photo courtesy of Getty Images (storm)
Interested in Publishing on The Home Idea?
Send your query to the Publisher today!