Important Traits of a Kitchen Designer

When choosing a kitchen designer, there are important traits to look for. Any professional you work with should always have your best interests in mind, while also using their proven experience to upgrade your kitchen. You want your kitchen to function within your lifestyle, budget, and fashion sense. To do this, choose a designer who listens to your needs and plans the design around those conversations and examples. Anyone who works in interior design should have strong attention to detail, but in the kitchen, this is particularly important. Read more

Sunroom Additions Are Great in All Four Seasons, Even Winter

When many of us think of sunrooms, we think of them as places to spend the spring and summer months enjoying the sunshine. Believe it or not, sunrooms are actually great additions for the fall and winter, as well. With the proper type of glass in your windows, you can take advantage of the sun’s rays for both heating and cooling purposes. Read more

5 Mistakes to Avoid in Bathroom Design

 

The bathroom is one of the most important rooms in any house and designing it for maximum utility and comfort is essentially. When remodeling your bathroom, here are 5 common design mistakes to avoid.

Inadequate Waterproofing

Bathrooms are naturally quite wet. It’s estimated that proper waterproofing costs should account for 5 to 10 percent of the total cost of the room. Also, many materials that work fine in the design showroom don’t necessarily hold up to long-term exposure to moisture. This is why it’s best to design and build with durable materials that stand up to any moisture.master-bathroom

Slippery Floors or Carpet in Bathrooms

Bathroom floors need traction. Having a shiny floor such as glossy tile or polished stone for a bathroom is a major no-no. Also, carpets and bathrooms don’t mix, due to the fact that with how much moisture ends up being in a bathroom, you invite mold, mildew, or other things to collect in the carpet. Bath mats are fine as long as they’re washed often, but carpeting, especially around the toilet, can collect a lot of unwanted smells and sanitary issues.

Insufficient Lighting

Many designers will suggest that having no natural light in any room, especially the bathroom, is a major sin. This can’t always be avoided based on where the bathroom needs to be put. Skylights and light tubes are good ways to get around not having space for a window available. But these options aren’t always available for the space, either. There are innovative design options such as finding ways to bring in light from adjoining rooms. In any case, if you have no way to let in natural light, use light cabinetry and have plenty of ambient lighting in the bathroom to avoid making the space feel creepy.

Using Bland or Overpowering Tile

Typical 4×4 white tile is something found in far too many remodeled bathrooms. This rather bland design choice is often made in anticipation of future home resale value. Some remodels go the exact opposite direction and use tile designs that are either incredibly bright or overpowering. It may be the choice of some to go overboard to add visual interest to one of the most important rooms in the home. The trick is to add a splash of color to make for a nice conversation piece, not to have a distracting design that confuses everyone but you that uses the bathroom.

Not Venting Quickly and Quietly

The last thing you want to do when using the bathroom is to feel like you’re taking off in a jet when you turn on the exhaust fan. Despite building codes requiring “fart fans” (yes, that’s an actual term), far too often cheap $25 fans that are extremely loud and attached to cheap flexible ducts. While they may pass inspection for the airflow, measured in CFM (Cubic Feet per Minutes), no one wants to turn on that fan. There are many options that are long-lasting and so quiet that you forget they’re even there, well worth the extra few dollars.

Keeping these 5 design aspects in mind, your next bathroom should turn out to be durable and enjoyable for many years to come.

All You Need to Know About Building a Front Porch to Cut a Long Story Short

A front porch is simply an outdoor patio with a roof, right? Not really. While some porches are as simple as that, most are more comparable to an interior room that is lacking walls and windows.

Porches, as a rule, have more durable floors than decks. At the same time, porch ceilings, while frequently made of timber, also offer a more finished look. In reality, just about all Luxury-front-porch-design-ideas-9aspects of a porch are better than its relative, the deck.

For example, a porch’s supportive posts are structural and ornamental at the same time. They can be boxed-in or columns 4x4s with molding fashioned foundations and capitals. Knee walls and balustrades are design backbones as well, typically finished with shingles, paint, or stucco.

Another diversion between decks and porches: You can add furnishings that wouldn’t fully stand up to the direct attack of the elements. Wooden furniture and chairs, upholstered furnishings and wicker, will all work better on a porch than they would on decks.

Picking the Location

A porch can be a great addition, so long as it does not result in issues with other areas of the home. The major issue homeowners are facing when they think about a porch addition is linked with daylight. A porch may considerably reduce kitchen daylight, or cut-off daylight in the living room. Make sure that building a front porch will not shade other parts of the house.

Building the Porch

A Porch can be built in different ways. Let your home’s architecture guide you. If a home pertains to a certain historical period, research the porch designs that were built throughout that period.  You can do it by taking a look at actual houses or studying old publications and history books on architecture.

Foundations

Many porches are built on slabs over compressed gravel. The floor can be rock, tile, or brick. Other porches are wooden-framed and backed by beams and piers. With these, floorboards are usually narrow tongue-and -groove cedar planks looking more like interior floors than decking. Regardless of the flooring type you decide to install, the slope or the pitch of the floor has to run away from the home so that the wind blows, rainfall, and snowmelt would drain before leading to any damage.

Stairs

Porch stairways can be constructed with cement and veneered with brick or stone, or be crafted with timber. In contrast to the stairs of a deck, they frequently have bull nose risers and treads.

Skirting

The area around the porch must be secured with strong lattice skirting, if not critters will be competing to drill down their burrows in that decent, dry place you’ve built. Add an entrance door so that you can enter when needed.

Balustrades

Railings or balustrades must be built to match up the design of the home. Solid knee walls might be used as well, which also should be made to match the design of the home. For instance, in case a house is clapboard- sided, the knee wall structure should be the same.

Columns

For a front porch, columns should look very elegant and stylish. Be cautious with their size, though. If they are too narrow, your porch will look flimsy. If they are too wide, it will look snobbish. Columns made of wood must be lifted considerably off the floor to avoid rot. Pressure-treated materials clothed with moldings and PVC boards are an alternative solution.

Roofs

The roofs of the porch, whether gable-style or shed, generally have a shallow slope. This is mainly because they attach to your house at the first floor top (or possibly a little bit higher for two – story homes), and also because the eve of the porch should let enough headroom. The exclusion, of course, takes place if a front porch is integrated within the design of the house from the start, if there is a living area above the front porch.

The porch is an ideal place to spend some time. Just make sure to spend the time developing and planning it, before you get started with its construction.

Rising House Prices Encouraging for House Flippers in the D.C. Area

The housing market in Washington D.C. is the strongest it has been in years. According to a recent report from the Commerce Department, the robust market is likely to continue for the months to come. Daren Bloomquist, vice president of RealtyTrac, implied that the strong market is a great benefiting house flippers throughout the region.

“D.C. is one of those markets that’s still pretty on fire and that is an advantage to flippers,” Bloomquist said.

State of House Flipping in D.C.

House flipping wasn’t common in the D.C. area until a few drawing-of-three-houses-where-it-reads-buy-renovate-resellyears ago. “It seems like house flipping came late to Washington, D.C. It started in Phoenix and in some areas of California first, because prices hit bottom first in those areas. In D.C. there’s been this window of opportunity between low-priced housing stock and really high price appreciation over the past two years,” Nela Richardson, the chief economist at Redfin told WAMU.

However, the booming house market has made the practice much more appealing to investors in the D.C. region. A growing number of investors are making returns over 50% after purchasing and repairing existing houses. RealtyTrac estimates that the average house flipper makes a $107,000 profit from their homes.

Of course, a number of factors play a role in the profitability of house flipping. The zip code the home is located is one of the most influential factors. The most valuable houses that have been flipped are located in the 20743 zip code, which includes parts of Maryland.

Will House Flipping Become More Common in D.C.?

The sudden popularity of house flipping in Washington D.C. is due primarily to the rapidly growing housing market. The National Association of Realtors found that the region is home to one of the fastest growing housing markets in the country. There are a number of factors that appear to be playing a role, but one of them is the growing tech sector. The housing market is likely to grow more quickly as many businesses relocate from Silicon Valley to escape costly regulations and taxes.

If the economy maintains its current growth rate, it will continue to propel the D.C. housing market. A growing number of house flippers are expected to invest in properties as they speculate housing prices will continue to rise. In turn, their acquisitions will lift housing prices even further, which may encourage more sellers to list their properties.