The Counters Blog

Selecting Stainless Steel Sinks For Kitchens And Bathrooms

In addition to contributing to visually stimulating kitchens, choosing quality sinks can help eliminate callbacks, increase word-of-mouth referrals and ultimately result in higher profit margins. Stainless steel offers a great match for any color or material and seems to always be in style. Residential sinks usually range from 18 to 22 gauge, with the lower the gauge number, the thicker the steel and sturdier the sink. To ensure satisfied customers, stainless steel sinks in 18 or 20 gauge are largely recommended for most applications.

It is also wise to consider manufacturers that offer long-term warranties to ensure customer satisfaction for years to come. After choosing the right manufacturer; the fabricator can help the homeowner choose between under-mount and top-mount sinks. Both sink types have unique advantages, so it’s important for fabricators to be able to explain the benefits of each option to the customer. Also, under-mount sallow for easy cleaning as debris from the countertop can be simply brushed off the edge of the countertop and into the sink bowl without sink deck interference. Another option to explain to customers is top-mount or drop-in sinks, which have rolled and finished edges. Sharing tips and insights such as these helps to build the fabricator’s reputation as an expert, and hopefully, increase referrals and profitability from repeat customers and increased job value.

Double-bowl sinks are the most common sink configuration as they increase efficiency for multiple users in the kitchen. Triple-bowl sinks provide versatility in the kitchen by offering enough space for several people to perform different tasks around the sink together. As with the style, the depth should be determined by the homeowner’s preference and the function of the sink. A mirror or hammered finish sink, although attractive as a kitchen focal point, is only recommended for areas that encounter less activity, such as wet bars or butler’s pantries. To simplify the installation, many fabricators choose sinks equipped with mounting hardware for added convenience. By sharing tips for proper care and cleaning with customers, fabricators can avoid callbacks and ensure customer satisfaction with a sink that maintains its quality throughout its life. A homeowner’s decision to upgrade to a higher quality sink creates an opportunity for the fabricator to provide the customer with the ideal product for his or her needs while creating a larger profit. Whether providing the homeowner with a solid surface or stone countertop, it’s important to help them select a quality sink that is not only easy to install but will also make the countertop material “pop” and deliver years of consistent performance. One trendy choice among customers is the stainless steel sink as the finishing touch for a stone or solid surface countertop. With that in mind, it is important to note that stainless steel as sink material does not crack, chip or discolor when compared to other materials, such as enameled cast iron and vitreous china.

Choosing a sink of thinner or low-quality stainless steel may affect the homeowner’s satisfaction within the first six months, as the finish and sound will create noticeable deficiencies. By selecting stainless steel sinks from reputable manufacturers that offer quality products constructed of the appropriate thickness and type with consistent material and dimensional integrity, fabricators can rest assured they are delivering a quality sink paired with their quality top. This decision should be based on the countertop material, customer preference, and price.

Provide the homeowner with background on each type, such as how under-mount or recessed sinks are in railed under a countertop to create a seamless look. A key benefit to a drop-in sink style is that it can usually be replaced without dismantling or possibly destroying the original countertop, thus making remodeling easier down the road. Also, with soft countertop stone, such as marble, a top-mount sink can help protect countertop edges. For example, will the customer use it for meal preparation, washing dishes or as a secondary sink for entertaining?

Some double-bowl models feature a second bowl in a different size or depth that can either be specified for the left or right side, depending on the customer’s preference. Triple-bowl models usually have two larger bowls with one small bowl in the cente r, which often houses the garbage disposal. In addition to determining how the sink will be used, fabricators should also discuss the amount of space it will occupy to choose the ideal model and properly set customer expectations.

Working with manufacturers who offer a wide variety of sink styles, sizes and depths make finding the right model for the customer a quick and easy process. The appropriate finish ensures the sink will maintain its look throughout the countertops’ lifetime. For example, some manufacturers offer accessories customized for each model, such as cutting boards that can be used over the bowls, bottom grids for protecting the sink and strainers.

Most quality stainless steel sinks include countertop cutout templates and complete installation instructions to help fabricators install sinks quickly and easily, thus allowing the fabricator to move on to the next project and the satisfied homeowner to start using his or her new kitchen without delays. For stainless steel, the best approach is to apply a mild dishwashing detergent with a soft sponge or fiber brush, rinse with clear water and wipe dry. Although kitchen sink styles continue to evolve, fabricators can provide insight to get the right sink.

Stainless Steel Kitchen Sinks by

Choosing the right material for your kitchen sink is a decision that’s going have a substantial impact for years to come. They have a versatile style that is perfect for any home décor – from traditional to modern. Since these sinks are stain resistant clean up is a breeze, making it a sanitary solution for an area that will often encounter raw foods that have harmful bacteria.

Selecting the right gauge size for your stainless steel sink is essential. If heavy pots and pans are frequently tossed into your sink then a lower gauge number is ideal for you. Higher number gauges are also not ideal for high-quality, heavy faucets since their edges are quite thin. Having a partition that separates the sink is convenient for multi-tasking such as soaking pots and pans while washing dashes. Undermount sinks make clean up easier because they sit below the countertop and do not have a crevice for dirt to get trapped in.

Farm sinks, also known as apron front sinks, usually have a deep single bowl.

Farm sinks do require a special cabinet to support its weight and unique shape. Dried mineral deposits from standing water or food scraps can have your sink looking scuffed up pretty quickly. Avoid using steel wool, wire brushes, and sponge pads and opt for non-scratch cleaning pads. Selecting a stainless steel sink is an excellent option for a durable sink that will last years and never go out of style.

They are the hub of preparing meals, cleaning, and also handle the bulk of daily chores. Every sink has its purposeful application and deciding which one is right for you can be a little tricky. It is the home of a variety of tasks that are essential to daily living, such as washing hands, preparing meals, and cleaning. Something durable will be necessary for standing up to the daily use that a kitchen sink experiences. The neutral tone of silver looks great with any color scheme. Stainless steel is also impervious to corrosion, heat damage, and chemical damage. The gauge of a stainless steel sink tells you how sturdy it is. A heavier duty sink is also preferred for garbage disposals. If you are short on countertop space, a deeper sink is a valuable addition to compensate for a small area. Stainless steel sinks tend to be deeper than other materials because of its light, yet strong properties.

Double bowl sinks have become increasingly popular over the last decade. Although these are more expensive, the ease of clean up outweighs the cost to many homeowners. This style provides a traditional kitchen look, however, with stainless steel, it takes on a modern persona. Wiping your sink out frequently wi ll avoid having a drab, filmy look. Do not store open containers, such as cleaners or other products that may contain chemicals like acids and bleach.

Do Stainless Steel Appliances Increase The Value Of Your Home? by

Do stainless steel appliances increase the value of your home? For the record, they look nothing like the standard stainless steel domestic fridge. Also, handy user tip: a small amount of baby oil applied with a soft cloth is very effective at polishing stainless steel appliances without smudging.

How is the pricing of the stainless steel appliances determined? What is the difference between tool steel and stainless steel?

What are the best ways to increase the resale value of a home?

Does stainless steel fall into the category of special steel?

What is the most effective way to clean, polish and remove stains from stainless steel appliances?

Usually a commercial fridge will be extremely heavy duty, and look somewhat industrial. Sometimes they’re even offered for free when a restaurant goes out of business. How long will stainless steel appliances be popular?

What percent of components are present in stainless steel?

What is the best way to clean stainless steel appliances?

Will Adding Stainless Steel Appliances To Our Kitchen Increase Our Value? We Have To Replace by

Will adding stainless steel appliances to our kitchen increase our home value?

Many consumers consider them too “cold” and “commercial” in appearance. The appliances in your home should fit-in with the buyers’ expectations of such a home. I have been showing new homes in the last few days, and we saw all kinds of appliances, but certainly a lot of stainless.

Depending upon the colors used in there, the stainless could be stunning and very impressive. If there were lighter colors or if it was bright and cheerful, the stainless was nice. Stainless can be very appealing with marble, depending upon what color it is. A quiet, insulated energy-efficient white dishwasher with more features would be preferable to a stainless low end one. You will pay far more for the stainless, and in many cases you won’t recover your investment. If they see appealing appliances in a competing home, chances are they won’t care about the allowance in yours.

Refine the look of your home to bring it up to saleable standards, having a uniform look will accomplish that but not bring you an immediate, full return on your investment. They may not have the money for upgrades after closing so purchasing them may help sell the house.

You should look at your competition and see what those houses have. On the other hand if you are just replacing one have it match the other two. So having your appliances all match in color is the better direction to go in. Should we get hardwood floors or stainless steel appliances?

Hardwood floors, new stainless steel appliances and custom cabinets. Your home value will not increase simply because of stainless appliances. I would recommend spea king with a top real estate company to give you the specific advice that you seek.

But make sure to list that feature somewhere so prospective buyers realize it.

Remodeling kitchens and baths do have a higher percentage of costs recouped over other types of remodeling or upgrades. Also, depending on the amount of remodeling or upgrading, it may have a negative effect on the property as an over-improvement for the market area. If the room is dark or if there is more subtle lighting such as recessed or indirect lights or no windows, and if there are dark cabinets or even beige or darker colors on the walls, the bisque or white appliances really made everything stand out and brightened up the room. I think the features offered in appliances are more important most times than the finishes.

If your refrigerator and stove are older and don’t offer some of the more modern features, such as ice and water, or smooth cooktop, you might even consider replacing the existing ones with lesser expensive white ones that do have those features. Don’t forget the big picture – to sell your home – and the overall return realized by the sale as a whole. I don’t care for stainless and certainly wouldn’t want a kitchen of matching stainless appliances. If your appliances are really old and dated, then it is likely any buyer will want new ones when they purchase a home. Stainless appliances are not suitable for all houses so that needs to be considered also. Keep in mind a lot of people, especially with young children don’t like stainless.

That way you don’t spend money on something they care less about and it sweetens the pot for your buyers. I would also agree with the other answers about staging the entire house. We have proven data that houses with upgrades will spend less time on the market. I can tell you that it depends on the market and the price range and in some cases may make the property more “marketable” to have stainless steel appliances. If you are preparing your home for sale, you may want to read about staging as well.

Stainless Steel Market Size by

In addition, regulations concerning food safety are expected to fuel industry growth. The exceptional weldability and formability characteristics have facilitated its high utilization in lightweight vehicles. Chinese government policies are aimed at rationalizing excess capacity of stainless steel plants in the region, which in turn, is likely to affect the stainless steel industry dynamics over the forecast period. The 300 series grade exhibits high temperature resistance in comparison to the 200 series and this is expected to drive demand over the forecast period.

It is also prone to rust and corrosion at certain conditions. These are used in basic vehicle frames for doors, mufflers, hoods, and fuel tanks. Demand for corrosion-resistant material with high tensile strength is projected to positively affect global demand. Leading companies have extensive manufacturing capacities spread across various countries worldwide. Players are heavily investing in development of new products to sustain in the market. Grade 316 is referred to as food grade stainless steel and it is majorly used in manufacturing utensils and machinery used in kitchens. It is used in the manufacturing of components such as springs, hose clamps, and exhaust systems. Grades 303, 304, and 316 are used in construction and heavy industry applications due to high corrosion resistance. The growth in automotive and construction industries is attributed to increasing buying power and change in lifestyle of the people in the country. Rising importance of lightweight vehicles to improve performance of automobiles has made carbon fiber the most desired material.

These factors are anticipated to boost the stainless steel industry growth over the forecast period. Increasing application in heavy industries is anticipated to drive its growth in the market.

Surface treated sheets, namely electro galvanized and hot dipped galvanized sheets, a re key products used in automobile production. Moreover, rising preference for utilization of alloys in consumer goods is expected to drive the stainless steel industry. Growing infrastructure investments, coupled with favorable government policies in emerging economies, is likely to fuel demand for stainless steel. Growing demand for consumer products is expected to have a positive impact on market growth. Presence of raw materials such as nickel and iron ore is also expected to have a positive impact on the growth of this regional market. Key strategies of prominent companies include technological innovation and new product development.

They are also collaborating with local players in emerging economies to expand their distribution network within the industry.

Selling: Should I Replace Kitchen Appliances Before Placing House On Market? by

Would it be a good investment to replace with stainless steel?

Trying to anticipate what your future buyer’s desires will be would be purely guess work. Rules of thumb are great, but you have a specific house in a specific market that will benefit from on site local expertise. The only instruction was no red wine on it, even in a glass. But we also replaced bathroom faucets, light fixtures and mirrors. Realtor told us to replace high end white appliances with the cheapest stainless steel we could find.

Few have extra cash after buying house so can afford little rehab. Appraiser also said the exterior of the house needed to be painted. Do you think these improvements were a positive thing?

A lot of ladies who have had it are constantly wiping fingerprints off. Changing out the appliances may not make much difference in price, though it might help the home show better than competing homes and get it sold faster. I have seen houses in my area similar to mine with updates, not selling, and others sell, and same with no updates and they've lowered way below the city assessor office and still won't go. I have seen houses in my area similar to mine with updates, not selling, and others sell, and same with no updates and they’ve lowered way below the city assessor office and still won’t go. Most buyers find it hard to visualize a room other than the way it is. I don’t plan on updating the dw, since it’s not very visible and visual impact would be minimal. Otherwise both houses are keeping the appliances they otherwise have.

I wouldnt bother selling to anybody that requires all new appliances anyway.

But also you need to look at other factors when making that decision. In my market, people often want to redo the kitchens and bathrooms just to personalize. Don’t do something that will put you out of the area price range. Steven, you have a good idea, however from a professional stand point, having those stainless appliances could make or break someone putting a contract on your home.

If you can’t do anything else, replacing the appliances with stainless steel appliances is a good move. A buyer tallies potential expenses as he/she looks at a house, so it is wise to freshen up or update those areas which are obviously in need. If you choose to update the appliances you may not recoup your whole investment. A good agent in your area should discuss with you what your motivation is for selling. Cleanliness is the single-most important factor, and it just takes time and effort.

They’ll know where you can get the most for your time and money. A new interior paint job for example may actually make you some money. Your best bet is to price the property with the need to replace appliances in mind and go from there. My recommendation is to try listing the property without upgrading the appliances and getting buyer feedback before making your decision to replace them. When you look for your replacement house are you looking for new appliances or a dry basement and new roof. Interview a couple of agents and get their suggestions based on what they see and the competition. Bottom line: how much ‘wiggle-room’ do you have to work with?

Remember to leave your accent lights on, use incense and play soft music whenever showing your home. Recycle the old granite counters when you remodel your bathroom and put in new wood counters. It’s easy to clean but otherwise the worst surface possible.

I did not seal it to get the “plastic” look that would have made it a no no for placing hot pots on it. People who had looked at our house before, said it looked dated, but they aren’t saying it now. My realtor didn’t say anything about my appliances when she was here. The paint was 9 years old as well, and my realtor didn’t think it needed to be painted.

My husband’s hands are always oily or full of something and he couldn’t raise a print. Just put it in your offer that you would replace them if asked to by the buyer!

This way you will know up front what homes like yours are selling for, what improvements they have, and also what your competition (other homes similar to yours, in your area) is priced. My house is sound structure, and great mechanicals but needs updates. Even if buyers will buy their own, having newish, sharp looking, updated appliances will give a favorable impression and the kitchen will show well. Impact of a reasonably updated, maintained, pretty home can’t be measured.

I plan on updating my fridge, since it’s more than 20 yrs old, doesn’t look nice, and never fit the area as well as it should. However, if your neighborhood calls for updated kitchens, by all means do it. Sorry cannot give a straight answer without knowing the property and area. You could give a buyer a concession to buy all new appliances, but that might not attract most buyers. Yes, updated kitchen, but it must still be done correctly and not be a cheesy flip. If you choose not to update the appliances be sure that your listing price reflects that. Your local realtor, who has seen your kitchen and home, would provide the most clarity on whether it will be worth the investment of doing any updates. Better to price the home correctly for the cosmetic updating needed.

A walkthrough by an experienced agent would be a worthwhile endeavor. It may be that there is another area of your home that would be more in need than your appliances and you’re too close to see it.

There may be some other things you could or should do that will give you a greater return on the money. If you’re luck you’ll get back between 75-85% of the expense. Get some local professional advice before writing any checks.

5 Tricks For Lowering Your Property Tax by

The good news, however, is that there are some things homeowners can do to lessen the pain – and the burden. However, the assessment still contains a certain amount of subjectivity. Keep in mind, your property is essentially being compared to your neighbors’ during the evaluation process, as well as others in the general vicinity.

It is important to review comparable homes in the area and general statistics about the town’s evaluation results. They’ll overlook the fact that several appliances are out of date, and some small cracks appearing in the ceiling. This will ensure that you receive the fairest possible valuation for your home.

However, what typically happens if you do not permit access to the interior is that the assessor assumes you’ve made certain improvements (such as added fixtures or made exorbitant refurbishments). At this point, it’s up to the individual to dispute the evaluation with the town, which will be nearly impossible unless access to the interior is ultimately granted. If you’ve obtained permits for all improvements you’ve made to the property, you should be fine. However, there are some little things that can be done to reduce property tax without resorting to living in a dump. Check out the neighbor; if they pay less tax than you but own similar homes, you could be in line for a tax reduction. A little homework and due diligence can help reduce the burden. They tend to rise steadily over time and, even once you pay off your mortgage, the taxes keep on coming. As you review this card, note any discrepancies and then raise these issues with the tax assessor. A deck, a pool, a large shed, or any other permanent fixture that is added to your home is presumed to increase its value. This means more attractive homes often receive a higher assessed value than comparable houses that are less physically appealing.

While it may be difficult, resist the urge to primp your property prior to the assessor’s arrival (which is usually a scheduled affair). You can often find discrepancies that could lower your taxes. Some assessors will only see the good points in the home – the new fireplace or marble-topped counters in the kitchen. To prevent this from happening, be sure to walk the home with the assessor and point out the good points as well as the deficiencies. Remember to avoid making any improvements right before your house is due to be assessed.

9 Improvement Projects To Make Your More Desirable In 2017 by

With new trends constantly popping up, it can be difficult to decide which home improvement projects are worth the time and money. You’ll get the most money for your home if a homebuyer doesn’t feel they need to make a lot of updates. Read on to see which features are “the new black” and worth the pretty penny you’ll spend versus the ones you might want to put off for another year to see if they make a comeback. Stainless steel appliances have a sleek look and they’re easy to clean, despite the surfaces’ susceptibility to little fingerprints.

It could be due to the ever-increasing intelligence of home technology as it develops from year to year.

Not only does it look fabulous in almost any kitchen but it is also easy to maintain. On the plus side, marble is less expensive than quartz and still looks great in a kitchen, but if we are talking about wowing potential homebuyers, quartz is leading the charge for home improvement projects!

People still love their hardwood floors, but it looks like this style’s days are numbered, which is a shame. You could say it was in with the new (bamboo) and out with the old (hardwood flooring), but it looks like we are leaning back toward the traditional hardwood floors and other materials that look like hardwood. This is more of a luxury item since it isn’t necessarily a “needed” amenity in a home. Millennials have been especially interested in minimalist living due to the fact that they entered a struggling job market during a recession and have a more minimalist take on how they spend their money. It might seem like it took a backseat this past year, but we think this is a trend that won’t be going away, as millennials continue to enter the housing market. Separate breakfast nooks or eating areas other than the dining room just don’t seem to be cutting it in the trends department. Thinking about making some changes to your home before you sell? To make things easier, we dug into the hottest home improvement projects of 2017 for you!

For those with a funkier side, retro and modern colors can be another appealing alternative for appliances in the kitchen, but keep in mind that overly personalized homes tend to stay on market longer since the next person might not want a pink refrigerator in their home!

Out of all of the materials, this is the one choice a person can make that will stand the test of time. We are seeing a lot more homes on the market boasting about quartz over marble, which is indicative of what homebuyers are looking for. Bamboo is a very versatile material and was previously seen in homes in a variety of different colors and styles. This hot new trend is perfect for homeowners who like to have guests over. The local bars might be closed, but your built-in-bar can stay open all night!

You really need to have the space to have a freestanding tub in your bathroom; this isn’t a trend you will find in most urban areas where space is limited. With the rise of micro homes and efforts to make life less cluttered, it isn’t surprising that this is a trend that has grown in popularity. While kitchen islands and peninsulas are still something people want in their homes, these areas are usually desired solely for more counter space.

New Condo Units At Logan Circle Combine Modern and Traditional Design by

French lighting and other modern fixtures blend with classically paneled walls and elaborate moldings. It has direct elevator access to both levels, and it has a roof deck.

The stairs provide access to the rear entrances for the building’s two units. The bay window at the front of the unit can be used as dining space, and the back of the unit has room for a living area and entertaining. Upstairs are three bedrooms, two full bathrooms and a laundry room with a washer and dryer. The master bedroom has two walk-in closets, two windows and a pocket door to the marble bathroom, which has a free-standing tub and a separate shower. The roof deck has built-in benches and three areas for sitting and dining. The open floor plans include center island kitchens with marble counters and stainless-steel appliances. The units have open floor plans and center island kitchens with marble counters and fully integrated appliances.

Concealed in the cabinetry, along with the refrigerator door, are doors to a pantry, a closet and a powder room. The center island includes additional storage and the dishwasher. The unit has herringbone-patterned white oak flooring, multilayered moldings and trim around the windows. The master bathroom has a free-standing soaking tub and an oversize glass-enclosed shower.

At the back, the living area has floor-to-ceiling windows, and there is a small deck with stairs that lead to the parking pad. A front bedroom has two closets and a private door into the hall bathroom. This unit also has an 800-square-foot roof deck, reached by a wood staircase.

Stainless Steel Countertops by

While everyone is familiar with the material, you might not have considered it for use as countertops. Stainless steel tiles are now being produced for use in backsplashes and countertops that are clearly inspired by past decades.

Stainless produces a clean, efficient yet beautiful appearance. Kitchens and bathroom surfaces need to be clean, and stainless steel is one of the most sanitary materials you can use. Cleanliness and durability are among the top reasons stainless is used in s o many professional kitchens. Avoid thin material; choose a beefier grade that will hold its shape better. This is a very good choice for gourmets who love to prepare their own meals, especially using raw meat and vegetables. For those with young children, it’s an ideal bathroom choice for the same reason.

With so many large kitchen appliances now featuring stainless steel finishes, you can select countertops to blend seamlessly with your refrigerator, range, dishwasher and more. Stainless steel has been trending for a few years, but home decorating experts expect it to remain in high demand for kitchen remodeling and bathroom renovations for the foreseeable future. Stainless steel sinks were introduced in the 1940s and became the rage in the 1950s along with stainless backsplashes. Contemporary kitchens are the second ideal choice for this countertop material.

It blends well with contemporary accents, lighting and fixtures. It complements materials such as wood cabinetry and natural stone flooring. Stainless is also very durable and should give you 15-25 years of dependable service at minimum. Unlike wood, concrete or natural stone, it is not porous, so bacteria and viruses are easy to remove. For appearance, consider metal surface like stainless steel if you’re working to achieve a 1940s-1950s retro look or one with a cutting-edge contemporary feel.

For Best Resale Value Stainless Steel Or White Kitchen Appliances? by

For best home resale value, stainless steel or white kitchen appliances?

Everything looks its best in the store, spanking new and shiny. Remodel kitchen, stainless steel or white appliances when oven is white?

Will stainless steel appliances increase resale of house? I would be turned off a house with all stainless appliances. Instead of trying to guess what your buyer will prefer, which is impossible, match the appliances to the rest of the kitchen. Also remember that stainless steel is just grey with a sheen. I would prefer black to stainless but, my first choice by far is white – clean and bright and it makes the room look larger. Just have to be careful not to dent it ’cause magnets won’t stick to cover it.

[WORKSHEET] The 12 Line Items In Your Kitchen Remodel Budget by

In most cases this is because homeowners opt for more expensive materials than previously planned.

In an effort to help us all stick to our budgets we’ve outlined the 12 items of every kitchen renovation. A mid-tier renovation is going to cost about 15% of your home’s value.

A premium-tier renovation is going to cost about 20% of your home’s value.

If your budget exceeds 20% of your home’s value you run the risk of over-improving your home. Using these rules of thumb you will be able to create a budget even if you’ve just started planning your renovation. Think black appliances, laminate counter tops, and stock cabinets. Think stainless steel appliances, quartz counter tops, semi-custom cabinets. Think sub-zero appliances, marble counter tops, custom cabinets. So now that you have a baseline to start with; here are the 12 line items you must consider in your kitchen renovation budget.

10 Steps To Boost Your Value by

To boost value, a dd color with a new tile backsplash or update with stainless steel appliances. To boost value, a dd color with a new tile backspla sh or update with stainless steel appliances. Plan it out — the fastest way to increase your home’s value is to make upgrades intentionally, not on impulse.

If you’re planning on selling, talk to your real estate agent and make a selling plan. Look at your categorized list and prioritize what is a real “must-have” and what is more of a dream. Make a list of all the things you dream about doing, break your list down into categories based on cost and write down how much time each project may take. If you only have a day or a weekend, choose a project that fits within your time frame, comfort level and financial commitment. Make two lists — upgrades for your home value and upgrades just for you. When it’s time to sell, you will feel confident about what you are presenting to the buyer. Make a list of ways to enhance the positive and eliminate the negative. There’s lots of wear and tear, so you want to keep it functioning well and make good-looking upgrades along the way. The strategy you develop for the type of loan you want depends on where you see yourself in five or 10 years. The rule of thumb is if you are moving into a fixer-upper, go for 10 percent down.

It will give you an opportunity to save that money for retirement or a college fund. Next, categorize your list by how much it may cost, including your time and money.

Don’t get too excited and start fixing up every room in the house. Whether it’s a simple coat of paint or knocking down a wall, focus on one room to keep projects achievable. Don’t sacrifice decor to make the upg rades you need to increase your home’s resale value — do a little of both. Throw out the dartboard approach to picking projects and then wondering if what you are doing is really making a difference. If you already blew through your budget after one upgrade, make small changes for the next couple of months. Hang a pot rack with fresh new pots, pans and a hanging wine-bottle holder. Make sure that around the mirror you have even lighting with no side shadows. Then estimate what you may get for your house and how much cash you will leave with to put down on a new home.

You can get exactly the home you want, and you won’t risk any buyer’s remorse. A home inspection can be a valuable thing, whether you are selling or not. You can pick your home projects and spend your money with confidence. Combine different loan features to create a loan that is comfortable for you and offers you the flexibility to do home improvements as well as invest in your future. Refinancing gives you the chance to switch up your loan and try something new, but avoid using it as a financial crutch.

How To Fight Fingerprints and Keep Stainless Steel Looking New by

Stainless steel is not only classic, but it also gives a kitchen a more professional look; it conveys a serious, strong vibe and projects a sense that real cooking takes place there (even if in some cases it doesn’t). But don’t confuse its durability for indestructibility; stainless steel can scratch and dent, and by far the biggest complaint owners have is that the surface shows fingerprints. The best way to prevent fingerprints from showing is to use a wax-based spray made for treating stainless steel. Pash says that in some ways, stainless steel is easier to clean and maintain than the cabinetry and marble countertops.

Whichever brand you use, wear gloves when applying the polish. Wait one or two minutes after spraying, then wipe away with a clean, lint-free cloth (microfiber cloths work best). And if fingerprints do appear, they will be easy to wipe away. And don’t use oil-based cleaners, either; they will attract lint. The only time you may want to use an abrasive pad is if an unintended scratch appears.

Again, make sure you always rub with the grain until the scratches are no longer visible. The worst thing that can happen to stainless steel is a dent. Now that his kids are older, he says it’s easier to keep the kitchen’s stainless steel pristine, the way the chef side of him likes it, but the dad side of him misses those little smudges. Unlike other surfaces that mask dirt, he says, stainless steel shows when it needs to be cleaned. Spray a light mist over the stainless-steel surface, but do not overspray; if you soak the surface, it will become too greasy.

The spray will bring back the original luster of the material and leave a thin layer of wax that will resist fingerprints and smudges.Whatever you do, don’t use cleaners with bleach after you put on the waxy layer; it will dull the surface luster. If necessary, spray a bit more of the polish on the scratch; the wax will help fill in fine lines. Dents are hard to repair unless you can get behind the stainless-steel layer and knock the dent out.

Pros and Cons: 7 Kitchen and Bath Countertop Materials by

Also, although there’s a variety of woods that are appropriate for countertop use, maple is the most common, and species like red oak and mahogany can be pricier. The sealant should be reapplied every three years, and even with the sealant, the countertop will still age— which some find appealing. A granite countertop in the bathroom will not suffer from heat marks from hair dryers or curlers, for example. It is also quite high maintenance, requiring regular resealing—sometimes as frequently as every 6 months, depending on how often you cook. Choosing a kitchen or bathroom countertop can be nerve-wracking, and we understand why—they can be one of the most expensive aspects of a renovation, with the added responsibility of impacting the aesthetics of a space. And just because the surface is stain-resistant doesn’t mean that it’s impervious to denting and scratching—depending on the gauge, or thickness, of the steel, the countertop is more susceptible to denting and other damage.

As a result, engineered quartz isn’t as expensive as other natural stone countertops, and is usually produced locally.

These 10 Kitchen Upgrades Could Ruin Your Home’S Resale Value by

It might also serve as your home office and having a kitchen that is both functional and appealing is probably high on your priority list.

In fact, here are ten kitchen remodel ideas from which you may want to steer clear. Plus, any dropped dishware is more likely to shatter on ceramic than on softer flooring options like cork or hardwood. Likewise, don’t think you can save money by buying the cheapest appliances on the market. Instead of replacing your well-made current cabinets with lesser-quality ones, freshen them up with new paint or hardware instead. That space between the top of the cabinet and the ceiling is either going to collect dust or clutter.

Read more: 8 home renovation projects to tackle this summer 6. However, too much stainless steel can overpower a room and make it feel cold and sterile.

If you’re the type to obsess over every knick and stain on your countertop, you will not want marble in your kitchen. If you are remodeling to sell, it may be hard to recoup your investment if you live in a mid-level neighborhood. Great, but it won’t be much of an upgrade if it’s the only lighting you have planned for the room. Even if you don’t cook, it’s likely the room where you gather with family and friends. If you plan to sell your home in the near future, having a great kitchen is even more important. While a creative kitchen remodel can let you dream you big, be aware that not everything sold as an upgrade is necessarily an improvement.
Read more: 10 simple (and cheap) backyard upgrades1. Hard ceramic is not the type of flooring you want to stand on for long periods. However, adding an island that comes between the sink and fridge isn’t such a good idea. An ultra-cheap new appliance could end up being a downgrade if you have a better-quality, older model in your kitchen already.

They may look nice, but cheaply made cabinets will be quick to show wear and tear under heavy use. Rather than have a kitchen with dead space, maximize your storage by installing cabinets that go to the ceiling. Not only do you lose valuable kitchen space to the machine, the jury’s still out on whether the coffee tastes any better. Your cabinets may be salvageable with new paint and hardware. To do a creative kitchen remodel, you don’t have to gut the entire roo m. Anybody who enjoys eating early in the day should shed a tear for the maligned meal of breakfast.

Granite Sinks Vs Stainless Steel by

It has always proved to be a practical choice for household sinks. However, stainless steel has also been widely used as a fitting alternative to granite. Granite sinks blend easily with various architectural styles.

This makes it easier to achieve whatever color effects you desire for your kitchen.

This may not be to your liking, especially if you prefer space underneath the sink. Although granite is generally durable, should chipping occur, you will be compelled to seal the gap with some appropriate filler material. Another disadvantage of these sinks is that breakages are likely to occur if dishes or other delicate crockery is dropped into the sink. When well maintained, a stainless steel sink will keep its shiny look for a long time. Although the thicker gauge is more durable, it is also more expensive.

Granite offers a virtually unlimited color range to choose from. This partly explains why many homeowners choose stone over other materials for sink purposes. If you’re wondering about which makes a better fit, below is a basic comparison to help you decide. It reflects both a traditional as well as contemporary look for your home.

It is more expensive to install a granite sink than the stainless steel variety. It’s vital that an adequate support structure is installed to sustain the sink. You need to apply some sealant regularly to control stains. Once installed, especially the thicker gauges, the sink can last several years. Stainless steel sinks have low maintenance requirements, unlike granite. They also have higher maintenance needs than the thicker gauge. If you prefer to have more color in the kitchen, a stainless steel sink will disappoint because of the limited color variety.


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