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Monthly Archives: November 2014

Creating a Beautiful Bathroom

By | Bathrooms, Ottawa, Renovations | No Comments

Bathroom renovations offer you the chance to enjoy spa like luxury in your own home every day. When considering bathroom renovations in your home there are several things you can add to achieve a stylish, luxurious look:

Walk in Shower

A walk in shower has become a bathroom must for modern homes. In fact, shower rooms are even more popular. Large spacious showers allow you to enter the shower without fear of tripping. You will have plenty of space to luxuriate in the warm water with the addition of multiple shower heads and even a steam shower option. If space allows many homeowners appreciate the addition of a built in bench. Benches provide the perfect place for tasks such as shaving legs and for overall relaxing. A bench is also ideal if you have a steam shower feature as you can sit and relax much like a sauna. Your entire shower experience will be changed with the addition of a walk in shower complete with stunning tile detail and glass walls and doors.

Soaker Tub

In addition to your walk in shower it is always nice to have a soaker tub for the perfect retreat at the end of a long, hard day. Soaker tubs come in a number of styles and can become a stunning focal point in beautifully designed bathrooms. Tubs have become sculptured and molded as a major design feature in bathroom remodels. They even come in a number of different materials including copper, stone, faux stone and other interesting colours and designs. You can create an even more striking focal point by hanging an elegant chandelier overhead or consider interesting lighting effects surrounding the tub to help set a relaxing mood.

Deep Sinks

Deep sinks are all the rage in designer bathrooms. A deep sink can be designed as part of your counter tops or installed as an undermount in a number of different styles and materials. Make sure you have the space below for deep sinks. Consider the potential loss of counter space and storage space in cabinets and drawers. They also work well for floating vanities as they add a feeling of substance to the room. Deep sinks can be custom designed to meet your needs. Some homeowners are even installing industrial style sinks designed for use in restaurants.

Creating beautifully designed bathrooms is easy with these three stylish features.

5 Problems that Can Affect your Home in the Winter

By | Foundation, Ottawa, Professional Tips, Winter | No Comments

The constant changes of winter weather can pose some issues for your home. Here are five problems you should prepare for to keep your home safe and sound this winter:

Ice Dams

Ice dams form at the edge of your roof and force water back up the shingles leading to leaks. When your roof is poorly insulated and your gutters are in poor condition ice dams can cause serious water damage due to leaks. In order to avoid ice dams you can do the following:

• Clear your gutters of debris
• Add gutter guards
• Make sure your attic is insulated and properly vented
• Install a membrane to repel water in your attic

Freezing Pipes

Pipes that are vulnerable to freezing include those in the attic, on outside walls as well as in crawl spaces. Freezing pipes will expand and often burst leading to costly water damage and even potential flooding. To avoid freezing pipes you can:

• Insulate outside walls, attics and crawl spaces properly
• Seal all holes in the outside of your home such as those around cables
• Allow a slow trickle of water from faucets leading to vulnerable pipes
• Use insulating sleeves on exposed pipes

Roof and Wall Issues

Your roof and walls protect your home from the cold. If there are any leaks or openings it will make your home more vulnerable. To avoid leaks and issues you should:
• Have a roof inspection to ensure your shingles are all secure
• Seal any cracks in your masonry between bricks as well as in the foundation Ottawa homes may see damage

Heating and Fireplace

You may heat your home using a fireplace, furnace, space heaters and even a wood burning stove. Each of these heating elements has its own risks. Make certain you:

• Avoid anything flammable coming into contact with any of your heat sources
• Avoid having too many heaters and other electrical items plugged into one source
• Have your fireplace and furnace serviced as the winter approaches
• Make sure smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are working

Floods

Take care of these flood threats:

• The foundation Ottawa homeowners have should be kept clear of snow
• Keep street basins clear to allow for drainage
• Remove property obstructions that could force water towards your foundation to avoid leaks

Being prepared will help you avoid costly damage from these five common winter problems.

Adding Character to Your Home

By | General Contracting, Home Renovations, Professional Tips, Renovations, Uncategorized | No Comments

Many homeowners decide to purchase a newer home and then find once they move in their house lacks character. There are many ways you can add character to your home with the help of general contractors Ottawa homeowners hire as well as a few of your own DIY touches.

Lighting

Dull and boring light fixtures can make a home lack style and personality. A simple DIY project is to install new light fixtures such as charming chandeliers in your foyer and dining room and stylish pendant lighting over the island in your kitchen. The general contractors Ottawa homeowners hire can also come in and do some major updates such as recessed lighting and even accent and task lighting under your kitchen cabinets.

Welcoming Foyer

Your foyer sets the tone of your home. To create a more welcoming entry you can make some changes such as hardwood for floors and staircases, hanging a new chandelier, adding wainscoting and a more substantial floorboard. You can also use furniture such as a chair and hall table with an accent lamp or two.

Add Built-ins

Look at unused space such as a corner or bay window ideal for a cozy window seat with storage. The fireplace is ideal for built-in shelves and cabinetry. A den is ideal for a “library” look with custom shelving. The general contractors Ottawa homeowners hire can offer many suggestions from walk in butler pantries to dining room banquettes.

Architectural Detail

Architectural detail can add character such as crown moulding, framing around windows and doors, higher floorboards and new doors. You can also consider major changes such as coffered ceilings, a skylight or cupola. You can add decorative chunky feet to lower kitchen cabinets, beadboard to the front of an island and even filigrees and molding to cabinets or bulk heads.

Fireplaces

Many modern fireplaces don’t have a hearth or mantle. The addition of a wood or marble mantle and surround can add a substantial, historical feeling to your home. A marble hearth will also add charm and substance. You can choose to go modern with less detail or use reclaimed wood to add rustic charm.

Staircase

Give your staircase a makeover. Remove tired old carpet and replace steps with hardwood. You can also update your banister and rails or add a new decorative runner.

Adding character to your home will make it more welcoming with a unique sense of style.

To Renovate or Sell Your Home

By | Custom Built Homes, Home Renovations | No Comments

The problem many homeowners face when their home starts to feel a little cramped is whether it is better to renovate or sell. There are a number of things to consider before you make your decision including:

Neighbourhood

Your neighbourhood has played a key role in your life for the past few years. When you decide to move you might not be able to afford a home in your current area. This can be especially troublesome if you have kids as well as for your commute to and from work. When you decide to renovate you have the option of creating a perfect custom home in the perfect location without the need to uproot your family.

Investment

You also have to consider expenses. You want to know how much money would be available to you for renovations and compare that to the ideal renos you would need to make it worth your while to stay. You then have to look at what your budget would get you if you were to purchase a new home. Weigh the differences and decide which works more in your favour in hand with your wants and needs. Many homeowners have plenty of equity in their home. This means you can get a loan that is simply added back onto your mortgage. This is both an affordable and logical option as it does not add an additional financial burden to monthly expenses.

The Changes

Make a list of all of the things you would do to create a custom home if you were to stay. List each item such as an additional bathroom, the need for a basement reno, a new kitchen, a mud room, a better backyard, etc. Each change will have an impact on the cost as well as the improvement to your comfort. Ask for quotes from a few contractors and see if the numbers match up to the amount of money you have available to invest in the renos.

If you feel your current house has the homey feel you desire in a neighbourhood you love, making a move is not the answer. Speak to a contractor and share everything you love about your home and everything you hate. Speak to your bank and then begin the renovations to create a custom home you will live in comfortably for years to come.