Home Renovation

Why You Should Buy A Fixer-Upper

To buy a fixer-upper home or not to buy a fixer-upper home, that is the question. There are many home buyers out there who want to fix up their home and customize it to their liking. And on the other hand, there are those who would rather buy a home and leave it as is. 

Buying a fixer-upper isn't for everyone, but there are plenty of reasons to undertake the endeavor. Here are a few reasons invade you're on the fence.

  1. Always a deal

Most fixer uppers are usually sold for a great price, which is the biggest attraction for buyers. They usually sell for anywhere from 18% - 25% less than comparable homes in the area. 

Keep in mind fixer uppers will require you spend a lot of money on the renovations. Have a contractor give a thorough estimate of what each job will cost, and be sure to budget an extra 5% for the unexpected expenses, because they will arise. 

  1. Making it your home

Fixer-upper homes up allow the owners to customize the home exactly as they wish. What's also need about these, is they let the new owners live in them before they begin renovations. 

On the flip-side, living in a demolition zone can be less than enjoyable. Maybe you can talk to the contractor and see if it can be completed in corners; this can leave you a section of the home to live in while they build.

  1. Sweat equity

A good portion of fixer-upper homes are often older with a different layout than homes built today. The parts of the home that show age and personality may need to be remolded to fit your taste, so don't be afraid to add your own touch. 

Coloring the home to your taste will make you appreciate it that much more. 

  1. Because you are a DIY'er

For those who are quite handy and have a lot of know how, a fixer-upper house will put their skills to the test.and the payoff will be the bragging rights and...

Jobs You Will Want to Hire Out

On this blog we usually promote DIY projects, but not today. Sometimes the workload can be just too large, or advanced for a homeowner. When this kind of circumstance is the case, it is almost unavoidable to hire out the work to a professional contractor. 

If you are flipping or renovating there will surely be several parts of the home where you hire a professional to make sure the job is done right. You pay for what you get (typically) and hiring out is usually expensive. When you hire out you'll save yourself time and hassle. These are the four jobs that you should probably hire a contractor to complete. 

Roofing

If your home needs a new roof this is the most important project to hire the professionals. It will take forever if you do it yourself, and you could even do it wrong. If you're working on the flip house, just remember, time is money. 

If you've never installed a roof, but feel like you can learn through YouTube, do yourself a favor and hire it out.

Plumbing

Plumbing is a dicey venture best left to the professionals. It's possible you could make a huge mistake and cause yourself hundreds, if not thousands of dollars in damage. Sometimes plumbing can be an instant issue, or it may take months to notice the problem, so why even chance it?

You would be better off hiring a professional who does this for a living. The time you'll save will be much more valuable than the cost you save by doing it yourself, and possibly doing it wrong.

Structural improvements

The newest trend in homes are open floorplans. As a flipper, chances are you will need to knock down some walls. The problem with this is that you can't just knock down any wall. Something may crumble! If you knock down the wrong wall...

8 Home Improvements Under $1,000

Here's how you can upgrade you home in under $1,000!

1. Install a smart thermostat

Heating and cooling your home accounts for more than 40% of the total energy usage. Having a programmable thermostat allows you to keep an eye on the temperatures even when you're not home. Many people forget to turn it off when they leave for work in the morning and it runs all day. Having a smart thermostat allows you to manage it from the road. There can be a substantial amount of savings over the long-term with this cool feature.

2. Update your fixtures

Old lights, vanities, and appliances can really make a Home look old. New anything will breathe new life into the home. Simply installing new hardware on cabinets gives it a fresh new look. Replace the spa think that your house that look old and it will go along way.

3. New toilet

Replacing an old, ugly, heavily used toilet can make a substantial impact of your home. Toilets only cost anywhere from $100-$300. The new toilets even use less water which can shrink your water bill over time. 

4. Reglaze the bathtub

Bathtubs can really make or break a deal. They are a pain to install, so every buyer really hopes the current one is in good shape. For a couple hundred bucks you can reglaze your tub and make it look brand new. 

5. Lay down a tile floor

Tile is sexy, and it makes a home look elegant. Shiny new floors really help homes sell. They are easy to clean and don't hold dirt and grime like carpet does. Lay some time in your bathroom and if the budget allows, in other parts of your house.

...

Inexpensive Kitchen Upgrades Before You Sell

Your kitchen is the room of the house you spend most of your time in whether you know it or not. This is where you make your meals, entertain your friends, or talk to your family day today. 
One day you may look around and see your kitchen isn't quite up to your standards and it needs a fresh makeover ASAP. Luckily a kitchen up grade can be done for less than $5,000. 

Upgrades that will boost the value

1. Repaint the cabinets and replace hardware
A fresh coat of paint and some new knobs are easy ways to give your kitchen a quick makeover without it draining your wallet. Hardware is often underestimated in the change it can bring to a kitchen. A simple new look can help modernize cabinetry without a whole lot of effort. Try to get knobs with the same drill holes as your current ones, drilling new holes to perfection isn't always that easy. 

Estimated cost: $250 hardware, $300 paint

2.Add a backsplash
Does the ugly wall or old backsplash bother you when you're doing dishes? Adding a modern backsplash can do wonders for a kitchen. They're not that difficult to install, and they have the benefit of coming in many shapes, size, and styles. 

Estimated cost: $1,000

3. Replace the lights
You Lighting creates the feel of a room, so it's vital to have good lighting in a kitchen. Pendant lights the well above islands, and under cabinet lights provide a classier look. If your white fixtures are already modern, then all you may need is to replace your existing bulbs with LED's. Lighting is usually a bit expensive, but if you shop at the right...

What Type of Fixer-Upper Are You Buying?

Taking on a fixer-upper is a task that isn’t for everyone, but it can be worth it in the end if it is done right. If you are a handy person and are willing to put some sweat into the home, you can get a great return on the home. Not every fixer-upper is alike though, so finding the one that best fits your skills is crucial. The first step is always to decide which homes are goldmines, and which are endless money pits.

There are three types of fixer-uppers: a cosmetic fixer-upper, a plain ugly fixer, and a demolition. Knowing the difference between each will help you make the best decision on which one to undertake.  

Cosmetic Fixer-upper

This house needs a facelift and probably hasn’t had one for a while. The sellers may not have ever kept up with it, or didn’t want to spend the time and money to get it up-to-date. Commonly these upgrades include new paint, floors, lighting, landscaping, minor repairs, and maybe appliances. For a handy homeowner this wouldn’t be a nightmare. A couple trips to the home improvement store will get you on the right track.

A plain ugly one

This house is ugly, but you may not think it’s that bad. This ugly duckling has a bit more wrong with it, but it’s not a disaster. The home is in good shape, but it will require a bit more remodeling and wide-ranging repairs. If you are a person who sees their vision clearly and can execute like a boss, this is the house for you. Not to mention will you get a better deal, and will probably make that little bit extra when it comes time to sell. It will be worth it in the end if you do it right.

Common traits of ugly fixers are:

Small rooms and a choppy layout – Look for nonloadbearing walls to take out...

How to Warm Your Bathroom In Style

Winter can be a hard time for your house, especially when it comes to comfortability. Sometimes bathrooms can be one of the most treacherous parts of your house, especially in the morning!

There’s a good chance your bathroom is made of tile, marble, or porcelain, and they aren’t conducive to warmth. With a little innovation and some sweat, you can make your bathroom enjoyable in the winter mornings by filling it with heat. Here are a few ways to heat up the bathroom

Heated floors

Warm bathrooms begin at the ground and heat is known to rise. Heated floors are one of the best things to step on in the morning. It keeps your toes warm, but also keeps the temperature of the room warm. The greatest benefit is it adds significant value to the home, so when you are ready to sell, expect a decent price increase!

This isn’t exactly easy, you will have to rip up the existing floor and lay electric cables or hydronic tubing. Once it is installed though, you’ll wonder how you went without it your whole life. These work really well because bathrooms are typically smaller, and can contain the heater better than a wide open room.

Towel Warmer

Everyone knows the second the shower turns off, it’s a race to grab the towel and get warm. Heated towel racks make getting out of the shower not so painful. They look like miniature ladders with heat-emitting rungs, and are large enough to hold several towels and maybe a robe.

Adding a heated towel rack can be easy or difficult, it’s essentially up to you. You can buy a freestanding one that has to be plugged in, or you can mount one to the wall or floor. The mounted ones tend to be hydronic based, and are connected to the homes plumbing.

Different models come with different options, like a timer, temperature control, how many towels, etc. Regardless, they...

How to Manage Winter Lawns

Winter isn’t always a break from lawn care, often times depending on where you live in the United States. Generally, lawn care comes down to the three needs, keeping your grass protected, short, and fed.
In between snows, make sure you pick up any branches your lawn might have, and leave the leaves as long as they’re not piling up. Mow them up to spread them around as they will act as a good mulch to protect and nourish the lawn.

Dormant lawns

If your lawn is brown in the winter, it means it’s dormant, and not growing. It’s best to keep this type of lawn short and let the earth water it. Don’t waste your time trying to water your dormant grass. You will essentially be preventing any diseases and pests that could benefit from dead blades of grass. Dormant laws are low maintenance; just do your best to protect it from debris, people walking on it, road salt, and anything else that could bother it while it sleeps.

Active growing lawns

If your lawn is somehow still growing green grass, then it’s obviously still growing. If you have over seeded your lawn with a cool-season lawn like Kentucky bluegrass, then water it regularly. Pretty much water it as needed to keep it green.  If you don’t want to tend to it, there’s always the option of letting it go brown. This is a good option if you want to save water, and don’t feel like mowing.

Fertilizing is only needed when you live in the southern states where it’s usually warm. Only feed them during winter, before it frosts over. Pull what weeds you can find, and spray herbicide in late winter.

Any lawns

These tips help, but leaving your lawn alone doesn’t hurt either. Here’s what you don’t want to do.

Do not let heavy foot traffic stamp...

Tackling Your Kitchen Clutter

Anyone who has a home knows that keeping your kitchen clean is a chore. It serves as the heart of the home where most family members spend most of their time. Chances are it’s used for more than eating purposes, so to keep it under control fro backpacks, books, mail, etc. these three simple steps should help you manage the monster.

Countertops

The biggest surface in the house is the countertops, and they serve as the best drop zone for everyone. When you go to cook you often have to maneuver around things, and reorganize your countertops. So a good way to eliminate this hassle is to establish a “clutter free” zone. This is a place reserved for food prep only.

You can always have another spot as the clutter zone, but you should clear it once-a-week. The key to being clutter free isn’t what you put up on the counter; it’s how often you clear it off.

Take notice of which kitchen tools and utensils you use regularly, and irregularly. Find another spot for the items you use irregularly, these items could be vases, decorative dishes, or coffee makers. Keep the items you use frequently close and accessible; if possible try to get them off the counter. A good spot, and decorative if done right, is to hang them on the wall. Knives, pots, pans can all be out of the way, hanging on the wall while looking nice.

Pantry

Pantries can be a dream come true, or a nightmare depending on your management of it. Take care of this room as it’s often the holder of your delicious food. Use the storage space to your advantage, and start to manage this room properly.

You first want to pull everything out of it. Wipe down the shelves and give the empty pantry a good cleaning. Next look at expiration dates and pitch accordingly. If items are nearing their expiration date, repackage them and put those back in last so you...

Quick Remodels to Boost The Resale of Your Home

It’s the beginning of September, and that means fall is finally here. Now is the time to finish that home project you’ve been meaning to do all summer, or wait until next year. I’m going to share a few remodeling lessons with you, and hopefully you can get it done before winter hits.

One of the quickest and easiest ways to boost the value or your home is to remodel your bathroom. Your fashion style isn’t what is going to boost the value. If you take a cruddy bathroom, and transform it into a functional space, prospective buyers will find it more attractive. Surprisingly home shoppers look for the number of bathrooms in a home, so if you add one more, it will only help your chances.

The median bathroom remodel is roughly $12,000, with $.87 cents of every dollar recovered.  If you spend a decent amount of $3,000 you can definitely get a decent return out of that.

Before you spend a ton of money on new counter tops, ask yourself why you are renovating. If you plan on putting it on the market, hold off on the counter tops. Your money would be better spent for you to enjoy them versus trying to make a few extra bucks in the sale. Surprisingly, kitchen remodels will get you the least return out of any remodel. Kitchens recover only half of the money spent.

One of the best remodels you can do is to remodel your basement. Generally they cost about $10,000. If you do it right, and the basement has become the ultimate man cave that room will likely get you five times what you’ve invested in it. 

If you have the money to spend, the best remodel you can do for a resale, is to add another floor.  Extra floors can give you 100%+ on your investment.

...

Top 10 Kitchen Remodels to Not Get Burned By

Remodeling your kitchen is one of the best things a homeowner can do for their house, also one of the most expensive. This can add thousands of dollars to the value of your home, but it’s crucial it is done right. With all the options available to you, that many more things can go wrong, and this month long kitchen project can be extended a lot longer. No one wants this. 

Before you start destroying your kitchen, read these top 10 tips to avoid so you aren’t up the creek without a paddle midway through. 

1.       Don’t overspend – Take a look at the market and decide which level of upgrade is most appropriate for you. Search the low, middle, and expensive upgrades; some can range from a simple $2,000 paint job, up to $50,000 complete renovation with countertops and appliances. If you are friends with your neighbors, ask to look at theirs to see what kind of kitchen they have. This can keep you from over/under spending. 

2.       Avoid an identity crisis – Don’t try to make a home into something it was not intended to be. This means if a single story 70’s ranch is turned into a contemporary luxury estate, it’s not going to fit. All homes are built with a certain architectural style in mind, and straying too far from that during a remodel can be disastrous.  You’re spending too much money to create a kitchen that looks out of place. 

3.       Keep the plumbing where it is – Moving water and gas lines to match up with sinks, ovens, stoves, etc. can cost you out the wazoo. Leave them alone to keep some money in your pocket. 

4.       Watch out for the wrong floor plan – If new appliances isn’t in the budget this time around, keep your floor plan at the front of your mind. Is the pattern still the same between the...

13 Ways to Not Get Screwed by Your Contractor, pt. 2

This is the second part of yesterday’s “13 Ways to Not Get Screwed by Your Contractor” post. We have talked about the best way to find a contractor, how to do your bidding, choosing the right one for the job, knowing their background and skills. We are picking up at number 8:

8. Ask for references, and call them

Ask for their references, and if it takes forever (which it might) then that’s a red flag. There is probably reason for it.

9. Check out the work

Ask if you can go see a couple projects he/she might be working on now. Any good contractor will be happy to show off his work.  They should also have some before-and-after pictures of their best work.

                10. Where is their headquarters

It is ideal to have contractors who live nearby. This will generally get them to be there each day, and be on time.

                11. Experience counts

Go only for the contractors who have been in business at least five years, and who have had the same name. There might be a company who has a bad reputation for faulty work, and decided to rebrand itself as a new company to escape the negative image.

                12. Insurance

It will be worth your time to ask about the general liability and workman’s comp certificates from each contractor you interview. Give the insurance companies a call to make sure their coverage is current.

                13. If the city permits

Stop by the city building department and see if your contractor has any complaints on them. It’s a little extra work, but it will give you the peace of mind you need to sleep soundly.

 

Hope...

13 Ways to Not Get Screwed By Your Contractor

Summer is the season most families begin tackling their home renovation projects. Americans spend a total of $130 billion on home renovations each year and is expected to keep rising, according to the U.S. Census data. Upgrading their kitchens and master baths are the typical remodels, but no matter the project it is important to be working with a reliable contactor. Here is the first of two parts about how to not get burned by a bad contactor.

 

  1. Third time’s a charm

Be sure to interview and find references for at least three different contractors. Don’t pick one because you like his company name or because he’s friends with your sister. Angie’s List is an excellent resource to find quality contractors.

  1. Compare oranges to oranges

Being consistent when asking contractors for a bid is key. Don’t add little projects to each’s bid because it can get confusing. Stay with a consistent workload for each contractor. This way you will find the true price and not have to remember if you asked contractor A to do a little more than contractor B.

  1. Callback turnaround

If you do not hear back from a contractor within 48 hours let them go! The contractor you want is responsive, eager to get to work, and driven. Without hearing back from them you should assume they’ll be this unreliable throughout the length of the project.  Make a time for in person interviews, and if they don’t show, take them off your list.

  1. Know their specialties

 

Find out what their specialties are, whether it’s kitchen renovations, commercial buildings, new construction, or whatever it may be. You want your contractor’s expertise to align with the job at hand.

 

  1. Get the skinny on the crew

 

How many people work under this contractor? Is it just a single contractor, or do they have a small team?...

Blogging for Us Left-Handed People

Is everything in your home made for a right-handed person? If you or one of your family members is left-handed cut them a break, and make it a little homier by adding a couple left-handed makeovers to the house.

Nine out of every 10 people is right-handed so it only makes sense that homes are made for right-handed people. Despite this statistic, there are still south [paws in the world.

Household appliances can be adapted to each’s comfort from fridges to faucets. Typically the engineers build for right-handed people, but here are ten ways to fix it up for those of us who are left-handed.

 

  1. Left-handed doors – All depending on the layout of your home, left-handed doors might not be much of an option, but if it can fit with your furniture and layout, this is one easy way. The best way to tell if a door is left-handed by opening it, putting your back to the hinges. And if it is to the left, we have a left-handed door.
  2. Left-handed sliding glass patio door – Sliding doors always slide in the direction of your dominant hand. A left-handed door slides open to the left, and vice versa. In order to make this change, you’ll have to buy it, or be the world’s best DIYer.
  3. Cabinet doors in kitchen – We use our dominant hands when going to grab cereal, cabinet doors, and items in the oven. Consider this when ordering your next cabinets; it will have a much smoother feel.
  4. Sink – a left-handed sink is where the drainer is on the right. If you cannot afford a left-handed sink, there are a few things you can do. If your dishwasher is on the left, there’s a start. You can place the drying rack to the left as well. And on the left is the ideal spot for paper towels and soaps.
  5. Kitchen accessories – Get yourself a pair of left-handed kitchen tools. What you will need is a left measuring cup, and can opener.
  6. Side tables - Putting your accent table on the left side of the couch will...

8 Ways to Fix Up Your Bathroom without Renovating

Are you excited about revamping your bathroom, but don’t want a huge project to last weeks or even months? This simple updates will make this seemingly daunting task not so intimidating.

Bathrooms are perfect rooms for mini-makeovers. These can be refurbished quickly, inexpensively, and professionally without a whole lot of effort. Before you begin, think about what vision you have in mind for this bathroom. Is it to be a peaceful, relaxing, place, or a dramatic tone styled spa-like room? Once you have an idea, start looking at these simple tips and you can be on your way.

 

Paint: Painting is always the ground zero for any revamping project. For a simple and serene look, try going for a soft and soothing tone for a better sense of space and light. If you want a rich, dark hideaway rom, go for a warmer saturated tone to strike the right mood.

Hardware: You will want to choose your drawers that are more modern, and will last years into the future. One thing that is nice to have, try checking out the softly closing drawers. These are great because they are stylish, and don’t make any noise. The spa look requires a nickel, or stainless steel drawers. For sophisticated and elegant looks, go for oil-rubbed bronze tones.

Storage: Keeping a bathroom void of clutter is key when your guests come over. Having a bunch of clutter creates mental stress and isn’t a positive feeling when walking into the bathroom. A good way to fix the clutter issue is to keep a couple storage cubbies. Keep these either under the sink, or in a closet, or mount them to the wall. Keep your toiletries and beauty equipment in here for easy access.

Lighting: In order to groom yourself properly, good quality light is mandatory. When you’re waking up in the morning, and getting ready for bed, a softer light is what you need. All you need is a dimmer switch. If you are looking to replace the vanity lighting fixture, don’t be nervous,...

Thinking about Flipping a House? Here's What You Need to Know

Buying a house, condo, apartment and flipping it is a proven method for getting more for your money. Each “fixer” is unique in its own way though. Not everyone is the same, and there will be some that just aren’t for you.
 
Flipping a piece of real estate property requires some sweat-equity for a great deal that just needs some attention. Because not all flippers will be the one for you, you must consider each ones value proposition and decide which ones are the money-makers, and which are the money pits. Most of the flippers fall into one of three categories, so here we go.
 
1.       The Cosmetic Fixer
 
This is a house that needs just a little cleanup, some repairs here and there, but nothing major. The sellers here didn’t want to invest much more time or money into the house and have dropped the price a bit in order to sell. The standard fix is all this house requires: new paint, countertops, lighting, landscaping, new carpet, and some new appliances will give this place the face-lift it needs. A couple dozen runs to Lowe’s or Home Depot should do the trick.
 
2.       The Ugly Fixer
This house is considered the ugly duckling. It may be ugly to everyone else, but you can see the real beauty inside. These houses need more extensive repairs and remodeling than the cosmetic fixer. If you are willing to put in the work, you will get the deal others have missed out on. Here are some traits of an ugly fixer.
a.       No curb appeal: fresh landscaping will fix this problem quickly. A newly painted door, new mailbox, and new house numbers will be the finishing touch.
b.      Great bones in bad shape: quality construction and architectural lines have been underutilized.
c.       Dark interiors masked with ugly décor: ugly décor is a major...

Transforming Your Boring Apartment on a Budget

Home decoration and design shouldn’t be rocket science, but occasional it can be for some people. The goal is to make this living space appeal to you and your tastes right? I’m going to let you in on a few tips and tricks to decorate on a budget, which will give your apartment a significant upgrade.

Plan ahead of time – A lot of people often try and do the one stop shop. They pick a random store and buy random furniture and accessories to furnish their homes. Decorating without planning ahead is a mistake. Not only are you going to spend more money than you planned, it won’t be as appealing as you originally thought.

It’s all about being prepared. Being ready and doing your homework to know where to buy the accessories you need.  Once you have the store(s) located, start checking all the prices.

Choose a color scheme – Choosing a right color scheme makes a world of a difference. This act alone can be the most important transformation technique of the process. Painting is relatively cheap so without a whole lot of money you can make your place into a brand new place, with a brand new feel. Choose colors you like, since you will be the one living in it.

Be sure to check out other existing schemes and choose the ones that appeal to you the most.

Add carpets or rugs – Apartments with a naked floor are boring. Adding carpets/rugs with freshen the atmosphere with colors, and give the feel of a larger space. Dust and dirty will also no longer be visible! Having a carpet will only require cleaning every-now-and-then instead of daily.  

If you have a small room, go for a big rug. This has the effect of making your room feel much bigger than it actually is. The best places to shop for cheap carpets/rugs are IKEA, Walmart, and eBay.

Mix Furniture- The final transformation piece is to replace your furniture. Look at many stores, because the more options you have, the more potential your...

The Need to Knows About Home Improvement & Taxes

If you are one the people who have an older type house and are looking to modernize it, read this article carefully. Whether you are making improvements, repairs, or just updating, your wallet will still take the same financial impact. They key is how to categorize each “upgrade”, this will determine if you can catch a tax break down the road or not.

A repair

A repair means your home is returned to its previous condition and doesn’t make it better than before. The nature and timing of the repair will determine how it will be viewed on your return. For example, patching and painting walls is tax neutral. They have no tax advantage.

Let’s say someone in your house has a disability, and they are bound to a wheelchair. If you build a wheelchair ramp, you are then allowed to claim every cent as a medical expense, but only if the improvement doesn’t increase the value of your home.

Energy-efficient upgrades

To qualify for an energy tax credit, you must improve your home using alternative energy. The Residential Energy Efficient Property Credit is equal to 30% of the cost of qualified equipment. A short list of the equipment is solar water heaters, wind turbines, and solar electric equipment. These credits have no cap for most property types, and the improvements do not have to be made directly to your home.

Can updates to a home office be deducted?

Yes! Repairs and improvements to the part of your home where you conduct your business is definitely worthy of a deduction. You just have to make sure the repair or improvement meets the criteria for business expenses to take the deduction. Deducting the cost over time could also be a reality, so check the rules carefully.

If none of these circumstances apply?

Don’t worry, if all your home improvements are viewed as capital improvements, you can still get a tax break by increasing your basis for purposes of calculating a gain or a loss come...

Best Ways to Update Your Louisville Kitchen

The kitchen is where a family spends most of its time. So if you are building your own home, or buying an existing home you plan on remodeling, the kitchen is the best (and most expensive) place to start. I will let you in on some of the most recent trends that make it one of the best rooms in the house.

  1. Make the kitchen open to the family room – rarely do people feel a room is too open.  Families today want everything to be together, so what better place than those in the kitchen mingling with those in the family room. Open room are the new trend!
  2. Plenty of stylish cabinets – Homes today are needing more and more storage than homes in the past, especially in the kitchen. It is ideal to fit as many cabinets in as you can while also having the right amount of windows and open spaces. Stylish cabinets look the best, but the style really depends on your own taste.
  3. Functional layout – functionality never goes out of style. Make as much space around the cooking surface as you can. Do not let any important kitchen piece (fridge, garbage can, sink, etc.) be too far away from the rest.
  4. Countertops that make a statement – Kitchen countertops really pull the room together. This is still all your choice though. Just make sure that they complement the cabinets and floors.  You can never go wrong with Carrera marble or granite. There are still plenty of choices out there, just be sure to pick what you are willing to live with for a while!
  5. High-end appliances – In most cases, high-end appliances perform better and last longer. Also, when you have these brand names, potential buyers will get a sense that this kitchen is special. Not only do they come in style, but they are absolutely beautiful.
  6. Today’s colors please – Like the fashion industry, interior designs can really make a person’s jaw drop. Begin with a subtle base from the neutral family, and accept it with a different color. Silvers still lead...

Top Ten Most Helpful Home Renovation Apps pt. 2

From the previous post, here is the second part of the top ten most helpful apps. Let’s begin where we left off,

6. myPANTONE ($7.99-$9.99, iPhone & Android) – Pantone began over 50 years ago and is looked at as the “language of color”, so they specialize in planning color schemes for rooms in homes. Homeowners who do it themselves can also see Pantone’s libraries and create their own color scheme. A great aspect about this app is you can color match. All you have to do is snap a picture, upload it and Pantone will pull the closest color from their spectrum. Saving them will giving you a head start when you decide to start shopping.

 

7. NousDECOR (Free, iPhone & iPad) - Here’s how to work this app. You see a piece of furniture you like, so you decide to take a photo of it. Then you can upload it using the app and it will search for the same piece, or ones like it, with different prices, and where to find it.

 

8. HomeStyler (Free, iPhone & iPad) – Before you begin any major reconstruction project; this app helps you envision the process from start to finish. You upload a shot of your empty space, and you can virtually try lighting, paint, rugs, cabinets, etc. Save your favorites to see which rooms look the best. A handy trick from this app is it has a list of nearby experts on call when you’re ready to throw in the towel.

 

9. iScape ($9.99, iPhone & iPad) – This one is similar to HomeStyler, but only it’s for outdoor spaces. Upload a shot of a garden, or yard and start adding trees, shrubs, chairs, etc. If you want to take on this project, this app lets you plan it all out and helps you envision the project, but if you are hiring a landscaper, you can explore the ideas and let them in on your vision. It even has a texture tool that adds grass, mulch, rock, and others to complete your plan.

 

10. Paint my Place (Free, iPhone & iPad) – Let’s...

Top Ten Most Helpful Home Renovation Apps Pt. 1

     Today's homes are smarter than ever, and the info you will need to plan and organize the remodeling of your home can fit in your pocket. If you want to choose which paint color looks best in your bedroom, or find a new coffee table for your living room, or how to renovate your kitchen, it can all be found on these apps! It's just as effective as hiring your own personal decorator. 

     Here are the first 5 of the top ten, easiest to use apps that can assist you in your home improvement.
1. Houzz. (FREE, iPhone,iPad, & Android) - if you are thinking of remodeling look at this app. It's essentially a picture gallery that can be broken down by room, style, location, and even furniture type. It allows you to save photos of the pictures you like. A cool feature it holds is being able to search for an specific paint brand and color and finding real homes that have used it. This way you can see what s finished room looks like in that color. 
2. Roomscan (FREE, iPhone)- this app draws out a rooms floor plan fairly fast. All that is required is placing your phone from wall to wall. So forget measuring out the room, and use your phone. This even works for oddly shaped rooms like "L" or rectangle shape rooms.
3. RoomHints (FREE, iPhone)- ever wanted to ask a large number of people about which decor looks best? This is the app for you. Simply take a photo of the room you're looking to decorate and upload it. In no time you will have people commenting on the picture with recommendations. Something great about this app is you can save your favorite comments and don't have to search through every single one of them to find it again. 
4. Snapshop (FREE, iPhone & iPad)- the hardest part about shopping for new furniture is visualizing how it will look in your home. What is so cool about this app is you just have to take a couple pictures of the room, and take another one of the piece of decor you're looking at...