It might seem like a good idea to do each room individually. But here's why it's beneficial to do at least two rooms at a time!

 

1.       Efficient Setup & Breakdown.

For every job, your design and build team will cover your floors to protect them, apply for city permits, set up a  giant trash bit and get ready for the work to start. At the end, he (or she) will take it all down and clean everything up. Like all other tasks, set up and teardown for a renovation are shockingly time-consuming. If you only have to do this once, it will save you time and money.

 

2.       Batch the tasks together!

Although a job involving multiple rooms is bigger than a one-room remodel, each piece of the large job will go quicker if the contractor can do them all together. When the painters come, they can paint everything all at once. Same with plumbers, electricians, etc.

 

3.       Design the whole house at once.

Your designer will do a better job of making sure the colours, textures and styles of your room flow from one to another if he or she can deisgn them all at once. Standalone rooms such as bedrooms and bathrooms can be independently designed fairly easily, but rooms that connect with each other – especially open-floor concepts - such as living rooms, dining rooms and kitchens can be improved if done in a unified design concept.

 

4.       Lessen the lifestyle disruption.

It’s no secret that doing remodeling and renovations can disrupt your day to day. But grouping your projects into a single job will almost certainly shorten the length of a job compared to doing each room individually.

 

5.       Save Money.

 

Your contractor might discount the price on a multi-room job compared with the single-room estimate! All you have to do is ask!

Could it get any colder? (Don’t answer that…)

With the cold weather happening around here, you should take preventative measures to make sure the pipes in your home stay warm and keep the water running.

Although some of these steps may go against your better instincts of conserving water and heat, the extra expense is much better than the repair bill if your pipes do freeze!

1.    Keep your garage doors closed, especially if there are water supply lines in the garage.

2.    Open your kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to allow warmer air to circulate around the plumbing. (If you have small children, be sure to remove any harmful cleaners and household chemicals.)

3.    If you have a faucet served by exposed pipes, let the cold-water drip. Running water through the pipe—even at a trickle—helps prevent pipes from freezing.

4.    Keep the thermostat set to the same temperature during day and night.

5.    If you plan to be away during the cold weather, leave the heat on in your home, set to a temperature no lower than 55° F.

Thinking long term… Add insulation to attics, basements, and crawl spaces. This will help maintain higher temperatures in those areas. As well as prevent drafts, seal cracks and openings around windows, doors, and at sill plates, where the house rests on its foundation.

If your pipes are frozen…

1.    Turn on the faucet. As you heat the frozen pipe and the ice plug begins to melt, you want the water to be able to flow through. Running water (no matter how cold) through the pipe will help melt ice in the pipe.

2.    Apply heat. You can use an electric heating pad wrapped around the pipe, an electric hair dryer, or a portable space heater (kept away from flammable materials), or by wrapping pipes with towels soaked in hot water. Although tempting, do not use a blowtorch, a kerosene or propane heater, a charcoal stove, or any device with an open flame. The high heat can damage the pipes and may even start a fire.

3.    Apply heat until full water pressure is restored. Check all other faucets in your home to see whether you have additional frozen pipes. If one pipe freezes, others may freeze, too.

 

4.    If you are unable to locate the frozen area, the frozen area is not accessible, or if you cannot thaw the pipe, call a licensed plumber.

Being a homeowner can be so much fun! But it takes a lot of work, maintenance, and care. Some things need to be handled by a professional, but you don’t need to call someone for the little things. Here are eight DIY tasks that every person should know how to fix in their home.

1.      Lightbulbs

Of all the home repairs, lightbulbs are probably the easiest and most basic which makes it a good thing to learn first if you are just joining the DIY world.  To change a light bulb, you should do the following:

-          Start by turning the lightbulb off, then you will need to let the bulb cool off.

-          Unscrew it and screw in the replacement.

-          If the lightbulb is stuck get a two-foot strip of duct tape and make it into a circle, loop it around the base and turn the loop counter-clockwise. Hold an end of the tape in each hand.

2.      Drains

We’re sure you have experienced the disgusting (and annoying) tub clogging that occurs when too much hair gets in the shower drain. But drains in different areas of your house can also experience more serious clogs. Kitchen sinks are commonly an instigator of these major problems but are easy to fix.

Check your garbage disposal, turn it on and check to see if there is a low humming sound. If the disposal seems to be working right, try using a plunger to clear the drain (but don’t forget to put a clamp on the dishwasher drain hose). Make sure there are 3-4 inches of water in the sink. If that doesn’t fix it, try snaking the drain beneath the sink.

3.      Garbage Disposal

If you hear a grinding sound as your garbage disposal runs, that probably means that the disposal is jammed. If you hear this sound, turn off the disposal, unplug it, and try to remove whatever is causing it to be jammed by shoving an Allen key into the base of the unit.

4.      Squeaky Door

Do you feel like you live in a horror movie every time you move any of your doors? Here are a few DIY hacks you can use to stop those horrible squeaks. You probably have a lot these things at home.

First, rub some non-glycerin-based soap bar or olive oil on the hinge. If it doesn’t work, remove the rust with a hammer and cover it with petroleum jelly or melted wax from a paraffin candle.

5.      Smoke Detector

Is your smoke alarm getting annoying with that random beeping?  That means it probably needs a battery replacement. Many smoke alarms need a 9-volt battery.

Remove the alarm from the wall and replace the batteries. You may be able to hit the reset button and fix the problem if it is not the batteries. If the issue is the smoke alarm itself, and not just the batteries, you will need to buy a new alarm. Each model is different and has different installation directions, but you always need to start by cutting off the electricity flow, so you don’t get zapped.

6.      Stuck Windows

If a window is really stuck no amount of muscle is going to open it and you’ve checked to make sure it’s not locked there are some DIY tricks that can help you open your window!

Look for paint around the window that is sealing it shut, remove it with your finger or a pocket knife. Next, try and put a putty knife in between the window and the frame, wiggling it all around the window.

If you still haven’t got it, then use a hammer that is cushioned with a wood block to softly tap the window frame. Make sure that you are not tapping the glass! After these 3 things it should open, but if it doesn’t then you can pry it open with a pry bar.

7.      Vacuum

If your vacuum isn’t working, then here are some DIY hacks just for you to try before you go out to buy a new one or get the professionals involved.

-          Start by changing the vacuum bag and cleaning all filters.

-          Check the hose for clogs and clean them.

Your owner’s manual will give you instructions on how to change the belt and on any overheating details that may cause it to shut down by itself. Anything after these things may need to be looked at by a professional.

8.      Holes in the Wall

Small holes in the wall are easy to fix if you know how to do it well. All you need is a bit of fast-drying spackle that you can get at your local hardware store.

Clean any dust or debris from the hole before you spackle. You’ll need to let it sit for about 24 hours before you can sand it flat. Wider holes may require the assistance of a patch kit which normally uses a self-adhesive mesh patch to fix the hole.

These kits are also found at the hardware store and are easy to use if you follow the directions.

Painting anything big or small is a messy job, and doing it right requires a serious time commitment. If you’re still putting up with smelly paint fumes and lengthy cleanup, there’s a better way. The following painting tips will change the way you paint… making it faster, easier, and cleaner than you probably thought possible.

 

Goodbye Paint Smells!

To avoid paint fumes, add 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract into your paint. Be sure to avoid adding it to incredibly light or subtle hues though.

 

Goodbye Paint Drips!

Before you start, wrap 2 rubber bands around the paint can so that they are positioned across the opening. After you dip your brush in, run the bristles across the bands to remove the extra paint.

 

Goodbye Long Cleanup!

Instead of wasting time trying to clear your paint trays, line the tray with aluminum foil before putting the paint in the tray. Be sure the wrap it around the edges so that the foil doesn’t pull up. After you’re done painting, remove the tin foil and throw away.

 

Goodbye Impossibly Sealed Paint Lids!

Ever had the pry a paint can open because the paint has sealed it shut? Here’s a DIY way to make that stop happening. Place plastic wrap around the opening and replace the lid as usual. Next time, you be glad you did.

 

Goodbye Colour Confusion!

 

Do you tend to use the same colour throughout your house, or have a large collection of paint? If you clearly label the lids it makes it much easier to grab the right colour in a jiffy. Add a touch of the paint to the lid and use a permanent marker to make a note as to which room it belongs in. 

If you’re planning to sell your house in the near future, down the road or you’re just wanting to improve your living space, the following tips are ways to renovate that will make you (and your future bank account) thank you.

Not all renovations will actually improve your home value. For instance, an infinity-edge pool. But these seven upgrades will do the trick!

1. Temp-Controlled Square Footage

Convert your garage, attic, screen-in porch or build an entirely new addition. These are all major brownie points for buyers. They do cost a bit of time and money though, so be sure you’re ready for the upfront investment before you start!

2. A Fresh Coat of Paint

It’s amazing what a fresh coat of paint can do! Something neutral, cheerful, light and bright is one of the most inexpensive upgrades you can do!

3. Your Landscaping.

What’s the first thing people see when they arrive at your house? Answer: Your yard. Your home’s curb appeal is relatively simple but has a BIG payoff. Aside from your typical yard upkeep, you can add freshly planted or potted flowers. Adding new mulch makes everything look so much fresher.

4. The Kitchen Fix

Since most trends turn towards minimalism and modernism, more buyers are opting against busy backsplashes and jarring palettes for the kitchen. If your kitchen hasn’t had an upgrade since the ‘70s, it’s time. Simple things such as painting your cabinets or replacing your backsplash will make a huge difference. If you’re in need of new appliances – stainless steel can make the entire kitchen look new.

5. Smart Storage Space

Organizational accents like built-in bookshelves and window seats with storage underneath are stylish, practical and add their own character to the house. If you have limited closet space, simple solutions like adding extra shelves, hooks, and rods can help increase storage and decrease the worries of potential buyers.

6. Big-Impact Bathroom Upgrades

Bathrooms are tiny enough that you can make changes such as replacing a sink or tub to make a massive impact. Claw-foot tubs, frameless shower doors, and freestanding sinks are trendy right now. If you’re looking for a smaller investment, a fresh coat of paint, new hardware quick re-glazing and re-caulking the tub can also make the room feel shiny and new.

7. Solid Flooring

If you’re looking for a high-impact upgrade, hardwood flooring can dramatically transform your home just like a fresh coat of paint! Avoid using carpet though… Hard floor surfaces appeal to more people as they are easier to clean and hardwood feels aesthetically sophisticated.