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Although concrete counter tops and granite countertops can look very comparable, they are two very totally different materials. Granite has been used for countertops and tabletops for a quite some time. Though granite may be very lovely, concrete has so many extra possibilities.
The design flexibility, mixed with its relative affordability, give counters made from concrete an advantage over the alternatives. One can coordinate a completely unique design idea for a wide range of surfaces together with floors, countertops and islands, bogs, tables, and work areas. Let your creativeness run wild with colours too. Use a selection of colors in the floors, walls and tables if you choose. Imitate the look of different traditional material, or come up with ideas of your own.
The focus of many house remodels is often the kitchen, so express your ideas to on this well-liked central gathering point. By letting the nature of concrete work to your benefit, you may make a cookie-cutter kitchen into a inside designer's dream. Be at liberty to make your kitchen into chef's central by adding special touches and equipment only for you. Monkey around with forms and molds before pouring the concrete so that you'll be sure to have all the options you require. Use whatever shade, or mixture of colours, you need in your counter tops so as to enhance the rest of your kitchen.
You can even make use of stains. Concrete stains are a little different than colors. Think of a chunk of wood that is stained as opposed to painted. It gives you a bit of a mottled look, that can make the feel a lot "warmer."
But should you not want to venture on your own, just remember to comply with all the beneficial steps. Understanding what goes into the right mixing of concrete is fundamental knowledge that you will need to get begin on your countertops. Deciding on what type or form you want for your countertops and then producing the suitable molds are very important for the finished product. Be careful to pay particular attention to the sink and faucet knockouts. When you already know easy methods to use polishers, grinders, and other concrete tools, you're a step ahead of the game. In case you aren't overwhelmed by the process, take every step slowly. Your finished counter tops might be well worth the wait.
By adding glass or marble into the combination, concrete counter tops look as unique as you are. The added features, of various materials can make the tactile appeal of your concrete countertop even more extreme.
Often, home renovations don't go exactly as planned - either going way over budget or schedule, or unforseen problems cause additional time, work, and money.
Most of these situations can be avoided with some careful planning and proper decision making, sooner rather than later in the process.
Here are a few items that may help
Before you start shopping for your new bathroom or kitchen you must know your spending limits. Whether you are getting a loan or paying cash, you need to work out how much your project is going to cost. Some businesses also offer finance solutions for approved customers.
Be aware of council regulations
Find out all the information you can before you arrange tradesperson. If your home is heritage listed you will need to meet strict council regulations. Many renovations must be approved by the council before work can commence. Contact your local council for more details.
Speak with family and friends who have done renovations or built a home. It is important to find a tradesperson that you can communicate with. Make sure you understand everything they are telling you. Book a tradesperson well ahead of time, as they can be booked for months in advance. Ensure that your tradesperson is licensed. Your product warranties are only valid if installed by a licensed tradesperson.
Know your start and completion dates
Communicate with your tradesperson and come to an agreement of realistic start and completion dates for your project. If you have a specific date that the job must be finished by, for example you have relatives coming to stay, let your tradesperson know. Keep in mind that unexpected problems can hold up your project, no matter how well you have planned it.
It may take a few shopping trips for you to decide on the products that give you the look you desire and are also practical for your needs. Browse through a print or online catalogue. Once you have decided on a style (modern, heritage or easy living) this will narrow down your product choices. Be aware of any size restrictions of the room. Print out or write down product specifications and measure up your bathroom. You may use the online bathroom planner at the Bourne Bathroom and Kitchen Centre website to layout the products you have chosen.
Talk to your tradesperson about your choices. If the tradesperson tells you that a product you have chosen is unsuitable, find out why. It may just be that extra work is required that they don't want to do. Remember, it is your home and you need to be satisfied once the job is complete.
It is important that you draw up plans of your bathroom or kitchen. Discuss the plans with your tradesperson. Let him know what sort of products you would like, so he will know what work needs to be done. For example if you have chosen an inwall cistern, the tradesperson will need to know so he can set up the plumbing correctly before the tiling is done. It is best to have specifications of all of the products you have chosen so the tradesperson knows exactly what work is required. Purchasing products
When selecting products, find out how long it will take for delivery. Some goods such as tapware and toilets will be in stock, while others such as spas and vanity units are custom made and can take up to 1 month to order in. Often these custom made products are non-refundable so confirm your product choices with your tradesperson before ordering. Find out from your tradesperson which products they will required first. Generally, the first products needed are the shower base, bath or spa and mixers if they are being installed on the wall.
As an owner builder, what should I purchase myself?
If you are owner building, make sure you purchase all of the main products for your bathroom, kitchen and laundry. This will ensure that you make all of the decisions and achieve the result you want. There will be things you will not think about when placing an order, such as different handle types on a vanity unit, the pump position of your spa, that you will need to decide on. It is important to make these decisions yourself as they will affect the overall result of your project. Smaller fittings for plumbing can be purchased by your tradesperson.
What services are available to my property?
It is important to know whether you need gas or electric appliances (hot water unit, cooking appliances). If you live further out from the city, you may need LPG appliances. If you currently have electric appliances and you want to change to gas, speak with your tradesperson to determine if this is going to be cost effective and worthwhile in the long run. If you are building a new home, decide on the appliances you want before building begins, as the plumbing will need to be roughed in based on your product selection.
What sort of Hot Water Unit do I need?
There is a wide range of hot water units available and it can be quite daunting to try and choose one. If you are replacing an existing unit your choices can be limited, so speak with your tradesperson. The instantaneous hot water units are popular at the moment, but they use a larger gas line than the standard storage units. This can mean major plumbing changes which can be quite costly, though in the long run the instantaneous systems are cost efficient.
Many of these points seem somewhat obvious, but the problem arises when you start taking things for granted. When you don't make sure that all your bases are covered, you may find that you have invested a lot of time, effort and money in a home renovation that you may end up unhappy with.
Garage remodelling is becoming a popular trend all across the country these days. The reasons to remodel your garage are actually quite obvious when you look at the facts. If you live in a modest 2000 square foot house and have lost room to stretch out or even workout for that matter, your garage may prove to be the perfect place to exercise, do yoga, or a quiet place to just think. You may find your garage is 1/4 the size of your whole house.
You might look at the condition of your garage currently and cringe at the thought of even walking through it, let alone relaxing in your garage, but with some proper planning and a little hard work you can have years of enjoyment and add totally usable space without the expense of a costly room addition. Most garages are over 500 square feet of space that just get cluttered with stuff we would rather not see until we need it.
As with any other building project, a garage remodel requires a well thought out plan of attack. The most obvious place to start with a garage remodel is by getting rid of trash and stuff you will never need. Next would be to find a way to store the stuff you cannot do without.
If there is no drywall on the walls of your garage, this is the time to insulate. Walls and ceilings should be insulated and if you can afford the additional costs and don't have one already you should replace your garage door with an insulated one. It may seem like a large cost to insulate, but you will notice the difference.
Many people have a washer and dryer inside their garage and perhaps a wash basin, water heater and maybe a forced air furnace. If these items can be walled up and louvered doors installed to hide them, you will almost forget they are there. Sometimes it helps to move things around a bit to maximize the space you do have. Of course make sure all codes and clearances are followed and if any gas appliances are in the room, make sure to have good fire/carbon monoxide detectors in place.
Many ceilings in garages require additional framing in order to hold drywall and may require engineering and plans, but often times what is there is perfectly adequate. There is usually not enough power outlets in a garage or lighting circuits for that matter and getting additional power almost always means new circuits in your panel, if there is room and adequate amperage.
By just clearing up what you have and doing the few things mentioned so far, you will have a nice shell that can be used for all sorts of reasons. At this point your garage remodel can become anything you like so if the remodel wasn't too much for you, toss down a yoga mat and some barbells and really get to work.
Remodeling a room in your home does not have to be a stressful undertaking. In fact, if planned and executed correctly a remodeling project can become quite an enjoyable experience. Imagine watching every step of your dream for that particular part of your living space come to life and become space that you have always wanted.
Adding little touches of fun to any space can make the project more enjoyable as you are able to visualize the outcome as the project is moving along. Keeping the green in mind whether it is the cost of the project or making a conscious effort to use recycled materials can be a fun challenge. Taking the green recycled material route can add a bit of a fun challenge to the project as well as being great for the environment.
No matter what your remodeling project is, keeping it fun and enjoyable for you is important. Turn the space into exactly what you want and you'll reap the benefits for years to come. Taking shortcuts and skimping on the quality of the materials and labor will quickly drive any project into frustration and no one likes to ever be there. Unfortunately that is where a lot of remodeling projects end up.
No matter what area you have decided to take on, never forget to add a touch of yourself in the planning. Personalizing your space tells your visitors who you are and can create a more pleasant environment for you. It becomes the space that you love and never want to leave.
Did you just buy a house and realize the hardwood floors you thought were beautiful are actually scratched up and discolored, or have you lived in your house for some time and now your floors don't have quite the same appeal as they used to?
Hardwood floors can easily be brought to life with a little sanding and refinish work. Though it is definitely work, if you can mow your own lawn and do basic yard work, the odds are you can refinish your floors yourself and save a lot of money, while greatly improving the appearance of your floors.
If you truly want to refinish your floors, you might first try getting some quotes from professionals. If it is worth having people come into your home and refinish your living room floor for 1000.00 or more, then by all means have it done professionally. Professionals know what they are doing and can get in and out in the least amount of time. But if you could save about half the money, wouldn't it be worth it to do your own floors?
Prior to sanding you should figure out the best method of dust control for your situation. Dust from sanding floors can travel throughout the house. Sealing off doors and using fans to expel dust through windows is a favorite way, but each setup differs in some ways. Remove all the baseboards you can unless you want to spend a great deal of time on your hands and knees with a palm sander.
There are basically two different types of floor sanders widely available at most rental yards and home improvement stores. The first one is a large pad sander. The bottom is flat and the sandpaper sticks to the bottom pad and it is very easy to use. For initial sanding with a pad sander the best grit to start with is 36 or 60 grit depending on the existing finish. The pad sanders are relatively slow as far as removal goes and the fact that the bottom is flat makes this the best option for most do it your-selfers. Also available at most rental places are drum sanders. Drum sanders remove material real fast, which is great if you know what you are doing and don't stay in one place for too long or "ride the edges". Drum sanders can be quite dangerous and one wrong move can literally destroy your floor. Special care needs to be taken when starting or stopping a sander; they tend to jump around a bit at first, and can easily bump into stuff. You do need to maintain control of the machine at all times, you have been warned! Remove all the old finish and use finer paper to smooth the entire floor. Hand sanders should be used in areas where the pad or drum sander can't reach and special attention needs to be taken to ensure that all the sanding is uniform. Any nail holes or separation of boards should be patched with trowlable wood patch prior to finish sanding and all patches require special attention to ensure as little patch is left as possible.
Wear adequate eye and lung protection whenever around sanding particles and whenever handling tools or when cleaning up.
The regulations on paints and floor coverings were once thought to be the end of descent finishes, but in actuality it has been the best thing that has happened to the industry in some time. The latest waterborne formulas for water-based polyurethane are nothing short of miraculous. Within an hour of applying a coat you can walk on your newly finished floors, (you should wait much longer). You can literally do 4 coats in 2 days, where oils require 24 hours dry time between coats. The water-based polyurethane also won't yellow like oil based does and looks as good as the day you did it for much longer than oil based products. The smell of water-based polyurethane while wet is bearable whereas the oil based products stinks and lingers for days.Although your floor may seem dry to the touch, it won't really be dry for at least 24-36 hours and won't completely harden for a couple weeks, so it may be more susceptible to scratches and nicks for the first week after finishing, so be careful.