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Category Archives: Design Inspiration

Steel Roofing

2016’s Biggest Home Renovation Trends

By | Blog, Design Inspiration | No Comments

Starting a renovation in your home, whether big or small, can be tedious and overwhelming. But ultimately, if the result is what you envision, it makes it all worth it in the end. If you’re in the process of selecting a few potential additions for your home, here are the top trends of 2016 in home renovation trends for you to consider.

Low-Maintenance Designs

Who doesn’t love low-maintenance designs? Especially with the increasing amount of Millennials entering the housing market, the idea of turning towards a renovation project becomes only worth it when the result is low maintenance. And who blames them?

For this reason you can find an increasing amount of homeowners this year leaning towards quartz countertops. Rather than invest in granite or marble, you can have the stunning aesthetic properties in an easy-to-maintain quartz.

In addition, major brands are revamping their stainless steel appliances to get on board. Enter black finger-resistant stainless steel appliances. You get added warmth, along with an easy to clean design without all of those pesky fingerprints.

Restaurant Features in the Comfort of Home

From smoked meats, to those fire roasted pizzas – restaurant cooking trends are increasingly finding their way into the hearts and homes of many. The Smoker Cabinet from Kalamazoo is not your average barrel smoker. This beauty is a prize work of art that consists of a gravity-feed charcoal design, along with an insulated box that maintains peak temperature for those perfectly smoked ribs. But it will set you back about $10,000. But for some, you simply can’t put a price on smoked meat.

Enter Virtual Reality

Planning a design or remodel throughout your home can be unnerving, especially if it’s a big project you have planned. Well thanks to the wonderful world of technology, you can virtually eliminate any doubt and uncertainty. Programs such as Lowe’s Holoroom, is a prime example of how the benefits of virtual reality are making life easier. So you can take the guessing out of a renovation by seeing the virtual reality of it first.

Return to Formal Dining

Do you use your dining room as a home office? Be honest – has it basically turned into a storage area? In modern living, the dining room has fallen in importance with families choosing to eat in the living room or at an eat-in kitchen nook, if they eat together at all. For many people, dinner parties aren’t even a thought – until now.

This year is all about the return of the dining room. These rooms are formal yet warm, classic yet modern. It doesn’t matter if you’re eating filet mignon or Kraft dinner, dining alone or with a party of twenty – everything looks better, feels better, and tastes better in the comfort of a dining room designed around its intended purpose.

Energy and Water Efficiency

There’s no doubt that there’s an increasing trend growing for environmentally conscious, and sustainable home products and appliances being incorporated into designs. That’s why you can continue to see growing popularity in energy and water efficient appliances. From smart water heaters to Energy Star approval, they not only help the environment, they can also save you money in the long run.

So whether it’s a simple upgrade, or you have a vision for redesigning your entire kitchen space, you’ll now be well informed about the hottest trends entering homes this year.

Lucas Contracting offers a wide suite of home renovation services to homeowners in the Ottawa area, including Nepean, Kanata, Barrhaven, Orleans, and Gatineau. Our interior renovation services include kitchen, bathroom, flooring, basement, framing, drywall, and open concept designs.

5 Kitchen Styles That Are Turning Heads

By | Blog, Design Inspiration, Kitchens | No Comments

The kitchen is one of the most heavily used spaces in a home; the room where everyone reconnects after a long day and enjoys a meal and family time. So why not create a kitchen space that is as beautiful as it is functional? There are so many new trends in kitchen design, from classic black and white colour schemes, bold and unique fixtures, and even automated technologies – think of hands-free faucets, sensor-activated lighting that illuminates the kitchen as you enter, and more!

Whether you are looking for ideas for your next kitchen renovation project or want to make sure that you are getting the most out of the current construction of your dream kitchen, make sure you take advantage of all the latest and greatest features and trends popular kitchens are boasting today.

Here is a quick guide to some of the most popular trends in kitchen renovations taking over the current market:

Stainless steel (almost) everything is red-hot right now

Stainless steel appliances have almost always been a crowd favourite (at least they have been for the last 25 years or so), but now people are incorporating stainless steel in other areas of the kitchen as well, opting for stainless steel fixtures, stainless steel sinks, stainless steel construction materials, and even stainless steel countertops. It’s a great material that provides a clean, modern aesthetic and is very durable for any busy family kitchen prone to frequent bumps and bashes.

Reused, reclaimed, and repurposed materials that look distressed are incredibly popular in the kitchen

More and more people are becoming aware of their environmental footprint and wanting to be more environmentally friendly with their renovations projects. Instead of sourcing new products, many homeowners are instead looking to reuse, re-claim, and repurpose all kinds of different materials including barn and deck board, even flooring and doors, and implement them into their new kitchen construction projects.

Using reclaimed and reused items can result in some of the most creative kitchen designs. If you are looking to unleash your creativity and flair for the unique there are endless possibilities for innovative DIY projects!

Blending modern design aesthetics with antique pieces is more popular now than ever before

Most of the things that we interact with on a daily basis look like they come from the future – clean lines, high-end materials, shiny finishes, etc. – but more and more people are starting to blend that very clean aesthetic with antiques, retro and vintage pieces, and distressed items that bring a quaint charm to any living space.

Blending the old with the new is a very interesting dichotomy that fosters a unique contrast. When pulled off successfully, it creates a beautiful, dynamic living space.

Herringbone patterns are taking over kitchen design

Herringbone patterns are starting to pop up in high-end kitchen designs around the world – with luxury resorts, restaurants, and hotels leading the charge.

It’s now possible to get your hands on herringbone construction materials for almost any application and finish. Try opting for a bold pattern like herringbone to create a focal point in an area of the kitchen that may have been otherwise unnoticed – perhaps the corner desk space or breakfast nook.

Advanced technology has made its way into the kitchen

Technology has invaded and taken over most every aspect of our modern lives, and the kitchen is no different. Touchscreens, internet-enabled devices, “smart appliances”, LED lighting and a whole host of other technological advances are now commonplace in the modern kitchen – and there’s no sign of this technological revolution slowing down anytime soon.

Looking for Ottawa professional renovations and roofing services? Contact Lucas Contracting today!

EPDM Roofing Ottawa

5 Signs An Open Concept Renovation Is Right For You

By | Design Inspiration, Fashion, Food for thought, Kitchens | No Comments

The overwhelming majority of homeowners that purchase pre-existing homes want to do one thing and one thing only the second that they get their hands on the keys. They can’t wait to rip out as many of the interior walls as humanly possible and create a real open concept floor plan ASAP – and it’s easy to see why.

Anyone that has spent any amount of time in homes that were built before the 1980s and 1990s are going to find that they are a little bit tight and some would even say cramped. There are walls everywhere cutting up the space. While that may have been all the rage in the past (we’re looking at you, Craftsman-style bungalows and single-floor ranches), nothing could be further from the truth today.

Open concept floor plans are definitely in vogue today, and here are five signs that you might need to pull off an open concept renovation the first chance that you get.

Open concept renovations open up the view

While you’ll certainly want to make sure that each space in your home is clearly delineated from the rest, and that you have privacy wherever you need it, most people don’t want a bunch of walls breaking up their view of the rest of the property.

Open concept renovations remove a significant chunk of those interior walls, and in turn open up the view.

One large living space provides breathing room

If there are too many walls in a smaller home, you’re definitely going to feel it. When you knock those walls down and really open things up with a new renovation, you’re going to be able to breathe easier. The entire space will just feel larger.

Open concept floorplans are perfect for those that like to entertain

Those that love to entertain are definitely going to want to think about opening up their floor plan as much as humanly possible. There is nothing worse than feeling like you’re stuck in the kitchen always from all the action because there are a bunch of walls between you and your guests.

Knocking out your walls will help you better monitor your children and pets

Multitasking is such an important skill in our modern world and you’re going to have to become a master of it when you need to get things done while watching your children and your pets. Take down as many walls as you can that are between you and where your kids are going to be most of the time, and you’ll be able to get work done without them ever leaving your sight.

The right open concept floor plan showcases your feature highlights

Whether you want to make sure that your kitchen really sings or that people are drawn into your living room, an open floor plan can really help to funnel the action into those specific spaces and frame them in a very positive light.

Remember, a proper open concept renovation is about a lot more than knocking down walls and calling it a day. You need to make sure everything is done properly and the structural integrity of your home is not compromised. Contact Lucas Contracting to bring your open concept vision to fruition.

Custom Home

The Beauty of a Custom Home

By | Custom Built Homes, Design Inspiration, Ottawa, Professional Tips | No Comments

Are you left feeling cold by row upon rows of cookie cutters homes in your neighbourhood? Do you have a creative spark that you’d like to see reflected in your home? If so, a custom home from Lucas Contracting might be right for you. Let’s explore the beauty of designing and building a custom home:

Your Dream, Your Home

When you choose to build a custom home, you have complete and total control over every aspect of your home, from the dimensions of each room to the slope of the roof to the tile width in the bathroom. Our talented design team can offer plenty of guidance or recommendations if you need some design inspiration, but you have final say over every specification of your brand new custom home. This is your chance to combine all of your favourite elements into a home that is entirely unique, and entirely yours.

Plumbing

When you are renovating an existing home, you are limited by the existing layout of the plumbing systems, unless you want to spend a lot of money rearranging the system. Likewise, in cookie-cutter new builds, you are restricted in this regard. Not so with a custom home from Lucas Contracting. You get to choose where each and every plumbing element is installed, including sinks, toilets, tubs, and showers. Combine the best of form and function without being limited by an existing arrangement.

Flooring

It can be frustrating purchasing a “used” home and having to pay for costly renovations to make the home your own. Pulling up carpet, resanding old floors, trying to live in a home where 50-year old dust is being kicked up. With a custom home, you get to treat yourself. Choose whatever modern flooring option you like (warm and natural red oak? eco-friendly light bamboo?) and sit back while our hard-working team brings it all together.

Never Settle

In “used” homes and model new build homes alike, you are limited by others in terms of size and style. Not so with a custom home. You never again have to settle for living in a home built according to someone else’s vision or style. Purchasing a home is expensive enough as it is, and renovations are costly and take a while. With that much investment on the line, you may as well fully commit to the process with a stunning custom home.

Contact our team to start the process of turning your dream home into a reality. Give us your “wish list” and we’ll get started on building a gorgeous custom home with every detail built according to your exact specifications.

Green roof

6 Benefits of a Green Roof

By | Design Inspiration, Food for thought, Roofing | No Comments

Are you looking to upgrade your roof? If so, you should definitely investigate the benefits of a green roof. Lucas Roofing is at the forefront of the green roofing initiative and our team has extensive experience with expert installation. In addition to the tremendous ecological benefits of green roofing, you will also experience many benefits as a homeowner:

Extend Lifespan

Traditional roofing products wear down much faster than green roofing. For one, roofing components like shingles can become damaged over time due to weather and wind. Waterproofing membranes can also experience micro-tears due to temperature fluctuations. With a green roof, there are no shingles to be damaged, and waterproofing membranes do not experience the same temperature fluctuations. If you want to double or triple the lifespan of your roof, then you should choose a green roof installed by a professional Ottawa roofing company.

Save Money

Green roofs significantly reduce your heating and cooling costs. Traditional roofs are the cause of the greatest heat loss in your home in the winter, and reach the highest temperatures in the summer. A green roof greatly reduces both of these effects. According to a 2003 study by the National Research Council of Canada, green roofs lower summertime air conditioning demand by 75%. In the winter, homes with green roofs retain up to 35% more warmth than traditional roofs. What does that mean for you? More money in your pocket every month.

Stormwater Management

Green roofs blend seamlessly into our environment’s water cycle. Rainwater is stored by the substrate. The water is then taken up by the plants and later returned to the atmosphere through transpiration and evaporation. This advantageous benefit is contrasted with traditional roofs, which often route water down toward your home’s foundation. This could lead to foundation deterioration or water damage in your basement. Stormwater management helps the environment, but it also helps to protect the structural integrity of your home.

Green Space

Aside from the obvious economic and environmental benefits, green roofs also turn your otherwise bland and dull roof into a functional garden space. Especially if you do not have much yard space, this can be a very attractive feature. Hone your green thumb, improve your home’s curb appeal, and increase the value of your home with a functional garden space atop your home.

Join the green movement and help protect the environment while getting some great added benefits as a homeowner. Contact our Ottawa roofing company today for more information or to request a free quote.

6 Common DIY Mistakes

By | Design Inspiration, Ottawa, Professional Tips, Renovations | No Comments

The renovations Ottawa homeowners plan often include some DIY projects that can lead to some common mistakes including:

Under-budgeting

It is very easy to under-budget your DIY projects. This is because you consider only the cosmetic aspects of the job. For example if you want to do your flooring you look at the cost of the hardwood or laminate but not the cost of additional materials required to install them. As well it is easy to miscalculate measurements which can lead to huge underestimations on the materials required. It is also common for a DIY project to spin out of control. You might see a tile that is loose and decide to replace it only to find you damage other surrounding tiles and have to do the whole wall.

Timing

The DIY reno always takes longer than you think You look at your kitchen cabinets and figure you can paint them white in one weekend. However you don’t realize that sanding takes time as well as priming. Once you get to what you think is the final step for your top coat it ends up taking three coats for each cupboard door. Suddenly your easy weekend project takes months because you just don’t have the time to complete the project.

Require Skills

Unfortunately watching a video on how to install tile is not going to give you the required skills to complete the project. It is easy to think you can handle the job without any issues. However once you start into the project it becomes a sloppy mess that isn’t going as planned. Most DIY projects require a certain level of knowledge and skill the average homeowner just doesn’t possess.

Tools

The renovations Ottawa homeowners undergo require the proper tools to do the job right. Even something as simple as cutting a tile can be impossible without the right tools.

Improper Prep

Many DIY-ers skip steps to save time and money. However without the proper preparation you can completely ruin a project. From skipping the sanding to not using a primer on wood before painting, missing a step can lead to disaster.

Measuring

Measure twice and cutting once is very important if you want to save time and materials.
It is always tempting to take on DIY projects to save money. However the renovations Ottawa homeowners require are often better left to the professionals to avoid costly mistakes.

5 Unique Renovation Ideas

By | Design Inspiration, General Contracting, Home Renovations, Ottawa | No Comments

If you consider yourself a unique person your home should reflect your individuality. Here are five unique renovations Ottawa homeowners can consider for a truly customized look:

Utilize Your Stairs

One of the biggest wasted spaces in your home can be found beneath the stairs. Create a cozy reading nook just like Harry Potter for yourself or the kids by adding a banquette style seating area with an overhead lamp and plenty of pillows. You can also look for unique storage ideas such as shelving or pull out drawers for extra shoes, coats and backpacks. Another good use for that little area is to build a workspace for your computer.

Baseboard Kitchen Drawers

Kitchen storage space is always at a minimum. A new trend is to build drawers into the baseboards beneath kitchen cabinets. As long as you are spry it offers easy access to any number of items. You can store cookie sheets, frying pans and muffin tins or lesser used items such as fancy table linens.

Pumped Up Shower

Luxurious showers seem to be replacing the soaker tub in modern bathrooms. Consider an easy to clean walk in shower room sans the high maintenance glass doors and walls. Look at installing curved seating where you can lie down and enjoy a steam shower. Look at high end shower features such as programmable faucets or music and lighting.

Platforms and Sunken Spaces

In rooms with higher ceilings consider adding a platform with a storage space below. Platforms work well in awkward spaces with interesting window configurations in turrets or sun rooms. You can also do the opposite and opt for a sunken living space with steps leading down into a comfy seating area. This is very retro and was a popular design feature in homes in the 60’s and 70’s.

Retractable Window Wall

Install a retractable wall of windows at the back of your home. You will bring in natural light and have a lovely view of your garden area. Accordion style patio doors can open up the entire back area of your home for access to your backyard. This is great if you back onto a natural forest or conservation area. It is also perfect if you have a pool or do a lot of summer entertaining.

The renovations Ottawa contractors provide can customize your home to reflect your personal taste and lifestyle.

Designing Your Dream Kitchen

By | Design Inspiration, Home Renovations, Kitchens, Ottawa | No Comments

Many people don’t take the time to stop and consider some of the finer features they could include in their kitchen remodel. Here are some exceptional ideas to consider for the kitchen renovations Ottawa homeowners dream of:

Breakfast Area

The breakfast area is an often overlooked kitchen feature most families would welcome. You can work with your contractor to find a way to make it work in your remodel. Whether you have the potential to add additional space or can work with wasted space you never considered, a breakfast area is a wonderful place for casual family dinners and people to gather during parties.

Ceiling Detail

The perfectly designed kitchen features ceiling detail that completes the look. From elegant, deep coffered ceilings to interesting textures reflecting the look of traditional tin, the kitchen is the perfect room to add interest to the detail of your ceiling. Think of beams for a cottage feel or barn board for a rustic look. Cape Cod loves bead board and modern kitchens are ideal for deep set overhead lighting to set a contemporary mood.

Eclectic Flooring

Hardwood is always a lovely touch to any room, however it can get a little boring. The kitchen is the perfect place to have a little fun with the flooring using checkerboard tiles, interesting insets and even rustic painting techniques. You can go upscale with marble or stone or create a mosaic using tile. Sheet vinyl can also be cut into interesting, artfully inspired patterns.

Double Appliances

The ultimate host has double appliances to accommodate cooking a gourmet meal. Double ovens and cook tops keep everything cooking without having to reheat anything. Double dishwashers makes clean up a snap and double fridges store all the fresh foods and drinks you need even for larger parties.

Sustainable Materials

Sustainable materials are popular for the kitchen renovations Ottawa homeowners undergo. From bamboo cabinets and flooring to recycled glass and paper countertops, being eco-conscious during your renovation can make you feel good about your kitchen once it is completed.

Natural Light

Natural light can make your dream kitchen bright and airy for easy food prep and lower energy bills. Consider adding more windows, skylights or knocking out a back wall to add garden doors out to the deck.

These innovative ideas help make the kitchen renovations Ottawa home owners undergo well planned and dream worthy.

6 Eco-Friendly Flooring Options

By | Design Inspiration, Eco-Friendly Options, Flooring, Home Renovations | No Comments

There are many reasons homeowners consider using an eco-friendly flooring option when they are decorating their homes. Ottawa construction companies have many green flooring choices homeowners love including these great options:

Cork

Cork is not only beautiful it is practical. It is the ideal flooring for areas such as the kitchen as it offers a buffer when glasses and dishes are dropped. Cork comes in many different textures, patterns and configurations making it a versatile option as well. You can find cork stained in a number of tones just like wood making it comparable in its application and selection. It is a sustainable material that contains natural antimicrobial properties which fights allergens and also resists mold from damp. This adds to its appeal as an excellent and popular green choice Ottawa construction companies can install in kitchens.

Bamboo

Also 100 percent sustainable, bamboo is highly durable and equally as attractive as hardwood. It comes in many grains, stains and patterns making it versatile, elegant and comparable to less eco-friendly wood.

Linoleum

Linoleum might not seem like an eco-friendly option but it is actually made from natural materials. Unlike vinyl, linoleum contains linseed oil. Sawdust and tree are just two example resins that make its natural makeup. It comes in a number of patterns and colours making it a fun option ideal for kitchens and even entry halls.

Glass

Recently glass tiles have made a splash as the go to tile for bathrooms and kitchen backsplashes, however they are also now making their way to the floor. Perfect for elegant bathrooms, glass tile is made from recycled bottles and adds a custom look with plenty of charm and personality.

Wool Carpet

Carpeting is still a preferred flooring choice for stairs as well as bedrooms and basements. Wool carpet is 100 percent sustainable and contains no volatile chemicals that are harmful to the environment. You can also find runners and area rugs made of sustainable jute, sea grass, sisal and cotton as another sustainable carpeting option.

Reclaimed Hardwood

If you have your heart set on hardwood reclaimed hardwood is an option. It is made from reclaimed wood or salvaged from renovation sites and demolitions. It has plenty of character and add a rustic look or can be refurbished to elegant perfection.

From love of the planet to beauty and durability to price, there are many reasons to opt for eco-friendly flooring.

The Benefits of Open Living Concept

By | Blog, Design Inspiration, Ottawa, Renovations | No Comments

When building a new home or renovating an old one, Ottawa residents often consult general contractors for their expertise. The majority of general contractors in Ottawa will often recommend a modern, open concept living space when undergoing major renovations. They suggest this because there are many benefits to open concept living including:

Let the Sun Shine

Nothing lets the sun shine into your home more effectively than an open concept plan. It works wonderfully for townhouses and row houses that have limited windows at the front and back of the home. Open plans also work well in semi-detached homes with limited outer wall space. Without walls to interfere with the sun and block the windows you will always have plenty of natural light. Working with a general contractor, Ottawa homeowners can explore the best options to bring in the most light.

Clear Line of Sight

Open concepts are an excellent option if you have small children. You will have a clear line of sight for the entire floor allowing you to keep an eye on them while you work in the kitchen. You can also work with layouts allowing you to watch TV while you cook or to set up a work area for kids to do their homework close by while you make dinner.

Entertainment Friendly

An open plan will make your home entertainment friendly home. Whether you are in the kitchen, sitting at the dining room or relaxing in the living room everyone can talk easily without feeling left out of the fun. Planning with a general contractor Ottawa homeowners will find the perfect layout for easy conversation.

Open & Large

An open concept layout makes your home feel larger. You will be able to break down the walls separating your home into a series of small rooms and create one large open space filled with light and an airy feeling.

Decorative Kitchen

If your renovations are going to involve a brand new kitchen you will want to show it off. Stunning kitchens are always the focal point of a main floor open plan making all of your efforts and investment well worth it.

When working with a general contractor Ottawa homeowners can discuss the possibility of open concept for their home. Your general contractor can assess the structural challenges and make recommendations that will open up your space. You can then enjoy living in a spacious, light filled home ideal for entertaining and family living.