Basement Flooring

If you’ve decided to install flooring in your basement, finding flooring that is moisture-resistant to a degree or relatively easy to replace if necessary is the first step in picking a basement flooring option.

Next, you’ll need to decide what you’re going to use your basement for – kid’s play area, workout space, living or entertaining space. This decision will help guide the look and feel of the flooring you decide on.

With all that in mind, here are some popular basement flooring choices:

  • Luxury Vinyl Tile (LVT) – Can mimic hardwood, ceramic and many other choices. Lower maintenance and comfortable to walk on with good water resistance. However, it is one of the more expensive options.
  • Engineered Hardwood – Unlike real hardwood, engineered hardwood can stand up to moisture and humidity issues that may be present in basements. With a beautiful wood look, engineered hardwood is probably the most elegant, but expensive choice.
  • Laminate – Comes in many colors and patterns. Laminate is moisture resistant and easy to clean.
  • Vinyl – Moisture resistant, durable and comes in a wide variety of designs to suit any color scheme. Vinyl is one of the more inexpensive flooring choices.
  • Carpet Squares – While carpet is generally not the best idea where there are moisture concerns, carpet squares are easy to replace individually if there is any water damage.
  • Cork – Durable and eco-friendly, but be sure to look for cork that is recommended for a basement install.
  • Concrete – The most inexpensive option since most basements already have a concrete slab. Not the most comfortable or warm option, but it can be stained or painted to give it more character. Concrete is the most water resistant option there is available.

If you’re interested in learning more about your basement flooring options, stop into any of our locations today and we’ll be happy to help!

Paint like Pro

Warmer weather is the perfect time for most home improvement projects including one of the most popular home improvement project around – painting. These tips from the professionals can give you a beautiful paint job in a weekend:

  • Take the day before you paint to completely prep the room – make sure walls are repaired, clean and dry.
  • Invest in high quality painter’s tape and at the very least, tape the baseboards to prevent paint splatter.
  • Sand before using primer, after primer and even in between coats of paint for a really pristine finish.
  • An angled sash brush can make it easy to “cut-in” or freehand paint along obstructions, against the ceiling or walls with different paint colors. This YouTube video can help explain how to cut-in if you want to give it a try!
  • Use long, smooth brush strokes to avoid brush marks and streaks.
  • Don’t overload your roller with paint, but make sure it’s completely covered.
  • Paint walls in a “W” pattern, then go over it in overlapping vertical strokes to cover the “W.”
  • Mix paint frequently to prevent pigments from settling
  • Don’t worry about the first coat being perfect, you’ll be going over it with another coat of paint to even things out.
  • When using a paint brush, tap, don’t wipe, excess paint off.
  • Paint one wall at a time, doing the edges first and then filling in the rest of the wall with a roller.
  • Wait long enough for paint to dry completely between coats.
  • Wrap brushes and rollers with plastic wrap to keep them pliable if you need to take a break.

What are your painting tips?

Decorating an Outdoor Space: Furniture

We covered finding your perfect outdoor flooring last month – up next is furniture!

Outdoor furniture is one of the most important components of your outdoor space. To find the perfect furniture for a great summer outdoors, use these tips:

  • Determine what you’ll be using your space for. This will help you decide which pieces of furniture you need to buy. Planning on hosting dinner parties? You’ll need enough table space and chairs to accommodate everyone. Just want to lounge? Maybe you only need some cozy chairs and a small table to hold drinks.
  • Figure out how much care and maintenance you want to put into your furniture. For example, if you want low maintenance furniture, consider aluminum or plastic. Don’t mind some maintenance? Wood or wrought-iron furniture are beautiful choices, but will need sealing and touch-ups over the years.
  • Go for quality over bargain prices. Superior quality will stand up better over time to the elements and use.
  • When buying furniture, consider what storage space you have for during the off season to keep it in top condition. If you have less space, consider collapsible furniture.
  • Test out seats and cushions before you buy! Look for comfort and ease of use.
  • Invest in quality cushions that can stand up to the sun and elements. Look for all- weather materials that dry quickly.
  • Don’t forget to add some shade in the form of an umbrella or an awning. You want to be able to spend time in your outdoor space even during the hottest part of the day.

What do you look for in outdoor furniture? Let us know in the comments!

Flooring Design

The floor is the fifth wall in designing any room, so don’t ignore it! Use these tips and tricks to help Bolivia 765_Plank_LGyou get the most out of your flooring design:

When deciding on flooring, you want to focus on looks and functionality. As far as functionality goes, you’ll need to decide how you’re going to use the room before picking out a material, taking into account things like moisture in the room and traffic the room will get.

Next, consider what you want to flooring in the room to achieve. For instance, wall to wall carpet can reduce sound, tile laid diagonally can make a room appear larger and patterned rugs and carpets hide stains better.

When shopping for flooring, be open to new materials and technology you may not have considered, but go for quality material with a timeless look instead of too trendy. Flooring is a big investment that can last for years and years so take your time deciding.

If you already have design ideas for the room, bring paint samples and swatches with you when shopping to help achieve a cohesive look.

Stop into any of our five locations today and our staff will be happy to guide you picking out your ideal flooring

Kitchen Counters: How to Pick the Right One for You

Picking out your kitchen counters for a remodel or a home build is one of the most important components of the design. There are many materials to choose from depending on your budget, habits and design style. Here are a few of the most popular options and their pros and cons:

Marble
Pros: Relatively durable and heat-resistant
Elegant, traditional counter choice that can add resale value to your home

Cons: One of the most expensive options
Needs periodic resealing
Susceptible to stains

Solid-Surfacing
Pros: Comes in various colors and patterns
Durable, resists stains and moisture
No sealing required
Seamless installation
Can be repaired with light buffing

Cons: Not heat-resistant
Knives can scratch the surface

Butcher-block
Pros: Adds warmth to a kitchen
Can be refinished multiple times
Ages beautifully

Cons: Must be oiled frequently
Susceptible to water damage
Needs frequent disinfecting

Quartz
Pros: Available in a broad range of colors
Durable and low-maintenance
Non-porous

Cons: Expensive compared to other options

Granite
Pros: Durable
Resistant to heat, scratches and stains

Cons: May need resealing to prevent stains
Very heavy – will require lower cabinets that can support the weight

Laminate
Pros: Affordable
Lightweight
Comes in a multitude of colors

Cons: Not heat-resistant
Can scratch easily
Not easy to repair if damaged

There are also more unconventional options you can consider for your kitchen such as concrete, tile, soapstone and stainless steel. Ultimately, the choice depends on the look you want to achieve, your budget and how much time you’re willing to put into maintaining your counters.