Category Archives: Home Improvement

Home Theater Installation

There’s nothing like sitting back, reclining and enjoying a five-star film right in the confines of your home. One way to amplify the thrilling action you see on your screen is by watching it in your own home theater.

What once was considered a luxury only for the very rich has become much more typical for homeowners in the twenty-first century. It is a terrific outlet for families who love watching home movies, staying in on Saturday nights and really being part of the action. Frankly, a home theater is like an oasis from reality.

Nevertheless, there is always a cost involved. Surprisingly, if you know how to shop, many families can install a new home theater system for less than $1,000. Below, I will discuss all factors, as well as costs, that go into home theater installation.

 

Home Theater Installation Cost

The overall price of your home theater install will largely depend on what you need. If you are clearing out the basement, adding new soundproof walls, all new wires, a new speaker system and screen, then of course, the price will inflate. However, if you just need the wiring and other components installed, you should expect to pay no more than $500. In fact, according to our home theater installation cost estimator, the average price is $334.

 

Surround Sound Installation Cost

While the overall design may look different, installing surround sound for your home theater is not very different from any home sound system. Therefore, as HomeAdvisor points out, the average price to install a surround sound system is $492.

A surround sound system can include two small speakers plugged into a wall outlet, or it can include a dozen mounted speakers located throughout the home for cohesive sound. Either way, we highly recommend buying a pre-packaged system. They ensure that all parts are included and oftentimes, can be cheaper as opposed to buying a la carte.

If you do want to buy each piece by itself, you should look for:

  • A center channel speaker
  • Two front speakers – one for each side of the screen or on the side walls
  • One or two subwoofers
  • Two or more surround speakers or speakers behind

Deck Lighting Ideas

Your deck is the perfect place for an outdoor gathering. When the sun goes down, that doesn’t mean the party has to end. The solution is deck lights, which come in a variety to match your current style.

There are many options when it comes to light installation and it can be hard to decide where to start. Some homeowners want to provide a bright space to safely cook and play, while others desire the ambiance of subtle lighting. With a few lighting ideas, you can enjoy your deck any time of day or night.

 

Create A Plan

Before you shop for your new deck lights, you should create a plan to determine where you’d like your new deck lights. This will help you focus on what you’d like your lighting to highlight and where they will be placed, before any installations are made. Draw out a simple sketch of your deck and begin to label where the lights will go. One of the first things to consider as you plan to add lighting to your deck is how the lights will be powered. Unlike a house lamp, many can’t simply plug into the wall. So you must determine where the power source will come from.

Second, determine where you want your deck lighting to go and what it will highlight. Are you looking to create a safer outdoor environment? Deck stair lights are a great option as well as any type of overhead lighting. Looking for ambiance? Solar lights or string lights can easily provide a relaxing atmosphere.

Once you’ve mapped out where the lights will be placed, you can find the style that’s right for you.

 

 

Deck Stair Lighting

Decks tend to have specific safety regulations, as many local ordinances require deck stairs and steps to be illuminated. There are plenty of options available, ranging from deck railing lights to illuminate the steps, or lights that recess into the steps themselves. Always be sure to check your city’s code when planning a deck improvement project.

 

Low Voltage Deck Lighting

One of the more common options for homeowners is low voltage deck lighting. Low voltage deck lighting is easy to install and comes in a variety of styles to match your look. Low voltage lighting does require a transformer to reduce the voltage from the standard 120 volts to 12 volts. The initial installation may have higher costs compared to other options, but tends to take less costly maintenance. Low voltage lights tend to produce a soft light, but can vary by the type of bulb.

Porch Lighting Ideas

As the sun begins to set, many homeowners turn on a front porch light to illuminate their home. While many of us just see this as normal routine, leaving a light on is more than just illumination. It’s a welcoming sign for visitors and provides additional safety at night.

With this in mind, why just settle for any old light? By upgrading your front porch light fixture, you’re adding curb appeal and creating a warm environment for guests. There are many interesting front porch lights that will inspire you to rethink your current lighting. Here are a few outside lighting ideas to get you thinking about how you can spice up your porch.

 

Wall Lights

Porch wall lights are among the most common fixtures and come in a variety of styles to match your outdoor décor. There are classic looking lantern lights that look great on almost any front porch to modern circular porch lights. Vintage styles with Edison bulbs are becoming more trendy as homeowners bring back a classic look to their homes.

As you may guess, porch wall light fixtures are mounted to the outside of your home. If you’re replacing a wall mount light, this may be a DIY project for you, based on the product’s instructions. Whenever you are working with electricity, always remember to shut the power off before beginning your project.

 

Outdoor Post Lights

Since it’s not attached to the home, outdoor porch post lights have the freedom to go where you’d like, making them an extremely versatile option for the homeowner who is thinking out of the box. Many times, these lights are placed on the entryway to the porch. These come in many classic styles either with one bright light or multiple bulb options and they stand alone. You’ll need to contact a pro for this installation, as the wiring can be complicated if you don’t already have a post light installed.

Small Bath Look Big

Any homeowner with a small bathroom knows it’s a challenge to make it look and feel bigger. One attractive and affordable solution to this obstacle is mosaic tile. A mosaic is a piece of art or image made from the assemblage of small pieces of colored glass, stone or other materials. Most mosaics are made of small, flat, roughly square pieces of stone or glass of different colors known as tesserae.

Mosaic tile is more versatile than you may think. It’s frequently used as decorative art or as interior decoration and the possibilities are endless. See six examples of how mosaic tile will effortlessly make your small bath look big and liven it up.

 

1. Create An Accent Wall

Paint isn’t the only way to create an accent wall. Colorful, delicate mosaic tile delivers a unique solution for brightening up your bathroom. There’s typically not much wall space to work with in a small bath, so getting a bit fancy with your accent wall won’t be too hard on your wallet. A white foundation, natural light and mirrors will also help play tricks on the eyes to make the room appear larger.

 

2. Build A Border or Backsplash

A border or backsplash is an effective way to make a room look bigger. It also adds style and an element of surprise to your small bath. The continuous design keeps the eye busy as it travels from one element to the next. To keep the project budget-friendly, cover small areas with expensive tiles or larger areas with less expensive tile styles.

Another idea is to fill the blank space between your sink and mirror with colorful, mosaic tile. You won’t believe how something so simple will magnify the aesthetic appeal of your bathroom. Once again, the eye will be drawn to the tile and travel with the flow of the design.

Fireplace Ideas For Home

As the host of your home, you want to create a space where all can gather and enjoy. Many older buildings come with a fireplace that may not be in use anymore or maybe you’ve decided you just don’t want to care for your working fireplace anymore. Whatever the case, and unused fireplace can become an eyesore in any living space, but you can change that.

Consider the firebox to be a stage where you can show off your unique decorative style. With a little creativity and the right supplies, you can take your unused fireplace from eyesore to focal point with these out-of-the-box fireplace ideas for the home.

Before you begin your décor work, you’ll want to make sure the brickwork around the fireplace is in good condition. If there are any cracks or broken bricks, now is the time to call for a repair. The average cost to repair a fireplace is $380, but will largely depend on the type of damage you need repaired. Also remember to clean any ashes in and around the fireplace. You won’t want this getting on any of your belongings. Even if it’s an old fireplace you’ve never used, it’s a smart idea to give it a good cleaning to get rid of any lasting grime.

Another way to spruce up your brick fireplace is by painting it. This can add to the overall décor of the room. You’ll be surprised at how quickly you can change your look with this DIY project. Read How To Paint A Brick Fireplace for more instructions.

Once you have the outside in the condition you want, you can focus on choosing the right décor for your unused fireplace.

The Hottest Interior Paint Colors Perfect For Any Home

Interior paint selections make or break the appearance of your home. Additionally, colors have the power to dramatically influence your feelings, behaviors and moods. For these reasons, it’s important you research your options before altering your walls.

Professional painters can paint your home or you can roll up your sleeves and DIY. Either way, there’ll come a time when you need to choose the right color for each individual room. See the 10 hottest interior paint colors that are guaranteed to bring style and new energy to your home.

 

1. Hazel by Sherwin-Williams

This paint is a beautiful light blue hue that’s versatile and attractive. This is a color that looks stunning paired with wood, neutral accents and white trim. Hazel paint is perfect for any homeowner looking to add subtle color to their rooms without coming off too loud.

 

2. Cloud White by Benjamin Moore

White is always a popular paint color amongst homeowners. The trick is finding a shade that’s not too bright or dull. Cloud White is part of Benjamin Moore’s Classic Color Collection and a fan favorite. These timeless, elegant, classic colors guarantee beautiful, usable color all the time, every time. It has a softness to it that creates a relaxed and comfortable space.

 

3. Indigo Streamer by Valspar

This is the paint for you if you’re someone who likes a fun pop of color in their house! Not only is this color gorgeous on its own, but it looks amazing paired with white walls. Use this paint to spruce up a door or incorporate an accent wall. It’s vibrant and trendy with just the right amount of spunk.

Kitchen Cabinet Trends

All home remodeling trends come and go, but when you’re talking about the most trafficked room of the house, some say the heart of the home, it’s vital to know what others are doing in case you ever decide to sell.

Kitchen cabinet trends have not changed as much as other areas around the kitchen, such as kitchen countertops, but a few dominant trends have taken shape in 2015. Fortunately enough, many experts agree that most of the kitchen cabinet trends discussed below are not going away in 2016.

 

1. Personalized Cabinets

First and foremost, despite any of these trends, many homeowners are adding cabinet styles, colors and functions that fit their needs and desires. As time has evolved, cabinet companies have come up with numerous styles that match any home design or style. As a result, even homeowners who can afford them are passing over custom cabinets for more affordable, yet design-friendly, semi-custom cabinets.

Overall, in today’s world, there is no cookie-cutter kitchen cabinet design. Ask any kitchen expert for hot designs and they will almost certainly say that personalization and tailored designs are sticking around through 2015, into 2016.

 

2. Clean Lines & Subtle Design

Two other dominant trends for kitchen cabinets are clean lines and subtle designs. To ensure design flexibility in the long term, cabinet door styles have become simpler, using clean lines. As the modern style continues to gain steam, clean lines and subtle designs make ideal sense for anyone looking to upgrade their kitchen cabinets.

Matching another kitchen remodeling trend, clean lines go perfectly with black and white kitchens. As I noted in Kitchen Remodeling Trends For 2015-16, black and white kitchens tend to offset each other and give the kitchen a clean, sleek and visually appealing design. Clean lines, along with black and white kitchens, can also offset the tension between rustic, modern and transitional kitchens.

 

3. Shaker Style

Along with the classic black and white, shaker style cabinets have remained in vogue for years. At first glance, some associate shaker as a plain, square design that doesn’t leave much room for imagination. However, many more attractive versions of the shaker have come to life since the 1800s.

One way to install terrific shaker cabinets is by using premium quality wood. With its simple design, shaker cabinets let the wood or material do the talking. Just like a knife does the work when you’re cutting an onion, the wood tends to speak the loudest when it comes to shaker cabinets.

Just how prevalent are shaker cabinets?

“Ninety-nine percent of the time, it’s a white painted-wood shaker door with a square picture and simple recessed center,” Anthony Maucieri, president of East Hill Cabinetry said.

Creative Kitchen Upgrades

My guess is you spend a considerable amount of time in or around your kitchen on a daily basis. Whether you’re cooking, cleaning or rearranging, it’s a room that requires your attention. Your kitchen is so powerful it can even change your mood. For example, if it’s too dark, messy or loud for your taste, it may upset you.

It’s also a space that gets boring to look at if you’re in or around your kitchen often. If you’ve had the urge to upgrade, personalize or modernize it, you’re not alone. See 11 creative kitchen upgrades that’ll have you falling back in love with the most essential room in your home.

 

1. Bring On The Charm

You may be more inclined to pay attention to the details and personal touches in your bedroom or living room, but they matter in your kitchen too. There are so many great décor pieces out there and DIY projects for you to get lost in. Large display letters, hanging plants, fresh flowers, homemade storage and chalkboards are a few ideas that’ll add instant charm and style to your kitchen. A perfect example of a charming kitchen is represented in the breakfast nook image above, which mixes stripes, plants, red accents and an antique chandelier.

 

2. Create A Colorful Cookbook Display

It’s easy to get caught up collecting cookbooks filled with unique and tasty recipes. The more you have, the harder it is to find space to store them. Install vertical open shelving cabinets and paint the shelves a fun color, then strategically place and display your favorite cookbooks for all to see. Doing this will upgrade your cookbooks from dusty cabinet fillers to trendy décor in no time. Another option is to sneak in cookbook shelf space on the exposed end of a cabinet or island.

 

3. Fasten Tailored Slipcovers

Before you head out and purchase brand new kitchen chairs or stools, ask yourself if a simple slipcover could solve your problem. Interior decorators advise to save your money and skip the fancy upholstery and instead, choose fitted slipcovers for your kitchen chairs. They’re easy to wash, practical and an inexpensive solution in a potentially messy, high-traffic area. Slipcovered kitchen or bar stools will add class and character to a dull space. They come in all sorts of patterns and colors too!

Kitchen Color Schemes That Suitable and Work

One of the most important rooms in your home is the kitchen. It’s where people gather to share a meal and be together. As you can anticipate many people enjoying this space, you’ll want to make it comfortable for all.

Picking the perfect color scheme for your kitchen can seem challenging. There are many options available that it’s overwhelming to think of what the best kitchen colors may be. Here are a few color palates based on current kitchen color trends to help create a space everyone can enjoy.

One concern you may have when choosing the perfect color palate for your kitchen is how it will match with your cabinetry and appliances that are already in place. Typically, darker finishes and appliances will do well with warm, contemporary or bright colors. While kitchen colors with white cabinets do well with bolder and pastel colors, or even other shades of white, because they already do a great job of brightening up the room.

 

1. Variations Of White

If you love what’s trending right now, creating a kitchen with variations of white is hot. Subway tiles and mixed shades of white can truly make your kitchen feel bright and clean as you cook. This is a timeless color scheme and is great if you’re going for a farmhouse kitchen look.

 

2. Warm & Wonderful

Surround yourself with warmth as you cook with colors that reflect how you feel. Use light reds, oranges and yellow hues. Benjamin Moore makes a perfect warm color palate that’s great for a cozy kitchen called Spicy & Modern Yellow. It utilizes a soft shade of white to really make the trim pop.

 

3. Cool & Calm

From everyday cooking to small gatherings the kitchen tends to be an active center of the home. Give yourself, your family and guests a relaxed feel with a cool kitchen color scheme. Use soft greens or blues on kitchen walls and compliment with a light gray for the trim.

How to Make Your Home Feel Warm With Easy Way

Fall is in the air! This means it’s time to indulge in pumpkin spice lattes and meals from the crockpot but, most importantly, transition your home to the new season, in style. Fall is a time of year we can’t seem to get enough of because of all the beautiful colors, coziness and fun it brings.

Your home is the perfect place to embrace fall. Decorating it for the season will make it feel warm and inviting. See tips for making your home cozy for fall, and then kick back, relax and enjoy your hard work!

 

Replace Summer Bedding

One quick decorating trick that’ll make your bedroom feel more like fall is to swap out your summer bedding for something warmer; warmer colors, as well as, warmer materials. Soft comforters, pillows and blankets are sure to bump summer ambiences right out of the room. Add comfortable rugs, décor and lighting to really cozy up your bedroom this fall.

If you’re worried about making your room look too dark, then use window treatments, lamps, furniture and artwork to liven it up. It may also be the perfect time to throw on a fresh coat of paint. Painting is a wonderful DIY project for fall, as the weather cools and you find yourself spending more time indoors.

 

Sprucing up your windows is a practical way to draw more of the fall vibes into your home. A curtain wall, drapes, embellishments and sheer overlays are easy ways to dress up your windows. Lifestyle media publisher, POPSUGAR advises hanging curtains all the way across a wall to add visual interest and create a cozy effect with the bulk of the material. Ikea has endless curtain options at a low price, so you can buy plenty of panels to reach across a wall.

Be mindful of the colors and materials you’re selecting so you’re sure to create the right look for the season. Consider installing warm hues that mimic nature and fabrics that flow and make the room feel more comfortable.

 

Cozy Up with Lights & Candles

Fall is the perfect season to go overboard with candles and lighting options. These decorative elements have the ability to instantly cozy up any space. If you’re a DIYer, this is a great opportunity to get the family together and make your own candles and string lights.