Picking Tile 101: The Bathroom

There are thousands of different tiles on the market to choose from; and countless numbers of color, finish, size, shape, and style possible. Are you overwhelmed yet? I’m not surprised! Here are a few tips to keep in mind as you’re selecting the “perfect” tile. These tips will help you narrow down your search and keep you focused.

Size Does Matter


There are many factors to consider when determining what size tile will best fit in your bathroom. In a well-lit, rectangular room, with vaulted ceilings, you MIGHT be able to accommodate large tiles without making the room look smaller. However, a bathroom that has angles, curves, or bench shower seating would be best suited for small tiles or mosaics. Generally, The rule of thumb here is: The larger the tiles, the smaller the room will look.

 

 

Use Different Tile Types


You can get really creative with using different tile types. Don’t go too crazy here; try to keep it to three different types. Keep your eyes from being too overwhelmed. Backsplashes are not just for the kitchen! Try using small tiles like a mosaic to create a feature wall in your bathroom with a backsplash. Combined with large neutral tiles and you’ll create a smooth flow to your bathroom.

 

Neutral Goes a Long Way


Neutral tile on the floor will allow you to focus more on the walls. Whether you’re tiling the walls or painting them, as long as your floor and ceiling are neutral, you can experiment with an accent color wall or a fun tile backsplash. Backsplashes are not just for the kitchen!

Texture


Smooth, sleek tile looks beautiful and is very easy to clean! However, they can also be hazardous, especially in the shower. For that reason, it’s a great idea to choose a slightly textured tile for the floor. No slipping in your bathroom!

 

 

 

 

 

Finish Strong with Grout


If you’re looking for that dramatic look in your bathroom and you want each tile to stand out, pick a grout that is contrasting in color to your tile. Otherwise, go for soft neutrals that blend in, mask stains, and let the tiles be the focal point. By selecting grout that is similar in color to the tile helps create a unified look.  Here are some tips to use with grout:

  • While sanded grout is used for most installations, Use unsanded grout for stone tiles.
  • Sanded grout adds stability which helps increase the slip-resistance of a shower floor
  • Minimize maintenance in your bathroom by selecting darker grout colors and applying a sealant to the grout.
  • Boost grout flexibility, this is really a thing!! Include a polymer additive to the joins as wide as 1-1/4 inches.

If you have any questions or would like to discuss updating the tile in your home, contact us today!

Picking Tile 101: The Kitchen Floor

Tile on the kitchen floor is a great idea!  It’s durable, easy to clean, and lasts just about forever. There are a few timeless style options when it comes to the kitchen floor: ceramic, porcelain, natural stone, slate, travertine, and granite are just a few. 

Ceramic


Ceramic tile is a favorite among homeowners due to its durability. In addition to being durable, it’s also resistant to stains, heat, and water. This option is perfect for any kitchen, especially if you have high traffic. There are endless colors and styles to choose from, so options won’t slow you down. On top of the versatility of ceramic, it’s affordable as well.

Porcelain


Porcelain is very similar to ceramic. It’s durable and affordable and great with high-traffic areas, like the kitchen.

What sets porcelain apart is the fact that it is denser and is more water-resistant than ceramic tile. Porcelain will last longer with minimal care.

Slate


Slate is a natural stone that mostly comes in charcoal, green, or gray and has an uneven texture. Slate is very unique because no two tiles will look the same. It’s a little more on the expensive side, but the durability of slate will last decades. It can be slightly chilly, especially in the winter, but slate is perfect to  pair with radiant heat underneath.

Granite


Granite is a popular choice for many kitchen countertops, but it’s also a great choice for the kitchen floor. Granite tile is extremely durable, and resistant to scratches and heat. You’ll pay a pretty penny for its beauty and it’s a little on the high maintenance side, but you can depend on granite to last!

 

Marble


Marble is another slightly expensive tile choice. It provides a unique look with swirling patterns and shade variations. Installation will definitely require a professional who specializes in marble installation as the tiles can be difficult to match. Marble is a porous natural stone and will have to be sealed and cleaned regularly.

Travertine


Travertine is perfect for the open floor plan. It’s a gorgeous look and will last forever. As long as travertine has been properly honed and sealed, it’s easy to maintain.

If you have any questions or would like to discuss updating the tile in your home, contact us today!

Picking Tile 101: The Backsplash

Remodeling a kitchen is hard; there so many choices and decisions to you have to make. Cabinets, countertops, and the kitchen sink are just a few. However, the kitchen backsplash is a crucial detail that should be given some thought. Choosing tile for your backsplash can be complex; there are a variety of things to consider when making this decision. Here are several to keep in mind…

Color

Color is one of the most important decisions you’ll make when choosing your backsplash. Are you someone who loves color? Do you want your kitchen to make a statement? Or are you someone who prefers more of the neutral tones? Neutral tones can be very peaceful and calming. Both of these options can be great in your kitchen.  

Height

The backsplash can be the focal point of your kitchen depending on the material, color, and layout. An important detail that is often overlooked is the height of the backsplash. However, there are several you have options when making this decision. After all, the backsplash has to end somewhere, but where is up to you!

 

Backsplash to the Cabinetry

Backsplash to The First Shelf

 

Backsplash to The Ceiling

Material

What material will work best with your overall kitchen design? This decision is based on a combination of personal preference and the look you are trying to achieve in your home.

Ceramic Tile


Gives your kitchen a crisp, clean, and contemporary look.

 

Brick


Gives your kitchen a rustic or industrial look.

 

Handpainted


Adds that WOW factor to your modern-looking kitchen.

 

Countertops

The backsplash and the countertop will go hand and hand, so it’s important to make sure they work well together.

Shapes & Patterns

Which pattern or design best fits you: classic shapes or fun patterns? 

The tile backsplash serves a very fundamental purpose: to protect the wall around your cooking area. To be honest, it’s actually so much more than that. Of course, with no shortage of ideas to choose from, the kitchen backsplash has evolved into a statement of its own!  It tells a story about you AND what you’ve got cooking.  So, what’s your story and what does your backsplash say about you? 

If you have any questions or would like to discuss updating your home with a new backsplash, contact us today!

Which is Better, Building Up or Out?

Did you buy a small home in the neighborhood you love and can’t bear to leave? Are you starting to feel cramped in your one-story house? Don’t worry! You have a few options that will help. You can build up by adding on a second story, or you can build out by putting on an addition. It is always wise to consider the cost in this decision, as well as the nature of your needs.

What Kind of Space Do You Need?

When making these decisions, it’s always wise to take your family’s needs into consideration. Is your family getting bigger, creating a need for more bedrooms and bathrooms?  In that case, building up would be a good idea.  Then again, if you’re just looking for extra space, like a playroom or den, you might want to consider an addition.  Generally, it is less expensive to build up than out.  However, that’s just the construction end of things. That doesn’t take into consideration the fact that you will most likely have to relocate until the construction is finished.  

Second Story

Adding a second story to your ranch is a great way to add more space to your home while increasing the value of your home.

Playroom

When you need a little more space for kids toys and space for them to play.  Building an addition onto the back of the house may be what you need.

Home Office

Working from home and the kitchen table isn’t cutting it any longer?  Adding an addition to the back of the house for your home office would be a great solution.

Sunroom

Adding a sunroom is a great way to extend your living space.  Add heating to your sunroom to use all year long or make it a three seasons room.

Attic Conversion 

Most older homes were built with A Framed roofs and loads of available height making an attic conversion pretty straightforward.

Basement Renovation

Finishing your basement is a great way to add more space to your house without having to add on a whole new addition.  Depending on the layout down below you can add an extra bedroom and bathroom for additional living space.


 

When it comes to creating more space in your home, you really do have several options.  Ultimately, you’re going to want to create space and increase the value of your home.  You’re never going to get a 100% return on your investment.  However, with a 75% return and years of enjoyment in your home  I’d say that’s a win!

If you have any questions or would like to discuss building up or out, contact us today!

Digging Deeper: The Home for Aging Adults

Many older adults still live in the same house where they raised their children and have created countless memories. Would you want to move away from that? With a few accommodations, older adults can continue to live in the same place and keep making memories.


Accommodations 


 

Certain changes will make their home safer to live in, and while it may not be possible for an older adult to live independently forever, it will be possible for them to remain in their own home longer. This can help to save a substantial amount of money on senior living or assisted living centers.  These changes to the house will also accommodate those with handicaps or who use wheelchairs to get around. 


A Clear Path of Entry



Wider Doorways



Wheelchair Ramp



Higher Ceilings & Columns


Adding columns throughout the house will give your home a warmer feel to rooms that might feel otherwise cold due to their openness. Ceilings can be raised to 12 feet, providing a more expansive feel. These accommodations will also make it easier for the homeowner or those who use a wheelchair to move through the house more freely.

 

The Bathroom


Install Grab Bars



Wheelchair Accessible Sink



Plenty of Space


The Kitchen


Lower Kitchen Sink



Dishwasher Accessible from Either Side



Accessible Cupboards


If you have any questions or would like to discuss updating your home for aging adults, contact us today!

Digging Deeper: Update Your Home with Lighting

Lighting is one of those things that is relatively inexpensive to update. It can give your home a fresh new look without breaking the bank. In  2018, LED light and light fixtures were very popular. LED is so efficient and has a longer lifespan than any other bulb. For a more rustic look, the exposed bulbs are also very popular. They can give you a traditional feel with more of a modern look. Talk about a win-win! The options are endless, but your future will be bright!

 

Add a Little Class

Which room would you like to spruce up? You can add a little class to any room with an eye-catching chandelier. They don’t have to break the bank either.

 

The Bathroom

Does your bathroom have overhead lights? Wall-mounted lights can add warmth and value to your bathroom without the cost of a full bathroom remodel. Remember to add light around your mirror that won’t create unwanted shadows.

The Kitchen

Having proper lighting in your kitchen is imperative. It’s not only the workspace for every meal prep, but it’s also space for kids to do their homework. Light is key! Kitchens can be divided into three categories:

  • General Lighting – overall illumination
  • Task Lighting – detailed tasks
  • Accent Lighting – mood illumination

Lighting can change the mood of any room. Lighting can make a room look larger or smaller. It can magnify color and improve functionality.

If you have any questions or would like to discuss updating your home with lighting, contact us today!

Digging Deeper: The Mudroom

The mudroom is unlike the front entrance, which is seen by everyone and used by guests; the mudroom is usually a secondary entrance. Personally, I would love one; even a small mudroom would be helpful for keeping the house picked up and organized.

What Every Mudroom Needs

1. Hooks and Racks

Hooks and racks are a must! Coats, hats, scarves, umbrellas whatever it may be, they all need a place. Currently, my kids think it’s the floor of the entryway; I’m not a fan.

 

 

2. A Bench

A bench is next on the must-have mudroom list. The first thing you want to do when you get home is sit down and take your shoes off. A bench is a perfect place to do that, and it can also be used for shoe storage by putting a boot tray underneath the bench, or by using a bench with a flip-up seat for more storage space.

 

 

 

3. Cubbies or Lockers 

Cubbies or lockers will take your mudroom to the next level. Each member of your family can have their own designated storage space. Each cubby or locker should come with the essentials: low storage for the shoes, hooks for the coats and backpacks, and high storage for seasonal items like hats, gloves, and scarves.

4. A Closet

A closet can also come in handy in your mudroom. It’s not an absolute must-have, but it would provide a designated space for out-of-season things, such as sports equipment, winter/spring essentials, cleaning supplies, or any other items you want out of sight.

5. Utility Sink

Also useful in the mudroom would be a utility sink!! This is great for spring, when you’re gardening and need a quick place to clean up without tracking mud throughout your home. It’s also excellent for cleaning up paint and crafts, or a quick washing of clothes. You could even use it for bathing your pets.

If you have any questions or would like to discuss creating your mudroom, contact us today!