Attaining The Perfect Home Remodel | A Planning & Process Guide

Are You Planning a Home Remodel? Here Are Some Tips to Get You There Successfully! Attaining Perfect Home Remodel | Planning & Process Guide

A home remodel can be a bit overwhelming. It’s a complex job filled with product and color choices along with the task of maintaining a budget and finding the right design-build firm to complete the work.

Whether you’re considering a kitchen remodel, creating the perfect master suite, or adding an addition, with planning, research, a developed creative vision, and the right contractor, you can complete your project successfully and create the perfect space for you and your family to enjoy for many years to come.

The following steps can help you to plan and execute a successful home remodel.

FIRST, DEVELOP YOUR CREATIVE VISION

Even before you seek out a contractor, have a plan. Start to develop a creative vision for your project. Your entire project from planning, design, and budget comes down to your knowing exactly what you want at the beginning of the project. Be prepared to answer questions like the following;

  • What is the overall style you are looking to achieve? Choose something you’ll want to live with for years to come. (Traditional, Contemporary, Country, Vintage)
  • Will I need an addition or is my current footprint large enough? (Where will you put that soaking tub?)
  • Am I looking for the best materials and appliances or will the standard be good enough? (6 burner Wolf cook top with in-wall oven or 4 burners GE Cafe range?)
  • Will my home remodel require taking down walls and moving the kitchen or bathroom locations? (Moving mechanical systems will add to the cost.)
  • What type of flooring fits your lifestyle and aesthetic? Hardwood, natural stone tile, carpet?)
  • Are you seeking a statement home with custom exotic wood kitchen cabinets with a hand rubbed finish or something more conventional?

Make a master file and start clipping photos of spaces that you like regarding design, style, and décor. Go through home, design and architecture magazines. You can also do a lot of the work online. Sites like Houzz allow you to create digital “Idea-books” that you can fill with relevant photos from the site.

This pre-planning research can work in your favor when you begin the process of building your team. By giving your designer your master folder, you can develop a commonality of vision and language right from the beginning of your project. By choosing “must have” elements from your files, you can begin to develop your budget. Your designer may have ideas that can meet your aesthetic needs while keeping you within your budget.

Attaining Perfect Home Remodel | Planning & Process Guide just call us now today:(800) 371-8970

WORK WITH A PROFESSIONAL DESIGNER

To successfully execute a major home remodel you need a detailed plan and scope of work. Hiring an architect, interior designer, or better yet, a design-build firm is a significant step in the process. Each can play a role in your project.

While every company does things a little differently, many designers work on projects that don’t involve major structural work. They can also offer assistance with materials and colors. Architects may take on a large range of work, or specialize for example only working on floor plans and permits leaving the electrical plans and plumbing to the contractor.

Choosing to work with a full-service design/build firm can mean a single source for your entire project. A design/build firm handles every phase of your project all in-house from the physical design of your space to planning and permitting, creating a realistic budget, construction and even interior design. When you’re considering your project, look at all of the possibilities, including hiring a design/build firm!

Attaining Perfect Home Remodel | Planning & Process Guide just call us now today:(800) 371-8970

 

Attaining Perfect Home Remodel | Planning & Process Guide
Attaining Perfect Home Remodel | Planning & Process Guide

SELECTING THE RIGHT TEAM FOR YOUR HOME REMODEL

Hiring the right people can often be the difference between a smooth, minimally disruptive home remodel and a major disruptive project that can turn ugly! When interviewing firms, there are several things to take into consideration before you sign a contract. The process of vetting can take several weeks depending on how many companies you are interviewing. Make sure you are prepared for any meetings. Have a good idea of what you are looking to accomplish, have a general budget in mind and develop a list of relevant questions to ask each prospect.

You will usually start with an in-person meeting. This is your opportunity to understand the services that each firm offers and make sure they understand your aesthetics and creative vision. It is critical that you have a budget in mind and that you can communicate your expectations to the firm you hire. Make sure you feel comfortable with anyone you choose to work with. Having a good rapport in the interview process is a good first step.

Remember, depending on the scope of work, the workers from the company you choose will be in your home for some time. Working with a company that you can communicate with, understands your needs and design style and can keep disruption to your home to a minimum can go a long way towards a successful project!

If live in the Dallas/Forth Worth Metroplex and you’re planning a home remodel, give the professionals at Joseph & Berry a call! We’re here to help you design a home that will meet your needs for years to come.

Attaining Perfect Home Remodel | Planning & Process Guide just call us now today:(800) 371-8970

How To Choose The Best Kitchen Counter top Material for a Remodel

Know Your Options When Choosing The Perfect Kitchen Countertop Material

Best Kitchen Counter top Material
Best Kitchen Counter top Material

For The Best Kitchen Counter top Material just call us now: (800) 371-8970 Whether you’re remodeling your kitchen, giving your existing kitchen a facelift, or building a new custom home, your countertops can set the style and tone of the most important room in the house. If your home features an open concept floor plan, it can even carry your design sense throughout the entire living space.

In fact, countertops are almost as important as the layout of your kitchen. Today, you have more choices than ever before. With a huge variety of human-made and engineered products, as well as natural materials available in every possible color and pattern, you have more options than ever!

While it’s tempting to choose your new countertop based solely on aesthetics, picking your kitchen countertop comes down to four criteria; your style, maintenance needs, the material’s durability and of course the cost. Consider each before making a final choice.

Best Kitchen Countertop Material just call us now: (800) 371-8970

FINDING THE RIGHT FIT: DEFINING YOUR NEEDS

Start by examining your lifestyle. While beautiful white Carrara marble is an elegant, luxurious choice, if you have small children who love to come home from school and make peanut butter and jelly sandwiches on the kitchen counter, marble is probably not a good choice for you. Perhaps an engineered quartz or natural soapstone surface might make more sense.

Do you love to prepare food? Will you be chopping and slicing on your surface? Maybe a hardwood butcher block surface, like natural maple is the answer. Looking for an eco-friendly option? Consider solid surface composites like IceStone, Richlite or Paperstone. They are sustainable and release no VOCs. Are you a baker? Marble countertops stay cool and if you like to bake, it is the perfect surface for kneading dough.

For The Best Kitchen Counter top Material just call us now: (800) 371-8970

Best Kitchen Counter top Material
Best Kitchen Counter top Material

KITCHEN COUNTERTOP OPTIONS TO FIT ANY LIFESTYLE

The good news? With so many great kitchen countertop choices available, even if you have your heart set on a particular material like marble, but it doesn’t match your lifestyle, you can find a similar material like manufactured quartz that can match the pattern and style of natural marble.

Let’s explore some of the popular kitchen countertop options available!

GRANITE

Natural stone is a popular kitchen countertop choice and granite is by far the most popular. Granite countertops come in a wide variety of colors, and every slab is unique. It also comes in several different finishes including, brushed, antiqued, honed (which is a matte finish) and polished for a shiny almost luminescent look. Granite’s cost can vary widely with a common variety like Ubatuba being more affordable than the more exotic Labradorite.

NATURAL STONE

While granite is the most popular natural stone, it’s not your only choice. Marble, limestone, quartzite, and soapstone are great luxurious options, but they are not as durable as granite and will require occasional maintenance like annual sealing. Even truly exotic stone like Onyx is available for your kitchen countertop if money’s no object!

ENGINEERED STONE

Another option is engineered stone. Quartz countertops are made by using chips of stone and resin. They offer the look and feel of natural stone, but are almost bulletproof and come in every color imaginable. You will pay for this durability however as manufactured stone countertops can cost twice as much as the least expensive granite!

SOLID SURFACES

If it’s practicality you’re looking for, solid surface materials might be the right choice. Acrylics like Corian, or newer countertop materials like Paperstone or Richlite (made using recycled paper and resin) are easy to maintain and eco-friendly. We rarely use solid surface materials in our kitchen designs, but they are ideal for laundry rooms where value and practicality are important.

CUSTOM-MADE CONCRETE

A hot trend a few years ago, concrete countertops are at home in a contemporary or industrial design. They can be customized with pigment, stained, acid washed, and polished. It can also be delivered with several different finishes including trowel finished,  exposed aggregate or pressed with a tool that replicates marble like veining. Concrete requires upkeep and needs careful maintenance. A sponge left on the surface can leave a stain, acidic liquids can etch the surface, and sudden temperature changes can cause warping or curling. It also needs to be sealed four times a year, and paste wax should be applied every couple of months.

WOOD COUNTERTOPS

Wood is a traditional material that can warm up your kitchen. Wooden kitchen countertops like maple or butcher block are easy to clean, and small scratches can easily be sanded out. Water can be a problem, so you will need to oil them frequently to keep the surface sealed.

The best option is to try to see and touch the surfaces in person before you make a final decision. Work with a designer and discuss your options. Countertops can be customized with various edge styles. Many designers are their meeting clients needs by combining different materials to create a truly custom kitchen. With all of the countertop choices available and a little help from your kitchen designer, you’re sure to find the perfect kitchen countertop to meet your lifestyle and stylistic needs!

Best Kitchen Countertop Material just call us now: (800) 371-8970

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Master Suite Flooring Ideas for a Bathroom Remodel in Dallas, TX

Learn the available bathroom flooring options when remodeling a Master Suite

Master Suite Flooring Ideas Bathroom Remodel Dallas, TX
Master Suite Flooring Ideas Bathroom Remodel Dallas, TX

Creating the perfect bathroom for your master suite means making lots of choices. From the layout and design to the fixtures, tiles, and flooring, you have a wide range of options. Today, with new manufacturing techniques and new materials, you have an almost overwhelming amount of choices for flooring in the bathroom in terms of colors, patterns, sizes, styles, and materials!

Your master suite bathroom flooring can not only be functional, it can help to establish the aesthetics of the space and, depending on what and how you install it, can even add an element of spaciousness to your overall design. Let’s explore some of the most popular and functional materials available for bathroom flooring today!

DO YOUR RESEARCH!

It’s important to do your research. Before you move forward with any material, understand its properties. Bathroom flooring is subject to unique challenges. It must be waterproof or water resistant, as well as safe to walk on when wet. Tile that may be functional in a kitchen, may become dangerously slippery when subjected to steam and water in a bathroom. Consider your maintenance and lifestyle needs as well. For example, natural stone and wood may need periodic sealing in order to remain water resistant.

MASTER SUITE BATHROOM FLOORING OPTIONS

Whether you’re seeking a natural material like wood or stone, or a manufactured product like ceramic or porcelain tile, there are plenty of beautiful and functional choices available for your master suite. Thanks to improvements in manufacturing, it’s even possible to get a waterproof porcelain tile that looks exactly like more expensive wood or natural stone flooring – click for more inspiration photos!

Here are a few of the most popular choices.

CERAMIC AND PORCELAIN TILE

Ceramic is a wonderful floor surface that comes in a wide variety of colors, patterns, and sizes. It’s very easy to maintain and although a hard surface, if you add radiant heating, nothing is quite as luxurious as stepping onto a warm tile floor on a cold day! When protected with a hard glaze, ceramic can resist wear and scratches. While not completely waterproof, ceramic tile can resist water well if properly grouted and sealed.

Porcelain tile is impervious to water and harder than clay-based ceramics. They generally have through-body color which is an advantage if they are accidentally chipped or scratched. New manufacturing techniques allow for photo-realistic wood grain and natural stone patterns that can be extremely cost effective when compared to natural stone or wood flooring.

Master Suite Flooring Ideas Bathroom Remodel Dallas, TX just call us now:(800) 371-8970

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NATURAL STONE

Natural stone was once primarily used in the entryway. Today, it’s at home in any room of the house, including the bathroom.! Nothing is as beautiful and luxurious as stone and tiles are available in colors that range from pure white to cream, blues, reds, greens, golds and deep rich black. You can purchase textured tiles that include cleft, tumbled, sandblasted, etched and flamed variations made from marble, granite, limestone, slate and more. Stone does require periodic maintenance like regular cleaning and sealing to keep it water resistant and it is typically more expensive than porcelain or ceramics.

Master Suite Flooring Ideas Bathroom Remodel Dallas, TX
Master Suite Flooring Ideas Bathroom Remodel Dallas, TX

CORK

Cork s a warm soft material that feels great on the feet. It comes in a variety of color tints and will need at least two coats of polyurethane before you can get it wet. It’s installed much like ceramic, porcelain and stone, using a trowel on adhesive, but click-in-place floating floors are also available.

WOOD

Hardwood flooring or wood floor tiles (parquet) in the bathroom looks luxurious, but extreme care must be taken. If wood gets wet, it can warp, buckle or stain. Any wood flooring must be fastidiously sealed and at least two coats of polyurethane applied. It’s not the best choice for a high traffic bathroom and can be expensive. Eco-friendly products like engineered hardwoods, bamboo or porcelain wood grain tiles are friendlier choices.

Master Suite Flooring Ideas Bathroom Remodel Dallas, TX just call us now:(800) 371-8970

GLASS TILES

Nothing is as unique as glass floor tile! It holds up well and if textured, resist slips. Small glass tiles with lots of grout are also very slip resistant. Aesthetically, covering a floor in a thin layer of glass creates the illusion of depth, and if it is tinted can provide a beautifully stained glass effect. Prices for glass tiles can vary widely but it’s generally on the higher end of the scale.

A FEW FINAL TIPS FOR CHOOSING YOUR MASTER SUITE FLOORING!

If you choose, glass, ceramic or porcelain, it’s important to make sure the material is rated for use as flooring. Choose ceramics with a grade of 1 or 2. Ceramic is also rated with a coefficient of friction (COF) for slip resistance and safety, choose one that s rated .50 or above. The Porcelain Enamel Institute (PEI) also offers a rating system for porcelain. It works the opposite way. Opt for porcelain tiles that are rated at least PEI III.

If you’re ready to remodel your master bath, give us a call! At Joseph & Berry, our designers are aware of all the latest flooring options available and can help you to choose the best one for your project. Let us help you create your dream master bath by showing you samples and providing you with all the information you need to make an informed choice.

Master Suite Flooring Ideas Bathroom Remodel Dallas, TX just call us now:(800) 371-8970

 

Remodeling Tips For Designing an Aging In Place Home

Remodeling Tips For Designing an Aging In Place Home


Aging in place tips for homeowners over 50 years old who are considering a home remodel

Baby boomers have always been an independent generation, and as they age, that trait is continuing. Many of us are opting to stay in our homes as we grow older. Independent living is a growing trend and to continue to live in your home safely and comfortably may require some design adjustments and enhancements to your home.You need to take future conditions like mobility issues, fading eyesight, and arthritic joints into consideration when planning home remodels after age 50 if you’re planning on staying in your home as you age. In response to the massive wave of boomers entering retirement, all sorts of products and design ideas are popping up that are catering to the 50 and over crowd.

Remodeling Tips For Designing an Aging In Place Home just call to schedule your free consultation meeting with our project developers now:
(800) 371-8970

Let’s explore some of the growing design trends to keep us in our homes as we age.

BUILDERS ARE ON BOARD!

Before we jump into design ideas, even the construction industry is beginning to jump on this growing trend. The CAPS program is an NAHB certification that has remodelers, architects, designers, builders and even occupational therapists buzzing. CAPS stands for Certified Aging-In-Place Specialist.

This program goes far beyond universal design ideas. Independent living principals are sweeping changes and retrofits designed to allow you to continue to live in your home safely and comfortably as you age. CAPS designs focus on elegant, aesthetically pleasing, barrier-free environments. In fact, these changes can add value to your home, according to Realtors.

Economically, aging in place retrofits and modifications are a no brainer. Consider that the typical cost of moving to an assisted living facility can be up to $60,000 per year or more. The cost of modifying a bathroom, widening doors, putting in safety bars and adding a no-threshold roll-in shower typically costs under $15,000, and it’s a one time expense, not a yearly drain. As an additional bonus, aging-in-place changes that are medically necessary (such as a roll-in shower and wider doorways) are tax deductible if backed up by a letter from your doctor.

WHAT CHANGES ARE NECESSARY FOR AGING IN PLACE?

The overall goal is to make your home safer, more barrier-free, and easier to maintain. Changes can be applied to every area of the home to achieve that purpose. From a zero-step entry with a wider entrance door to pull-out shelves in the kitchen, smart design changes can make aging in place affordable, safe and comfortable.

Here are a few specific changes you can make when remodeling your home for independent living.

CHANGES TO YOUR HOMES ENTRY

  • Better outdoor lighting from the driveway to your front entry
  • Attractive ramps, or zero step entry into your home
  • A package shelf near the front door to prevent bending over
  • Handrails by existing steps or porches
  • Wider front entryway to accommodate a wheelchair or walker
  • Sidelights by entrances for improved security
Wide home entrance

CHANGES IN THE KITCHEN

Simple changes in your kitchen can make for easier meal preparation and eating.

  • Lever handles for faucets with a pull out spray nozzle
  • Raised appliances, wall mounted ovens, raised dishwasher (in the laundry room consider raised front-loading machines to make clothes washing easier)
  • Pull-out shelves, revolving corner shelves
  • Pull out cutting boards
  • Side opening ovens
  • Adjustable height sink
  • Larger cabinet and drawer pulls

CHANGES IN THE BATHROOM

Most accidents in the home happen in the bathroom. Simple safety changes can look attractive and help keep older homeowners safe.

  • Attractive shower grab bars
  • Lever handles on faucets
  • Inset shampoo nooks
  • Curb-less showers so there are no steps. (can be designed to allow future wheelchair access as well.)
  • Anti-scald temperature controls for safer bathing
  • Widened entry doors
  • High toilets with slow-close lids
  • Slide bar showers to accommodate standing or sitting

Remodeling Tips For Designing an Aging In Place Home just call us now:(800) 371-8970

MOVING THROUGHOUT THE HOME

Virtually every room and space in your home can be improved including hallways, closets and even the garage. Here are some ideas to help you move around the house.

  • Improved lighting in common areas and hallways
  • Lever handles on doors and windows
  • Lower light switches and thermostats
  • Raised outlets
  • Adding blocking in the walls to accommodate a future stair-mounted chairlift
  • Wider doors to accommodate wheelchairs and walkers

These are just a few ideas that can make aging in place possible for older adults. At Joseph & Berry, we are always ready to work with our clients to accommodate all of their needs including independent living renovations. We start all our projects by sitting with homeowners and talking about their needs.

If you are in the last home you will build or considering a renovation project like a kitchen or a master suite bathroom remodel, consider adding aging in place amenities. They can keep you in your home safely and comfortably as you age. Give us a call and let’s talk about your upcoming project!

Remodeling Tips For Designing an Aging In Place Home just call us now:(800) 371-8970

Is A Framed or Frameless Glass Shower Best For A Master Bath?

Glass shower doors and walls will make your master bath feel spacious and contemporary

Framed / Frameless Glass Shower If you have children, a master bath is one of the most important parts of any home. It is often characterized as the private retreat, complete with a luxurious shower and beautiful decor. When part of a master suite, a master bath be a much-loved luxury. If it’s time for you to remodel your master bath and turn it into the spa you’ve always wanted, glass shower doors should be one of your biggest priorities.

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A GLASS SHOWER ALLOWS LIGHT IN

Many homes have master baths, but few of them are designed to provide the open, relaxing environment that most people are after. Older styles walk in showers had floor to ceiling tile walls or bathtub and shower combos with semi-transparent sliding doors or opaque shower curtains. All of these options tend to close off a section of the bathroom and make the room feel smaller and darker. Glass shower doors open the room up by adding transparency, allowing you to take in the whole space, and allow natural light into the shower. Even lightly frosted glass gives the room a lighter feel.

Remodeling your master bath into a warm, welcoming room for the adults is one of the best investments you can make. Bathrooms have a high return on investment, and the master bath especially is important to anyone shopping for a home because it is the most private part of their daily routine. The shower doors you choose will make an instant visual impact on anyone who enters the room.

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GLASS SHOWER DOORS COME IN FRAMED AND FRAMELESS STYLES

When it comes to designing a glass shower for your master bath, there are two different styles of doors to choose from. First, you can find framed glass shower doors which include chrome or gold hardware. If the movable shower door itself has a frame around it, it is called a framed glass door. Framed glass doors are typically less expensive than frameless doors, and the hardware tends to serve as an accent to the decor.

Framed / Frameless Glass Shower Best just call us now:(800) 371-8970

WHICH GLASS SHOWER DOOR IS RIGHT FOR ME?

Ultimately, the perfect glass shower doors for you will depend on your personal tastes and budget. Seeking for inspiration? Click here!
While frameless glass doors are considered the gold standard in design, they may not be functional for everyone. If you want to achieve a look similar to frameless doors but without the added expense, you can always find framed doors that have a minimalist frame around the edges. This reduces the appearance of the frame and hardware while maintaining a slightly lower cost and ensuring that the door has all of the necessary seals to keep water in.

Once you’ve installed your new shower doors, you will be amazed at how much bigger your master bath appears. Glass shower doors expand the look and feel of the room and make the shower more inviting. There are dozens of glass shower door styles available on the market today. Framed options  You may also want to look at different styles of hardware that will fit with the decor of the room as a whole. If you are preparing to embark on a complete remodel, ask your contractor about the different styles of shower doors available and how you can work them into your new design.

If live in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex and you’re planning a master suite bath remodel, give the professionals at Joseph & Berry a call! We’re here to help you create a master bath you will love for years to come.

Framed / Frameless Glass Shower just call us now:(800) 371-8970

Award-winning bathroom remodeling by Joseph & Berry remodel-dallas

Kitchen Remodeling & Marble Counter tops, Style & Care Guide

Kitchen Remodeling & Marble Countertops, Style & Care Guide

From the time of ancient civilizations marble has been the luxurious choice of royalty. Today, when it comes to selecting a beautiful natural stone for your kitchen countertop, marble countertops remain the top choice for many homeowners.
Kitchen Remodeling & Marble Countertops, Style & Care Guide just call us now to schedule your free consultation meeting :(800) 371-8970

Marble comes in a wide variety of colors and patterns depending on the species and the cut. Nothing is as white in nature as natural marble. It offers a unique color and veining, unlike any other natural stone.

But there are factors to consider. Marble is not a perfect product. That being said, if you take some care, choose carefully and know what to expect, your marble countertops can offer a lifetime of beauty and functionality.

Let’s explore the world of marble countertops for your kitchen, from the different styles available to tips for caring for your luxurious new kitchen countertops.

VARIETIES AVAILABLE

For most people, when thinking about marble, their first thoughts go immediately to creamy white stone with sophisticated natural veining. The fact is there are hundreds of colored varieties available, in all colors including taupe, green, gold, red and black.

While the popular products from Carrara, Italy are incredibly dense and non-porous, marble is a nonfoliated metamorphic rock that is composed of calcium carbonate (the same ingredient used in over-the-counter antacids) or magnesium carbonate. Both of these elements react with acids like vinegar or lemon juice.

Acid on marble can cause etching, a reaction between the acid and the calcium in marble. Even after sealing, etching can happen. That’s why understanding how to care for your marble countertop is important.

On colored marble surfaces, these etch marks are visible as white areas and are much more noticeable on non-white marble countertops. This is why many designers will stick to white when considering marble for the kitchen. While the Italian varieties like Statuario and Calcutta are highly prized, equally beautiful high-quality marble is available in the US including Vermont Danby and Colorado Yule and may be slightly more affordable.

Kitchen Remodeling & Marble Counter tops, Style & Care Guide just call us now:(800) 371-8970

Dallas kitchen remodeling – kitchen countertop guide:

SELECTING THE PERFECT SLAB FOR MARBLE COUNTERTOPS

Every slab is unique, so the best choice is to work with your designer. There’s an art to selecting the perfect slab. You need to understand where the veining is going to be located on the countertop. The best designers will artfully place the markings so that they flow almost like a painting.

A great designer will consider how the pieces fit together, the longer the slab, the better. It reduces seams and lets the natural beauty of the stone shine. If you do have seams, proper cutting book match pieces so that adjacent pieces will have a mirrored look.

VEINING

Every producer and quarry are different, but certain types of marble can be cut to accentuate unique veining patterns. Crosscut or Feuri, for example, can create slabs with an open flowering pattern, which looks random and is perfect for book matching. Vein cut or Striato slices the block the opposite way to create a linear, striped appearance.

DIFFERENT FINISH CHOICES

Technology has changed the stone cutting industry. Today, homeowners have more finish choices than ever before. Different brushing and polishing techniques can create finishes that can be described as leather, brushed or river washed. The most popular choices, however, remain polished which is glossy, and honed which is a matte finish. If you’re concerned about acid etching, a honed finish can hide etching better than a polished one.

Because of its relative softness, marble can be worked with easily. With the availability of CNC or computer controlled machining, marble edges can be artfully etched and sculpted to create beautiful edge patterns for a unique look.

Kitchen Remodeling & Marble Counter tops, Style & Care Guide just call us now:(800) 371-8970

Leather Finish Countertop

CARE AND MAINTENANCE

Marble needs periodic sealing for best performance, but it’s not foolproof. If you choose a honed finish, etch marks can be well hidden and can usually be removed by lightly scrubbing with Comet paste using a Scotch-Brite pad. If it’s a polished surface, professional care is recommended.

Marble is also prone to staining, but it can often be removed using an alkaline poultice that gradually pulls the stain out of the stone as it dries. Any of these applications will also strip the sealer so, after any intense cleaning, sealer must be reapplied. In cases of severe damage, marble can often be sanded down or polished to return it to like new condition.

At Joseph & Berry, we are experts in the selection and installation of luxury materials like marble countertops. Our designers can help you to choose the perfect slab, create unique, exciting designs and our team of professional installers can help you to give you the countertops you desire in your dream kitchen. If you’re planning a kitchen makeover or complete remodel, give us a call. We’re always happy to show you al of the options available to you for your dream kitchen!

Kitchen Remodeling & Marble Counter tops, Style & Care Guide just call us now:(800) 371-8970

Attaining The Perfect Home Remodel | A Planning and Process Guide

Perfect Home Remodel | Planning & Process Guide Are You Planning a Home Remodel? Here Are Some Tips to Get You There Successfully!

Perfect Home Remodel | Planning & Process Guide
Perfect Home Remodel | Planning & Process Guide

A home remodel can be a bit overwhelming. It’s a complex job filled with product and color choices along with the task of maintaining a budget and finding the right design build firm to complete the work, Perfect Home Remodel | Planning & Process Guide

Whether you’re considering a kitchen remodel, creating the perfect master suite, or adding an addition, with planning, research, a developed creative vision, and the right contractor, you can complete your project successfully and create the perfect space for you and your family to enjoy for many years to come.

The following steps can help you to plan and execute a successful home remodel.

FIRST, DEVELOP YOUR CREATIVE VISION

Even before you seek out a contractor, have a plan. Start to develop a creative vision for your project. Your entire project from planning, design, and budget comes down to your knowing exactly what you want at the beginning of the project. Be prepared to answer questions like the following;

  • What is the overall style you are looking to achieve? Choose something you’ll want to live with for years to come. (Traditional, Contemporary, Country, Vintage)
  • Will I need an addition or is my current footprint large enough? (Where will you put that soaking tub?)
  • Am I looking for the best materials and appliances or will the standard be good enough? (6 burner Wolf cook top with in-wall oven or 4 burners GE Cafe range?)
  • Will my home remodel require taking down walls and moving the kitchen or bathroom locations? (Moving mechanical systems will add to the cost.)
  • What type of flooring fits your lifestyle and aesthetic? Hardwood, natural stone tile, carpet?)
  • Are you seeking a statement home with custom exotic wood kitchen cabinets with a hand rubbed finish or something more conventional?

Make a master file and start clipping photos of spaces that you like regarding design, style, and décor. Go through home, design and architecture magazines. You can also do a lot of the work online. Sites like Houzz allow you to create digital “Idea-books” that you can fill with relevant photos from the site.

This pre-planning research can work in your favor when you begin the process of building your team. By giving your designer your master folder, you can develop a commonality of vision and language right from the beginning of your project. By choosing “must have” elements from your files, you can begin to develop your budget. Your designer may have ideas that can meet your aesthetic needs while keeping you within your budget.

WORK WITH A PROFESSIONAL DESIGNER

To successfully execute a major home remodel you need a detailed plan and scope of work. Hiring an architect, interior designer, or better yet, a design-build firm is a significant step in the process. Each can play a role in your project.

While every company does things a little differently, many designers work on projects that don’t involve major structural work. They can also offer assistance with materials and colors. Architects may take on a large range of work, or specialize for example only working on floor plans and permits leaving the electrical plans and plumbing to the contractor.

Choosing to work with a full-service design/build firm can mean a single source for your entire project. A design/build firm handles every phase of your project all in-house from the physical design of your space to planning and permitting, creating a realistic budget, construction and even interior design. When you’re considering your project, look at all of the possibilities, including hiring a design/build firm!

Perfect Home Remodel | Planning & Process Guide
Perfect Home Remodel | Planning & Process Guide

SELECTING THE RIGHT TEAM FOR YOUR HOME REMODEL

Hiring the right people can often be the difference between a smooth, minimally disruptive home remodel and a major disruptive project that can turn ugly! When interviewing firms, there are several things to take into consideration before you sign a contract. The process of vetting can take several weeks depending on how many companies you are interviewing. Make sure you are prepared before any meetings. Have a good idea of what you are looking to accomplish, have a general budget in mind and develop a list of relevant questions to ask each prospect.

You will usually start with an in-person meeting. This is your opportunity to understand the services that each firm offers and make sure they understand your aesthetics and creative vision. It is critical that you have a budget in mind and that you can communicate your expectations to the firm you hire. Make sure you feel comfortable with anyone you choose to work with. Having a good rapport in the interview process is a good first step.

Remember, depending on the scope of work, the workers from the company you choose will be in your home for some time. Working with a company that you can communicate with, understands your needs and design style and can keep disruption to your home to a minimum can go a long way towards a successful project!

If live in the Dallas/Forth Worth Metroplex and you’re planning a home remodel, give the professionals at Joseph & Berry a call! We’re here to help you design a home that will meet your needs for years to come.

Perfect Home Remodel | Planning & Process Guide

How To Choose The Best Kitchen Countertop Material for a Remodel

Choose Kitchen Countertop Material & Remodel Know Your Options When Choosing The Perfect Kitchen Countertop

Choose Kitchen Countertop Material & Remodel
Choose Kitchen Countertop Material & Remodel

Choose Kitchen Countertop Material & Remodel, Whether you’re remodeling your kitchen, giving your existing kitchen a facelift, or building a new custom home, your countertops can set the style and tone of the most important room in the house. If your home features an open concept floor plan, it can even carry your design sense throughout the entire living space.

In fact, countertops are almost as important as the layout of your kitchen. Today, you have more choices than ever before. With a huge variety of human-made and engineered products, as well as natural materials available in every possible color and pattern, you have more options than ever!

While it’s tempting to choose your new countertop based solely on aesthetics, picking your kitchen countertop comes down to four criteria; your style, maintenance needs, the material’s durability and of course the cost. Consider each before making a final choice.

 

FINDING THE RIGHT FIT: DEFINING YOUR NEEDS

Start by examining your lifestyle. While beautiful white Carrara marble is an elegant, luxurious choice, if you have small children who love to come home from school and make peanut butter and jelly sandwiches on the kitchen counter, marble is probably not a good choice for you. Perhaps an engineered quartz or natural soapstone surface might make more sense.

Do you love to prepare food? Will you be chopping and slicing on your surface? Maybe a hardwood butcher block surface, like natural maple is the answer. Looking for an eco-friendly option? Consider solid surface composites like IceStone, Richlite or Paperstone. They are sustainable and release no VOCs. Are you a baker? Marble countertops stay cool and if you like to bake, it is the perfect surface for kneading dough.
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KITCHEN COUNTERTOP OPTIONS TO FIT ANY LIFESTYLE

The good news? With so many great kitchen countertop choices available, even if you have your heart set on a particular material like marble, but it doesn’t match your lifestyle, you can find a similar material like manufactured quartz that can match the pattern and style of natural marble.

Let’s explore some of the popular kitchen countertop options available!

GRANITE

Natural stone is a popular kitchen countertop choice and granite is by far the most popular. Granite countertops come in a wide variety of colors, and every slab is unique. It also comes in several different finishes including, brushed, antiqued, honed (which is a matte finish) and polished for a shiny almost luminescent look. Granite’s cost can vary widely with a common variety like Ubatuba being more affordable than the more exotic Labradorite.

NATURAL STONE

While granite is the most popular natural stone, it’s not your only choice. Marble, limestone, quartzite, and soapstone are great luxurious options, but they are not as durable as granite and will require occasional maintenance like annual sealing. Even truly exotic stone like Onyx is available for your kitchen countertop if money’s no object!

ENGINEERED STONE

Another option is engineered stone. Quartz countertops are made by using chips of stone and resin. They offer the look and feel of natural stone, but are almost bulletproof and come in every color imaginable. You will pay for this durability however as manufactured stone countertops can cost twice as much as the least expensive granite!

SOLID SURFACES

If it’s practicality you’re looking for, solid surface materials might be the right choice. Acrylics like Corian, or newer countertop materials like Paperstone or Richlite (made using recycled paper and resin) are easy to maintain and eco-friendly. We rarely use solid surface materials in our kitchen designs, but they are ideal for laundry rooms where value and practicality are important.

CUSTOM-MADE CONCRETE

A hot trend a few years ago, concrete countertops are at home in a contemporary or industrial design. They can be customized with pigment, stained, acid washed, and polished. It can also be delivered with several different finishes including trowel finished,  exposed aggregate or pressed with a tool that replicates marble like veining. Concrete requires upkeep and needs careful maintenance. A sponge left on the surface can leave a stain, acidic liquids can etch the surface, and sudden temperature changes can cause warping or curling. It also needs to be sealed four times a year, and paste wax should be applied every couple of months.

WOOD COUNTERTOPS

Wood is a traditional material that can warm up your kitchen. Wooden kitchen countertops like maple or butcher block are easy to clean, and small scratches can easily be sanded out. Water can be a problem, so you will need to oil them frequently to keep the surface sealed.

The best option is to try to see and touch the surfaces in person before you make a final decision. Work with a designer and discuss your options. Countertops can be customized with various edge styles. Many designers are their meeting clients needs by combining different materials to create a truly custom kitchen. With all of the countertop choices available and a little help from your kitchen designer, you’re sure to find the perfect kitchen countertop to meet your lifestyle and stylistic needs!

Choose Kitchen Countertop Material & Remodel

Wine Cellar Construction | Keeping Your Collection Safe in Texas

Wine cellar construction tips for home,  Wine Cellar Construction | Keeping Collection Safe.

Heat is enemy number one for wine, and temperatures higher than 70° F will age a wine more quickly than is preferable. With a record high of 113° F, and an average daily high of 77° F, the greater Dallas, TX area is an ideal one for installing a wine cellar in your home. Proper wine cellar construction is crucial for your collection.Wine Cellar Construction | Keeping Collection Safe call us now for your free consultation meeting: (800) 371-8970

WHERE TO PUT A WINE CELLAR

The ideal temperature for wine storage is 55-57° F, and 55-75% humidity. The closer you can get to optimal temperature without too much artificial cooling, the better. Typically, a wine cellar is best built in a basement, as it’s cooler. If your home lacks a basement, it’s still possible to construct one above ground, but you’ll need a larger-size cooling unit. A dry environment also requires more frequent introduction of humidity. In general, a wine cellar should be located where there’s adequate ventilation, no direct sunlight or heat, and at least one external wall.

If you’ve dreamed of building a wine cellar in your greater Dallas, TX area home, here’s what you need to know to bring your vision to fruition:

 

CRUCIAL ROLE OF THE VAPOR BARRIER

Frequent or sudden fluctuations in wine cellar temperature and humidity are detrimental to the aging process of wine: the resulting excessive oxidation makes wine turn bitter before it can achieve its peak taste. That’s why it’s important to ensure your wine cellar keeps the ambient temperature inside lower than the area outside it. A vapor barrier separates the two environments. On interior walls, a vapor barrier is created by wrapping polyethylene around the studs and applying it to the surface behind the insulation.

INSULATION DURING WINE CELLAR CONSTRUCTION

Think of your wine cellar as a room-sized refrigerator. Proper insulation is key to controlling the temperature and protecting your walls and ceiling, as well as your wine. Thick insulation – a minimum R-22 rating – is best for interior and exterior walls. A minimum rating of R-32 is best for the ceiling. If the walls are concrete, blown-in insulation is recommended, and if the floor might have an impact on the room’s temperature, insulation there should also be considered.

CELLAR WALL AND CEILING COVERING

The wine cellar’s interior wall and ceiling is determined by the overall theme of your cellar. Regular drywall is typically adequate, but if you have humidity concerns, consider moisture-resistant drywall instead. Always use a low VOC latex-based paint to prime and paint the walls and ceiling. If you prefer the look of redwood tongue and groove material, be sure to use rot-resistant wood. Never use cedar, as its strong aroma will taint the wine. Some people also use granite or other stone as a wall covering.

CELLAR FLOORING

All types of flooring are used in wine cellars, with the most common being tile, slate, hardwood, marble, and concrete. Never use carpet, as it will mold in the cool, damp conditions. Choose flooring that matches your overall theme and make sure it’s applied to a level surface.

CELLAR DOORS

For proper temperature and humidity control, wine cellars need to be a sealed environment. Otherwise, you’ll end up with a continually running cooling unit, which shortens its life and increases your energy costs. Use an exterior grade door with weather stripping on all four sides. Some environmentally minded homeowners choose reclaimed wine barrel doors.

CHOOSING AND PLACEMENT OF COOLING UNIT

How large a cooling unit you’ll need depends on your wine cellar construction, cellar size, the ambient climate, construction plans, and more. Ideally, it should be mounted on an interior wall. A wood frame is typically constructed to hold the unit, which on average weighs between 50 and 120 pounds. At Joseph & Berry, we’ll help you find the cooling unit that’s right for your cellar.

VENTING

Ventilation keeps your cellar at the optimum temperature. The cooling unit blows cool air into the cellar, which then pushes warm air to the ceiling. That warm air must be moved to a properly-sized exhaust room, or the wine cellar temperature will get too hot. The ideal exhaust room has a fresh air intake that regulates temperature and provides continuous air flow.

WINE RACKS

Racking varies widely, but common woods include redwood and mahogany, as well as reclaimed wine barrels. All are resistant to rot in a cool, damp environment. Some people prefer wire lattice, modular storage, or fully customized wine racks. It all depends on your budget and the overall look you want your cellar to have.

Wine Cellar Construction | Keeping Collection Safe just call us now:(800) 371-8970

CELLAR LIGHTING

The goal with any wine cellar lighting is minimal heat output and 0% UV rays. A recessed ceiling can light are popular wine cellar choices, and they should be put on dimmers to control brightness. Timers and motion detectors can also help avoid having the lights left on, which can heat up the cellar over time. LED rope lighting is an attractive choice for highlighting racks.

At Joseph and Berry, we work with homeowners through every step of the wine cellar construction process from planning and budgeting through the design and execution of your project. Let us help you create your custom wine cellar! Contact us to schedule an appointment for a design consultation!

Wine Cellar Construction | Keeping Collection Safe just call us now:(800) 371-8970

Wine Cellar Construction | Keeping Your Collection Safe in Texas

Wine cellar construction tips for home collections

Wine Cellar Construction
Wine Cellar Construction

Wine Cellar Construction ,Heat is enemy number one for wine, and temperatures higher than 70° F will age a wine more quickly than is preferable. With a record high of 113° F, and an average daily high of 77° F, the greater Dallas, TX area is an ideal one for installing a wine cellar in your home. Proper wine cellar construction is crucial for your collection.

WHERE TO PUT A WINE CELLAR

The ideal temperature for wine storage is 55-57° F, and 55-75% humidity. The closer you can get to optimal temperature without too much artificial cooling, the better. Typically, a wine cellar is best built in a basement, as it’s cooler. If your home lacks a basement, it’s still possible to construct one above ground, but you’ll need a larger-size cooling unit. A dry environment also requires more frequent introduction of humidity. In general, a wine cellar should be located where there’s adequate ventilation, no direct sunlight or heat, and at least one external wall.

If you’ve dreamed of building a wine cellar in your greater Dallas, TX area home, here’s what you need to know to bring your vision to fruition.

CRUCIAL ROLE OF THE VAPOR BARRIER

Frequent or sudden fluctuations in wine cellar temperature and humidity are detrimental to the aging process of wine: the resulting excessive oxidation makes wine turn bitter before it can achieve its peak taste. That’s why it’s important to ensure your wine cellar keeps the ambient temperature inside lower than the area outside it. A vapor barrier separates the two environments. On interior walls, a vapor barrier is created by wrapping polyethylene around the studs and applying it to the surface behind the insulation.

INSULATION DURING WINE CELLAR CONSTRUCTION

Think of your wine cellar as a room-sized refrigerator. Proper insulation is key to controlling the temperature and protecting your walls and ceiling, as well as your wine. Thick insulation – a minimum R-22 rating – is best for interior and exterior walls. A minimum rating of R-32 is best for the ceiling. If the walls are concrete, blown-in insulation is recommended, and if the floor might have an impact on the room’s temperature, insulation there should also be considered.

CELLAR WALL AND CEILING COVERING

The wine cellar’s interior wall and ceiling is determined by the overall theme of your cellar. Regular drywall is typically adequate, but if you have humidity concerns, consider moisture-resistant drywall instead. Always use a low VOC latex-based paint to prime and paint the walls and ceiling. If you prefer the look of redwood tongue and groove material, be sure to use rot-resistant wood. Never use cedar, as its strong aroma will taint the wine. Some people also use granite or other stone as a wall covering.
wine-cellar-construction-and-design

CELLAR FLOORING

All types of flooring are used in wine cellars, with the most common being tile, slate, hardwood, marble, and concrete. Never use carpet, as it will mold in the cool, damp conditions. Choose flooring that matches your overall theme and make sure it’s applied to a level surface.

CELLAR DOORS

For proper temperature and humidity control, wine cellars need to be a sealed environment. Otherwise, you’ll end up with a continually running cooling unit, which shortens its life and increases your energy costs. Use an exterior grade door with weather stripping on all four sides. Some environmentally minded homeowners choose reclaimed wine barrel doors.

CHOOSING AND PLACEMENT OF COOLING UNIT

How large a cooling unit you’ll need depends on your wine cellar construction, cellar size, the ambient climate, construction plans, and more. Ideally, it should be mounted on an interior wall. A wood frame is typically constructed to hold the unit, which on average weighs between 50 and 120 pounds. At Joseph & Berry, we’ll help you find the cooling unit that’s right for your cellar.

VENTING

Ventilation keeps your cellar at the optimum temperature. The cooling unit blows cool air into the cellar, which then pushes warm air to the ceiling. That warm air must be moved to a properly-sized exhaust room, or the wine cellar temperature will get too hot. The ideal exhaust room has a fresh air intake that regulates temperature and provides continuous air flow.

WINE RACKS

Racking varies widely, but common woods include redwood and mahogany, as well as reclaimed wine barrels. All are resistant to rot in a cool, damp environment. Some people prefer wire lattice, modular storage, or fully customized wine racks. It all depends on your budget and the overall look you want your cellar to have.

CELLAR LIGHTING

The goal with any wine cellar lighting is minimal heat output and 0% UV rays. A recessed ceiling can lights are popular wine cellar choices, and they should be put on dimmers to control brightness. Timers and motion detectors can also help avoid having the lights left on, which can heat up the cellar over time. LED rope lighting is an attractive choice for highlighting racks.

At Joseph and Berry, we work with homeowners through every step of the wine cellar construction processfrom planning and budgeting through the design and execution of your project. Let us help you create your custom wine cellar! Contact us to schedule an appointment for a design consultation!

 

Celler wall image by akariganphotos courtesy of Flickr

Top 10 Dog Friendly Remodeling Features For Your Home

Top 10 Dog Friendly Remodeling Features

Top 10 Dog Friendly Remodeling Features Planning a remodeling project for your home is an exciting time. Everybody in the family has a chance to include features they’ve always dreamed of, and you can let your creativity shine with great additions.

Your upcoming project can also be a great opportunity to spoil the furry friends in your family. Approximately 40% of families own a dog, and there are plenty of ways to keep your pooch happy with a dog-friendly component to your renovation. Here are some of the best ones we have seen.

1. UNDER THE STAIRS

There are a lot of creative ways to utilize space under staircases, but it can make a great sanctuary for your dog. Fashion a small doorway and turn the area into an indoor dog house with their favorite toys and a bed. You can keep the exterior wall simple like the one found here or add some tasteful decor.

2. FOLDING DOG BED

Keeping a dog bed around is optimum for their comfort and keeping furniture clean of dog hair, but they can be a hassle if they are in a main walkway. You can solve this problem with a folding dog bed. When you don’t need it, they can fold up and become a practical accent to any room with some bonus shelf space.

3. ISLAND DOG BOWLS

If your renovation project includes a kitchen, you can use an island to create an all-in-one serving station for your dog. Design a recessed wall to let you keep bowls for food and water off the ground and out of the way. You can also add drawers to store food and treats like the one found here in the picture.

4. A COOLING POOL

If your pet isn’t a swimmer or not allowed in the family pool, you can still create an outdoor haven to keep them cool in the summer heat. Build in a small wading pool like this one to give your dog and his friends that visit a place to take a refreshing dip.

5. CREATIVE CRATING

Whether it’s leaving for work and school or just a couple hours on the weekend, many owners crate their dogs when away from the house. Metal crates are bulky and can be a hassle to move around, but you can solve that problem with your next renovation. Creative designs can let you build a crate into a wall that also lets you build in windows so your furry friend can keep an eye outside waiting for your return.

6. A SEPARATE BATH

Bathing your dog may always be an adventure, but you can help reduce the headache with a separate bathing station. One of the downsides is leftover dog hair in your own shower, but you can eliminate that with an addition to your laundry room or garage. Along with adding storage for dedicated dog towels, you can install custom water fixtures to make bath time even easier.

7. A SHADY RETREAT

If you don’t have a pool, you can still find ways to help your dog beat the heat. A shady area like this one works great for humans and animals alike, and can be a standalone feature or added to an existing patio or deck.

8. REPLACE YOUR GATES

Pet gates can be a great help to keep your dog both out of a crate and out of unwanted areas. They also serve double purpose as a safety measure if you have young children. If you know the areas you would normally use them, you can use a remodeling project to build them right into the house. Pocket gates combine style and function and will leave you wondering why you hadn’t used them before.

9. FOOD CUPBOARD

This is more simple addition that will make feeding the dog easier and cleaner. Install a small custom cabinet that can be fitted with a container for dog food. For bulk food, this storage solution will eliminate keeping large bags stored in the pantry that are prone to spill when trying to fill the food bowl.

 

Top 10 Dog Friendly Remodeling Features
Top 10 Dog Friendly Remodeling Features

10. AN ALL-IN-ONE STATION

If space allows and you want to fully spoil your dog, consider adding space to have an all-in-one dog care space in your home. This one includes a bed, food, and water, a bathing area, and storage for food, treats and more. When done correctly it can be seamlessly integrated into your existing design scheme and will look great.

Dog owners know that you can never do too much to spoil your best friend, and these home renovation ideas will certainly help. There are plenty of other great ideas we’ve seen implemented throughout the home – we’d love to hear about some great ones you’ve seen and help you plan your next pro