Lighting Ideas for your Home

Lighting Ideas for your Home

New lighting is an excellent way to compliment any interior of your home. Recessed lighting, placed in different distinct patterns, can update your kitchen & bathroom or highlight any room in your home. Placed around the perimeter of your dinning room, recessed lighting can add depth and glamour.

Very unique and versatile track lighting can highlight your bookcase, mantle or paintings. Cove lighting, behind a soffet or crown molding offers a soft glow that will enhance your dining, theater or family room. Built-in custom lighting centered in your kitchen, with wood trim and a modern style diffuser, can really accent your cabinets or island. In addition under mount cabinet lighting can add a beautiful warm glow to your countertops. Wall sconces can add life to any hallway or staircase.

If your thinking of adding a dimmer switch to your existing  lighting, make sure your lighting circuit is either a single or a 3-way switch and the dimmer you purchase is also rated for the volts, amps and  the total wattage of the lighting you are connecting it to.

Enhance the curb appeal to your home with elegant outdoor lighting. Accentuate your landscape and the front of your home with strategically placed flood lights. Give your home a touch of sophistication with antique style coach lanterns on either side of your front and garage doors.

Gas or electric post lanterns are also very popular with many homeowners, placed at the end of the walk or around your backyard will create a traditional illuminating glow. Target dark areas of your backyard with flood lights, tight up against your wall will create beautiful shadows and depth. Stone or copper fire pots is also a very classy way to show off your patio and pool.

If your thinking of purchasing low voltage flood, tropical or landscape lighting, be sure of all your distances and number of lights you will need. There are many different manufacturers and all there systems have different limits on there lighting circuits and transformer placements. In addition, try to select a system with a quick and easy wire connections at each light, this will help if relocation of any lights will be necessary.

Creating more natural light in your home is very important as well. Installing a window(s) or skylight(s) is an excellent way to brighten the decor of any room: kitchen, bathroom or family room.

Kitchen Remodeling Tips and Ideas

Kitchen Remodeling Tips and IdeasOne of the best home improvement projects you can make to your home is remodeling your kitchen. According to the National Remodeling Statistics and the National Association of Realtors has reported that you can expect a 72.1 – 88.9% return on your  investment. This should be welcome news when you are trying to maximize every remodeling dollar.

If you are planning to remodel your kitchen, create a realistic budget and be sure of your needs and goals. First, you should examine your kitchen’s layout, your appliance locations, countertop and storage space. If you are comfortable with it, then updating your kitchen by painting or refinishing your cabinets might be one inexpensive idea. Replacing the cabinet doors with glass fronts, new hardware, drawer fronts and converting some of your cabinets to open storage, can give your kitchen an open airy charm.

You can give your kitchen new life by adding a new countertop, (granite, quartz, sandstone) windows, skylights or new built-in & track lighting. Design a new full height custom back splash, create your own special mosaics, utilize some glass tile into your patterns to enhance the beauty of your kitchen. Installing an inexpensive soffit or crown molding with indirect lighting around the perimeter, is a beautiful way to highlight your kitchen. Along with new flooring, wall accents, a deep well sink and swan neck faucet, you will have made a small investment paying big dividends. A helpful hint; when using rectangular or elongated shapes always run the length of the kitchen wall, making your kitchen look spacious.

If work space or appliance location is a problem, you may want to consider remodeling your entire kitchen and creating a new layout. Removing or bumping out an existing wall can give your kitchen the additional work space you need or an island you always desired.

Having a kitchen island can become an integral part of your kitchen’s design. Framing a pony wall around your island cabinets, with a raised or lowered countertop allows you to have family or guests nearby while you are involved in the kitchen. Installing your sink or cook top in a kitchen island may also improve your kitchen’s overall appearance and layout. With a stainless steel hood vent over your cook top will be a stunning addition to your gourmet kitchen.

When you are creating your new layout, make a sketch or mark on the floor with masking tape the new location of your appliances and sink(s). This will give you a good visual idea of how your kitchen will look, keep in mind that your appliance location will be the driving force behind your new layout. When relocating your appliances make sure you budget includes any utilities you may need to relocate (waste, water, power & venting).

Today’s cabinets offer several different styles, finishes and shades. Prices can vary as well, based on wood species, door & drawer details and cabinet heights, built-ins and style type; (frame-less, door & drawer flush with frame or framed). They also have many new and exciting storage solutions, deep pull out drawers for cookware, pull out lazysusan, pantry & corner sections, sectional compartments for vertical storage of kitchen utensils and spices.Very popular with homeowners today is combining different cabinet heights and depths. This will give you a unique and defined look to your kitchen design.

Cabinet manufacturers offer many enhancements to complete your cabinet design, crown molding, radius corners and glass fronts, face panels for your dishwasher & refrigerator, a light skirt for under mount lighting and finished end panels for the side of your cabinets. All will be a stunning addition to your new kitchen.

When you are researching for new cabinets, it is very important that you review your cabinet designer’s layout and elevation drawings thoroughly. Make sure the appliance locations are where they should be. That the door and drawer combinations of the different base cabinets (elevations) look symmetrical, that they line up with the uppers, and your overall design is pleasing to the eye. You should also be sure of what each cabinet has to offer, such as; (pull out shelves, deep drawers, ect.).

Before selecting your new cabinets, try to examine a (sample) finished cabinet. Take a look at the type of construction of the box and drawers. Make sure they are well made (dove tail assembly), that the interior has a durable finish and it will hold up under daily wear and tear. Also examine the drawer guides, make sure they are sturdy and will hold up under the additional weight they will have. In addition, inspect the door hinges, they should re-track or close smoothly, and are easily adjustable, up & down and in & out, this will ensure that the doors will sit flush and level against the face of your cabinet.

Highlight your kitchen remodel with granite, engineered quartz, butcher block, polished slate or a limestone counter top. A new deep well sink, built-in hood vent, faucet and tile or stone back splash is a great way to accessorize your kitchen. When considering new flooring the selections are endless, make sure to determine your kitchen’s usage first, travertine, granite stones, ceramic tile are ideal for busy kitchens, wood flooring is especially beautiful, but requires a bit more care.

Helpful hint: before you replace your kitchen floor with any surface make sure that the new height of the floor does not conflict with installation or removal of any of your under counter built-in appliances, such as; the dishwasher or wine refrigerator.

Make sure that the appliances you are going to replace are selected in advance of designing your kitchen and cabinet layout. This will ensure that you, (your contractor) and the cabinet manufacturer are all on the same page and avoid any confusion as to their location and measurements.

If your kitchen remodel involved replacing you cabinets, consider reusing them in your garage. The upper & lower cabinets can be inexpensive way to have additional storage for your holiday fixtures.

Remodeling your kitchen, as well as any room in your house can be a time consuming and sometimes a frustrating experience. That is why you may want to consult a licensed remodeling contractor. He can provide you with new and inspiring ideas, the latest products & materials for your designs and show you affordable solutions to your kitchen remodeling project. He will also be able to provide you with a detailed budget for your kitchen remodel.This information will be extremely helpful to have when researching for financial resources for your project.