5 Tips for Surviving a Whole House Remodel 

A house remodel project with workers in the background.

When you opt to live in a house that is being remodeled, the stress and inconvenience of renovations are exacerbated tenfold. For the duration of the remodeling process, there will be a lot of noise, a lot of dust, and a lot of filth all over the area. Not everyone is suited to living in a house undergoing renovation, especially those who are impatient and anxious. However, we have some advice on how to survive a whole house remodel. If you follow these essential five tips, you’ll do just fine! 

1 Plan in advance 

A whole house remodel requires more planning than simply renovating a single room. If you’ve never done a complete home redesign, you’ll have no idea what to expect. But don’t be afraid to ask for help! Contractors and other homeowners who have undertaken such complex remodels can be a good source of information when planning your own.  

 

You also need to plan your design ahead of time. Think about if you want something trendy or something timeless. The planning phase allows you to have a clearer picture of what you want for your home. Taking into account your individual preferences and demands and future plans for a different way of life is one approach to go about it. A well-planned project also gives you a better sense of how much it will cost to complete it, so it’s important to take your time in this phase. 

 

2 Organize Your Things  

De-clutter, pack up or relocate anything in the renovation area to make the process go as smoothly as possible. Consider renting an off-site storage unit to keep your stuff safe and sanitary throughout a major home renovation project. You might be wondering what kind of items you can store in a unit. Among some typical items that people put away in storage units are furniture, appliances, and seasonal items. Whatever you decide to put there will be safe and sound until you need it again. Renting a storage unit might be the right choice for you, as it keeps your furniture safe and allows for additional space in your home during a remodel, too.  

Alt-tag: A storage facility with units with red doors.

3 Pay attention to cleaning 

The hardest part of living through a whole house remodel is the dust. You need to be able to protect yourself and your family from it. This task might seem intimidating at first, but the way to do this might be simpler than you think. Create a clean zone in your home and block it off your remodeling area with thick plastic and masking tape sheets. Another tip is to lay a damp towel on the floor to keep work boots from tracking dust into the living space at the end of the day.  

 

Another issue that comes up with remodeling is waste. In order to reduce the amount of waste, you need to plan disposal in advance. Try to recycle or reuse as much material as you can. Then there are also strong odors and harmful chemicals that you have to minimize the effects. You could try using low VOC paint and investing in a portable fan or two to keep your area safe. Taking necessary precautions will ensure your, and your family’s well-being during a whole house remodel. 

A blue bin with a recycling sign on it. 

4 Protect your furniture 

One of the most critical steps to a remodel is protecting your expensive furniture. You can do this by purchasing drop cloths or plastic tarps. These can be bought at your local hardware shop for a low price and can be taped or stapled to the wall. Eventually, though, they will come off, exposing your furniture to dust and other foreign objects. The dust will probably cover your lovely furniture entirely before you even notice it. 

 

For this reason, you may choose to put your furniture in a storage unit or even a spare room in your home. This way, you won’t have to think about it while working. Just make sure the doors are locked to keep dust out of the rooms where the furniture is kept! Use a fan near an open window to push the dust outside if you can. In this way, you can keep dust from spreading to other parts of the house. If you choose to put your more expensive furniture into a storage unit, you must meticulously prepare every piece. Make sure you use high-quality moving supplies and tape all your boxes well to avoid damaging your furniture. 

 

5 Make a No-Renovation Zone a Reality 

You should set aside an area for your family to meet in semi-relaxation before beginning the process. If you need to work from home while you’re remodeling, you will also need a quiet focus room. It would help if you tried equipping these spaces with as many utilities as possible. For example, a kettle or microwave can be a great addition to a relaxation room. That way, you can gather with your family and friends to relax and unwind at the end of the day with some popcorn or a heat-up meal. You might want to bring in a TV or some board games, in order to always have something to do. If you create a no-renovation office zone, bring a coffee machine in if possible. It will definitely help out during the workdays! 

A family unwinding together after a day of remodeling.

Final words 

If you follow our advice, you should be able to get through renovations without too much difficulty. We understand a whole house remodel is stressful and filled with challenges. But the important thing is to remember that everything will be worthwhile in the end. Happy remodeling! 

How to Remodel Your Home For a Growing Family

Having kids is an exciting time in your life. While adding new members to your family is wonderful, it can also be stressful if you don’t have enough space in your home. This new milestone poses the question of if your current home is suitable for this change. Especially in today’s competitive housing market, buying a larger home may be out of the question for many people. Luckily, there are ways to remodel your current home to comfortably adjust to your growing family. Here are a few tips to get started!  

 

1 Plan Ahead  

Managing a growing family can be difficult enough, but simultaneously planning a home remodel can be hectic. That’s why it’s important to plan ahead for your renovation to ensure you’re choosing the best upgrades to fit your needs. First, determine what inconveniences you want to fix in your home and research what projects are the best solutions to these issues. You’ll also want to consider the timeline of your remodel. Especially with kids on the way, you’ll most likely want these renovations completed before they arrive, so make sure to give yourself enough time to plan and execute these changes. 

 

2 Organize Your Finances  

Another large part of the home renovation process is finances. To keep yourself organized, it’s best to create a budget for your remodel beforehand along with looking into different financing options. If you plan on using money from your savings, make sure you have enough to account for additional costs and unforeseen expenses, as well as enough money for your growing family, of course. If you need some financial assistance, homeowners can also utilize their home’s equity to pay for these renovations. An equity loan can be a wise choice for these upgrades since they’re tax deductible when used for home improvements, and have generally low interest rates. However you choose to fund your home remodel, knowing how much you can afford to spend can help you prioritize what projects you need the most.  

 

3 Build an Addition  

If your home simply doesn’t have enough space, building an addition might make the most sense for your family. Whether you want to build up or out, this is the most straightforward way to create more room in your home without changing the rest of your space. An advantage to building an addition is that the space can be specifically designed for your needs – whether that’s creating a playroom, extra bedrooms, another bathroom dedicated to your children, and more. Keep in mind that if you want to build out, you’ll need extra square footage, so consult a contractor to determine how feasible this is.  

 

4 Renovate Extra Space 

 

Many homes may have lots of space, but these areas might not be functional for everyday use especially as your family grows. Areas in your home such as an attic or basement might be used for storage, but you can use them more effectively with renovations. By remodeling and decluttering these areas, you can make better use of them and transform these spaces into a home office, recreation room, bedroom, and more. The options are endless, so keep your family’s needs in mind! 

 
5 Create an Open Floor Plan 

There are still ways to remodel your home for a growing family even if you can’t build an addition or don’t have extra rooms to renovate. This is where creating an open floor plan comes into play. With this option, you can adjust your current space by knocking down walls to open up the area and bring in more natural light. An open floor plan can not only make your home feel less crowded as your family grows, but can also give you a clear view of your children so you can safely supervise them while multitasking.  

 

You don’t need to move to make your home function effectively for your growing family. By making smart renovations suited for your needs, you’ll be able to make the most out of your home sweet home. 

6 Tips to Surviving a Remodel While Working / Learning From Home

Working from home is an awesome opportunity to accomplish things that you wouldn’t be able to do otherwise. From the chance to care for pets that wouldn’t otherwise like to spend eight to ten hours alone to the ability to answer the door and supervise work on your property that would be impossible if you were at the office: this opens a lot of metaphorical and literal doors for you.

Unfortunately, working from home while you’re making changes to your property isn’t as easy as you’d hope for. Remodeling while working from home is stressful and can take up a lot of time and attention that should be spent working or studying.

These are the top ways to survive a home remodel while you need to focus at home!

 

1. Create Quiet Focus Spaces

A large distraction to many when they’re trying to focus is sound. Any noises that can pull their attention away from work or classes will immediately prove successful at doing so. This can be difficult when you’re in the middle of a home remodel since almost every change is something that’s going to make noise.

 Consider starting with window replacement inserts before you update any other portion of your home. New windows reduce the amount of noise pollution that gets in and ensures that you won’t be interrupted by the hammering of someone building your garage just a hundred feet away.

 

2. Keep Your Air Quality High

The air we breathe is important, not only for our focus but also obviously for our health. If you’re working from home, you might not immediately notice if the air quality gets worse. Because of this, it’s a good idea to ensure you work in well-ventilated spaces so that when workers are applying sealant, the fumes that result until it dries don’t agitate your lungs or cause health complications in any of your loved ones.

This can simply be a fan turned on, with a window open, or you can look into strong air filters if you’re interested in going further.

 

3. Increase Security for Privacy

Many of us who work from home deal with delicate information or calls that don’t need to be shared with the world. Because of this, it’s a good idea to update your doors as well. This means both exterior and interior since both add a layer of security and soundproofing between you and the outside world in the same way smooth siding would.

If you’re nervous about missing anything important, set a sign on your interior office door asking people to text you instead, which you can remove between meetings. This can feel silly at first, but it’s a great way to avoid interruptions for anything that’s not an emergency.

 

 

4. Time it as Well as Possible

If you have kids and they’re taking classes from home, it’s important to try and schedule around them as much as possible. Kids have a harder time focusing, and although we can accommodate to some degree, the best option for them is to avoid any construction as long as school is going.

Instead, time noisier projects for the summer or the evenings when they won’t be in classes. In this time, you can keep them distracted with games, television, playing together outside, or other ways: and their classes won’t suffer.

 

5. Declutter Before Anything Starts

Before you put in your first metal studs: it’s important to get rid of any and all clutter. When you’re doing home renovations, things are likely to get moved around and displaced, and clutter will just make your workdays even more stressful. Take the time to go room to room over the course of a couple of weeks, and get rid of any clutter that could get in your way. Although this can feel stressful to deal with, it’s important in order to ensure this clutter won’t get in your way when you need your full attention on work or classes.

Make sure you donate, sell, or recycle anything you no longer need, only trashing things if they truly couldn’t be used in any way.

 

 

6. Give Yourselves Perks Along the Way

It can be rough to focus while your home is going through major changes, so don’t forget to reward yourself for working so hard to get through these shifts. These don’t have to be major rewards, like a vacation out of state: but treat yourself along the way. 

This might mean that you order in for dinner more often during the week or that you take yourself out for a big movie and dinner night at the end of your workweek, but you should put your all into giving yourself things to look forward to. These are large changes to acclimate to, so you deserve a treat.

 

 

Home Remodels Aren’t the End of Your Attention Span.

Although it can be distracting at first: even the noisiest home remodel can eventually become a part of your life that you acclimate to. Don’t forget to take breaks and be patient with yourself in this transitional phase.

 

 

Matt Lee is the owner of the Innovative Building Materials blog and a content writer for the building materials industry. He is focused on helping fellow homeowners, contractors, and architects discover materials and methods of construction that save money, improve energy efficiency, and increase property value. 

8 Kitchen Color Combos We’re Loving Right Now  

Many people refer to the kitchen as the heart of the home, whether it serves as a laboratory for gourmet cooking or the hub for friends and family to spend quality time.   

Since the kitchen is one of the most utilized rooms in the house, the space must best reflect your style preferences while meeting modern design, comfort and functionality. 

Kitchen makeovers take planning, time and patience, meaning the outcome should deliver a fresh look that best meets your expectations and needs. A traditional kitchen reminiscent of childhood is most desirable for some homeowners. For others, contemporary impressions with sleek lines, modern appliances, eye-catching elements — from tile backsplashes to hardware — and colors that spark joy are favorable.  

It’s safe to say that in 2022, the look and feel of your kitchen are what matter most. Here are eight kitchen color combinations we’re loving right now.  

 

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White and Gray 

According to the 2022 U.S. Houzz Kitchen Trends Study, white and gray kitchens are still the top choice for remodeling. In fact, between 32% and 41% opt for white cabinets, backsplashes and walls. Another 27% of homeowners choose gray walls to offset their white kitchens, while up to 26% bring in another shade to enhance visual intrigue.  

While light gray keeps a kitchen bright and airy, dark tones — whether brought in on the cabinetry, countertops or island — offer more contrast against white tile backsplashes and deep, ceramic sinks. Add black or gold hardware and brass-plated pendant light fixtures to deliver greater warmth to cooler shades. 

 

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Black and White 

The black-and-white color combination is modern and classic. It will elevate your kitchen design and give it a timeless look for years to come.  

Some homeowners may play it safe with a predominantly white kitchen and hints of black, while others appreciate black cabinets for a more dramatic aesthetic. Whichever way you lean, a black-and-white kitchen is easy to decorate and lends to pops of color or rustic wood elements.  

Of course, remember that black and white isn’t boring — you can play with materials and contrasts to create striking looks. Some homeowners opt for dark natural stone countertops, like quartz, which create contrast against the solid black hues in other kitchen elements. Two-tone combinations, like a white backsplash against black cabinetry, is also a great way to play with visuals in a black and white kitchen. 

 

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Blue and White 

Homeowners looking to incorporate their personality into their kitchens without going overboard may choose a blue-and-white color combination. Blues may come in bold or muted hues and open the door to other creative design features.   

Consider installing blue cabinets with a white backsplash or stick to the favored white kitchen with a rich blue island.  

You might also go big with a striking blue-and-white patterned backsplash tile that may lean toward simple, modern or vintage. Rustic wood elements provide warmth, while pops of color — a bowl of lemons or oranges, unusual hardware and windowsill herbs — can add more interest.  

 

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Warm Neutrals 

If you want a calmer space to prepare meals and break bread with your family, you might choose warm neutrals. Although whites and grays fall within this category, so do beige, creamy whites and ivory. Often, natural wood and leather accents are incorporated into the design, as well.  

Neutral-toned kitchens are soft and light, allowing you to include different textures to enhance the appearance. You might opt for open shelving, bronze hardware or two-toned cabinetry, such as white on top and a light brown or beige on the bottom. Marble countertops with mesmerizing gold and silver veining or butcher block will seamlessly tie it together.  

Suppose you have difficulty deciding on colors or styles. In that case, neutral kitchen colors make it simple for you to play with different elements and find a look that’s easily adjustable as your tastes change.  

 

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Dark Wood Tones 

The rise of technology and a desire for greater comfort prompt homeowners to enhance the coziness of their living spaces. One way they’re doing this is by installing dark wood cabinetry in their kitchens.  

Sleek, flat-faced, dark wood cabinets deliver a modern Scandinavian look that’s earthy and warm. A white subway tile backsplash is quite popular with this design, while other homeowners may look to add a patterned backsplash or darker shade like black or pine. 

The dark wood tones go well with charcoal flooring and greenery — herbs, succulents and plants — which add a splash of color. 

 

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Light Wood Tones 

Contrastingly, light wood cabinets deliver the same warmth that many homeowners are looking for in their kitchens and keep the room feeling open and bright.  

 This design aesthetic shows that white and gray geometric backsplash tiles and black hardware look sharp. To contrast the lighter wood, you might also want to include other matte black elements in the light fixtures, appliances and flooring.  

 Light wood cabinets may provide the feeling of having more space than dark wood in smaller kitchens. Floor-to-ceiling cabinetry adds storage space and draws the eye upward, making your kitchen ceiling seem higher.  

 

 

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Green Tones 

During the coronavirus pandemic, lockdowns encouraged people to spend more time outdoors to improve their mental well-being. Seeing that studies have uncovered several benefits of nature, many homeowners have since found ways to bring the outdoors into the interiors of their homes. 

While plants and a continuum of indoor-outdoor patio living spaces top home renovations and design trends, everyone generally seems to be seeing green. Earthy, green tones can bring a state of tranquility and rejuvenation to your kitchen. It’s also surprisingly versatile. 

Pair green cabinetry with a white backsplash and gold hardware. You might also choose to go with two-toned countertops, such as white quartz countertops with butcher block on the island. Incorporating a wooden hood vent over the oven or brassy elements keeps with the organic, nature-inspired aesthetic of the space.  

 

 

Project 3362-1 NE Minneapolis Kitchen Refresh LR 7

 

Dark and Moody 

Contrasting colors, such as white and dark gray, aren’t for everyone. Some homeowners like a fully dark and moody kitchen design. 

Darker kitchens will be modern and luxurious this year — black cabinetry pairs well with shiny dark gray backsplash tiles, gold hardware and stainless steel appliances. Wood elements, such as butcher block countertops, open shelving or decorative bowls, can add some needed warmth to the space. 

If you’re interested in a more expensive look, a wooden island with a black quartz waterfall countertop or marble backsplash will also inject visual appeal.  

 

Inspiration for Your Favorite Kitchen Color Combinations 

The kitchen is where we spend the most time alone or with others, so choosing a color combination you love is essential. Find what inspires you the most.  

 

Do you enjoy spending time outdoors? Are you looking to create a calm and relaxing environment for yourself? Are you trying to make your kitchen feel brighter? Remember that whichever colors you select will look beautiful either way. 

5 Ways to Create a Functional Kitchen

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Whether you’re cooking up a five-course meal or unwrapping some lovingly-ordered takeout, having a functional and welcoming kitchen is equally important. Kitchens have become the focal point of a home, and the space where everyone seems to gather. 

Perhaps you’re looking for a dramatic makeover or a thoughtful touch-up. Either way, there’s a lot to consider as you approach a kitchen project. Instead of scrolling through endless idea boards, consider this list to jump-start your plans. 

 

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Cabinets 

Cabinets are a focal point of any kitchen, but the myriad style and color options might be overwhelming. To be frank – if you’re thinking about redoing the entire kitchen, you should connect with an experienced design-and-build team.  

But there’s a lot you can do to change the feel and functionality of your space while working with your existing layout. Depending on the material of your cabinets, you might be able to refinish the surface or replace the doors. If you’re looking for an open, airy space, consider a light color.  

 Open shelving or glass-fronted cabinets are a great way to show off your beautiful pieces while hiding the rest behind solid doors. No longer do you need Grandma’s old china cabinet. Installing under-cabinet lighting is another easy project that will completely change the feel of your home. 

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Counters 

Replacing countertops is another big job, but it is an unmatched way to improve the functionality of your space.  

 Your first step is to decide what type of counter you want. There are environmentally friendly options, economic options, and simply aesthetic options. People who cook and bake a lot may lean toward natural stone, but those of us who are more prone to ordering in can find a manufactured dupe. 

 

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Dining 

Having space of any size for eating transforms a kitchen from a work space to a gathering space. Whether you have room for two stools or a full farmhouse table, making an area for dining part of the prep space can be a major improvement.  

Carrying colors and materials from the prep space to the dining area will make both feel like one large space. It might be as simple as extending the counter and adding a couple of barstools, or finding a corner table to fill the extra nook. 

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Accents 

Updating the hardware is another simple and effective way to make a change. If you like the handles and pulls you already have, consider using a quality spray paint to give them a more modern aesthetic. And if you want to replace the hardware altogether, it’s a project just about anyone can handle. 

Similarly, installing a backsplash can make any kitchen feel like new. Some tiling projects are pretty simple and can be done in a weekend, while others are best left to the professionals. 

As you begin adding the functional items like microwaves and spoon rests, leave some room for an herb garden or a few houseplants that can purify the air. Whether you create a hanging garden or some countertop dimension, greenery breathes new life into any space. 

 

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Appliances 

If you don’t have the time for a major renovation, updating and coordinating your appliances will have a major impact on your day-to-day kitchen experience. Whether you prioritize a double oven or a top-of-the-line microwave, good appliances are the key to functionality. 

Upgrading the sink and faucet is another easy way to modernize the space you already have. Instead of the tried-and-true stainless steel sink, consider a porcelain or ceramic centerpiece. 

Remodeling your kitchen gives you the chance to design it based on exactly how you live in that space. 

 

Erin Langford is a home stager and landscape design writer. She loves entertaining and playing in her backyard, but she hates yard work.  She recently expanded her patio and added an outdoor kitchen so she has less grass to mow.