The Perks Of Vinyl Siding

There are many great ways to improve the curb appeal of your property, but vinyl siding is one of the most popular. It is a great remodel because it allows you to completely alter the look of your home, while also improving its energy efficiency and protecting the structural integrity of your building. This article explains why vinyl siding is such a great investment for all types of homes.

Vinyl Siding is Stylish

First, it is important to dispel the misconception that vinyl siding is cheap and looks like plastic. There are many super inexpensive styles that are very common, mainly because of their price tag. The most common is white plank siding, which is a little shiny and looks a bit generic. Since it is so popular, many people think that all vinyl siding looks like this. In reality, there are many diverse styles of vinyl siding. You may have even seen some of these products but not even known that they are vinyl. For instance, vinyl is produced with detailed textures and prints that look very rich.

Faux wood finishes are usually the most popular because they give a building the look of wood siding without all the upkeep. You can basically find vinyl in any color imaginable. If you are interested in a unique or hard-to-find color, you can find manufacturers who produce custom-dyed vinyl.

Vinyl is Energy Efficient

Vinyl is also a great upgrade because it is installed directly over the top of your existing sidewall. This not only protects the sidewall, it also creates a buffer zone. The space between the vinyl and the wall is usually hollow, which slows down heat loss from your walls. Customers in colder climates often choose insulated vinyl. This further increases the efficiency of your walls, particularly during the winter. You could significantly reduce your reliance on your heating appliances and reduce your electricity bills. Vinyl also helps during the summer (especially if you choose a light color) because it does not absorb sunlight. Also, the buffer zone will slow down heat transfer, making you less reliant on your AC. If you’re considering vinyl, make sure you get professional remodeling contractors like those found at Four Seasons.

The fact that vinyl is stylish and efficient make it a great product for any home. You can make your home stand out from others in your neighborhood. It is also a very smart long term investment because it will make your home a little cheaper to heat and cool.

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Want To Replace Your Kitchen Windows? 3 Reasons To Go Bigger

Old and outdated windows are going to lead to higher energy costs. This is especially true when they are in the kitchen because you likely spend hours in the general vicinity on a daily basis. This makes it more noticeable compared to a spare bedroom that might only get used once or twice per week. There is nothing wrong with replacing the windows in your kitchen with exact replicas that have better insulation simply due to them being newer and made with better technology. But, it is worth it to consider installing windows that are slightly bigger to enjoy some noticeable benefits.

Bigger Windowsill

An excellent perk that you can get when going bigger is a larger windowsill. You might not have a lot of room to do much or any growing of plants where they are able to soak up the sun all day long. A larger windowsill will make it easy to grow herbs and certain vegetables from inside your home. This will reduce their exposure to wind, rain, snow, and pests, which means having plants that are easy to care for. Plants are not the only things that you can put in the windowsill as it can house decorations just as easily.

More Sunlight

Bigger windows are naturally going to bring in more sunlight. This is beneficial in numerous ways, such as being able to warm up your home on a cold day by letting the light shine through. You just have to rely on the new and improved insulation to reduce how much cold air actually gets into your home. The sunlight is also helpful for your mood, which ties in directly to how much you enjoy being a homeowner. This can turn the kitchen into the place where you go to start off the day in the right mood or to feel better.

Improved Airflow

Through spring and fall, the weather might be tame enough to open the windows. Larger windows will allow more fresh air inside, which is perfect for improving the airflow and making it more comfortable. To maximize airflow, you should prioritize awning or double-hung windows. These window types will allow you to open the windows enough to bring in a considerable amount of air from outside.

Replacing the kitchen windows is standard maintenance, but you can turn it into a legitimate upgrade when you make the decision to get larger windows, even when they are just a bit bigger.

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When To Worry About Your Hardwood Floors

Hardwood floors are a luxury flooring option that beautify any room. With just a little maintenance, your hardwood floors can last for years without any problems. For maintenance, Better Homes and Gardens recommends sweeping the floors with a soft mop and a dusting agent every week. Deep clean periodically with a mop dampened by a wood-cleaning product. However, what if you’re seeing signs of wear and tear? It may be time to refinish, repair, or even replace your hardwood floor.


Over time, the sheen of your hardwood flooring may dull or fade. This is especially noticeable with high-gloss finishes, but you can notice it with any flooring. You may see a few light surface scratches. Fading can often be fixed with screening, which is a process during which contractors buff and re-coat the floor. They lightly sand away the old finish without sanding into the wood itself before applying a new finish. However, if you see deep scratches, the contractors may have to sand into the hardwood before fully refinishing the floor.


A subtle issue with hardwood flooring can result in the edges being higher than the center. Called cupping, this can be an installation issue. However, it also occurs if you have a leak in your plumbing in the walls. The moisture causes the wood to swell, thus rising higher at the edges. If this is the case, fixing the plumbing issue and drying out the boards should solve the problem. However, in either case, it may be necessary to hire a contractor to sand the wooden floor flat.

Cracks Between Boards

Wood is an organic material, so it is susceptible to the vagaries of temperature. When homeowners heat their homes, the lowered relative humidity of the air can cause the boards to shrink slightly. This can cause gaps between the boards. If the gaps are small, the problem will probably solve itself once the humidity rises again. However, you can also run a humidifier to settle the moisture content in the room. Just be careful with the humidity in the room—too much can infiltrate the wood and cause warping.

Warping or Sagging

In that vein, warping or sagging boards are a sign of water damage. This typically occurs because of leaking plumbing, though it can result from other sources of water as well. If you see warped or sagging boards throughout your floor, you may have to replace the floor itself. However, if the damage is limited, you may be able to just replace the affected boards. Either way, solve the water issue first.

Maintain beautiful hardwood flooring throughout your home. For more information, contact a company like K J M Floor Store.

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Building A Kitchen Island? Order Cabinets To Speed Up The Process

It is great to be prepared for an emergency in which you may not have access to a grocery store. So you may end up collecting canned beans, vegetables, chili, and various ready-made meals in your kitchen cabinets. If you have decided to build a kitchen island to expand the storage space that you have and to give you more functionality, you should think about ordering cabinets online as this can help you accelerate the whole process.

Save Money with Ready-to-Assemble Cabinets

Cabinets can be shipped to your home already assembled, or you can get them in pieces. The great thing about ready-to-assemble cabinets is that you will save money. They still need to be put together, but this is something that even a novice DIY remodeler can undertake with relative ease. You just have to follow the instructions that are given to you and devote enough time to the procedure.

If you want to maximize your savings, you should consider getting premade cabinets. Instead of drawing up a plan for an island that needs custom cabinets, you should try to fit in typical cabinet sizes. Making a design that is able to fit the standard cabinet measurement depth of 24 inches will save you money.

Pick A Color That Matches Perfectly

When you order cabinets online, you will not have much limitation when it comes to color selection. This will ensure that you are able to find cabinet colors that match the rest of your kitchen. It will save you time because you will not have to scour stores to find a paint that matches and then paint them all.

Avoid Construction Limitations

The problem with building your own cabinets is that you may not have the technical know-how. Trying to acquire it can take a considerable amount of time and it could lead to mistakes during construction. Ordering cabinets online from a company like Unity Cabinet & Granite will speed up this process and give you the easy task of putting them together. Whether you feel confident enough to build the rest of the island is up to you, but it is always an option to hire a handyman or remodeling professional to help you with the difficult building parts.

Creating a kitchen island plan and ordering cabinets that fit perfectly will give you exactly what you need to start working on the rest of the process and make sure that it all can be done quickly.

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How to Fix Cabinet Molding

Do you have a built-in cabinet where the molding is peeling away from the wall? As a house settles, built-in cabinets and the walls they are attached to can shift. Most often, this causes the decorative molding, especially near the crown, to separate from the wall or the cabinet. Unfortunately, this can make your cabinets look sloppy and out of style. However, you can easily fix this problem without having to replace the molding. All you need is a pneumatic nail gun and new caulk.

Reinforcing the Molding

Often, your molding will look wavy and lumpy if it is separated from the walls. You don’t need to pull the molding off of the cabinet to fix this. In fact, you can just reinforce the molding by shooting some more nails into it. It is very important that your air compressor is at the right setting. If there’s too much pressure, the nail can shoot right through the molding. If there is too little pressure, the nail head will stick out. When shooting the nails, make sure you hit the thickest part of the molding.

Fixing the Caulk Lines

No matter how many nails you shoot into the molding, it could still look a bit sloppy. It won’t look 100% better until you apply a new line of caulk to the edge. To get a durable and good-looking final product, you need to scrape away the existing caulk. A painter’s putty knife usually works best for this. It has an angled edge that allows you to gouge away at caulk. You might also need to use a utility knife to first cut through the caulk and break the seal.

When you apply a new bead of caulk, it needs to be a little thicker than the previous caulk line. This way you will completely cover any remnants of the old caulk line. To get the cleanest and straightest line, you should first shoot the bead of caulk into the seam. Then, you want to wipe it away and smooth it out with your fingers. The trick is to do short wipes with your finger pressed tightly into the corner. As you pull your finger away, wipe it clean with a rag. Then, continue, always making your finger clean between each wipe.

This is the best technique for getting professional looking cabinets and restoring the style of your cabinet. With straighter and cleaner molding, your cabinet will definitely look newer and more stylish.

Talk to a company such as Sierra Remodeling & Home Builders Inc for more information. 

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Designing An Authentic Old House Kitchen

Old houses have boundless charm, letting modern families get a glimpse into yesteryear and imagine what they might hear if walls could talk. Unfortunately, over the decades of trends and updates, the original beauty and function of the old house is covered up by carpeting, vinyl, and particle-board cabinetry. If you have an old house that has great bones but a lackluster kitchen, you can put some effort into making the kitchen a shining example of modern convenience while staying true to the original architectural style of the home. Here are some things to consider when designing your renovation plans.

1. Choose patterns that make sense.

Many home building trends are hyper-modern, with sleek lines and shiny surfaces. If you are hoping to keep the kitchen looking like it belongs, forego these modern, geometric designs. Instead, research what patterns and styles were popular during the era your house was built. For example, homes that were built in the first decade of the 20th century used small tile designs and mosaics in the bathroom and even in the kitchen. Hexagon, small square, or penny tiles were common. You can call into these trends by making your backsplash from small hexagon tiles instead of the modern white subway tile design. 

2. Be thoughtful with cabinet choice.

Building trends of the 80s and 90s saw a lot of cabinets made from oak in a common, short style, with lackluster finishes. These types of cabinets often prevent your house from getting back to its roots. Instead, research what kitchen cabinets looked like when your home was built. If you cannot possibly match the style, choose a wood that matches the color of the original woodwork in your home. Forgo finishes that are too ornate, because old-fashioned kitchens did not celebrate the kitchen as a thing of beauty, but as a work space. If you do happen to have some original cabinetry left in your home (craftsman homes may have a butler’s pantry or a series of built-in cabinets), try hiring a carpenter to make door fronts that match the style. Keep in mind that open shelves or glass front doors are more period authentic to older houses. Crown molding was more commonly found on the roof than on the cabinets, and under cabinet lighting was also uncommon. 

3. Finish with flair.

After you have cabinets and tiles picked out, keep going with the authentic style through to the finishes. Kitchen faucets should have two handles, since one handle faucets did not exist in old homes. Hardware should be black, bronze, or copper — stainless steel handles and pulls are more modern. White porcelain sinks are more period authentic. If you are brave, you could even choose appliances in an almond color or that are purposely made to look old, instead of opting for flashy stainless appliance. 

For more information, contact Personal Touch Kitchens, Inc. or a similar company.

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From Cozy To Comfortable — 5 Tips For Remodeling A Small Galley Kitchen

If you don’t have a lot of space to work with when remodeling your kitchen, it’s more important than ever to get the layout right. A small galley kitchen is a common facet of older homes and can provide some unique challenges for remodelers. So, what can you do to maximize your cozy galley kitchen? Here are 5 tips for any budget.

Remember the Triangle. One of the most important aspects of any kitchen layout is the “work triangle” – usually consisting of the stove, refrigerator and sink. For a galley kitchen, consider placing the stove on one wall and the sink on the opposite side. Don’t place the refrigerator too close to the stove to avoid wasting energy between the two appliances. Walk the triangle to ensure that it’s comfortable and convenient to use.

Hide Appliances. Avoid placing small appliances on the counter tops to create a clean, long, visually open area. Even larger appliances – such as the stove or range – can often be somewhat “hidden” by choosing minimalist styles, placing them in locations that will not be easily seen or physically hiding them behind cabinet doors.

The Illusion of Depth. There are several ways to make the galley kitchen seem larger or longer. One is to place floor boards lengthwise. Place back splash or wall tiles in the opposite position to create the illusion of depth on the sides. Raising appliances or cabinetry off the floor — and keeping them unadorned and in a single color – can also make things appear wider.

Lighten it Up. The color palette chosen for a small kitchen can do a lot to make it appear larger or smaller. Light colors – such as white, cream, pale pastels or light gray – can help brighten up the space. Adding natural light via a window or skylight can also make things feel less claustrophobic.

Add Storage. The more storage you can fit into the kitchen, the less clutter you’re likely to have. Galley kitchens have the advantage of long, often-uninterrupted cabinet lengths. Adding lazy Susan organizers, drawers or shelf storage systems, integrated garbage cans and hanging storage tools will maximize storage even more. Build upper cabinets all the way to the ceiling to add even more space.

By knowing how to make the best use of your galley-style kitchen layout, you can create the kitchen of your dreams even with little space to work with. Click here to learn more about kitchen remodeling.

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5 Commercial Roofing Maintenance Tips

Your commercial roof is essential for your business. If you let your roof go, this can lead to expensive repairs or remodeling in the future. You also run the risk of getting leaks, which can lead to unsightly water damage that can drive customers away. You need to maintain your roof to keep it in the best shape so it can last for years. Here are commercial roofing maintenance tips:

Keep the roof clear

Make sure your roof is kept free from debris all year round. Remove leaves and tree branches in the fall. If left on the roof, leaves can collect moisture when it rains, which will cause the roof to deteriorate over time. You should also remove snow from the roof every day to prevent the weight of the snow from weakening the structure. In the summer, debris can pose a fire hazard, especially if you live in a dry climate.

Inspect and repair AC unit

You need to have your roof AC unit inspected by a professional technician at least once a year. You should also inspect the unit yourself once every few months. Make sure there are no condensation puddles forming on the roof from the unit. Caulk the gaps and crevices around the AC pipes that connect the roof unit to the inside space. Look for and repair cracks in ducts.

Roof cleaning

Hire commercial roofers to come out and clean your roof at least annually. The roofer will buff and remove dirt and grime without damaging the material. Without an annual cleaning, your roof loses its efficiency and it will no longer be able to reflect the sun’s rays which keeps your building cool in the summer.

Check your drains, pipes, and gutters

Take a walk around the entire roof and inspect all your drains, pipes, and gutters. Clear all debris from your drains and gutters. Check to make sure the drains work properly by pouring water down them. Check the gutters for cracks and caulk any damage. You should also take a look at all pipes and look for and repair leaks, rust, or damage.

Replace gravel

Search your roof for areas with missing gravel or exposed tar. You need to replace the gravel in these areas to ensure the roofing is not exposed to the elements and becomes damaged. If you find exposed tar, check the area for softness or cracks. If you find damage, you need to call a roofing contractor for repairs before applying more gravel.

These are five ways you can maintain your commercial roof to make it last for decades. Work with a company like Patrick Miller Construction to make the most of these tips.

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Considerations When Hiring A Handyman For Your Residence Or Business

A professional handyman is a skilled worker who can tackle a wide range of tasks and responsibilities at a residential or business location. A good handyman can do electrical work, plumbing, remodel rooms, paint interior and exterior surfaces, diagnose and repair appliances, fix flooring, clean up patios and yards, repair minor roofing problems, and numerous other tasks. When looking for a reputable and talented handyman, consider the following: 

  • Training and Certification – When interviewing a handyman, ask them about their specific skills and training and if they are qualified to use any specialized tools and equipment. Ask if they have been certified by the Association of Certified Handyman Professionals, which tests and certifies handymen, provides them with group insurance programs, and lists them online by their skills and geographical location. This association also offers updated product and procedure information on numerous handyman projects. 
  • Written Estimate of Repairs and Costs – When you interview a potential handyman, show them the projects that you wish to have completed and ask them for a written and signed estimate of work to be completed and the associated costs that they will charge. After you read the estimate, sign it to show that you are both in agreement as to all aspects of the job. Having this estimate in writing protects you as well as the handyman should you have a later disagreement or dispute. 
  • Handyman License – Many states require a handyman to obtain a license in order work to in your home or business. To obtain this license, a handyman may take classes and be tested on their knowledge and technical skills. Although a handyman’s license is not required in all states, it gives valuable professional credibility to the handyman that has one. 
  • Handyman Liability Insurance – When hiring a handyman to work in your home or business, ask to see their certificates of liability insurance. This insurance protects the handyman against any claims of injury while working on your premises. Additional liability insurance protects the handyman against any claims of injury after completion of their work. Liability for broken or lost tools is included in both of these insurance documents. 
  • Building Permit and Building Inspection – For any work that you wish to have done in your home or business, ask your handyman to obtain a building permit in your state of residence. Keep a copy of this building permit in your records. After completion of your project, ask your handyman to attend the site inspection by the state building inspector sent to approve the completed work and/or repairs. 
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Revolving Doors: Good For Your Business?

As a kid, you may have enjoyed making multiple trips through the revolving door at the local department store. What you probably didn’t realize at the time is that the door was there for practical reasons instead of just your enjoyment. Revolving doors are actually an excellent investment. If you are building or remodeling a commercial building, you should consider having a commercial contractor install a revolving door.

Energy Savings

In both the warm and cold months, a revolving door can save you serious money by limiting energy consumption. Opening a traditional door allows a stream of outdoor air into your building that can drastically lower or raise the temperature. If your building has elevators, the effect is even more pronounced because the air shoots up the shafts and goes out the vents, taking precious heated or cooled air with it. The revolving door stops this draft and offers you significant energy savings. 


Revolving doors offer your building design advantages. They simply look more interesting and give your building an attractive focal point. They also give your architect a powerful tool for creating a powerful design. Although adults enjoy them, children are particularly attracted to revolving doors. Having children push their parents toward visiting your store is certainly a benefit for your business. They also eliminate the constant and annoying sound of doors opening and closing during the business day. The design is simply aesthetically pleasing to a large percentage of the population. 

Crowd Control

Of course, one of the biggest advantages of the revolving door is its ability to manage traffic flow into your store. During particularly busy seasons, people have to awkwardly line up outside traditional hinged doors to enter your business. A revolving door allows traffic to flow smoothly and continually into your building. For people who have their hands full, such as parents with infants, they are particularly easy to use. Also, first impressions are important, and you want consumers to be happy from the moment they enter the store. If their entrance is smooth, you’ve made a good start. 

Revolving doors offer your business a number of advantages. Even though they’ve been around for more than 100 years, they are still seen as something of a novelty, so they make your building stand out in a positive way. They truly are a practical addition to your building as well, limiting your energy expenditures in all seasons. When you are considering a remodel or new construction, don’t overlook the advantages of the revolving door.   

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About Me

When making home renovations, what improvements will give you the best return on investment? If you are looking to increase the value of your home, there are some projects that should be given a greater priority than others. I have created this blog to help homeowners that are trying to decide where to begin with renovations find the best place to start. I will show you what will come with the best return on investment and what will not do anything to improve the value of your home. Hopefully, my years of experience flipping homes will help you make the best possible choices.


February 2017
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