I know some of us had our doubts if it would ever arrive, but I think I am safe insaying Spring is finally here. it will probably be a short one and before long everyone will be complaining about the heat. Not me! I am a summer person and it has been a long cold winter! If you are tempted to rail about the heat and humidity in South-Western Ontario in the summer, just enjoy and remember what our winter was like.
The trees are sprouting and the flowering bushes are out in full bloom. My wife commented yesterday about the beautiful pink and white blossoms that are so beautiful but so short lived. She used to drive her grandmother around the city when she was with us to admire the Spring Sights. Grandma was a nature lover.
With Spring comes some yard work, maybe a little new landscaping and planting some annuals for color here and there.Add some CurbAppeal to your home. We all want to create that `Welcome Look` to our front entrances. You may even have some window boxes that you can plant.
Lawns have to be cut and it is time to spray those nasty weeds that keep coming up in the gardens. Be careful not to pick a windy day as you will get over spray and ruin your plants. Spray close to the weed root. Be sure to trim all the dead off your bushes and plants and give them room to sprout new growth.We always like to put a fresh coat of mulch on the gardens and spray weeds and fertilize the lawn at this time of year. If you do not know what to use, get some Professional advise.We have severalChatham-Kent Nurseries and Landscape Companies who can help. You may have to consider staining your deck to give it that fresh look.
Good planting everyone and enjoy the weather!
Chatham-Kent is the Affordable Lifestyle Location with many amenities. Call me Wayne Liddy 519-436-4810 Royal lePagePefier Realty Inc. Brokerage for all your Real estate need and visit my website for for the latest Chatham-Kent listings and upcoming Events.
You love your home and your neighborhood. However, you are not adverse to adding a few new touches, here and there to give it some pizzazz. Spring is just around the corner and it is a good time to add a new look.
Let's cover a few key areas.
Front Entrances: This is the first impression visitors have or your home. Make it welcoming and convenient.
1) Mirror You can either hang a mirror over a table or if possible mirror a wall. This is a great optical illusion for small entrances. and it will give a feeling of spaciousness.
2)Table Place to drop your keys or visitors purse, phone or gloves while guests are removing their coats and shoes.
3) Bench or chair Someplace to sit while removing boots or shoes.
4) New entrance flooring to present the Wow factor.
5) Wallpaper is making a comeback. Check out some of the new patterns and create a whole new look.
Family Room: With open concept great rooms being so popular today, this is the room where the family gathers and spends most of their time. Separate living rooms although still found in some homes are not the place where families watch television and congregate. If this is the case in your home spend the bulk of your budget on a comfortable sofa with love seat/chairs or a sectional. Be sure to pick a fabric that is good for everyday use. If it is possible, you may want to take a wall out between the living room and family room and create a large great room.
Fireplace: This adds warmth to a family room and a great focal point. Televisions can be mounted above which solves the dated problem of where to place the TV. If a gas fireplace is not feasable try an electric fireplace. The cost is much less and you can achieve a similar result.
Glass Tables: Accent tables or a glass dining room table or desk will give the illusion of space.
Clutter Removal: If you have numerous books, or other items sitting around, consider a wall cabinet to show your accessories in a more organized way.
Area Rug: Search for a color scheme or pattern that pulls the room together.The rug does not necessarily have to be expensive. It is the overall look that is important.
Color: Monochromatic can be very attractive but not for everyone. If you like color, use it. Add splashes of your favorite tones to that monochromatic room and it will be transformed. This can be accomplished through accessories such as pillows, throws, wall and table art. The beauty of this inexpensive makeover is that when you tire of the look, you can remove the color and enjoy the serenity of that monochromatic room again.
Bedrooms: Chose colors that flow. If the hallway is a cool color( blue base) keep the bedrooms which you can see from the hall in the same palette. It does not have to be the same color or even similar but if it is also cool, the space will appear larger.
Chair/Table Desk: If space allows, a reading corner is a welcome addition especially to the master bedroom. In a child's room, a desk and chair are often needed for homework. If you are on a budget, watch the garage sales or the kijiji ads. You can slip cover a chair inexpensively or use a wooden chair like a rocker and put a throw and/or cushion on it to match your bedspread. Place a small table for reading beside and the room has a perfect place to read or spend some quiet time. For the child's room search for a compact desk and chair and some wall units if possible.
In all of the above remember greenery! It will add warmth to a room, fill empty corners and be your most inexpensive way to complete the look of your home. Have fun!
Flooring costs are always a large part of a renovation budget. Don't rush the decision and pick the first material you see. Do your homework and decidewhat materials will suit your needs the best. I know that both our children did renovations in the past year and they spend a great deal of time chosing just the right material for their family's needs. Our daughter has small children and the durability of the product was a number one factor with them. They chose a laminate throughout the entire home and it has been a very good choice for their lifestyle. Our son and his wife on the other hand are almost empty nesters and they decided to go for hardwoods througout.They both look great and suit their individual needs perfectly.
I will say, if you are not up on the latest materials, get some help. Hire a decorator or visit your local lumber or flooring store and speak to one of the experts. They will be able to lead you to the best product for your budget and your needs.Your flooring should last for years if taken care of properly and not need to be replaced.
Now to a few choices for you to consider.
Hardwood: This material is durable, warm and achieves a very traditional look. If used in the entire floor space, it can give a very open concept view. There are several choices to pick from including oak, maple and cherry.The prices vary from imported options, obviously on the high price side to the more traditional ones which are more economical. Sold wood floors can be refinished but remember they do show scratches and dents so chose wisely.
Engineered Wood: This seems to be a very popular choice today with young families. It is less susceptible to temperature changes and humidity and is easily installed for do-it-yourself renovators since the material is available in self-locking parquet, planks or squares that can be installed without glue or nails.
Bamboo: This flooring is often popular with the eco-conscious homeowner as it comes from plants that regenerate quickly and is therefore classed as a sustainable material. Bamboo is strong and able to resist the negative effects of changes in humidity making it a good choice for tropical or warm climates and non climate controlled environments.
Laminate: This is among the less expensive options to buy and install.The floating laminate flooring system can even be installed over an existing floor without glue or nails. There are several varieties available and are improving as we speak. Many are hard to tell from real wood,
Cork: Cork is a very sustainable flooring material and often the flooring of choice for those wishing to make their homes eco-friendly. It has a very different look, having a speckled finished thanks to the unusual grain of the trees from which it is harvested. Cork is very popular in bathrooms and bathrooms due to its non-slip surface.
Have fun with your new look. Just do your homework and make sure you haven selected the best option for your home and family. Enjoy!
Today, there are so many TV show about renovating that homeowners get the bug totransform their own homes. If you like your neighborhood and your home has possibilities for expansion, it is a good option. The experts however,make it look easy and their pricesseem to be pretty good! The problem is that many of us do not have the expertise to handle a major renovating project. If you have to hire everything done, the project could get very expensive. Hire experts for specific areas that are not your expertise such as electrical issues and save the unskilled jobs such as demolition, for yourself. This can save money and make you feel a part of the outcome. Set your budgetand them go to work getting 2 or 3 prices for each project being done. Some homeowners get inspired, charge forward and do not do their homework. Check the basic structure of your home and its ability to handle the changes. Here are a few tips if you have decided to charge ahead!
1) Basement renovation can add additional living space for the family, a cozy theatre room and even added income if you have the space to add a rental suite. However before you begin, check that the basement is waterproof. Always inspect the interior foundation to ensure there are no moisture issues or mold problems before beginning. Examine the outside grading to make sure water runs away from the foundation.
Insulation is key. You want your new lower level space to feel comfortable. Make sure yousoundproof it. You want your new space to be quiet and private. Safety is also an important issue. Evaluate the exits in case of a fire. You may have to add a large window or another door. Educate your self on fire resistant materials and alarms and know your local fire codes.
2) Kitchens are often the last area to be upgraded. You can put in a whole new kitchen withcustom cabinets but there are ways to upgrade without breaking the bank. If the basic structure of your cabinets are satisfactory or due to the layout cannot be changed, then consider refacing them. There are several companies out there that will come in, paint the bases and add new wood doors. Ask around and get referrals. We are currently using Heritage Cabinets. They manufacture their own doors in their own factory and they turn out quality work! If refacing is not for you, you might just consider new hardware and an upgraded counter top. This alone will make a huge difference.
3) Consider creating an Open Concept look which is very popular today. Find out which walls are non-load-bearing walls and remove them to create large living spaces. This can give your home a spacious feel, improve flow, lighting and overall function.
4) Garages are being used today for much more than overflow storage or car parking. If insulated properly, your garage can become a rental unit, a home office, a guest suite forcompany or a gathering place for the family. Carpet, quality thermal insulation and a couple of windows can transform your space into added value for you home.
5) Re-evaluate the lighting in your home. If you have opened up spaces by removing walls, you may have to add French Doors or addition lighting to enhance that light open space feel. Color can be a real asset here. Light tones, especially greys are big this year and really do a great job.
6)The finishing touches are vital.Furniture and accessories will be the icing on thecake. Avoid pieces that overpower the space. Large pieces such as wall units can often shrink a room simply by its proportions. Develop an eye for chosing lower profile or smaller scale furniture. Investigate dual purpose pieces such as ottomons which double as storage units for throws, books or even knitting.
Have fun but watch the budget. You do not want your home to turn into a money pit. If you are in the market for a new home to transform into your own space, by using some of theses ideas, call me, Wayne Liddy 519-436-4810 Royal LePage Peifer Realty Inc. Brokerage Inc. Chatham-Kent today, for all your Real Estate needs.
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