This time of year may find you dreaming of ways to spruce things up, perhaps because you’ve spent the winter indoors, staring at all the things in your home that could use some updating. If you find yourself with lots of ideas for changes you’d like to make, then you’ll be glad to hear that National Home Improvement Month in May is just the start. We’ve got some tips and advice to help you get started on your next project!
Where should you start? Careful planning of your home improvement projects will enable you to update your home, increase the value of your investment, and customize your living space—all for a lot less than the cost of a new home. So, take a look at those to-do lists, Pinterest boards, and Houzz Idea Books you have and make some decisions.
What would make you the happiest to check off your list? What project would make the biggest difference in giving you some extra time to spend with your family?
If you’re tired of painting wood siding or it’s time to replace vinyl siding, stone and brick can dramatically change the look of your home. Materials like these last a lifetime and require very little maintenance. If you don’t want the look or the cost of brick or stone, there are attractive options. Fiber-cement siding is guaranteed for 50 years, insects can’t bore into it, and it serves as an extra layer of insulation for your home — which can lower your heating and cooling costs.
A deck is meant to add to your enjoyment, not your workload. Decking materials have come a long way and there is no reason to build a deck now that requires lots of maintenance. Composite and engineered materials such as Fiberon® Decking and St. James® Railing Systems, not only eliminate annual maintenance like staining, sealing and checking for rot or loose nails, they also provide long-lasting freedom from warping, rotting, splinters, stains from spills, and damage from the sun, moisture, and insects.
If you want to go one step further, a little smart home remodeling can also remodel how much time and money need to be spent maintaining the yard, by replacing some of that lawn with something you might enjoy more. Adding a porch, remodeling your patio into a complete outdoor kitchen, or building a new sunroom will treat you to living space you can use throughout the year.
In the kitchen, quartz countertops are taking the place of granite and marble because composites are just as sleek and shiny, but virtually maintenance-free. Engineered surface options such as Silestone, Zodiac® and Cambria are particularly durable. Replace the top-mounted sink with an undermount solid surface or stainless sink that’s easier to keep clean because you can wipe spills and crumbs from the countertop directly into the sink and there’s no crevices to catch dirt. Add a high quality faucet that won’t break or peel in a year’s time.
If you want the look of rustic wood floors in a high-traffic area, without all the fuss, you can get the durability of porcelain tile in a finish that looks exactly like weathered wood. There are also new, low-maintenance veneers with the appearance of natural stone or exposed brick to add texture to any wall.
For a low-maintenance bathroom, your goal is to is eliminate grime, reduce grout, and get rid of glass. Use solid surface materials on walls and in showers, or choose large-format tile to vastly cut down on the amount of grout. One 24” x 48” porcelain tile covers the same area as 72 4”x 4” tiles! A walk-in, doorless shower can be designed using little or no glass. Also, it might surprise you to learn that a high-quality fan/vent with a timer can cut your workload by removing moisture from the room. Less moisture means less mold and mildew. Voilà, less scrubbing!
We can help you in your planning by outlining options and discussing the improvements you can make to make your life easier, within your budget. If you’ve come to the conclusion that one of your top home improvement goals is to spend less time and money on routine home maintenance, inside and out, call us today!