Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Tips for Your New Kitchen Remodel

If you have the opportunity to perform a kitchen remodel, congratulations! You now have the chance to develop the perfect kitchen you have always wanted just to your specifications. Before immediately focusing on what your new appliances will look like or what color you’d like the walls to be, consider the layout of your future kitchen. You will want to maximize space while keeping your kitchen inviting and functional. These tips for your kitchen remodel should help get you started on planning your new cooking space and keep you happy for years to come.

Eliminate Wasted Space

When you are remodeling your kitchen, take some time to think about storage. As you plan out your cabinet placement, consider adding cabinets that reach the ceiling to eliminate wasted space, keep dust from settling, and provide more space for rarely used items like fine china and vases. Many people opt to include glass panes in their upper cabinets in case they decide to display china in these hard-to-reach areas. If these cabinets also have a lighting source, it can lighten your entire kitchen, instead of making it feel dark and cramped.

Keep Things Spacious

You should keep in mind things that bothered you about your previous kitchen. Were the walkways too narrow? Was an island in the middle of your kitchen taking up space rather than being useful? Could you easily access your fridge, cabinets, and dishwasher without being in the way of others? Kitchen islands are great for large spaces, but we encourage those with a smaller kitchen space to nix the island idea, as it typically ends up being more of a nuisance than a help. We also suggest remodelers keep the walking space open so more than one person can get around at the same time. This is especially great for when you have company who wants to socialize with you while you cook. A side bar is a nice addition for a kitchen remodel, as it provides extra storage or cutting space, as well as a place for visitors to sit without being right in the middle of things.

Think About Kids

If you have children or grandchildren, you will want your kitchen remodel to be kid-friendly so you can keep an eye on them while you cook. Some newer kitchens include tiered counter tops, so your child can mimic what you do at a height they are comfortable with. Tiered counters are fun for baking cookies or teaching small children the basics of food preparation. They can also be helpful if a sink is in place at their level. If you have young children, you will want to think strategically about oven and stovetop placement, so they cannot be easily accessed or bumped into by children without your supervision. Keep the barstools and microwaves away from these areas so children can color or entertain themselves safely and comfortably while keeping away from the more dangerous areas.

With these tips to get you started during your kitchen remodel, you will be able to plan ahead for the inevitable. When you need an extra hand or want more tips, contact us to learn more.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

What Does a General Contractor Do?

A general contractor is hired by the owner of the property (typically, you) to complete a project from start to finish. When you enter a contract with a general contractor, they are taking responsibility for the entire project, which means they will take on responsibility for all elements of the project. This includes the financial responsibility of getting the project done within the budget agreed upon. Naturally, there are always contingencies, but for the most part, your general contractor will give you an estimate and stick to it closely. At the same time, the general contractor is also responsible for getting the project done in a timely manner without causing you a great deal of undue stress. The general contractor purchases all the supplies, hires the tradespeople and engages the subcontractors.

What Are a General Contractor’s Key Responsibilities?

The general contractor is fundamentally responsible for the entire project, which makes it critically important that you make a great decision when hiring the general contractor. Some of the areas the general contractor will focus on include:

Hiring and Managing the Subcontractors: When there is a large job or even a smaller one, there is going to be a number of smaller jobs. When you put in or renovate a kitchen, for example, there will be plumbing work, electrical work, counters and masonry work, cabinetry, etc. It is very important that you have the right subcontractors and make sure that if you get these individuals, they are the responsibility of your general contractor. Additionally, the general contractor sets a schedule for paying the subcontractors and makes sure you approve. Typically, this is time-based and also based on progress as the work is completed. As such, the general contractor will negotiate the contracts for the subcontractors, hire them, and set forth the terms.

Getting Permits and Inspections: Any time you have a project that involves changing or building anything, you will need permits for all the work. The general contractor is responsible for getting the permits in a timely manner so the work can proceed. To do this, they will need to be intimately involved with the planning process and know exactly how to get the permits you need. In addition to this, the project will need periodic inspections based on how far along each aspect of the job is. Often, you cannot proceed to the next phase of a job until the inspections have been completed. The general contractor is responsible for scheduling the inspectors to visit, making sure your site is ready, and making changes if for some reason you do not pass.

Supplies and Materials: The general contractor will be responsible for ordering the supplies you need to complete the jobs. To that end, they will order supplies based on what the job needs and ensure that your subcontractors do not run out of the materials you need. All this should be included in the quote you get from the general contractor before you make a hiring decision.

Monday, November 30, 2015

Important Things to Consider Before a Bathroom Remodel

Most homeowners dream of performing a perfect bathroom remodel. When you buy a home, you often become stuck with outdated sinks, faucets, toilets, tiles, and more. You may not mind the current bathroom outfit, but you may feel like it doesn’t suit your particular decoration and design style. Now that you have the opportunity to perform a bathroom remodel, you have several things to consider before you begin. You should also consider hiring someone to perform the work for you to ensure everything is installed professionally and works correctly.

Consideration #1 Dream Big While Being Practical

Dream big and beautifully, but also consider your budget and practical uses of the space. Some of the most beautiful fixtures, sinks, and tubs also make servicing pipes and electric lines a hassle. When you are picking these items out for your bathroom remodel, consider placement and making important wires and pipes accessible to plumbers and electricians. This also goes for fancy add-ons like heated floors and touchless faucets. Heated floors may sound extravagant and wonderful, but are they really worth the cost when you can put that money toward classier fixtures or items that make your bathroom look more pleasing to the sight?

Consideration #2 Be On Guard for Toxic Chemicals and Materials

This consideration is especially important if you are performing a bathroom remodel in an older home. The presence of asbestos is often unknown until a remodel begins, and it can pose serious health risks to those who breathe it in. If you are concerned this could be a possibility in your home, hire a professional who knows how to prepare for toxic materials in advance. You may even need to stay elsewhere while your bathroom is being remodeled if this is a potentiality. You should also be aware that mold and mildew hiding in bathrooms is not uncommon. Not only are mold and mildew stinky and unsightly, but they can also lead to asthma attacks, respiratory problems, and worse health risks if you are exposed to them too long. Prepare yourself and others for these possibilities and hire a professional who is well-equipped to deal with them.

Consideration #3 Make Your Bathroom Convenient to Navigate

It can be tempting to pick out the biggest and most impressive tubs, toilets, and sinks, but also consider how useful they are. You want your bathroom to appear spacious and feel that way, so pick appliances that are easy to get around and provide you with a comfortable atmosphere. Also, keep in mind privacy. If you share a bathroom with someone, you may want to consider investing in toilet or shower spaces that are separate from each other, so you each have your needed privacy.

These are only three of the many considerations you should think about during a bathroom remodel. For an expert’s opinion and suggestions, contact our office. We can help you think of everything you need to get in order and decide on before you start your dream bathroom remodel. 

Monday, November 2, 2015

Hire a Kitchen Contractor for the Best Kitchen Improvements

The kitchen is a special place in your home so you should handle it with care by hiring a kitchen contractor for your next remodel. If you are currently building a home, you may be interested in learning more about how a professional kitchen contractor can craft the kitchen of your dreams. Your kitchen should be a place of comfort and versatility. During many family gatherings, you probably notice that visitors congregate in the kitchen while you prepare meals. We can help you make the kitchen the special place it should be.

You may currently have design ideas for your kitchen creation or remodel, or you may not have a clue what you want or need. We can help you determine all the important details. The kitchen contractor we provide is experienced in building and improving numerous kitchens so you will be enlightened to all the possibilities your space provides, regardless of how big or small it is. Allow us to help guide you through this process so you can make sure what you invest in the project gets you the perfect results you desire. These are a few reasons why hiring a kitchen contractor is the right decision for the best kitchen improvements:

Eliminate Stress: You have most likely collected design ideas you would like to implement in your kitchen remodel or creation, but you probably are unsure of how to make each design work. Without the extra help of a kitchen contractor, this can be a stressful process. We can help you combine your design hopes with your practical budget to create a kitchen that is affordable, functional, and beautiful.

Maximize Space: If you feel as though you have a small kitchen space, a kitchen contractor can help maximize it no matter what size it currently is. We can help you determine the best placement for your fridge, oven, cabinets, dishwasher and more to make your kitchen look more spacious than it really is. A kitchen contractor will also help make the final space design efficient and attractive.

Material Choices: The material choices for cabinets, flooring, and walls are endless. A kitchen contractor will help you decide on quality options that will serve you for years to come while also maintaining a fresh and timeless appearance. We know quality when we see it, and we have worked with a variety of materials. We will help you find the best options at the perfect prices for your budget.

Affordable Expertise: A kitchen contractor from our location will always give you affordable prices. Since we have the experience and workmanship necessary to be the choice of any remodeler or builder, we will not gouge you when we offer you estimates. We believe in honest prices and honest work ethic to provide you with the perfect kitchen for your home.

Contact us for a kitchen contractor who knows how to get the job done effectively and affordably. We will make your kitchen beautiful and functional so others will look forward to spending time with your in your home. 

Thursday, October 22, 2015

A Guide to Granite Countertops

Granite Countertops
If you are interested in installing granite countertops for your home, there are a few things you should know. Granite is a durable material that will add a touch of glamor and sophistication to your kitchen. This simple touch can completely change the appearance of your space and make your kitchen appear far more modern. We can help you select the right type of granite countertops for your home. In the meantime, here are a few basic facts you should know.

Granite comes in a variety of colors. You are not limited to certain hues or patterns when working with granite. This makes it possible to find something that will enhance the design you have selected. While some of the more standard colors include white, black, or brown with other shades mixed in, you can also find granite that contains brilliant blues, greens, and even purple. While a few of the more unique shades cannot be purchased at your local home improvement store, we can help you to acquire them after learning of your specific request.

Your counters will be unique. Since granite occurs naturally, no two pieces look exactly the same. This means you will not run the risk of walking to your neighbors and seeing an identical countertop. It also means planning ahead is important. For example, if you remodel your kitchen without an island and later decide to add one, there is no guarantee you will be able to find a piece of granite that matches perfectly. Instead, we recommend you complete the entire project at the same time.

You can select the edge. When installing your granite countertops, we will need to know what type of edge you want. One of the more popular edges is the half bullnose because it is rounded at the top and flattens toward the bottom. It is the best type of edge if you are worried about small children and safety; it also does not stand out, so the focus remains entirely on your countertops. On the other hand, a big angle can stand out and become a statement in and of itself. The easiest way to decide is to look at samples in person. We can show you several types of edges so you can select the one you feel would best fit with your design tastes.

Installation is done within a day. When it is time to install your granite countertops, we can finish the process in around four hours. If you have a large kitchen or are also installing granite in a butler’s pantry, the process could take the whole day. Keep in mind that granite is incredibly heavy. This makes it important to clear a wide path and make sure everything is out of the way prior to the crew getting to your house. We suggest putting all small appliances away and any extra rugs or furniture until the installation is complete.
If you are ready to transform your kitchen, this is an excellent way to do so. To get started, call and schedule a consultation today.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Frequently Asked Questions About Custom Cabinets

Custom Cabinets
We love custom cabinets and so do our customers. They are an excellent way to improve both the appearance and functionality of your home. With custom cabinets, we have the ability to design storage solutions that can do far more than simply house your plates, bowls, and cups. We can create spaces for your small appliances, baking stone, nice china, three styles of silverware, etc. If you are a home chef, like to entertain, or have a large family, there is a very good chance your current kitchen does not have enough storage. This is why we recommend starting from scratch with custom cabinets that can be designed to create not just more storage but the right storage for your particular needs. As an added benefit, we can have the cabinets created to match your design tastes and even combine textures like wood and glass for a more customized appearance. The best way to get started is to schedule a consultation so we can discuss your needs and create a beautiful and functional plan for addressing them.

Before you schedule an appointment, here are our answers to a few frequently asked questions about custom cabinets.

Are cabinets expensive?

The price of your cabinets will be based on the type of material you select, the unique finishes you want, and how many you need. If you have a set budget, let us know what it is so we can recommend a material that will fit within it. There are certain things you can do to keep the cost down. However, if you are ready to invest in your kitchen, you can have a great deal of fun selecting unique finishes and interior features that customize your space.

Can I just refinish my existing cabinets?

That is always a possibility, but if you do so, only the appearance of your cabinets will change. The actual layout and functionality will remain the same, so this typically does not solve the daily challenge of finding a place to store your new entertaining platters.

How long does it take to have custom cabinets delivered and installed?

It can take several weeks (three to four) to have your cabinets created and delivered. We can let you know the exact timeframe when you are ready to place your order. Once they are received, we can come out and install them. This can take one to three days, depending on the intricacy of your cabinets and how large your kitchen is. We will have your old cabinets ripped out first and the area prepared so it can go as quickly as possible. Our goal is to time it appropriately so you are not without your kitchen for very long though some people prefer to stay at a friend's house for a couple of days while we finish the process.

Can I select multiple finishes?

Absolutely, that is the benefit of ordering custom cabinets. You can design them however you want. If you want light cabinets up top and a darker color below, you can. If you want to mix open and closed cabinets or have some of them finished with glass, that is also an option. The sky is the limit, and we can help you select the right design for your home and family.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

The Responsibilities of a General Contractor

general contractor
A general contractor has many responsibilities, some that vary depending on the job site. On a typical day, a general contractor is responsible for the complete management and coordination of a project. With many responsibilities come many potential liabilities. Continue reading to learn more about how a general contractor should manage their responsibilities and avoid liabilities.

Management of Trades

A general contractor is responsible for hiring subcontractors that specialize in each aspect of a building project. Hiring contractors is helpful, but it also makes you liable if they are injured or if they perform poorly.

Knowledge

A general contractor is in charge of obtaining the appropriate knowledge of construction materials, building planning, safety, and building codes. This applies both during and after construction. A general contractor should know everything there is to know about how long you should let wood get accustomed to a climate before you install it, at what temperature range you should pour concrete, and what type of roofing is best for your area. Based on their knowledge, contractors should be able to tell if a tradesman is qualified for the job or if they will not do quality work.

Work Flow

A general contractor is responsible for overseeing the entire building process, so if you cannot be there, a general contractor will make sure everything is in order. They will be there for all the planning, the actual building process, and the cleanup. They know exactly what order trades should come in to work and when the job is completely done. If you have questions about proper structure, building a model for the job, or anything concerning the building process, a quality general contractor can help.

License, Insurance, and Worker’s Compensation

A general contractor assumes liability for accidents, injuries, and damage to property on a job site. A license, insurance, and worker’s compensation, along with appropriate safety training work together to ensure your building project flows smoothly and no one is seriously harmed. If anything does go wrong, a general contractor is responsible for fixing the problem. In most cases, if damage occurs to property or workers, the general contractor will be in charge of providing compensation. The proper licensing, insurance and safety training is what protects general contractors from the potential liabilities that come hand in hand with their many responsibilities. Training that general contractors receive and promote should include:

preventing accidents,

promoting safety in all circumstances,

accident or injury response techniques,

protective gear guidelines,

everyday safety practices,

proper machine operating techniques,

hazardous materials guidelines, and

general workplace hazards.

If you have questions about what you should expect from a general contractor or how you can get licensing and safety training to become a quality general contractor, we can help. Do not take the responsibilities of this occupation lightly when so much is at stake for you and your workers.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Tips for the Perfect Kitchen Cabinet Installation for Your Home

kitchen-cabinet-installation
If you are planning a kitchen cabinet installation for your home, we suggest hiring a contractor and would be happy to assist you. In the meantime, we have a few important tips for you to keep at the front of your mind while you decide on options. For the perfect cabinet installation, you will have to think about the ideal kitchen layout, perfect lighting, complementary colors, quality materials, and long-lasting appliances. Even just these things are a lot to keep in mind, so we have provided you with a few tips that many people forget to consider in order to get you started on a successful kitchen cabinet installation.

1. Plan Ahead for the Appropriate Amount of Storage

When you are planning a perfect kitchen cabinet installation, you should keep in mind how often you cook and how much storage space you will realistically need. If you have a layout in mind that is minimalist or open-air with very little cabinet space, you may need to rethink your setup. You will regret not having the space you need, and your counters will end up looking crowded and cluttered. We can install cabinets that look clean and crisp, but reach the ceiling, so you have a longer range of storage. To come up with ways to make your space look open and clean while also providing yourself with enough storage, visit our office for help.

2. Consider Getting Under-Cabinet Lighting

We often troubleshoot for people who have had a kitchen cabinet installation but realized after the fact that they do not have ideal lighting. If the light is hitting you from the middle of the kitchen, it is most likely behind you, which will make it harder to see the food you are attempting to prepare. When you are planning a perfect kitchen cabinet installation, make sure you keep in mind what kind of lighting you will like best. We can provide you with many examples, or you can find great ideas online that you can share with us before your installation.

3. Plan for Hard-to-Reach Areas

For your everyday items, like cups and dishes, you will want to have a cabinet that is lower, easier to access, and more spacious. You should be able to fit these items all in the same general area. For example, you may consider having a section of cabinets next to your fridge so you can grab a plate, get something from the fridge, and throw it in the microwave in one quick fashion. Make sure you also have drawers in the section for silverware. This also goes for pots and pans you'd like near the stove. We also suggest that your expensive china and other items you would like to keep away from little hands are kept in mind. If you have kids, plan to put a few cabinets higher, so your valuable kitchen accessories are out of reach and less at risk of breaking. If it seems too high, a step stool can be hidden somewhere discreet for your use only.

These are only three of the most common tips we suggest you think about when planning a cabinet installation. If you have other concerns about your kitchen cabinet installation, please feel free to contact us for more planning tips or ideas on construction.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Kitchen Cabinet Installation: Why Hire a Professional


kitchen-cabinet-installation
A complete kitchen cabinet installation can be a stressful process. We know the difficulties and inconveniences a kitchen renovation poses for you and your family, which is why we are fully committed to providing you a seamless installation, guaranteeing efficiency and quality. We make the entire kitchen cabinet installation and remodel a hassle-free experience, from the initial design concept to completion. Part of the reason why our home renovations are so successful is because of the meticulous steps we take before we begin any project.

Step 1. Design & Functionality

We have a reputation for professional and exceptional kitchen cabinetry services. Our team of expert kitchen contractors can help you turn your vision of a perfect kitchen into reality, and we start with design and layout. We can help you sort through the many different types of kitchen cabinets, compare wood and laminate finishes, and offer advice on smart storage and organization solutions, such as pullout spice racks, hideaway bins, and pop-up shelves that let you hide certain counter appliances. In addition to improved aesthetics, we want to ensure that your kitchen also provides added organization and functionality. Once you have chosen your cabinets, a professional installer will take detailed measurements of your kitchen and verify the design and layout with you prior to demolition and installation.  

Step 2. Demolition & Installation

There are always a few hours of demolition involved in a kitchen cabinet installation and remodel. The process usually means removing the old kitchen elements in the reverse order of how they were most likely installed. First, we start by removing all the appliances, turning off the water, and disconnecting the gas appliances in a safe and secure manner. Then we remove any plumbing fixtures such as the sink and dishwasher, and we disconnect any drain and water supply pipes that connect to them.

The dishwasher is usually secured to the countertop or the neighboring cabinets with screws which we remove before trying to slide it out. Next, we remove the sink, and the countertops are taken out after. Countertops are attached to the cabinets by screws from below, through the cabinet framing. Before pulling off the top, we go into each base cabinet and remove all the screws going up into the countertop, or we pry them apart carefully, in case the countertops have been glued down. In some cases, the countertops are saved and used again with the new kitchen cabinets.

When we're removing cabinets, we take the base units out first. If the cabinets we are removing are stock box cabinets, they're usually screwed into the wall framing as well as into each other, so taking those screws out is about all that is necessary to remove the cabinets. However, if the cabinets were framed on site and built in when they were initially installed, we probably have to cut them apart with a reciprocating saw.

For the majority of kitchen projects, the demolition phase also involves re-framing to add or remove a window, door, or wall. This requires clearing off the wall surface to expose the old framing and perform any necessary structural changes.

Once everything from the old kitchen has been removed and cleared away, we start installing your new kitchen cabinets.

We suggest completing any painting or flooring first and then adding the cabinets afterwards. It is more likely cabinets will become damaged when walls are painted and floors are installed first rather than vice versa, and by doing so, you will have a pre-established smooth transition between your cabinets, floors, and walls. The only time it is suggested you install cabinets before flooring is if you are planning on using floating floors. Otherwise, any type of flooring that is nailed or glued down should come before installing kitchen cabinets.

Monday, August 3, 2015

How to Take Care of Your Wood Cabinets

Wood cabinets
Wood cabinets are a beautiful addition to any kitchen or other room in your house. Once you get the perfect, quality cabinets in place, you will want to maintain them for as long as you own or rent the home. The right cabinets not only work as storage, but they also add aesthetic value to whatever room they are in. Once you have been enjoying your cabinets for a while, you may have a spill or accident. At first, it can be alarming since wood can be harmed by certain substances, but we can lend a few helpful tips on how to take care of your fine wood cabinets.

Cleaning Wood Cabinets After a Spill

  1. Spot-clean the spill with whatever rags are handy. If you do not have time to grab a cleaner and towel, use the closest fabric or paper towel you can find nearby to sop up most of the liquid. Letting it sit while you look for a nice rag gives spills time to seep into your wood cabinets. If that happens, paint jobs can be ruined, and the wood grain and thickness of your cabinets can be disrupted. When wood absorbs moisture, it swells and may never go back to its correct size.
  2. After you remove the superficial liquid from the spill, sticky residue or gunk will most likely remain. For removing residue, you will need a cleaner. Never use a multi-surface cleaner on wood surfaces, even if the bottle says you can. Make sure you get a cleaner made for wood surfaces only, and it wouldn't hurt to find one that can be used on painted surfaces, too. Murphy's Oil Soap is a great option for wood cabinet surfaces because it both cleans and conditions. Try the cleaner on an inconspicuous part of your wood cabinets first to make sure it does not stain or spot. Spray the cleaner on the cabinet where the spill took place. Make sure you get it into the crevices. You will want to have a clean, dry cloth on hand, as well as a small toothbrush for the hard-to-reach areas. Following the directions on the cleaner, spray, leave, and revisit to rub and wash off the cleaner as indicated. If you do not have any appropriate cleaner on hand, a cloth dampened with warm water can remove excess stickiness until you get a good cleaner.
  3. After all signs of residue are removed, make sure you leave your cabinets dry. If you need to switch out cloths to absorb any residual wetness, do so. Don't let moisture sit on the wood.

Other Care Tips for Wood Cabinets

Wood cabinets look best when they are maintained properly. Dusting regularly keeps the right sheen-like surface. Lint-free cotton cloths can be used for dusting. Avoid using aerosol duster spray. Never drape damp cloths directly on wood cabinets to dry. This will leave discoloration. Also, avoid placing direct heat onto wood. If scratches or nicks occur in the wood, you can get a touch-up kit with the correct wood shade to cover up mild flaws.

These are just a few tips to consider when you are learning how to properly care for your wood cabinets. We have much more information available for your convenience. Contact our office to learn more about caring for your cabinet investment.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

New Features to Include in Your Kitchen Remodeling in New Orleans

Kitchen Remodeling in New Orleans
We can complete a kitchen remodeling in New Orleans to improve the look and functionality of your home.  Your kitchen is one of the most frequently used spaces in your home.  If you have a family and cook a lot, there is a good chance that you are preparing three meals a day plus at least two snacks in this space.  During the summer, when the kids are home from school, the kitchen has to work even harder at keeping up with the demand of meals and the constant clean up.  This time of year, it is easier than ever to see if your kitchen is up for the tasks at hand, or if it severely lacks in functionality.  If you are tired of constantly battling for counter space or dealing with a lack of storage and pile of dishes, give us a call.  We can meet with you and present you with design solutions to improve your space.  In the meantime, here are some of the aspects we incorporate in every remodeling project.

Kitchen Remodeling in New Orleans – Storage Solutions

No kitchen remodel would be complete without addressing the need for storage.  When they built older homes, the cabinets tended to be smaller, and there were fewer of them.  This has created an issue for the modern homeowner that tends to have several styles of dishes, pans, and small appliances.  Storage space is absolutely critical and instead of creating one-size-fits-all solutions, we like to learn about the amount of things you have and create a storage plan to fit them.  This way, you will not end your remodel without having a space for everything. Even if we are not expanding the footprint of your kitchen, we can use smart storage ideas like bringing the cabinets all the way to the ceiling, adding shelving, making the island a storage space, etc.  Installing drawer and cabinet organizers will also help to make the space more functional so that you can fit more and so that it is less messy than it is currently.  For example, one silverware drawer can have two levels of storage so that you can keep twice the amount of utensils in one space.

Kitchen Remodeling in New Orleans – Design Style

When remodeling your kitchen, it is important to select a design style that fits your personality.  Just because you had a country kitchen when you bought the house, does not mean that you have to keep it that way.  You could switch to a modern kitchen with clean lines, or you could go darker and install cherry cabinets OR if you have always wanted a country kitchen, we can make yours beautiful.  The reality is that there are so many design styles and features that can be included to transform your kitchen into a space that you absolutely love.  All you need to do is let us know what your favorite design style is and what your favorite colors are so that we can incorporate them into the design plan.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Why You Should Add Custom Cabinets to Your Home

If you are starting a remodel, include
Custom Cabinets
custom cabinets in your plans. This is an excellent way to create the storage you need to hide the clutter, create organization, and add beauty to your home. While many people tend to think of cabinets as no more than a functional item, they can also be beautiful and improve the appearance of your home. We can make cabinetry out of all types of wood. They can be painted or stained, and blend in or stand out. The choice is yours, and we can help you select the type of cabinetry perfect for your home and your family.

Custom Cabinets in the Bathroom

The bathroom is an excellent space to have custom cabinets designed and installed because they can maximize your storage. This is especially important if a bathroom is being shared by multiple people. For example, if you have a kids' bathroom being used by a teen, an elementary student, and a toddler, you will need to store three very different types of products. While your teenager may need a blow-dryer and a curling iron, your toddler might still be using bath toys. This means that your storage solutions need to keep up with the demands of your family. We can install various cabinets and drawers for each person to use, so their belongings can be entirely separate. We can also create space for towel storage, toilet paper, etc., so your hallway closet can be freed up. In the master bathroom, we can get more detailed with your storage solutions, providing cubbies for makeup, hair accessories, etc. This can make it easier and faster to get ready in the morning.

Custom Cabinets in the Family Room

Most families have games, toys, CDs, DVDs, blankets, etc. that all end up in the family room. If you have multiple video game consoles or your kids like to read, the amount of items that need to be stored only increases. This can turn any family room into a cluttered space in no time at all. If you are tired of picking up constantly or having the room look messy when it is actually clean, you should have custom cabinets built. With a wall of built-ins, there can be a space for everything that lives in the family room, which will make the room look better and make picking up less of a chore for you and the kids.

Custom Cabinets in the Kitchen

When it comes to your kitchen, cabinets are a must. We can design them to function as both storage and organizational tools. For example, you do not have to use a large cabinet for a tower of pans to go in. We can create cabinets that can actually separate and store pans, dishes, utensils, appliances, and more, so everything has its own organized place. Cooking will be much easier this way, and cleanup will be faster, as well.

To get started on your remodeling project, call and schedule an in-home consultation.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Why You Should Hire a Professional for Your Kitchen Cabinet Installation

kitchen cabinet installation
When it is time for your kitchen cabinet installation, you may want to consider hiring a professional to do the work for you. At first, a cabinet installation may seem like a simple process, but it actually requires extensive skill, professional equipment, and a keen eye for design. We offer professional and quality cabinet installation services for your kitchen. 

Your Kitchen is a Highly Trafficked Area
In most homes, a kitchen is a central location that encompasses cooking, cleaning, and socializing. Even if you have a living room, sometimes you may find that everyone is congregating in the kitchen so that they can be together and work together. For a comfortable family environment that also allows you enough space to work, a professional can help you determine the best layout for your kitchen cabinet installation
Your kitchen is such a common room that it will receive a fair amount of attention from visitors. This being so, you will want your kitchen to look beautiful even when it is messy from cooking. Having a proper quality cabinet installation can make your kitchen look like it has come straight out of a magazine. You will enjoy impressing your family and friends with your functional, but chic kitchen cabinet outfit. 

Expensive Houseware is at Risk
When you invest large amounts of money in cookware and dining ware, the last thing you want is for those expensive necessities to be at risk for breaking. When you install your own kitchen cabinets, you may not know how to properly reinforce the cabinets so that the weight of your dishes and appliances does not cause the cabinet to come loose. If your cabinet breaks, the entirety of what is inside of it breaks too. This is especially true if you have fine china that was expensive or passed down through generations. Not only is taking a chance on losing important house-ware costly, but it is also dangerous to anyone who could be nearby if a cabinet collapses. 

The Right Fit is Necessary
When you are performing a kitchen cabinet installation, you may find that a piece does not fit into place correctly. When this happens, you will need the right tools and the know-how to shape and cut the pieces in a way that leaves them unblemished. A professional can do all this detailed work for you while also providing you with cabinets that fit and that are left unscathed. New kitchen cabinets are an investment that you don’t want to throw around lightly by trying to fix minor issues yourself. 

Replacing Old Cabinets
If you are having a kitchen cabinet installation done in an older home, you may already have old cabinets in place that need to be removed. A professional can remove your old cabinets without creating a mess in the process. We can provide you with a cleared area for your brand new cabinets. 

Don’t take your kitchen cabinet installation lightly when you can easily hire a professional to complete this complicated work for you. We are available to properly install your beautiful new cabinets in a secure and durable way. 

Monday, June 1, 2015

Summer is Here and it is Time for Your Kitchen Remodel

Kitchen Remodel
If you have been considering a kitchen remodel, summer is the best time to get started.  Remodeling your kitchen can transform the appearance of your home, give you an open concept floorplan and make entertaining more delightful.  We can incorporate every fun, practical and glamorous feature that you can think of while adding in beautiful countertops and high-end appliances.  There is nothing too extravagant when creating your remodeling plan.   

The reason that we encourage people to remodel their kitchen during the summer is all about practicality.  While we do a thorough job and are conscientious about the noise and mess, there is no way to prevent a disruption to your home and your family life.  The kitchen is a room that is used so frequently that not having daily access to it poses challenges.  During the summer months, there are ways to get around this.  For example, many of our clients will plan their kitchen remodel to start right before they go on their family vacation.  This way, when they come back, the remodel is either done or close to it.  While you are dining out or visiting grandma, we can work on replacing your floors, cabinets, appliances, etc.  

Another benefit of a summertime kitchen remodel is that you can cook outdoors.  This is the season where most people are grilling on the barbecue anyway.  If you are grilling one or two days a week, you might want to use this time to buy a smoker or look up new recipes so that you can continue to cook outdoors for the duration of your remodeling project.  Sure, you may need to eat cereal for breakfast and sandwiches for lunch but at night, you can pull out the grill, throw on your favorite meat and veggies and have a delicious meal without the need for your kitchen.  This is opposed to a winter remodel where you may become highly reliant on your microwave.  Thanks to the grill, most homeowners we work with, find that a remodel is less disruptive than they initially thought it would be. 

If your kitchen remodel involves an extension, there is the added benefit of being less worried about inclement weather when the roof or walls are exposed.  Our crew can get more work done since the weather is nicer, and we will not be as concerned with the potential for a rain delay.  Additionally, the summer means that we have more light to work with.  This is helpful when completing an extension because natural light is essential for laying the new foundation, putting up new walls and a new roof.  It even helps our electricians to be able to work longer.  The summer months provide us with the opportunity to finish a remodeling project faster so that you can get your kitchen and home back.

Regardless of when you decide to start your kitchen remodel, we will ensure that it is a positive experience for you.  However, if you are looking for the least amount of disruption, we encourage you to start today.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Make Room for Grandma With Help From a General Contractor

General Contractor
As a general contractor, we are experts at providing home remodeling solutions.  Whatever the needs of your family are, we can help.  We are solution oriented and it is important that your home suits your family’s needs so that you can enjoy your time there and feel comfortable, rather than stressed out due to a lack of functionality or space constraints.  One challenge that many families have is finding space for extended family, whether they are visiting for a month or needing to move in.  We can create a space for both.

As a general contractor, our home remodeling solutions can make space for extended family. To create a design for your home, we need to visit with you, take a tour and look at your property to determine what options might be available.  One thing to consider is who is going to stay at your home and how long they plan to be there.  This is important because if your guests will only be staying off and on, you may want to create a space that can be repurposed in their absence.  For example, Grandma may come to stay for a month around the holidays but if she only visits once a year, you won’t want an empty room the rest of the time.  

We will frequently build an addition that serves as a guest suite for short-term out of town guests.  To make the room dual purpose, we can make the bed a Murphy bed that pulls down from the wall. You can put it in place before they come so that the room is all set up, and when they leave, it folds back into the wall so that you can use the space differently.  This often works well as a combined at-home office/guest suite or as a craft room.  We can build in a reserved closet for your guests’ clothes with an entirely separate closet or storage center that can be used for the items that need to be stored on a daily basis.  This way the space can have designated zones rather than storing your craft supplies in the same closet that grandma needs to hang her winter sweaters.  Additionally, the benefit of using a Murphy bed is that if you do need a space like a home office for daily use, it can serve one purpose during the day and another at night while still giving your guests privacy.
Get creative with our home remodeling solutions.

If your visitors are planning on becoming permanent or semi-permanent house guests, you may want to consider a different type of solution.  If, for example, Grandma is moving in, we recommend giving her a separate entrance into her suite or unit.  That way she can maintain some level of autonomy.  You can easily do this with a ground level addition, and we can create a path leading to the door from your driveway area.  If you have a walkout basement or are building a garage apartment, this is also a possibility.  As a general contractor, we also recommend that you turn it into a one bedroom or a studio with a kitchenette.  While small, this can make life a little easier so that she can have her own snacks and things to prepare small meals if she, or you, would like some alone time. 

Monday, May 4, 2015

Here is Everything You Need to Know About the Types of Wood Cabinets

Wood Cabinets
When you think about wood cabinets, more often than not, kitchen cabinets come to mind because kitchens tend to require the most storage space. However, cabinets are more than just storage units. With thousands of options to choose from, wood cabinets can reflect your personality, your taste, and your sense of style and, at the same time, fit into most budgets. Most wood cabinets can be fit into a few categories such as framed or frameless, stock or custom made, traditional, country, or modern. They can be made of hardwood, softwood, wood veneers or other materials.
Solid Wood
Because solid wood cabinets are not only extremely versatile but have a timeless appeal, they have become the most popular and sought after material used for cabinetry. Wood looks warm and inviting, comes in a vast array of enticing options that can work beautifully well with any d├ęcor.
Different woods are priced differently, depending on their availability, point of origin, durability and overall appearance. When choosing your wood option, it all comes down to three important details, type, color, and grain.
Wood is largely classified as hardwood or softwood. Hardwood comes from broad-leafed trees such as birch, oak, maple, cherry and hickory and are easy to saw. Softwood comes from needle bearing evergreen trees such as pine, spruce, and cedar and are harder to cut.
From the lighter touches of maple to the darker hues of birch, all woods have natural color variations, which can result in a number of attractive possibilities for the room you are decorating. Different wood finishes can either enhance or mask the natural grain patterns and color variations. When selecting wood options that will suit your home, it is important to understand the natural characteristics of the wood you will choose and which varnish or stain will work best.
Some Of The Popular Options in Solid Wood Cabinets
  • Oak.  For years, oak was a favorite among cabinet builders because it is a very hard, durable, heavy wood with a coarse grain that varies from straight to distinctive sweeping arch patterns. Many consider oak to be timeless, blending with virtually any color scheme or style. Oak also stains well with standard finishes.
  • Maple. Recently, maple has become more popular choice because of how adaptable it is to any cabinet style, how durable and shock resistant it is. Maple is a medium to hard wood with a straight, wavy or curly grain and has a uniform, light appearance that produces a smooth, clean look when stained. Its popularity can also be attributed to the fact that it can be finished to resemble other, more expensive woods such as cherry and cedar. Maple would be a great option if you were looking for a light, airy kitchen or a dramatic kitchen with darker finishes.
  • Birch.  This is a smooth hardwood with a straight, curly or wavy grain. It is especially resistant to wear and tear and is susceptible to most stains and finishes. Birch is relatively light in color and can vary from cream to yellow tones unless it is taken from the core of the tree. If from the center of the tree, birch will have darker reddish to brown tones. It is extremely versatile and looks equally at home in a casual or more refined setting.
  • Hickory.  This is a strong, hard and heavy wood. It is unique, in as much that it has an array of random, colored streaks that run through the wood.  These streaks can range from light cream, dark reddish browns to sometimes nearly black, all of which can be enhanced by light or natural stains.
  • Cherry.  Recently cherry has become more popular.  It is well known for its smooth grain and unique pinkish color that deepens as it ages into the more reddish brown tones. Depending on the how much light exposure it receives, cherry wood will tend to darken several shades over time. The darker tones tend to add a warm elegance to any room.  Cherry is considered a luxury wood and is a little more costly.
Mahogany, ebony, walnut, and teak are considered more exotic woods and are, therefore, far more expensive.
With the never ending variety of wood cabinets to choose from, finding ones that match your personal style, decor, and budget, is not very difficult.  We can help you to select the perfect set of wood cabinets for your home.

Friday, April 17, 2015

Make Sure that Your Bathroom Remodel Lives Up to the Demands of Your Family

Bathroom Remodel
If you have a large family, your bathroom remodel needs to stand up to the constant wear and tear that it will be receiving.  Bathrooms are one of the most frequently used rooms in the home, and they have a tough job to fulfill.  Your family needs to be able to use the restroom, take showers, brush teeth, get ready in the morning, etc.  Your bathroom even serves as an emergency room when one of your kids cuts their thumb or gets something in their eye.  It serves as the beauty salon when your daughter is getting ready for a dance, or your children have school picture day.  The list goes on and on, but most people don’t think about these things when planning for their remodel.  This is one of the reasons that it pays to work with a professional.  We know how hard your bathroom has to work and can provide solutions that make it more functional while also ensuring that it is beautiful.

What size and space do you need?

If you have the ability to determine the square footage, due to building an extension, for example, that is an excellent opportunity to really build the space that you need.  However, even if we are working within the existing footprint, there are often creative solutions that can be implemented.  It starts, however, with understanding how many people will be using the bathroom and whether or not they will be using it at the same general time.  For example, if your hallway bathroom needs to accommodate three school-aged children, we need to know this.  In theory, you can time showers so that they take them at night, or only one takes a morning shower.  Still, they will need to brush their teeth at the same relative time, brush their hair, and when they are older – do their makeup.  This can lead to massive conflict in the morning.  We can help to ease the tension by creating zones.  
What are zones?

Think about your bathroom like you would the floor plan of a tiny house.  Every area needs to have a function and by arranging the layout correctly, it can become possible for people to be in the room at the same time, without being in each others way. For example, you may not have enough space for two full vanities but you may have space for a shallow counter along an open wall in the back. We can use this space for storage, a counter, electrical outlets, and a mirror.  All of a sudden, this bathroom will have a separate space for doing hair and makeup while someone else is using the sink to brush their teeth.  This is a simple solution but incredibly effective for allowing your bathroom to accommodate several kids at the same time. Simultaneously, this can also work in a smaller master bathroom.   If the space is large enough, we can also create a separate room for the toilet since this is the most effective way of allowing multiple people to use the space at the same time.  The only thing that goes in there is the toilet so that people can continue to use the sink and get ready while someone else is using the facilities.  When we meet with you to discuss your bathroom remodel, we can discuss zones further after looking at your space and gaining an understanding of who needs to use it. 

Friday, April 3, 2015

A Guide To Granite Countertops

Quality Kitchen and Bath
Whether they are buying a home or remodeling their kitchen, consumers almost always choose granite counter tops over those made from any other material.

With good reason.

Granite countertops not only have an extremely hard and naturally non-porous surface that resists staining, heat and scratches, but are available in an endless assortment of patterns and an array of colors that range from almost pastel to very vivid and striking. Considering its durability, versatility, and easy maintenance, it is little wonder that leading consumer magazines consistently rate granite as being the ultimate material for kitchen counters. In other words, although most materials have their advantages and disadvantages, granite countertops are head and shoulders above ceramic tile, stainless steel, butcher block and other manufactured surfaces.

How We Use Them

Granite is not only used for indoor and outdoor kitchen counter tops, but also for bathroom counter tops, shower and floor tile, patios, etc.

A Few Facts About Granite

Formed by volcanic activity, granite is primarily made up of quartz, mica, and feldspar... minerals that determine the color variations and movement in a block of granite. Granite is first blasted from quarries in large blocks and then sliced into slabs. It is then taken to a facility where the slabs are cut into thinner pieces, treated and polished. These slabs eventually make their way to your home to be a beautiful counter top.

Granite being one of the hardest and strongest materials in nature, is quite impressive in its ability to withstand constant use and wear and tear. Thus, the comparison to diamonds. Granite countertops are almost impossible to scratch and, as an added bonus, are heat and bacteria resistant. Additionally, stains don't pose a problem under normal use. Although it is scratch resistant, it is recommended that homeowners use a cutting board to avoid blunting kitchen knives. However, it should be noted that as a stone, granite is inflexible, and can be chipped or cracked if hit with a very heavy object so you should still treat it with care.

Choosing A Granite Counter Top

Because of the vast array of options available when considering granite counter tops, coordinating your counter top with your kitchen cabinets, faucet, appliances, walls and flooring to achieve the look and feel you desire, has never been easier. The vast array of colors available in granite is quite remarkable. You have your pick of soft beiges, golden browns, pale pinks to corals, deep plums, romantic reds, sleek and modern blacks, rich blues, exotic greens, stark whites and many, many other shades. No two granite samples are alike, because each block will have a flecked or pebbled appearance that varies in size, shape, and density, depending on the composition of quartz, crystals, and minerals in that particular stone.

After you have chosen (from a few thousand possible combinations) the color and pattern that best meets your design needs, you then pick the texture and finish you desire. Granite countertops come in honed, flamed and brushed finishes, with the most popular being a polished surface.  Granite is naturally beautiful, durable, and elegant, and no other natural stone can match the many unique features it offers. Granite countertops are an excellent choice for any remodel project you may be planning, one that you will enjoy it for many years to come.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Get Rid of Your Outdated Kitchen With New Custom Cabinets

Custom Cabinets
If you have an ugly kitchen, custom cabinets can help to transform it.  Let’s face it, not everyone loves their house or their kitchen.  In fact, after you have put a fresh coat of paint on the walls and laid down new flooring, the main area of the house can usually look much improved.  These simple and affordable solutions work well for giving your home a fresh feel.  It doesn’t do much, however, for the kitchen, and if you don’t like yours – it is time for a makeover.

We can turn the most boring, ugly, and outdated kitchen into a dream space.  Whether you are stuck with old cabinets and appliance from the 70s or medium oak from the early 90s, we can take you into the next century.  While doing so, you can have the opportunity to customize your kitchen to fit your every need.  From how many sinks that you have to where each type of cabinet is placed, you can become as creative and as detailed as you like when planning for how to renovate your space. 

One of the reasons you can be so creative with your kitchen is that with custom cabinets, everything can be made to your exact requests and specifications.  Custom cabinetry goes far beyond selecting the height, width and depth of each cabinet.  You can select the color and the hardware for a customized appearance that matches your personality and that’s just getting started.  We invite you also to consider how you use your space, what your most used pots and pans are, how many spices you need to access, etc. Think about what meals you like to cook, how you like to cook them, and what tools and ingredients you need in order to do so.  Make a list so that we can learn about your style and incorporate features into your remodel that make it faster and easier to cook your favorite meals. 

We understand how critical it is for a kitchen to have optimal functionality and do our best to incorporate that into every design that we do.  For example, we may suggest wider drawers in place of several cupboards so that you can have a clean and organized space for your pots. What we do will be based on our conversations, learning about your concerns, and how you like to use the space.  All of this can then come together without an issue. 
If you love to make choices, you will love your new custom cabinets. Seeing something that you selected come to life is always a ton of fun, and we will work to ensure that you are completely satisfied with the material that you select, even the shade and hardware.  While creating a plan with you, we will also point out some amazing features that you can have incorporated.  Things like hidden compartments and a slide out cutting board can make cooking that much better. 

Monday, March 2, 2015

Hire a General Contractor to Create a New Space In Time For Summer

General Contractor
As a general contractor, we are in the business of creating beautiful spaces.  Whether you want a new home built, are looking to build an extension or simply want to remodel – we can help.  It is important that you hire someone with a contractor’s license because, in order to get one, you must be bonded and insured. This means that if you hire a contractor and they don’t finish the job, you can go after their bond or insurance policy.  That’s a good thing because a contractor doesn’t want that ever to happen and, therefore, is motivated to ensure that the job is done right.  However, if you hire someone that doesn’t have these credentials, they won’t have the same motivation, and you will have fewer protections, as a result. 

If you don’t like your home, now is an excellent time to create a new space just in time for summer.  We understand that for many of our clients, the way that their home looks and functions is beyond important.  This is especially true if you have a family and spend a lot of your time at home.  We can be sure that your home reflects the changing needs of your family and that it looks amazing.  

As a general contractor, we have a lot of creative ways to give you more space, including:
  • Building a sunroom.  This is an ideal solution that can be used year-round.  With a wall full of windows, a sunroom gets a lot of natural light and can be an excellent place to read a good book or have lunch with your friends.  We recommend that your sunroom be as comfortable as your family room, only light and airy. 
  • Create a screened porch.  If you want to extend your living space and have an indoor/outdoor feel, create a screened in porch.  We can build one next to the kitchen with cathedral ceilings for aesthetics, a ceiling fan for comfort, a tile floor for practicality, etc.  Your screened porch can be an extension of your living space and a beautiful addition to any home.
  • Create a master retreat.  If you aren’t using all of the bedrooms in your home, consider what you would do with a master retreat.  It is unnecessary to have a bunch of room sitting unused and waiting for a guest.  You use your bedroom every day so you should be comfortable and enjoy it. By combining more than one room, we can expand the footprint of your master before turning it into a little paradise.  Once that is done, we can also expand your master bathroom to create a luxurious space.
  • Finish your basement.  One of the easiest way to transform your home is to hire a general contractor to finish your basement.  We are always looking for creative ways to make your home more functional, and your basement is a prime way for doing so.  The footprint already exists, so it is a simple matter or finishing the interior as you like.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Kitchen Remodeling in New Orleans: Ways to Save Money

Kitchen Remodeling in New Orleans
We provide kitchen remodeling in New Orleans for discerning homeowners that want their kitchen to look absolutely stunning.  We love what we do and enjoy both the design and build process.  Since we work with clients that have both small and large budgets, we are often asked what aspects of the remodel a homeowner can do on their own in order to save money.  If you want the kitchen of your dreams, it may be possible to get there sooner by hiring us to do the major work while you handle the small details.  We still advise that you hire a contractor to deal with any electrical or plumbing issues along with installing the cabinetry.  However, with that in mind, here are some kitchen remodeling hacks that you can try:
  • Backsplash ideas.  There are new products on the market that make it incredibly easy to get a beautiful backsplash without a lot of work.  For gorgeous subway tile, we can install it for a finished look.  If, however, you want something more earthy or rustic, we suggest trying Airstone.  This is a product that can be purchased at the local hardware store. It looks like interesting, natural stone tiles, but they are fake and can be easily applied to your walls using a simple adhesive.  This way if you have the budget for your main kitchen remodel, but not the backsplash, you can create your own for $100 or less. 
  • Refinishing cabinetry.  When conducting kitchen remodeling in New Orleans, we sometimes find homeowners that want to keep their existing cabinetry because they like the layout, or the cabinets are original to the home.  If this is the case, it is possible to refinish the cabinets and preserve them for future use.  We recommend having a professional (us) refinish them for you since it can be complicated and challenging to get them to look perfect.  Still, this can be a good way to keep your original materials and decrease your waste.
  • Hardware.  This is an excellent and easy way to improve the appearance of your kitchen.  If your cabinets are the right color and in great shape, but look dated, change your hardware.  Purchase some modern or funky knobs and drawer pulls then replace your old ones.  This will make your kitchen look like you updated it, even if you only screwed in a few knobs.
  • Paint. If you don’t mind getting dirty, you can save money on your remodel by painting the kitchen yourself.  This is one of the easiest parts of the job but will still shave off several hundred dollars in labor.  The nice thing about paint is that you can change the color as often as you like in order to improve the look of your home. 
  • Faucet.  While conducting kitchen remodeling in New Orleans, we have found that by switching out a dated faucet for a new and beautiful one, an entire sink can look new, even if it’s not.  This is one hack that can save you money.
To learn more about how to remodel your kitchen, schedule an appointment so that we can view your space and discuss ideas.