7 Kitchen Design Upgrades For Your Remodeling Wish List

Seven Ideas You Should Add To Your Kitchen Design Wish List

When your planning a kitchen remodeling, a big part of the fun is considering the upgrades you want to include in your all-new space. There are so many options available and some can be pretty expensive, but you should consider upgrades that will not only add to the aesthetics of your kitchen design, but also to its functionality. Of course, your decision should be guided by a balance of what you need, and what you can afford without having to sacrifice elsewhere.

 

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When you’re working with a full-service design build remodeling contractor, you’ll have a designer to take you through the process of creating your dream kitchen. They can help you to focus on which upgrades to including in your remodeling project. Here are seven kitchen upgrades to consider that can be money well spent when it comes to the long-term enjoyment of your brand new dream kitchen!

Schedule a complimentary consultation and let us help you with your upcoming kitchen remodeling – (800) 371-8970

1.     Add Extra Storage and Pizzazz to Your Kitchen With Extra Tall Cabinets

Looking for extra storage space in the kitchen? Look up! Standard upper cabinet height is 30 inches, but you can go bigger with 36 or 42-inch uppers. It’s worth the added cost. The height gives you an extra shelf and taller cabinets look better. Plus if you go all the way to the ceiling it eliminates dust on top of the cabinets making cleaning easier.

2.     Store Pots and Pans in Drawers

Pot drawers are deeper than standard drawers. There perfect for keeping kitchen tools close at hand and the drawer depth makes them a great place to store small appliances like toasters, coffee grinders, and blenders free up counter space and keeping clutter to a minimum. It’s a modestly priced upgrade you won’t believe you lived without.

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3.     Go Deep Over The Fridge

Standard upper cabinets are 12 inches deep, and a builders standard over fridge cabinet is the same. Upgrading to a 24-inch cabinet over the refrigerator is totally worth the price. It’s a great place to store large seasonal platters and other seldom used important dishware and cookware.

4.     Make Your Kitchen Truly Your Own With Custom-Painted Cabinetry

Consider requesting that your design build remodeler source a cabinet manufacturer who will spray your cabinets with a unique custom color. This is a great upgrade to a kitchen design that not only saves you the expense of painting them later but also gives your home a unique look. Another advantage is if you choose to add additional cabinetry or an island later, you’ll be able to fit the new pieces in seamlessly by matching and using the same custom color.

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5.     Open Your Kitchen Design With Glass Cabinet Inserts

Glass inserts are typically an upgrade. If you’d like some cabinets to display your treasured family china or other items that are special to you, make sure your contractor includes them in your kitchen design. Including glass panel inserts is best done when the cabinets are first ordered. It can be difficult to do later, especially if the cabinets are custom built. In fact, it’s best if you plan upgrades during the design phase so all of the elements will have matching finishes, plus change orders can create time delays and increase costs.

6.     Consider An Artistic Tile Upgrade

Today, many kitchen designs include subway tile or glass mosaic for the backsplash. While it’s a great clean, modern look, consider upgrading to a more exciting tile choice. Consider upgrading to a more creative design or material like a solid marble or durable quartz backsplash to create a wonderful visual focal point.

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7.     Consider a Built-In Microwave

Every kitchen has one, and typically it’s either taking up counter space or hanging over the range. When designing your kitchen consider adding a built-in microwave. It will free up valuable counter space, and if you build it into the island or a wall, it frees the space above the range for a stylish range fan, which can add another great visual element to your kitchen design. Another great space is building your microwave into a base cabinet with extra deep pots and pans drawers underneath.

Creating your custom kitchen means having the ability to add upgrades that can increase your enjoyment of your space, make it more aesthetically pleasing and improve functionality. These are just a few exciting upgrades that can accomplish all of this and more. Work closely with a professional designer when creating your initial kitchen design. Our design team can incorporate these upgrades and help you to understand all of your options. Simple upgrades like building in the microwave or the inclusion of extra deep pots and pan drawers can improve the functionality of your kitchen space.

If you considering remodeling your kitchen in Dallas, Tx, contact the kitchen design professionals at Joseph & Berry Remodel Design Build to schedule a complimentary consultation (800)-371-8970.

 

 

Choosing Durable Outdoor Kitchen Cabinets For Dallas Weather

Balancing Style and Long-lasting When Choosing Outdoor Kitchen Cabinets

Outdoor Kitchen Design Advice

Outdoor cabinets can be an exciting kitchen design element and major focal point that can define your entire outdoor space. Manufacturers today are creating cabinets from a variety of durable materials that can stand up to the extremes of Dallas weather.

Whether your taste runs to organic, rustic look of traditional teak wood cabinets or the sophisticated and durable charm of powder-coated stainless steel, choosing your cabinets gets you one step closer to creating your own private sanctuary.

Outdoor cabinetry is available in a wide variety of styles and materials that provide protection against the elements. Here are some of the most beautiful and functional choices to complete your outdoor kitchen design.

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Outdoor Kitchen Cabinets: Materials

Today, you have some great choices when it comes to durable, beautiful materials for outdoor kitchen use. Here are a few of the most popular choices for homeowners and designers.

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Stainless Steel

Stainless steel has risen in popularity with homeowners and designers seeking to upgrade their outdoor kitchen cabinetry and appliances. Besides the high-end look stainless cabinets are easier to clean and maintain. They also make creating a cohesive design with a luxurious look coordinating appliances and accessories.

There are a few drawbacks, however. As with indoor kitchens, stainless steel may be pricier than other options. Stainless steel cabinets can also become hot when in direct sunlight and without a powder coat finish stainless can show fingerprints, oils and the effects of weather.

Wood

Although not quite as durable as some other materials, certain types of wood lend themselves to outdoor use like marine-grade teak, cypress, and bamboo. If your kitchen is covered, and you properly maintain wood cabinets they can give you many years of service.

Another benefit is the ease of incorporating them into your design. They can be stained and finished to suit any design style and outdoor wooden cabinetry can be seamlessly coordinated with other adjacent structures like a built-in pergola, stained deck, siding or other wooden structures.

The downside to wood is that it needs regular maintenance and is still prone to fading over time. Dependent upon the species used, some wood can break down over time and experience warping, cracking or swelling. Most high-quality wood cabinets like teak can be an expensive option.

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Polymer Outdoor Kitchen Cabinets

If you’re worried about the extreme Dallas weather wreaking havoc on your outdoor cabinetry consider installing polymer cabinets. High-density polyethylene or HDPE is an extremely durable material. It’s available in a range of colors and this extremely tough plastic-like substance generally includes UV inhibitors to protect against fading. It’s extremely easy to maintain and while it’s affordable there are some drawbacks.

Depending on the manufacturer, brand, and style, polymer cabinets may not offer the same luxurious look and feel as other materials. Unless it’s specified as “eco-friendly” if you’re concerned with the environment and seeking “green” products, polymer cabinets may contain petrochemicals. The polymer can also warp over time losing their shape and causing issues with the doors.

Some Final Thoughts On Outdoor Kitchen Design

When planning your outdoor kitchen make sure to take careful measurements to ensure that everything fits together seamlessly and compliments your existing exterior decor. Choose appliances carefully and in advance. It’s important to have your appliance selection in place when measuring and ordering cabinets as they will be housed inside built-ins and each component will have to fit according to the items specifications.

Whatever material you choose, be aware that your cabinets don’t necessarily have to be fixed in place. Consider an outdoor island on casters for plenty of movable storage.This will give you flexibility when entertaining and counter space where you need it.

Don’t skimp on storage outdoors. Consider the items you’ll store and plan accordingly. Deep cabinets are great for that portable margarita maker. Mix it up and include some large and small cabinets in your outdoor kitchen design. Cabinet space above and below can be helpful. If you have an exterior wall in your kitchen space, cabinets can add a wonderful visual element to your entertaining space.

Your design-build remodeling contractor can help you to understand your options and provide you with samples. The time to start designing your outdoor kitchen for the coming warm weather is right now!

If you’re considering creating an outdoor entertainment space, give the experts at Joseph & Berry a call. We can help you create the perfect outdoor entertaining space.

The Pros and Cons of an Induction Cooktop In Your Kitchen Design

An Induction Cooktop Matches A Modern Kitchen Design Perfectly.

So, is induction ideal for your kitchen remodeling project?

Induction cooking technology has been on the market for decades. the recent improvements in manufacturing and increased demand has resulted in a larger selection and lower prices. Big industry names like Viking, GE, Samsung, and Kenmore have all introduced induction ranges into their product lines. Designers are beginning to include induction products in their kitchen designs and homeowners who have included induction cooktop or ranges into the kitchen are sold on the technology.

Induction technology is energy efficient and has a growing reputation for power and precision. Induction cooking is the next big thing and it could forever change everyday tasks, or maybe not reach its full potential.

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What is Induction Cooking?

Induction technology uses electromagnets to heat iron or stainless steel. The basic physics behind the technology involve electromagnetic properties. Using an electric current and magnetic field is produced that “excites” iron molecules heating the pan and whatever is in it.

Because iron molecules are vital to the process if you turn on an induction burner and there is no pot or pan present no heat is generated, making them safer. The key to induction technology is the use of pots made of specific metals. You need to use a magnetic pot, meaning cast iron or magnetic stainless steel to generate the electromagnetic reaction that cooks the food.

Like every technology, induction cooking has both pros and cons. Let’s look at the benefits and drawbacks of including induction technology into your new kitchen design.

The Pros of Induction Technology

Switching your cooking method to induction cooking comes with some great benefits. While the technology is still more expensive than gas or electric, the price reflects the value you can receive by including an induction appliance into your kitchen design.

• Induction Makes Cooking Fast

Because induction technology uses magnetic energy, the response time is fast. In fact, cooking times can be reduced up to 50% over traditional methods.

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• Induction Cooking is Environmentally Friendly

Since induction cooking is fast, it also uses less energy. It generates very little heat, other than heating the pot itself.This means less energy is used and you’ll enjoy lower energy bills.

• Induction is Safer

Because electromagnetic energy is used to heat the physical pan, the burner remains cool throughout the cooking process. Within a couple of seconds of turning off a burner, both the pan and burner instantly cool, making the process is safer. This great if you have kids or pets in the house. Burns are less likely.

• Easy to Clean

Unless you spill, cleanup is easy simply wipe down the cooktop. Because the burner stays cool, even if you do spill, food doesn’t burn and rarely sticks. And oh boy! We hate to scrub!

• Induction Cooktops Look Great in Any Kitchen Design!

They are sleek stylish and modern looking so they make a great addition to any kitchen design. They also are great conversation starters when you entertain!

Induction cooking can save you time in the kitchen, keep your family safer and look great in the process. However, there are some drawbacks.

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The Cons of Induction Cooking

Even though prices are beginning to come down, induction cooking still has some drawbacks. The technology requires some adaptation for even the best cooks. You’ll need to adjust your cooking techniques, for example, if you’re used to pouring olive oil into the pan, then chop the last of the onions while it heats you’re making a big mistake. The heat comes on quickly. It will also require a new understanding of the settings dial. Heat is controlled using a numbered dial so you’ll need to feel it out for a while. Here are a few of the drawbacks…

• It Is Expensive

Even though prices have come down considerably, induction technology is still fairly new. As a result, an induction cooktop or range will cost more than traditional cooking appliances but they are competitively priced when compared to Gaggenau, Wolf and, Le Corneau ranges and cooktops.

• You’ll Need The Right Cookware

Without magnetic or induction capable cookware, the process doesn’t work. That means you may need to replace your cookware, and that isn’t cheap.

• They Are A Bit Noisy

They usually make a bit of a buzz or hum that some critics say resembles the noise of a floor fan set on high. It is usually a combination of the cookware you use and the cooktop itself. Light stainless steel pans and higher settings can produce more noise.

• You’ll Need To Ditch The Digital Thermometer

Electromagnetic energy generates a magnetic field that may affect the accuracy of your digital thermometer. You’ll need to break out the old analog thermometer to get an accurate reading.

Induction cookware offers some great benefits and a few drawbacks, mostly in terms of the complete costs of the technology and possible replacing cookware. In terms of cost of entry, it is still higher than conventional appliances, but the price is dropping as more products come onto the market.

If you’d like to learn more, give Joseph & Berry a call at (800)-371-8970! Our designers can show you the beauty and explain all of the benefits of induction cooking. It’s an exciting new technology and a growing trend our design team is on board with. If you’re planning a kitchen remodeling, give us a call or click here and we’ll call you. 

 

Dallas Homeowners, Start Designing Your Outdoor Kitchen Now!

Start Designing Your Outdoor Kitchen Now and Be Ready For Summer

Tips on Creating An Outdoor Kitchen Design For Your Dallas Home

A modern outdoor kitchen can be so much more than just a barbecue and a cooler. While most still feature the grill as the main focal point, a truly functional outdoor kitchen is an extension of your living space. It can have the same conveniences as your indoor kitchen, with even more functionality! Custom outdoor kitchens today can include brick pizza ovens, wet bars, fire or water features, side burners, smokers, warming drawers and even roasting spits.

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Advances in manufacturing elements like cabinets, refrigerators, warming drawers and more have made creating the outdoor kitchen even more exciting. Whatever your creative vision, with a little planning and research you can create a fabulous outdoor entertaining space that is the perfect environment for entertaining family and friends.

When planning your outdoor kitchen you’ll need to consider some important factors. Your space will not only need to be functional, you’ll need to consider location, and delineate entertaining, living and cooking areas.

To that end, here are some tips for designing your perfect outdoor kitchen and entertaining space.

Outdoor Kitchen Planning: Start at the Beginning!

While having a good idea of your end goal is important, the process starts with planning. Spend some time hanging out in your backyard and observe your surroundings. It might seem obvious, but walking around your space and asking some questions is the first step. Ask yourself:

  • How much space do you really have to work with?
  • Is there a pool or other existing structure you’ll need to work around?
  • Do you have easy access to power, or will you need to rewire the area?
  • Do you have structures already in place like decks, patios, gardens, etc?

Open your eyes to your space like you are looking at it for the first time. Gaining perspective can inspire you to do something new and exciting! Look for large shade trees, consider the amount of sun you get. Do you need a covered area? Think about colors and materials that would work with your home and existing landscape.

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Consider Location

After looking around, and determining if there are any space restrictions, consider how far you want your outdoor kitchen to be from the main house. Does your home have a “natural” place to locate your outdoor space? For example, are there French doors leading from the living room out to a patio or deck? If you’re planning on having the cooking space close to the doorway, you’ll need to consider ventilation options. If there a little room between the cooking area and the house, it will be easier to add features like a smoker, or wood burning cooking stove. However, you’ll need to consider other infrastructure like electrical and plumbing issues if you’re including a wet bar.

Try to strike a balance of distance for the best of both worlds. This can also help you determine what amenities are necessary. If the cooking area is close enough to the house, you might not need to include a refrigerator or outdoor sink. This can free up money to splurge elsewhere and it can also make potential issues like plumbing less of a problem.

Consider Space Needs

Is your outdoor space going to be used to host large gatherings of family and friends, or smaller more intimate dinners? If you have a smaller space, you’ll want to focus on making it an intimate family area for relaxing where you can feel close. If you have a large space, but still want a cozy feel, consider making the cooking area smaller and creating a larger lounging area with a fireplace, or water feature.

Whatever your entertaining needs, always make sure to plan for sufficient space to place cooked food, and a large prep area. Think about what your indoor kitchen may be missing. This is the time to add those amenities you lack to your outdoor space. This can also play a role in determining the size of your area.

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Think About The View

If your backyard space has a natural view, consider it when designing your space. If not, consider ways you can add character to the area, for example planting a butterfly garden to give your summertime guests a beautiful outdoor experience watching nature. Adding a water feature can create soothing natural sounds your guests can enjoy while dining.

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Consider Your Materials Carefully

While stainless steel appliances are fairly standard, easy to clean and durable, countertops, surrounds, and cabinet materials should be carefully considered. It’s important to avoid porous surfaces or be prepared to periodically seal and maintain them. Granite or natural stone offers a beautiful classic look but you need to make sure that any slabs you choose are UV-stabilized.

Flooring is another area to carefully consider. While natural wood or brick can offer a stunning look, spills can be problematic unless several coats of sealer are applied. Flooring will be subject to not only spills and splatters, but to the elements as well. Consider putting down inexpensive, easy to replace outdoor rugs in areas that a splash prone. It can not only protect flooring, it can add an exciting design element to an otherwise rustic space.

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Let yourself go when planning your space. The design possibilities are practically endless but don’t rush in and box yourself into a design. One of the best benefits of adding an outdoor living space is having the ability to let it evolve over time. Take the changes in seasons into account, speak with your guests and family about future features.

With proper planning, your outdoor entertaining space can evolve over time. Start with a fabulous outdoor kitchen, then add a fire feature like a large free-standing fireplace and seating for those wonderful fall evenings. Or a gazebo with a cedar hot tub. You’re only limited by your space, creative vision and budget. Dream big!

5 Of The Most Requested Design Elements When Remodeling a Kitchen

The Top Requests When Remodeling A Kitchen

Here at Joseph & Berry one of the things we love the most about what we do is helping our clients through the design build remodel process. Remodeling a kitchen is a daunting task filled with a plethora of choices from finishes and fixtures to appliances and functionality.

The first step our designers take when we’re remodeling a kitchen is to meet with our client. We want to learn about their lifestyle, aesthetic preferences, and needs. We always ask about their creative vision for their dream kitchen and we quickly come up with a list of must-have features and a wish list. While wish lists can vary widely, when it comes to must-have features, we overwhelming hear the same thing.

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Here are five of the most requested kitchen feature requests we hear from Joseph & Berry clients remodeling a kitchen.

• A Large Kitchen Sink or Two

Most of our clients specifically request a large single basin sink, typically 30 to 33 inches wide and 9 or more inches in depth. Why is this a common request? Even with a dishwasher, and a double sink, big pots and pans are tough to clean and that’s unacceptable!

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White and Gray custom kitchen cabinetry in this transitional kitchen remodeled by Joseph & Berry

• Kitchen Dining Space

Whether it’s a smaller kitchen or a huge space, most of our clients request an eat-in component be added to their design. Typically it is in addition to the formal dining room, sometimes just a nook other times a bit more. In fact, this is often in addition to seating at the island. Islands are great for grabbing a quick bite, and formal dining rooms are a bit much for the evening meal. An eat-in kitchen is the best of both worlds. The final design will depend on square footage, but typically we can creatively add an informal dining space to most kitchens.

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• Plenty of Storage

Almost every client asks for more storage. This is especially true with families who often buy in bulk. Fortunately, there are many ways to maximize storage in the kitchen. If you have extra space, or a closet in the kitchen a walk-in pantry is a great functional addition. If you don’t have a spare closet, one of the best ways to add storage is to include a tall cabinet with roll-out drawers to your design.

• Additional of Prep Space

Older kitchens weren’t designed for multiple cooks (is that where the phrase too many cooks in the kitchen originated?) Plus the prep space was generally a limited space next to the sink. Today, the trend is towards larger more accommodating kitchens. It’s not uncommon to have two chef families and that means more prep space. The National Kitchen and Bath Association recommends a continuous prep area at least 36” wide and 24” deep next to the sink for a primary workspace. Secondary workspaces include islands or peninsulas which can also double as serving areas.

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• Eliminate Clutter

No matter how big and beautiful your kitchen is, it’ll feel a lot smaller with cluttered countertops. Today, a well-equipped kitchen will have all kinds of appliances like high-end blenders, mixers, food processors, toasters, and more. Our clients are creating their beautiful dream kitchen and one of the biggest requests we get is to keep the counters clutter-free. Building the microwave into the wall, or under the island, appliance garages, specialty cabinets, and built-in coffee stations are all design choices that can reduce clutter and keep the kitchen feeling open and improve sight lines.

Remodeling a Kitchen with Joseph & Berry

At Joseph & Berry, our goal is to exceed our client’s expectations when working with them to create their luxurious dream kitchen. These five components are requested by many of our clients and we happily honor their requests. Each of these design elements can be both aesthetically pleasing and highly functional. Our team of professional designers is always ready to help achieve our client’s creative vision. Remodeling a kitchen can be challenging, let our team help make it easier… and a lot more fun! Contact us and lets schedule your consultation (800)-371-8970!

Kitchen Remodeling – Cooktop downdraft or Island Hood Ventilation

Kitchen Remodeling – Downdraft or Hood Island Cooktop Ventilation

If you’re considering a kitchen remodeling project choosing your cooking appliance is one of the biggest and most exciting choices you’ll make. Whether your project includes a professional range, or a wall oven and cooktop in the island, an important, and often overlooked element of your cooking area is your range hood.

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Proper ventilation is a critical element in a functional kitchen. Your ventilation system removes all of the steam, smoke, food particles, grease and odors from your kitchen. It’s in fact, one of the most important elements of a functional kitchen, especially in an open concept home. If your kitchen features an island, ventilation is even more important and can also be a prominent focal point in your kitchen.

Today, you have a choice when it comes to ventilation options for an island cooktop. A free hanging range hood is functional and can add an exciting focal point to your kitchen design. Your second option is a downdraft ventilation system. Depending on your kitchen design, this is an appliance that can be hidden by flush mounting it with the countertop of your island, and when needed, raised at the push of a button.

Let’s take a look at some considerations when choosing a ventilation option for your kitchen remodeling project.

Your Kitchen Remodeling Project: Ventilation Guidelines

Whether you choose a range hood or a downdraft system there are some guidelines you’ll need to be aware of. When choosing a system, the minimum airflow required will be based on the BTU output of the cooktop. A good general guideline is to divide the total BTU output by 100 to get the flow rate of ventilation in feet per minute.

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For example:

A cooktop with a combined burner output of 70,000 BTUs would require a system that is rated at 700 cubic feet per minute or higher. Generally, electric cooktops, including induction systems will require 200 cubic feet per minute of airflow per foot of cooktop width. For most electric cooktops and induction systems, a minimum of 400 cubic feet per minute is appropriate.

Local building codes may specify how cooktop hoods are exhausted. Some require that your system deliver exhaust out of the house through ductwork rather than recirculating it back into the kitchen. Local codes may also specify materials to be used for ducting, typically galvanized steel, stainless steel or copper. Your design build remodeling contractor will know the local requirements for ventilation systems and can help you to make the correct choice.

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Ducted or Ductless Range Hood Systems

A range hood can be a wonderful focal point in your kitchen. They come in a variety of styles and when used over an island are known as free hanging range hoods. The main distinctions when choosing a hood is the airflow rate and whether they are ducted or ductless systems.

A ducted range hood tends to be more expensive and requires placement of a vent to the exterior of your home, which can increase costs. The system includes a fan which draws air through the hood into the ductwork and exhausts it out of your home. If you are undergoing a complete gut to the studs kitchen remodeling, ductwork would be placed in the ceiling to the exterior of your home. You may be limited by the layout of your kitchen. If this is the case, a ductless range hood might be an option.

A ductless system looks exactly the same as a free hanging ducted range hood. The difference lies in how it functions. With a ductless system, the air is drawn into the hood and then passed through activated carbon or charcoal filters that trap and remove odor, grease, and food particles. The clean warm air is then recirculated back into the kitchen. The main advantage of a ductless system is that it can be placed anywhere, requires no additional construction or venting and is generally less expensive.

Range hoods are available to fit any style kitchen from traditional to industrial. They can be an interesting focal point in your kitchen design and come in a variety of materials from wood and copper to stainless steel and glass to match any design style.

Here is a great example of a copper custom made vent hood that adds elegance and flair to the kitchen design as well as being afunctional.

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A winning project for Best color match By Joseph & Berry Luxury Remodeling

Downdraft Ventilation

A downdraft vent is a sleek, modern looking ventilation system that is at home within an island and is a great option in a modern or contemporary kitchen design. Unlike a range hood, a downdraft system, (also known as a pop-up vent) sucks the fumes, cooking grease and food particles down and pushes them out of the house through ducting located under the floor.

They are ultra-modern, typically installed behind or below the cooktop. When you need ventilation, push a button and the vent rises 8 to 10 inches above the cooktop surface. A downdraft system is invisible until engaged, making them perfect in a modern kitchen design where clean lines and a minimal look are popular. Pop-up vents take up significantly less space than a range hood and are great in small kitchens where you may lack the space for a full range hood.

They tend to be a little more expensive than a range hood and are not available in a wide a variety of styles. Because they only rise 10 inches, steam and grease coming from tall pots may be problematic. If you often cook using multiple pots and pans, downdraft ventilation may have a hard time keeping up.

Proper ventilation is a key element to a functional kitchen. When planning your kitchen remodeling and design, work with your design build contractor. They can offer you information and options when it comes to choosing the proper ventilation system for your new kitchen.

If you’re ready to remodel your Dallas kitchen, contact us at (800)371-8970 or click here! Joseph & Berry are Greater Dallas’s preeminent design-build firm and has completed hundreds of kitchen &  bathroom design and remodel projects.

 

Selecting High-Quality Windows For A Home Remodeling Project

 

What Constitutes a High-Quality Window For A Home Addition Project

Selecting high-quality materials for a home remodeling project is key to ensuring your investment lasts for many years. New modern windows as part of a home addition can also bring energy efficiency as well as a wide range of options for bringing light into a space. The builders and designers at Joseph & Berry have extensive knowledge of the top-quality window brands and the best products to create a beautiful home remodeling project.

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Do brand names matter in a home remodeling project?

Well-known high-quality window brands are always a popular choice for any home remodeling project. While there are many smaller, local window companies that provide excellent quality, selecting a nationally known name brand window, like Pella, Anderson, Marvin, Weather Shield or Lincoln, ensures a higher resale value and return on your investment.

Need a professional’s advice? Contact us to schedule your consultation meeting

Materials are key to home remodeling

Wood frames are the gold stands in windows among professionals and homeowners. They provide a beautiful look while also providing durability and energy efficiency. However, they do require a fair bit of maintenance, needed an occasional stain or a fresh coat of paint. Some manufacturers like Andersen, offer a frame cladding the wood with vinyl or aluminum. This is a tough, maintenance-free frame on the exterior of the home and a natural-wood interior.

In recent years, wood frames have lost some market share to vinyl because of its low maintenance and affordability, however, homeowners often tell us they don’t like the look.  To get a low maintenance yet higher quality look, fiberglass and composite-frame windows are the newest options. Made from materials similar to those on car bumpers, these options are durable, maintenance-free and more energy efficient than vinyl.

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Understanding the ratings

Standardized window rating systems from the National Fenestration Rating Council help provide homeowners with the information they need to select a quality product. U-factor, based on the number scale of 0.15 and 1.20, will tell you the window’s ability to keep the cold out and the warmth in. The lower the U-factor, or U-scale, the better the quality. R-factor refers to the window’s ability to keep heat out and cool air in. A higher R-factor means higher quality. The Solar Heat Gain Coefficient, or SHGC, can also provide insight on quality, with the lower the SHGC the better.

Another more simple rating system is the U.S. Department of Energy and the Environmental Protection Agency’s Energy Star label, tagging the most energy-efficient products. Energy Star rated windows are 15% to 40% more efficient than windows that are not. Look for ratings that are specific to the local climate.

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Window style

A home remodeling project that includes a new addition extends far beyond just the construction. An experienced design-build company can also ensure a cohesive style and aesthetic are carried throughout. Part of achieving that goal is selecting the right windows. Traditional homes, like colonial or Cape Codder styles, look better with traditional six-over-six or eight-over-eight windows. Modern and contemporary homes look beautiful with large windows with metal frames. Ranch-style homes use a variety of modern styles, from small out-swing windows to large bay windows in central living spaces. Look for similar style ideas you like or ask your design-build team for examples of recent projects that provide a variety of styles.

What the experts look for

When evaluating window products, our construction team at Joseph & Berry look for frames with uniform color and wood free of imperfections. Joints on vinyl, fiberglass and composite windows should be heat-welded, as opposed to joined with fasteners. The window mechanisms should be easy to use and have a tight fit. Read more about room addition and room conversion.

Joseph & Berry has years of experience in home remodeling to provide the information you need about the best windows for your project. With a project manager on site at all times, we are able to answer your questions quickly, as well as provide the highest-quality products and custom designs for our clients. 

Attic Bedroom Conversion – Remodeling Your Attic For A Master Suite

Tips on Remodeling an Attic Bedroom Conversion for a Master Suite

If you’re seeking to add space to your home, start by looking at existing areas that are potentially useful. For many homeowners, the garage, basement or attic can often easily be converted into usable space. Usually, the attic is the easiest place to start.

When dealing with the attic, everything is already in place. There are no foundations or setbacks to deal with like when adding an addition. Most of the time, there are no zoning laws prohibiting attic conversion, and no concrete slabs to deal with like in the garage or basement.

One popular use of this prime real estate is converting your attic into a charming master bedroom suite. An attic master provides you with privacy, great views, and can add value to your home when it’s time to sell. Let’s take a look at some of the many benefits of converting your attic into a master suite.

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Attic Bedroom: Cost Versus Value

While you most likely won’t recoup all of your costs when you sell, according to a recent National Association of Realtors report, an attic bedroom that includes a small bathroom has an average cost of $110,000 and returns 45% of costs when you sell.

While this is a decent return on your investment, the real value of converting the attic is the improvements to your lifestyle. The “Joy Score” is a measure of homeowners happiness with renovation projects. On a scale of one to ten, with ten being the best, homeowners on the average score this project at a 9.4. Creating a private, secluded master bedroom in the attic will add to your quality of life!

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Considerations

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While converting the attic to a master offers homeowners a great improvement in their lifestyle, and is affordable when compared to adding a new addition to your home, it may not be practical. You should discuss the possibilities with your design-build remodeling firm. They will take a look at your home and determine if it is a cost-effective solution.

When designing your bedroom attic, you’ll need to consider:

  • Your local building codes: While you may not need zoning permission to finish the attic, you will need to meet your codes for ceiling height, updated plumbing, and electrical work.
  • Support Structures: Your contractor will need to examine your home’s infrastructure to determine if it is physically able to carry the load of a finished bedroom. You may need to include an engineer and architect if you are not using a design-build remodeling firm. Ceiling height and usable floor space can be created by adding dormers if necessary. But this will add to the cost of your project.
  • Infrastructure Issues: You will need to update electrical, run plumbing (if including a bath) and tie the space into your HVAC system. Some homes keep the air handlers and condensers in the attic. If your HVAC is located there, you will need to move it somewhere else in the home, which can add costs to your project.
  • Access to the Space: Do you have an existing stairway to the attic, or is it accessible through a hatch? Your designer or contractor may need to create a staircase for easier access, and this again may add to your costs.

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When considering your project, make sure that “attic living” fits into your lifestyle. If you’re planning an aging in place addition, ask yourself if the stairs will prove to be a problem as you get older? Also, if you have small children, you may not feel comfortable on a different floor away from them. If you have older kids, the attic might be the perfect getaway solution! Consider your project from all angles.

Your design-build remodel contractor can help determine if there are issues with infrastructure, for example, ceiling height, plumbing, and HVAC. They can provide you with a detailed cost estimate for all of the work involved including any additional costs like engineering. With proper planning and a solid infrastructure, your ROI could be higher than the national average of 61%.

Ideas for Creating Your Dream Attic Bedroom

Contact our design build team to schedule your consultation and get the master bedroom you always wanted!

When designing your space, consider adding some luxurious amenities. Your designer can help you with options to consider to create a truly unique personal escape.

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Consider adding elements that will bring in natural light. Depending on ceiling height this can include skylights. If adding a shed dormer to increase floor space, consider panoramic windows that can emphasize the view and allow plenty of natural light into your space.

One of the benefits of converting the attic is the beautiful architectural possibilities of the roof line. You can play up these elements with the creative use of paint, lighting, and natural light to create focal points throughout the space.

While adding a tub is always a welcome addition to a spa-like ensuite, your home’s infrastructure is an important element to consider. A soaking tub, especially when full of water, can add a tremendous amount of weight. This may require additional engineering or support work which can be expensive. Instead, consider adding a luxurious large shower.

Your attic may have tremendous potential and value when you’re considering a master bedroom conversion. The important element is hiring the right design-build contractor for the job. Make sure whomever you hire, shares your creative vision for the space, can bring excellent design skills to the project and offers only the highest quality craftsmanship.

At Joseph & Berry, we have created hundreds of spectacular attic bedroom spaces for our clients. If you’re considering converting your attic, whether it’s a master suite, a media room for the family, a play space for the kids, or a home office, give us a call. We’re always happy to show homeowners the possibilities when it comes to creating their dream home!

Reasons A Garage Conversion Makes Sense When Remodeling a Home

Garage Conversion 101 – Reasons for Converting Your Garage Into Livable Space

If you need to add usable space to your home, but don’t have the budget for a full-scale addition, look no farther than your garage! For many families, the garage isn’t even used for the car anymore. Often it ends up becoming a kind of catch-all storage space packed with the kid’s old hockey uniforms, and Christmas decorations. If you’re looking for space to add that media room, exercise room or in-law suite, your garage might be the perfect solution.

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The typical two-car garage conversion can add as much as 600 square feet of living space to your home. Because there is some infrastructure already in place like a slab floor, exterior walls, a pass through into the house and electrical wiring, the costs of converting the garage can be significantly less than adding an addition.

Let’s look at some of the practical reasons for a garage conversion that is designed for additional living space makes perfect sense.

First, The Cost Factor

As we mentioned above, because a garage already has a foundation, walls, a roof and some electrical, using the existing structure costs around half of what a new addition can cost. Depending on the level of finishes, you can expect to spend anywhere from $35,000 to $50,000 or more to convert the typical two-car garage into functional living space. If you’re planning on adding a bathroom, expect to pay an additional $20,000 to $30,000.

What To Expect: Garage Conversion Scope of Work

A garage conversion involves a fairly extensive scope of work. While much infrastructure is in place, it can still take 4 to 6 weeks to complete depending on the fixtures and finishes. A typical garage conversion can include:

  • Raising the floor height to insulate over the concrete slab
  • Insulating the walls and ceiling
  • Tying the space into the home’s main HVAC system, or adding an independent system, like a ductless mini system.
  • Electrical work including wiring and upgrading service to accommodate the larger load
  • Opening the space to the main house
  • Replacing the garage doors with windows, or fully insulated walls
  • Adding additional windows and door
  • Tying into the home’s plumbing if including a bathroom

To prevent your garage conversion from looking like well…a garage conversion, you’ll need to remove any evidence it was once a garage. That means possibly adding rooftop design elements like dormer windows, or skylights,  additional windows and interior trim. Your design build remodel firm can add architectural elements to help transform your garage into a functional space that fits in with your existing home’s design.

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The Benefits Of A Garage Conversion

There are many benefits of converting your garage into living space rather than building an addition. Including:

  • Additional useful space – Whether your family is growing, or your in-laws are moving in, your garage conversion can become anything you need. The top five choices for conversion projects are creating a guest suite, home office, fitness room, playroom for the kids, or a much-needed man cave. The truth is, whatever your creative vision, a good design build remodel firm can create the perfect interior space to meet your needs, whatever they are.
  • It’s a Budget Friendly Way To Add Space – Life changes. If you find yourself needing additional space, and are working with a limited budget, a garage conversion can cost half of the price of adding an addition. With a little creativity and a decent budget, a conversion can solve your family’s need for space.
  • Adds Value To Your Home – Creating additional living space will not only offer the immediate benefit of more space, it can add to the value of your home. Often, depending on the space you create, especially if it includes extra bedrooms with a bathroom, you can more than make up the cost when you sell.

If you need additional living space and are weighing your options, give the experts at Joseph & Berry a call!
We can show you the cost benefits of converting your garage, and our design team can create the perfect space for your family. We can handle the entire project from designing your space to securing permits and constructing a beautiful, functional space that will blend perfectly into your lifestyle.

Learn more about our process and let’s schedule your consultation!