Kitchen Design Tips with Your Family in Mind

Your family may be large or it may be small – no matter if you have one child or multiple children, ensuring your kitchen is kid friendly is essential. Since the kitchen is the heart of the home, areas like hard surfaces, hard corners, sharp edges and flammable positions make it an unsafe and dangerous area to spend time making memories with your children.

See our recommendations below for remodeling your kitchen into the true heart of the home for your family and kids.

When you choose your counter top surfaces, you will have plenty of options for the counter top slab details. We recommend using a style with a rounded edge to give more forgiveness when heads bump against them.

LOWERED COUNTER TOP HEIGHTS : Consider lowering a section of counter top to a child-friendly height. By having a kitchen surface well within their reach, children can safely prepare their own food without stretching or standing on other furniture, thus preventing accidents.

TOUCH-FREE FAUCETS : Kids have a hard time turning faucets on and off, and can accidentally kick on water hot enough to burn their skin. Touch-free faucets are the solution and can be pre-set to a safe “start temperature” than can be changed once the faucet is on and running.

KID-FRIENDLY STORAGE : Dedicate a drawer and/or cabinet in the under-cabinet section and organize it with kid’s plates, bowls, cups, and utensils, as well as, some of their favorite snack items. Refrigerator drawers can be great for this too. That way, kids have everything they need at a safe operating level.

When looking to remodel your kitchen, consider implementing some of the above features to ensure your child or children are safe while enjoying the memories of cooking with their parents. Create a kitchen that is truly the heart of your home with All South Restoration. (770) 409-0999!

8 Great Ideas when Finishing Your Basement

Are you getting ready to finish your basement? A finished basement can provide numerous opportunities to create the addition to your living space that you always wanted but don’t have room for in your home. Basement remodeling has the added benefits of privacy and quietness, so a finished basement is often used for purposes that would be disruptive in the upstairs living areas or for rooms that are better separated from the main living space. With the right kind of basement waterproofing, insulated wall panels, basement windows, low-maintenance flooring, and other high-quality Total Basement Finishing products, you can create the basement of your dreams!

Man Cave

One of the most popular uses of a finished basement is the man cave, a sanctuary of sorts that is comfortably tucked away from the practicalities of the rest of the home and the demands of everyday life. The idea is to make this space entirely about you and about the things you love to do. Whether that means creating the perfect setting to watch the big game, complete with dart set and pool table, or a space to store collectibles or tabletop board games, the sky’s the limit. By the way, a “man cave” doesn’t have to be just for men – anyone can use this kind of space for his or her hobbies!

Home Theater

Basements are the perfect spaces for home theaters, where noise won’t be a problem and there will be no disruptions. Comfortable seating is a must, and you can select the perfect entertainment set . It’s a good idea to install some built-in cabinetry underneath and on either side of the TV screen so that you can hide the wiring and use the storage space for DVDs and accessories.

Home Gym

Ever spent money on a gym membership only to never actually get around to going? We’ve all been there. That’s why setting up a home gym in your finished basement can be the perfect solution for anyone who wants to get in shape or loves exercising without the stress and hassle of going to the gym. As an added benefit, you get to pick the exercise equipment that best suits your needs and you can work out in the privacy of your own home – whenever and however you want!

Basement Apartment

If you’re looking to expand your living space, designing a basement apartment is much easier and more cost-effective than building an addition. A basement apartment with its own kitchen, bathroom, and appliances is a great way to earn some extra rent money, or you can create a basement in-law apartment for a relative. With the right kind of windows, flooring, ceiling tiles, and insulated wall panels, a damp and dark basement can be totally transformed into a bright, comfortable living space!

Basement Bedroom

Families grow and expand, and sometimes your living space just isn’t big enough anymore. If you don’t need an entire basement apartment but would like to take advantage of the space to add to your living area, a basement bedroom is a perfect solution. Keep in mind that a large basement egress window is a code requirement for both basement bedrooms and basement apartments so that the occupants can safely escape in case of an emergency.

Home Office

Working from home is becoming more and more common, and it’s essential to have a home office where you can concentrate without distraction. Your finished basement can be the perfect work space since it’s separated from the rest of the home and sound will not carry from other rooms.

Children’s Playroom

Total Basement Finishing offers warm, insulated, and highly durable basement finishing materials that are ideal for a children’s playroom. Your finished basement walls will retain their beautiful appearance with minimum effort on your part.

Basement Bar

On the opposite end of the spectrum, you may want to use your finished basement as a space for the adults in the home. Why not install a small fridge, a sink, some bar stools, and a TV? You can have a basement bar in no time that’s perfect for entertaining friends. Adding a basement sink won’t be much of an inconvenience if you’re already adding a basement bathroom!

To discuss any of these options further, don’t hesitate to get in touch with one of our highly trained basement finishing professionals. Let All South Restoration help you get started on your dream basement today (770) 409-0999!

More Bang for your Buck!

Kitchens & Baths are the Key to Unlocking the VALUE!

When considering remodeling projects, the kitchen and master bathroom renovations will give you the biggest return on your investment. For decades, kitchens have been called the heart of the home.  It is where people gather for meals, to share stories of the day, and to just hang out.  When people entertain, the kitchen is typically where everyone congregates. 

When remodeling the kitchen, countertops and cabinets are the best place to start.  Replacing laminate countertops with granite or another solid surface gives the kitchen an updated look with enhanced value.  Lower cabinets with pull-outs are an easy conversion option that can improve a kitchen and provide more storage.  Newer kitchens often have deep drawers instead of cabinets that are used for pots and pans and other larger items. If you have room, add an island, which can provide additional workspace or a place to sit.

Master bathrooms have changed in the past several decades.  Soaker tubs, with or without jets, are giving way to larger walk-in showers with multiple shower heads, benches and niches. Frameless glass showers may be a bit more costly but will enhance the look of your master bath.  These days people are looking for bathrooms that are easier to keep clean.  To do this, use larger tiles because there is less grout to maintain.

To save water, replace toilets with low-flow models with comfort-heights and elongated bowls.  These are more comfortable and are more attractive to potential buyers.

Another way to add value to your home is through added storage space.  It can be as simple as adding more shelving or perhaps expanding the footprint of the closet by taking space from an adjacent room. 

Whether you plan to sell your house in the next year or intend to stay, consider remodeling.  If you are not selling, you will appreciate the updates and changes.  If you are selling, the money you invest will most likely pay off in a higher selling price. 

When you make the decision on the rooms you would like to remodel call our remodeling team at (770) 409-0999 and start increasing the value of your home.

DIY or Call in the Pros?

While it is admirable to take on your own work, it is also important to know when to ask for help!

With all the YouTube videos and websites that show people how to do everything from making a roast to building a deck, is it smart to do home repairs and remodeling projects yourself?

Assessing the degree of difficulty and your skill set is the best place to start.  Be honest about your own capabilities and your tolerance for frustration or unknown issues.  Some jobs require an experienced professional to evaluate before starting to demo fixtures, walls, and floors.

If your plans include structural changes, a professional will consider and anticipate possible stumbling blocks that a DIYer might not.  This is especially important when designs call for an “open concept” floor plan.    A contractor can assess whether walls can be removed or modified and let the homeowner know the most efficient and economical way to achieve the desired look.  Changing walls can also involve having to relocate electrical wiring, plumbing lines, and sometimes HVAC ductwork.  These can sometimes present the biggest challenge to overcome.  It is best to entrust mechanical related items to  trained professionals to provide for the  proper installation and ensure the safety of your home.

All of these considerations are the responsibility of an experienced general contractor and that is why it is important to know your contractor.  Making sure your contractor is licensed, insured, provides a warranty, and has positive customer feedback is important in determining their credibility. 

Call the professionals at All South Restoration today to get your project started, while providing you the peace of mind in knowing it will be done right! (770) 409-0999!

The Process of a Renovation Project

Recent trends show home buyers moving from the suburbs to settle in communities that are within their ideal neighborhood location.  Whether you are looking to move for the right school district or looking for a more desirable commute to work.  You may have no problem finding the ideal location but the inventory of turnkey homes may not be available.  We have watched these trends and have noticed that home buyers have shifted their primary focus and are no longer looking to “find the perfect house” but to find the “imperfect house in the perfect neighborhood”.  With that many home buyers are considering home renovation rather than buying the turnkey home.  To keep up with this new trend, many mortgage companies are now offering renovation loans for home buyers.  While each lenders qualification may be different in various aspects, the general idea is to provide an all-in-one mortgage that rolls renovation cost and the mortgage into one payment.  This gives buyers the opportunity to purchase an imperfect home and make it their dream home. 

It is important to realize that some television programs show a gut rehab only taking approximately 30 minutes to complete.  What you don’t see are all the planning phases involved in a home renovation project.  There are many important steps that must be taken before you go tearing down walls and tossing out the kitchen sink.  With this being said, hiring a General Contractor is key.

Step 1: Determine Your Budget

Before jumping into the renovation process, your first question should be “What can I afford?”  This budget needs to be based on what you can realistically spend for your remodel project.  It is always wise to add another 10-20% to cover hidden costs or unforeseen expenses.  Remember older homes have hidden challenges such as mold behind walls that may be getting torn down. At this point if you are purchasing or refinancing it is important to meet with a mortgage expert to determine what you qualify for.

Step 2: Prioritize Detailed List

If you are like most homeowners, you are going to have a dream renovation list that includes multiple big-ticket rooms, such as kitchens and bathrooms.  These rooms are a larger financial expenses but also add value to your home.  Throughout our time renovating homes we have found the best process to stay on track and on budget is to have homeowners make a prioritized detailed list of the renovations they wish to complete.  The reason for this is setting realistic expectations for work within a given budget. 

A quote we once heard “opening walls equals opening wallets”, the play on words was cute, but the value behind the statement held value.  What many homeowners do not realize is the cost associated with opening up walls in a home.  Hidden issues such as relocating of plumbing and wiring or locating load baring walls indicates additional financial obligations to complete.  We suggest homeowners determine their top list of renovation items. This way we can walk through the realistic expectations of your renovation project.

Step 3: Meet with General Contractors

Once you have found a home that needs either small renovations or a major gut rehab, don’t try and go it alone. All South Restoration, Inc. is a preferred General Contractor for most lenders throughout North Metro Atlanta.   Discuss with us your home renovation desires, mandatory repairs, and overall budget.

All South Restoration looks forward to discussing your renovation project with you today.  Call our renovation experts at (770) 409-0999!