Home Improvement Suggestions for the Biggest Payoff

If you’re planning on putting your home on the market soon and want to increase its value, the key is to pick home improvement, remodeling projects that give you the best return on investment. As a rule, aim for projects that earn back at least 90 percent of your investment but preferably 100 percent or more. These are some of the top recommendations for the best ROI.

Kitchen Remodeling

Along with bathrooms, kitchens are the most expensive rooms from a structural perspective. When inspectors come to assess your home’s value, they can tell when money is invested and when cheap fixes are used. For the fairest ROI, don’t spend more than 10 percent of your home’s value on a kitchen remodeling project.

One of the biggest mistakes people make is investing in high-end designer wood cabinets. Tearing out and hanging new cabinets is a costly home improvement project. If your cabinets aren’t severely warped or damaged, you can refinish them and install new hardware. Granite countertops add value to a home. Appliances are also important. Ask a real estate agent about which appliances are better for your area. Some brands may raise a value more than others in a certain area. Some less expensive additions that add value are under-cabinet lights and pull-out pantries. Installing recessed lighting is also a good inexpensive way to add value.

Bathroom Remodeling

When you live in a popular area, like Washington, D.C., a smartly planned bathroom renovation can earn back more than 100 percent of your investment. In today’s fast-paced world, fewer people have time to take baths. Install a glass walk-in shower instead of a prefabricated standard combination unit. Low-flush toilets are also a smart purchase.

Adding a second bathroom may be wise in some cases. If your home has more than two bedrooms and only one bathroom, opt to add an efficient second bathroom instead of renovating the current one. In some cases, it can increase the home’s overall value by five percent or more, which is a better average value than creating an additional bedroom.

Add A Bedroom

In a hot housing market, you may be able to top your investment by adding a bedroom. There are several ways to do this. You can make an attic bedroom or loft. Or, you can put a bedroom in your basement. If your basement and attic need a considerable amount of expensive work such as HVAC and wiring, an addition may only be a cost burden. However, you can turn a finished den or office into a bedroom. The presence of a closet is what distinguishes a regular room from a bedroom. Explore cost-saving options for adding a closet. Bedrooms add more resale value than all-purpose rooms without closets.

Install New Flooring

Although floors collect dirt and germs, they shouldn’t look dingy. If you have old carpeting, cracked tiles, or discolored and warped laminate flooring, upgrading your floor is an excellent investment when it’s time to sell. Hardwood flooring offers the biggest payoff. Check to see if there is existing hardwood flooring exposed or hiding under old carpeting, and consider having the wood refinished and adding a dustless finish to entice more buyers. Stone floors also add value to your home and are a coveted feature among many buyers. If you have a large budget, some exotic flooring options add a considerable amount of value as well.
When you have other areas of the home that need attention and you can’t afford a high-end stone or hardwood floor, consider ceramic tile or engineered hardwood. Both home improvement options are more affordable and add value.

Prioritize Home Improvement

While adding a bathroom or converting a den to a bedroom may be the best investments for some people, others would be better off avoiding such projects to address more serious issues. For buyers and inspectors, updated plumbing, roofing, heating, cooling and wiring are more important than an extra bedroom or a bathroom with a glass shower. If the roof needs to be replaced, make that a priority. Fix any serious problems or structural issues that are lowering your home’s value before you start thinking about remodeling the interior.

The best way to approach a pre-sale renovation is to inspect your home or have it professionally inspected. Make a list of what must be done, such as treating a termite problem or patching a newer but damaged roof. Next, make a list of prioritized home improvement tasks, and decide which ones fit your budget and offers the biggest payout.

Photo Credit: ReBath of the Triangle/Triad/Wilmington Flickr via Compfight cc

Laundry Room Ideas Recommended by Houzz

Laundry rooms have been coming into their own in recent years, with more thought and design savvy being put into this workhorse space than ever. From farmhouse style to patterned tile, here are the top 10 trending features of the year so far, as measured by the number of people saving photos of them to their Houzz ideabooks. Are any of these in your own collection?

[houzz=https://www.houzz.com/ideabooks/65636773/list/top-10-trending-laundry-room-ideas-on-houzz w=620]


Tell us: What’s on your dream laundry room wish list?

Refinishing Hardwood Floors: What’s Involved?

Refinishing hardwood floors can seem like a daunting task that just is not worth the effort. However, if you have enough time and patience, you can achieve the beautiful floor of your dreams at a fraction of the cost.

This post will cover the time commitment it takes as well as the various steps that are involved in overhauling your hardwood flooring.

Before you go any further, keep in mind that remodeling your floors is the very last thing you want to do when you’re working on your house. It’s too easy to ruin all of your hard work with paint drips or accidental bumps and scratches from other projects.

What to Expect

First, it’s important to have a detailed plan to follow before you start on anything.

Step One: Refinishing Method

Step one should be deciding which refinishing route you want to take. If your floors are very worn, deeply scratched or damaged in any way, you should do a complete refinish. This requires more time and effort because you must sand all the way down to the bare wood, but the end result is worth the extra work.

If your floors have scratches, worn finish or dullness that is only cosmetic, you should be able to opt for the simpler process of screening. Screening only strips off the topmost layer of polyurethane coating, which should remove any unsightly wear and tear.

Step Two: Choosing a Polyurethane

Regardless of which option you take, you will need to decide whether you want an oil-based or water-based polyurethane.

Oil-based polyurethane does take longer, but it also lasts longer. Generally speaking, it will take about three to five days plus drying time to refinish a hardwood floor with this method. Expect to do one coat per day, because an oil-based product will need at least a full 24 hours to dry.

For water-based polyurethane, the entire process usually takes about two days. These products take far less time to dry, and in most cases, you can move furniture back into the room closer to the 48-hour mark.

These timelines are general estimates, though, so you will want to take into account things like square footage, how dark you want the initial stain to be and even the weather. Because wood is porous, things like dampness and humidity can affect absorption and dry time.

Step Three: Plan-Ahead Prep Tips

Many experts recommend that you remove your baseboards prior to staining and sanding your floors because they will inevitably get dinged and stained no matter how careful you are. If this isn’t possible, just keep in mind that you will need to go back through and touch up the baseboards once your flooring project is done.

It’s extremely important to seal off the room as much as you can to keep dust contained. It’s also easiest on you to plan this project during a time where the weather will be nice so you can open the windows to ventilate and speed the drying process.

Overall Time Commitment and Final Thoughts

While it depends on how dark you plan to stain your floors, which polyurethane you choose and other factors like the weather, you can still make at least a general estimate of how long the process will take from beginning to end.

For a beautiful finish that will last for many years to come, plan for the project to take five to seven days from beginning to end.

Keep in mind that, even though the floors are dry, you still need to take precautions. Furniture should have felt pads installed, pets should have their nails trimmed and no area rugs should be laid down for three to four weeks to allow the wood to “breathe” and cure properly.

Refinishing hardwood floors is a process that’s not overly complicated, but it is time-consuming. However, the end result will last for many years with proper care, so it is a wise investment of your time.

Ready to refinish your hardwood floors?  Contact Us!

Flooring: How to make small spaces seem bigger.

If you are renovating your home or business, deciding how to remodel small rooms can be frustrating. Decorating small spaces can be very challenging, and if you choose the wrong colors, furniture, and flooring, you may be left with rooms that feel stifling and claustrophobic. Fortunately, there are ways that you can make small rooms feel and look more expansive, starting with the flooring that you choose.

Wide-plank hardwood floors

If you are wanting to install hardwood floors in your small spaces, consider choosing planks instead of strips. Planks are wider than 3 inches, and wide-plank floors have planks of 5 inches or more. With wide planks, there are fewer seams, making the room look larger. Another trick is to install your planks adjacent to the longest wall in the room so the room itself will appear longer than it is.

Light vs. dark flooring in small spaces

Designers differ on whether or not people should stick with light-colored floors or if they can instead choose dark materials. Either can be used effectively as long as they are paired with the right color choices in walls and molding. If you choose walnut for your floors, you’ll want to choose to paint your walls in a cool color. Cooler colors tend to recede, which makes the room appear to visually expand. If you also add crown molding at the top of the walls, it can draw visitors’ eyes up, giving an added feeling of roominess.

Light-colored floors also work well to help rooms appear larger. Whether you choose a light-colored wood or a natural stone like travertine, the lightness of your material can reflect light to make your room appear larger. If you do choose to install natural stone tiles, selecting large tiles and avoiding using grout in between them may help to visually expand the floor and the room.

Use the same floor materials in adjacent rooms

You can increase the feel of roominess throughout your office or home by using the same floor materials throughout it. Spaces that are adjacent to your small room that have the same type of material used on their floors will give the impression that the rooms expand into one another, making all of them feel like they are larger.

Install floor materials on a diagonal

Another trick to make your small room appear larger is to install your flooring materials on a diagonal. This helps by giving a different perspective in order to expand the space. A diagonal pattern also creates added visual interest, drawing people’s eyes across the room’s expanse.

Avoid clutter and use the walls

Once you’ve chosen your floors, don’t clutter your small room. Use the minimum amount of furniture that you need in the space. If you are left without enough room to store your belongings, don’t forget about your walls. You can install shelves on the walls for the most effective use of the available space in your small room.

While small spaces can be challenging to decorate, you can use these tips to help your room look airier and larger than it is. Classic Floor Designs is available to help answer any questions you might have or to offer additional suggestions for choosing the floor materials that may work the best for your small rooms.

Photo Credit: suekulec Flickr via Compfight cc

Hardwood Flooring Trends in 2017

Hardwood Flooring Trends in 2017

What’s on trend for hardwood flooring in 2017? Our experts at Classic Floor Designs have suggestions for this year’s top trends: darker colors and wider dimensions. This is directly related to a desire to bring a natural look inside. Everyone has personal likes and a budget to follow. When you are contemplating a renovation that includes new hardwood floor ideas, here are a few that will be popular in the coming year.

Wide and Long Planks

Traditional hardwood flooring has long been available in narrow planks. Today’s flooring trends are seeing more size choices, and many people are opting for wider designs. Using wide and long planks will make a small space appear larger. The elongated lengths will provide a smoother look with fewer seams. Depending on desired results, these pieces can be installed vertically, horizontally, or diagonally.

Darker Stains

To make a bold statement, it may be wise to choose hardwood with a dark stain. If you want some contemporary flair, consider an ebony color. For added sophistication, you may wish to select a rich red wood. Selecting dark walnut is a smart way to bring traditional elegance to your space as well.

Gray is Good

Gray is the hot hardwood flooring trend in 2017. It is a smart alternative to tan and other brown shades. It has seen great popularity on the West Coast, and it is spreading fast across the country. If your space is feeling old, gray hardwood is the ideal update. Since gray is available in a variety of tones, you can select one that works with your existing decor and that adds a modern feel.

Reclaimed Wood

The public is becoming more and more aware of environmental concerns, which has led consumers to search for eco-friendly flooring options. When you want a hardwood floor that is “greener” and beautiful, consider reclaimed wood. Reclaimed products are either reused or remanufactured and include material that has been sourced from old beams, barns, barrels, or similar items. Thanks to the various knots and grains, each piece offers unique beauty.

Vintage Style

Authentic wood appearance is important for 2017 flooring. This means that the rustic look of maple and pine will be two of the most popular choices. If you want to create an antique vibe, distressed flooring will work well. Many hardwood pieces are being hand scraped by manufacturers to provide an aged and vintage look.

Updated White-Wash

To brighten a space, 2017 is seeing flooring that goes beyond white-washing. Lime-washing is a whitening technique that began in Europe and involved the application of a water and lime mixture to bare wood. The end results are a soft and rustic appearance that brings a touch of brightness to your space. The modern way to achieve this look is with liming wax, which fades and ages the look of dark wood.

Less Gloss

Traditional hardwood often has a high shine. However, trends are leaning toward a low-gloss appearance. The look brings a number of benefits. For instance, scratches are easier to hide, and dirt buildup is less noticeable. This is especially important in high traffic areas. Another reason that this type of finish is becoming popular is the authentic appearance that spotlights the wood’s natural color and texture.

Hardwood is a classic choice for both homes and corporate settings. At Classic Floor Designs, we are ready to share the top 2017 flooring trends with you. We are proud to offer some of the finest products that are made from high quality craftsmanship. No matter your needs, we will discuss some of the most popular items and will recommend something that will help your company get noticed from the ground up.

Photo Credit: Burroughs_Hardwoods Flickr via Compfight cc

Keep Your Hardwood Floors Looking Their Best with These 15 Hacks

When it comes to flooring, you’d be hard-pressed to find something that is as timeless or attractive as hardwood. Although it’s among the most durable flooring options around, a hardwood floor of even the utmost quality requires regular maintenance to stay in tip-top shape. At Classic Floor Designs, we have lots of tricks for keeping hardwood floors looking like new. Check out 15 especially useful tips below.

1. Routine Cleaning

One of the best ways to keep a hardwood floor looking terrific is by simply keeping it as clear of dust and other debris as possible. Once or twice a week, thoroughly sweep the floor with a regular broom and then go over it again with a microfiber duster.

2. Take Care with Water

Water and wood don’t mix. When mopping your floor, use a lightly damp mop—not a soaking wet one. Never allow water to sit on your floor for extended periods of time.

3. Ward Off Dings and Scratches

Even the toughest hardwood floor can get pitted and scratched over time. Minimize this by having a shoes-off policy in your home. If you have pets, keep their nails trimmed. Keep felt pads under furniture legs. Whenever possible, lift and carry furniture instead of pushing or dragging it.

4. Act Quickly

When spills and other mishaps occur, act quickly. Sop up excess liquid right away, and then apply a floor cleaner that is specially formulated for the surface with a soft cloth. Have these supplies ready to go at a moment’s notice.

5. Eliminate Dents

Despite your best efforts, your hardwood floors may develop dents from time to time. Repair them by wetting the spot and then laying a dampened cloth over it. Rub a clothes iron on the high setting over the cloth in circular motions until the dent is gone.

6. Wipe Away Marker Stains

If permanent marker ends up on your floor, don’t despair. Both toothpaste and cologne work wonders for eliminating even the toughest marker stains. Gently apply either to the spot with a soft, dry cloth, and then wipe it clean with a damp cloth.

7. Clean Up Scuffs with Melamine Foam

Melamine foam, which is popularly known as Magic Eraser, works incredibly well at wiping away scuffs and other marks. Generic melamine foam is very affordable, so stock up to ensure that you can clean up stubborn marks when necessary.

8. Say Goodbye to Urine Stains

In addition to being unsightly, urine stains give hardwood floors unpleasant odors. Eliminate even old urine stains by pouring hydrogen peroxide directly onto the spot. Cover it with a hydrogen peroxide soaked cloth, and then cover that with plastic. Let it sit overnight, and then wipe it clean with a damp cloth.

9. Use Kitchen Items to Clean Big Marks

If you think that you need heavy-duty cleaner to eliminate that big, stubborn mark, think again. Mix equal parts canola oil and white vinegar, rub it on and then wipe it away with a damp cloth.

10. Restore a Fading Floor

If your hardwood flooring is less bright and vibrant than it used to be, a little lemon oil should do the trick. Rub down the entire floor with it and allow it to dry. You’ll be amazed by how much better it looks!

11. Bid Adieu to Scratches

Are your hardwood floors riddled with scratches? It’s nothing a little steel wool and sandpaper can’t help. For light scratches, use fine steel wool to gently work them away. Use lightweight sandpaper on deeper scratches. In both cases, finish up by rubbing mineral spirits in to smooth the surface.

12. Take Care of Cracks

During the winter, it’s not unusual for cracks to appear in hardwood. Wood expands when it’s warm and humid and shrinks when it’s cold and dry. The cracks should go away when warm, moist weather returns, but you can always run a humidifier to resolve it any time of year.

13. Clean Up Tape Residue

Sticky residue from tape, stickers and the like can be easily and gently cleaned away. Combine two tablespoons baking soda with 1/4 to 1/2 of a teaspoon of water. Spread the paste onto the residue, allow it to dry and then rub it away with a damp cloth.

14. Make a Natural Floor Cleaner

Clean your floors naturally and restore their sheen with black tea. Brew some up, dampen a clean cloth with it and wipe down your floors. The polyphenolic compounds in the tea inhibit microbial growth, so your floors will stay clean longer. The tannins in the tea add a lovely sheen.

15. De-Squeak Your Floor

Finally, if your floors look fine but sound terrible, there’s an easy way to eliminate squeaks. Use a paintbrush to work baby powder in between the floor joints. You can also use powdered graphite, which comes in a tube, to accomplish the same thing.

There you have it! By keeping these tips in mind, your hardwood flooring will continue to look as good as new for years to come. Check back with Classic Floor Designs for more helpful tips in the future!

Photo Credit: C. VanHook (vanhookc) Flickr via Compfight cc

Commercial Flooring Considerations

Whether you’re designing a new office space or simply remodeling, selecting the right commercial flooring for your needs is a crucial decision. Your floors should be durable, ensure that your clients form a positive first impression of your business and contribute to a comfortable and safe work environment. During the design phase, the best flooring for commercial space should be thoroughly evaluated, including the pros and cons of each type, so that you can make an informed decision.

Carpet and Carpet Tiles: Quiet, Affordable and Easy to Replace

Carpet is an affordable and versatile choice that can dampen noises and create a warm, inviting environment. Special carpeting designed for commercial applications and high-traffic areas is extremely durable and will last for years with proper care. Stain-resistant material can help preserve your floor’s overall appearance, but all carpeting will eventually need to be cleaned.

If you decide carpet is the best option for your corporate space, you may want to consider carpet tiles. When installed properly, they look exactly like rolled carpet, but they make it easier and less expensive to repair small areas. Today’s carpet and carpet tiles come in a wide array of patterns and styles so you can easily choose a design that matches your brand or sets the tone for your office.

Vinyl Flooring: Resilient, Comfortable and Affordable

Vinyl might not be the first material you think of when you consider the best flooring for commercial space, but it’s an option many businesses prefer. It can give you the same look that comes with ceramic tile or hardwood floors, but it’s more affordable, easier to install and absorbs noises fairly well.

Even when installed in high-traffic areas, vinyl flooring is easy to clean and maintain, and it retains its attractive appearance for an extended period of time. As a bonus, if you have employees that stand for most of their workday, vinyl flooring is more forgiving to the human body than harder materials. Many retail stores and hospitals are floored in vinyl.

Rubber Flooring: Provides Traction, Heat Resistance and Sound Absorption

Rubber is a viable option for hospitals, airports and restaurants as well as similar types of businesses. This commercial flooring option is perfect for high-traffic area because it’s durable and easy to maintain. Other benefits include:

  • Comfortable to stand on
  • Heat and water resistant
  • Slip resistant
  • Sound absorbent
  • Available in multiple colors and textures

Hardwood Flooring: A Timeless, High-End Look that Always Makes a Good Impression

Hardwood flooring is more expensive upfront than many other options, and it does require maintenance to preserve its elegant appearance, but this type of flooring will last more than a lifetime with proper upkeep, and nothing sets a professional and successful tone quite like hardwood. If you are designing a commercial space for a law office, an advertising firm or a financial management company, hardwood flooring is an obvious choice.

New advancements in manufacturing have increased surface durability making this attractive material harder to mar or scratch than it used to be. You can find hardwood flooring made up of many different types of wood and in a variety of finishes from classic oak to rich cherry.

Laminate Flooring: Get the Look of Hardwood for a Lower Cost

As long as you choose a high-quality laminate, this commercial flooring option can provide you with a durable surface that looks almost exactly like hardwood flooring at a fraction of the cost. Today’s laminate can also give the appearance of stone, tiles or almost any other material. It’s easy and fast to install, simple to maintain and holds up well under heavy traffic. To make laminate flooring, the manufacturer presses multiple sheets of material together, then seals them with a protective coating that preserves the finish and gives laminate flooring a long life.

Hard Tiles: Ceramic, Glass, Slate, Marble or Granite

The options are virtually endless when you consider hard tiling for your office space. Depending on the material, the price can be relatively low or very expensive, but hard tiles are extremely durable, resist stains and can provide you with a very attractive look that will last. On the downside, hard tiling is exhausting to stand on for long periods of time.

What You Should Consider When Selecting the Best Flooring for Your Commercial Space

For the best outcome, consult with a flooring professional who specializes in corporate flooring to select the best materials for your office. Together, you should go over:

  • Expected traffic level – Spaces like school hallways, shopping malls and museums require hard materials like granite, marble or concrete to stand up to years of constant traffic. However, if you operate a call center where employees come and go but few customers enter, you may be better off with softer, more affordable carpeting as your commercial flooring choice.
  • Ease of repair – Some flooring like carpeting or vinyl will eventually need to be repaired or replaced. Consider how expensive it will be to repair, how long the repairs will take and how much the repairs will inconvenience your clients or employees before you make your final choice.
  • Maintenance requirements – Different types of flooring have very different maintenance needs. Discuss whether you can do the maintenance yourself, if you will have to hire someone to do it for you and the average yearly cost of maintenance.
  • Life expectancy – Ask how long each type of flooring is expected to last if it’s maintained properly. Carpeting generally has the lowed expected lifespan while hard tile and hardwoods have the longest.
  • Components – Find out if any volatile chemicals or any other problematic materials were used to make each type of flooring. Some chemicals can have an impact on air quality or prevent you from recycling old flooring at the end of its life.
  • The total cost to own – Just like buying a car, your overall cost to own will include more than the initial amount you pay to purchase your new flooring and have it installed. Include the cost to maintain and repair as well as life expectancy in your calculations. Don’t forget that upfront savings can cost you more in the long run.

If you need help choosing the best flooring for your corporate space, please give us a call. Our team of commercial flooring experts is ready and able to help.

Photo Credit: Paintzen Flickr via Compfight cc

Carpet Is A Great Flooring Option

We know that the durability of tile and the beauty of hardwood has been extensively praised throughout the years. However, there is a reason that carpet sales consistently outpace those of other floor coverings. Here are 10 reasons why we believe that wall-to-wall carpet will remain a go-to flooring option for modern households.

#1 Eco-friendly Carpet Versions Available

Carpeting floors used to mean installing rolls of synthetic materials that were saturated with volatile organic compounds and other toxic chemicals that impair indoor air quality for years after initial installation. Also, health-harming flame retardants are usually found in the foam padding that lies beneath most conventional carpeting. More sustainable carpeting options are available to today’s homeowners. Eco-friendly carpeting materials include wool, wool and silk blends and sea grass. Wool, natural rubber and cotton are a few non-toxic padding choices. Even conventional carpeting materials trap dust and airborne allergens which would otherwise aggravate respiratory conditions. Homeowners can then remove the dust particles by vacuuming with a high-quality vacuum cleaner.

#2 Warmth and Insulation

Very few people enjoy placing their feet on cold, hard floors first thing in the morning. Those who have wall-to-wall carpeting installed do not have to subject themselves to this disagreeable way of preparing for a new day. Carpeting is warmer to the touch than hardwood, tile and stone. When paired with quality padding, it also provides floors with an extra insulating layer that reduces energy bills.

#3 Noise Reduction

The insulating benefits of wall-to-wall carpets also reduce noise levels throughout a home. When carpet is installed on second-story floors, the sounds of footsteps, stereos and television sets are dampened. This feature is particularly noticeable for households that have active children and pets.

#4 Available Colors

The color choices for carpets are nearly endless, and we’ve seen that some interior designers create signature fashion statements through the clever use of color. For instance, they can make large rooms look cozier and more inviting by using deeper hues for carpeting. Also, carpets that display accent colors against neutral backgrounds are on trend.

#5 Wide Choice of Patterns and Textures

We’ve also seen an uptick in professional interior decorators and do-it-yourself remodelers taking advantage of available pattern and texture options for carpeting to add drama to contemporary room designs. In these homes, subtle carpeting patterns coordinate with window covering and furniture fabrics. Designers also create upscale looks by using our textured carpets to provide a contrast for clean-line, modern furnishings.

#6 Softness

Many families desire a home that exudes comfort and well-being for all who shelter there. Wall-to-wall carpet, which feels soft and luxurious to the touch, helps to provide that atmosphere. Our clients who have toddlers and small children who are just learning to walk often choose carpeting to cover all or part of their homes’ floors.

#7 The Price Is Right

Carpets can last up to 10 years if they are properly cleaned and maintained according to leading manufacturers of our quality brands. Carpeting installation is usually less expensive per square foot than installing hardwood floors. Also, installing hardwood flooring is more labor intensive than installing carpet throughout a home. While prices vary by region, carpeting can cost between $3 and $5 per square foot; hardwood floor installations cost between $9 and $12 per square foot.

#8 Low Maintenance

We’ve found that busy households need all the help that they can get when it comes to keeping their homes clean and neat. Carpeting is a relatively low-maintenance floor covering that usually requires only weekly vacuuming and yearly professional deep cleaning. Alternately, hardwood and laminate floors must be swept and mopped more often than carpeting. Families with small children and pets often need to sweep hardwood floors daily to maintain tidy homes.

#9 Slip Resistant

Many of our customers are caretakers for aging parents or grandparents as well as for their own children. This is often a contributing factor when they choose wall-to-wall carpet over other floor materials. Carpeting provides a slip resistant surface that reduces incidences of dangerous falls for elderly household members. Wall-to-wall carpets with thick piles are usually more difficult to navigate for those in wheelchairs; we recommend carpeting that has a thinner pile and quality padding to accommodate wheelchair use. The youngest of family members also benefit from floors that resist slips and cushion falls as they learn to walk and play at home.

#10 Excellent Manufacturer Warranties

Deciding to install wall-to-wall carpeting is a significant home improvement investment, and homeowners always want the assurance that they are purchasing the right product for their unique needs. Investigating product warranties often helps them in the decision-making process. Today’s wall-to-wall carpet warranties go beyond the basic wear warranty that just assures that carpets will not fall apart with normal use. Our clients can now get texture retention, fade resistance, soil resistance and stain resistance warranties.

Tips to Add Value and Help You Sell Your Home

Seven Tips: Add Value, and Help You Sell Your Home

Deciding to sell your home may seem like a massive undertaking. Be prepared to prioritize any necessary repairs to increase the home’s resale value on the market. When you improve the condition of the property, you can maximize your return on investment by quickly closing the deal. This article provides seven helpful tips on the most essential repairs your home might require in order to improve the home’s resale value and generate the most profit.

Considerations for Upgrades

Many sellers are constrained by a limited budget. To get a reasonable return on this investment, you have to make good decisions about any repairs. It will also be necessary to account for multiple variables that affect the home’s overall market value. This includes the condition of similar properties as well as the average value of other homes in the neighborhood.

Most experts advise performing repairs that are consistent with the quality of similar homes, and avoid making any repairs that are too flashy for the neighborhood. For example, if the home is located in an area where there are no swimming pools, installing a pool is unlikely to increase the value of your home relative to the costs of the upgrade. Try to strike a balance between investing in renovations that are cosmetic and structural repairs, which appeal mostly to experienced buyers.

Increase Home’s Resale Value in Seven Steps

1. New Carpet: Enhancing the condition of the carpet is an essential upgrade for any home that is going to be sold on the market. Fresh carpet is appealing because it makes the home feel brand new. Any home that has stains and other dirt baked into the carpet will be perceived as less valuable than a home that has a clean, new look on the floors. The perception of value is as important as the actual market value in many of these cases.

2. Fresh Coat of Quality Paint: A fresh coat of high-quality paint creates a positive first impression, and it can dramatically improve the appearance of a home that requires additional work. Always consider the effect of any sunlight that enters the room when choosing a color, and avoid bright or high-contrast colors. Muted tones work the best, and it gives the impression of a properly maintained space. The scent of fresh paint is an effective way to create an environment that is welcoming to the buyer. Avoid cheap paint whenever possible because this technique will backfire if it starts to peel.

3. Structural and Cosmetic Repairs: Obvious signs of major damage are a big deterrent to most buyers. Roofing renovations can have a large return on investment in these situations. This investment increases the value of the home and increases the prospects of closing the deal. Consider repairing or replacing essential features of the home like the plumbing or HVAC system if you expect to deal with knowledgeable buyers who will have the home inspected before committing to a purchase. If you have any funds left over from structural repairs, consider upgrading the countertops or replacing a key appliance.

4. Insulation Improvements: Insulation upgrades provide a major talking point when a potential buyer is doing a walk-through of the home. Energy-efficient windows are extremely popular with informed home buyers. If the home has an impressive U-factor, make sure that this information is available to the real estate agent in a form that they can use to estimate the monthly cost savings on heating and cooling. Double-pane windows also reduce the monthly utility bills, which improves the buyer’s perception of value. Additional home insulation in the walls can reduce the energy use by up to 30 percent, according to the North American Insulation Manufacturer’s Association, or NAIMA.

5. Replace Old Carpets with Hardwood Floors: Many home buyers prefer hardwood flooring to carpet, so this is an effective renovation that will appeal to these buyers. It is important to make this decision based on the understanding that it will primarily appeal to this group. If you planning to sell your home based on this strategy, make sure that you select a neutral tone of wood to avoid any kind of extreme or overpowering color palette.

6. Tile Flooring: Carpet and hardwood floors appeal to a generic base of home buyers, but tiles express a specific kind of personality. In addition, it is traditional to use ceramic or porcelain tiles for certain rooms inside of the home. You may choose to select an appropriate type of flooring for the kitchen and bathroom areas to provide contrast to the main living room areas. Mute tones that blend in with the paint will appeal to the widest base of home buyers.

7. Clean Entrances: Buyers often make major purchase decisions based on the first impression of the entrance to the home. While the real estate agent is finding the right key, the buyer will be looking around at the condition of the paint, exposed gutter parts, the style of the door and windows, and the front yard. Make this area feel welcoming and warm. Entice your buyers to feel like they would want to experience this place every day.

Additional Considerations to Increase Home’s Resale Value

Classic Floor Designs provides a variety of services and solutions to help you sell your home with the best possible return on your investment. There is no guarantee that any specific renovation will increase the home’s resale value, but there are many ways to improve the odds. For example, the condition of the homes in the surrounding areas can constrain the impact of any curbside improvements. Another point to consider is the overall condition of the home. Some sellers make the mistake of investing in expensive upgrades in a home with a low existing market value. In this situation, the best strategy is to target specific improvements that will increase the value of the home in proportion to the other homes in the area. Contact us today for additional information or a consultation appointment.

Photo Credit: tippetts_jeremy via Compfight cc

Pet-Friendly Flooring Options for Your Home

Best Flooring for Homes with Pets

Pets are wonderful to have around, but they can wreak havoc on your floors. Pet-friendly flooring is a necessity for any home that has dogs or cats. From tracking mud into the home to scratching the hardwood’s surface, cats and dogs can do an exceptional amount of damage in your home. When you begin to remodel your property, make sure to consider flooring options that work for your pet. Owning a pet does not mean that your home has to be completely destroyed. There are many durable flooring solutions that will not be destroyed by pets and are easy to maintain.

Warm and Durable Solutions

If you live in an all-weather region, you will want a solution that is warm and inviting. The rain and snow that are tracked in also need a type of flooring that can handle the added moisture. As a rule, hardwood flooring is not the most durable choice for pets because their claws can scratch up the wood. Instead, consider carpet-tile for your flooring. Carpet tiles are exceptionally easy to install, and their inexpensive price makes them ideal for any budget.

Carpet Tiles: This option is an excellent alternative to heavy floors. They can be easily assembled in high-use areas in just a day. Best of all, you can pick up the carpet tiles to wash in the sink or the washer. Carpet tiles are an ideal option for the areas that your pets like to be in the most.

Natural, Cool-Looking Solutions for Your Flooring

In warmer climates, homeowners need a flooring option that keeps the heat away. Stone and tile are ideal for these climates. Since these natural flooring options are exceptionally beautiful, they are often used by homeowners who are showing their home to buyers.

Tile: Tile is one of the easiest flooring options because it is simple to maintain and easy to install. For the best appearance, add some stylish rugs into your design. The rugs will help prevent your pets from sliding into the furniture or the walls as they are playing. Plus, a few added rugs will make the ground more comfortable to walk on for older pets.

Stone: Stone has been used as a flooring option for hundreds of years because it is beautiful and easy to clean. This type of flooring is ideal for pet-friendly homes because it is scratch resistant and naturally beautiful. Since it is not as slick as tile, you do not have to worry about your pets slipping around on the floor. Plus, the cool touch of the stone is great for homes in warmer areas.

Concrete: When most people think of concrete, they think of the rough stone that is used in garages and driveways. Over recent years, decorative concrete has developed a new popularity. Unlike the garage floors of the past, the new concrete options can be designed in a variety of different looks. From sleek black flooring to marble-like designs, concrete can be used for any design concept that you are looking for.

Renewable Solutions

Once you install new pet-friendly flooring, it will be a part of your home for years or decades afterward. Due to this, many homeowners are choosing green flooring options for their new floors. Options like cork and bamboo are beautiful flooring options. Best of all, they are ideal for your pets to use.

Bamboo: Bamboo is one of the hardest types of woods, which makes it exceptionally durable. Currently, green companies are trying to figure out ways to tissue culture large bamboos because of their amazing growth ability. Some types of bamboos can grow several feet in a day, which makes bamboo a green alternative to traditional wood floors. Plus, bamboo is water-resistant, exceptionally durable and easy to clean.

Cork: Cork absorbs sound well, which makes it ideal for homes with chattier dogs and cats. This pet-friendly flooring option also has natural antimicrobial properties, so it can reduce allergens and mold in your home. Since cork floors can fade over time, they are best used in rooms or regions of the country that do not receive a lot of sunlight. For the best protection, use a high-quality urethane to coat your floors. By doing this, you can prevent wear and tear over the long run.

Keeping Your Floor in Shape

Before we go through the options for pet-friendly flooring, you should first take some precautions to keep your floor safe. Start by trimming your dog’s nails. This will prevent their nails from scratching the floor and will save you on replacement flooring in the long run.

Meanwhile, move their food, water and toys to a room that is easy to clean. If you keep their food in the kitchen, it will be much easier to mop up any mess that happens. Likewise, you will want to move their toys to a room that can take the abuse or put them outside. This will prevent the floors and furniture from being harmed while your pet plays with their favorite toys.

Near the doorways to your home, place a walk-off mat. When your dog or cat walks over the mat, it will pick up some of the dirt that they drag in. Make sure that you buy a mat that can easily be put in the washer so that you do not end up with an eyesore in your entryway.

Finding Pet-Friendly Flooring Solutions That Last

Your main goal is to find a flooring option that is easy to maintain and durable. The previous options can add value to your home and prevent your pets from damaging the floor. Best of all, many of these options are cheaper than traditional flooring and are mildew-resistant. With the right pet-friendly flooring, you can relax and not worry about the damage that your pet may cause.

Photo Credit: Rich Walker75 via Compfight cc