Bathroom Trends 2019

As we near the middle of the fall and the end of the year it's nice to look back and reflect on some of the trends that we have seen in Bathrooms in 2019. Here are what some of the top interior designers say that the trends have been in the past year.

  1. Big impression in small spaces - Patrick Ediger explains by saying"Small spaces like powder rooms excel as a canvas for a singular, splashy statement. A high-contrast, large-scale wallpaper expands a small space and infuses it with an artful attitude."
  2. A neutral pallet - "We love a classic bathroom and think it's always on trend to have something that works for years to come. To keep it feeling modern we love using a monochromatic element throughout the whole space. For example, using all of one color or material (such as the color green or all marble tile) is a great way to achieve this, classic tile and motifs can be incorporated still but using all of one material creates a fun jewel box-like look to the space. You can still stay neutral and make it feel like something really special." –Allison Petty
  3. A completely black bathroom - "The spa-inspired bathroom trend has officially returned–back to the spa, that is. These days it's all about bold, dark, sultry bathroom designs that evoke an indulgent high-end experience." — Kesha Franklin
  4. Open concept designs - "Gone are the days where you hide behind a wall or door when getting ready for work or a big night out. It's all about the open concept. The use of steel or privacy glass as a barrier is important, but ultimately, showering and getting ready in the open air is awesome. I see a lot of this happening in the residential interiors world." — Becky Shea
  5. Statement Art - "The year 2019 is all about making an artistic statement; even in the bathroom. A sophisticated piece of fine art will provide your bathroom with a pretty focal point." — Anne Hepfer 
  6. White and Grey Marble - "White and grey marble continue to be strong, popular materials into 2019 for bathrooms and kitchens alike. They are classic and timeless, can go from traditional to modern in terms of aesthetics, and are also great for resale. Man-made materials, such as quartz and porcelain tiles that look like natural stones, are also workhorses from a durability perspective and will continue to be popular in the new year." — Ariel Okin
  7. Concrete - "We'll see the use of concrete application in sink basins, countertops, floors and walls. It's really exciting to see a brutalist material mixed with organic elements. Traditionally, concrete has been viewed as cold and non-welcoming, but I'm of the mindset that marrying this utilitarian medium with woods, steel, porcelain and resin is what you guys are going to see surface in 2019 across all design aesthetics." — Becky Shea

Bathroom Remodel Checklist

Remodeling a bathroom is a great way to refresh your space and increase your home value. Your remodel could be simple like applying a new coat of paint, refreshing the appliances or it could be more complex by doing a complete renovation and starting from scratch.  No matter what updates you are planning on doing it is helpful to plan ahead. Here is a checklist of important questions to ask yourself.

  • Make a list of priorities for the remodel as well as expectations 
    • What is your big-picture goal?
    • When does the job need to be finished?
  • Set a Budget
    • What are you planning on doing? New Shower? More Square footage? A fresh coat of paint?
    • Go through everything you are planning on doing to the bathroom and account for the price. Don’t forget the details, like the knobs on the new cabinets and the light switch covers.
  • Choose a color palette or design style
    • You should try to stay consistent with the color and materials you choose. You should also try to keep the design consistent with the rest of your house.
  • Source your materials and permits
    • Talk to manufacturers. Look into alternative eco-friendly, low-VOC or moisture-resistant materials.
    • Consider upgrades such as a bathroom fan, electric heater or radiant-heated floors.
    • Try to purchase as much as possible before you begin.
  • Plan all the logistics
    • Find out if you will need plumbing for the toilet or shower or if you can use existing pipes
    • Make sure you can get all the materials in time by checking the shipping periods
    • Find a contractor like GoldenIConstruction
    • Will the remodel have enough demolition that you’ll need to seal off other rooms from dust or noise?
  • Anticipate Obstacles
    • Will the subfloor need to be replaced?
    • Will the new fixtures and appliances like a new tub fit through the door?
    • Can the existing wiring be used?
    • Will the inspection officer be available during the remodeling process?
  • Create a timeline
    • Make a list of steps throughout the process that follow a set timeline
  • Get creative 
    • Be creative when designing the space
    • Find light fixtures at thrift stores

How to Prepare for your NYC Apartment Renovation

1. Be a confident decision-maker

Everyone involved in the remodel, including you, want the remodel to move forward in a timely manner and on schedule. To make sure that this is the case it is imperative that all decisions are made quickly and efficiently. Your contractor will discuss with you possible situations that may come up on your project. These decisions on what the solution will be are not what usually causes delays. The smaller decisions like faucet selection,  paint, or trim choice are what people usually get stuck on. If these aren't made in a timely manner, your faucet could be two weeks late because of shipping, and then your plumber will have to be rescheduled leading to a delay.

2. Compare prices and Set a Budget

This is hopefully an obvious one. It is important no matter what project you are doing to set a budget. When you are dividing up your budget per room, you will get the most return value on rooms like a master bathroom and or a kitchen if you decide to sell your place in the future. Also if you spend less money on lighting, vanities and closet systems, you will see more return on your investment.

You will want to get a rough idea of cost on all the different styles and looks you are considering implementing in your space. You don't need an exact estimate yet, but having a rough estimate will allow you to better plan your budget. For an exact estimate, the remodeling agency will have to come in and assess the condition of your space before providing an exact estimate.

3. Create a Contingency fund

No matter how much you plan or prep for your remodel something always happens. Because of this, it is important to set aside 5% of your original budget just in case. Rarely does anyone ever set a realistic budget for a project. However, you should not consume your contingency fund to stretch your budget.

4. Visit a Kitchen and Bath Showroom

If you are remodeling your kitchen and bathroom it is really helpful to go see a local showroom. This will allow you to see materials in person, ask questions and get an idea on pricing. This will allow you to make some informed decisions before and during the remodel.

Melamine Cabinets? What you need to know

What is Melamine? It is a synthetic material used to produce cabinets in your kitchen and the rest of your home. Melamine has a compressed wood particle core, which is then covered with a resin and paper finish that can be manufactured to embody a variety of styles and colors. To better understand this material we will go through the pros and cons in the following list.

Pros

  • Durability - Because of the tough outer coating, Melamine is resistant to the usual issues presented in the kitchen, like excessive moisture, heat or stains. It is also really easy to clean.
  • Offer a large variety - As mentioned earlier, the synthetic material offers a huge range of finishes. It can come in any shade or color so it is easy to match your kitchen's style.
  • A uniform finish - Unlike solid wood that can vary in grain patterns and color since melamine is manufactured in a controlled setting it offers a consistent finish.
  • Low Cost - Compared to solid wood cabinets, melamine is offered at a much lower price.

Cons

  • Cabinets can be heavy - This may not be your first concern but because of the weight, you may have to purchase heavy-duty brackets to install your cabinets. Without these, the cabinets may fall off the way which will cause expensive damages.
  • Melamine can chip - Even though the outside surface is durable it can be prone to chipping. This leaves the inner wood core exposed which is not attractive. It can also be expensive to have the cabinets refinished.
  • Can be harder to install - Because of how the material is constructed, the cabinets might splinter when using nails or screws. You should use a professional installation team, like GoldenIConstruction, to install your cabinets.
  • Melamine is prone to water damage - Any wooden material is likely to water damage, but if the wood particle core of the cabinets gets saturated with water, it can compromise their structural integrity. Water can be absorbed, in general, more easily in this material than solid wood.

Mistakes that can Derail Your Kitchen Remodel

Are you thinking of remodeling your kitchen? No matter what you are trying to do, whether it's adding an island or knocking down a wall, most people's goal is to get the most out of your remodel without overspending. So what sort of mistakes would cost you more money? Here is a list to help you avoid those mistakes.

1. Not Buying Appliances First

Always choose your appliances first before you choose things like countertops or cabinets. It is much easier to match your cabinets to your appliances than the other way around.

2. Overspending on cabinets and appliances

Cabinets and appliances are incredibly important for your kitchen both aesthetically and functionally. However, there is no need to go broke trying to buy the "best" the store has to offer. Do some research before buying cabinets and appliances. There are many options that give the same look and feel as the high-end cabinets and appliances while staying on budget.

3. Failing to measure

This is one of the most common mistakes among people doing renovations. Make sure you measure twice before buying fixtures, hardware, or appliances.  Then once you do that, you should thoroughly review the product details before purchasing an item to ensure that it fits.

4. Going light on the lighting

Improper lighting can be incredibly problematic, especially in the kitchen. You want to make sure you have enough lighting for every task whether that's cutting, cooking, or using appliances. It is suggested to include a dimmer switch and under cabinet lighting.

5. Botching the Backlash

Misplacing a backlash is a common decorative mistake that many people do. The backsplash should have a clear termination point horizontally, usually aligning with the bottom of the cabinets or where the walls meet. It should never overhang the upper cabinet or turn a corner.

6. Failing to level the floor

Make sure that you check if the floor is leveled before laying the flooring. If you need to level the floor you don't want to have the floor half-laid before realizing. That is a huge extra cost.

Bathroom and Kitchen Renovations for the Fall

Now that we are starting to get into the fall season, many homeowners start to think about how they can improve their home. Fall is a great time to make updates and upgrades to your home. While it may be too late to expect to complete a major home addition or renovation project, there is definitely time before the end of the year to spruce up your home and make some key changes.

Kitchen

The time for barbequing and having dinner in the warm summer air is coming to an end. Fall is the time for many families to bring cooking back indoors. Here are a few ideas on what you can do if may not want to do a full kitchen remodel.

  • You can resurface, paint, or stain your cabinets instead of completely replacing them
  • You can also replace the hardware on your cabinets and drawers which can have a surprisingly transformative effect
  • Resurface or replace your worn or dated countertops add a fresh new feel to your kitchen
  • Put a fresh coat of paint on your walls and ceiling
  • Make your kitchen energy efficient by upgrading your appliances to energy-efficient ones
  •  Get your kitchen ready for all the cooking you’ll be doing this fall and winter by installing a new range hood and fan
  • Install a kitchen island you have always wanted so it's easy to entertain guests

All these changes allow you to upgrade your kitchen little by little without having to do a complete remodel.

Bathroom

If you like having guests over, it might be time to take a look at your bathroom to see how you can make it a little nicer. Here are a few ideas to make the room a bit more presentable.

  • Repaint the walls and ceiling
  • Give your bathroom a deep clean by cleaning or scrubbing the tiles. You can do this by yourself or hire professionals.
  • Replace your vanity and mirror
  • Add a textured wall covering for a more inviting feel

What to do with your spare room?

If you are lucky enough to have an extra room, you may be wondering what to do with it. There are plenty of different ideas that can fit into your home based on the needs and tastes of your family members.  Here are some ideas to get you started brainstorming on what your room can be turned into.

A nook for quiet contemplation or relaxing

This is a great option if you have an attic space or a small room available. The space allows you to have some valuable me time in a cozy comfrotable setting. You could curl up with a book, have some quiet tome to clear your head or unwind with loved ones. In this space it is best to keep furniture and technology to a minimum. Focus on minimal decorations and cushy & comfortable seating.

A bedroom for the children and then a future guest room

Do you have kids that are demanding their own space? Well if you turn the space into a bedroom for the childrne then when they grow up ot can be conveniently turned into a guest room. You would just have to move their belongings and rearrange the beds and add some storage.

A media room

The spare room could be turned into a media room that allows your family to spend time together afte a long day. They can enjoy watching movies, tv or play games together. For an added bonus add a fire place for extra comfort.

A reading room

If getting lost in a new book is what you need in your life then this might be the solution for you. You can add some really comfy seating like an armchair or recliner and then surround your self with your beloved books. Make sure you arrange for ideal surface & wall lighting as well as overhead lighting to allow for the comfort of reading any time of the day or night.

Home Gym

A functional and well equiped gym is a great way to utilize your extra space. It will allow you to not only save on a gym membership but will also make it easier for you to work out.

A Home Office

If you work from home, or always bring your work home this is a great use of the space. Make sure you furnish it properly with suffiecient cabinets, comfortable work station, and a supportive chair.

Where and How to Store your Stuff During a Remodel

When you are remodeling your home there are a lot of moving parts. Other than figuring out design choices, like what countertops to choose, you also need to figure out logistics. One of these logistics is where are you going to keep all your stuff? Storage during a remodel can be tricky since you want to keep your stuff out of the way while maintaining easy access to your items. Here are five temporary storage options that could help.

1. Rent a Storage Container

A portable storage container is a great solution because it's like having your own storage unit in your driveway. This is a great solution for a remodel because it provides you with the ability to completely clear items out of your home while also maintaining the flexibility and convenience of having those items on hand when you need them.

Make sure that you do your research before picking a storage container. There are many different options that different companies provide. These options range in size, cost, and delivery options with size being the most valuable so don't skimp on the size of the container.  Pick what makes the most sense for your living situation.

The amount of time you keep the portable storage container on your property is up to you. However, you may need permission from the homeowners association if you live in a condo or townhome. Also make sure you are following the rules and get the proper permissions from your town, city or village. Make sure you invest in a heavy-duty lock to protect your stuff since the portable storage company does not provide one.

2. Designate another room for storage

This option is great if you have another room in your home that you don't use very often, for example, a guest bedroom or an empty corner of the basement. This is the most cost-effective option as long as you are not remodeling your entire space since you might not have enough space to spare. If you are having trouble giving up your extra space, just remember this is only temporary. Make sure you do leave your self space to move around in the space so don't box yourself into space.

3. Hire Moving Labor

It can be very difficult to move heavy furniture or boxes even if it is just from your house to your driveway. Consider hiring a moving company to assist you with the move. Make sure you look at lots of different company, at least 3, and get quotes. Only work with a company that is licensed and insured.

4. Store things with Family or Friends

If you don't have room to store your items, maybe you know someone else who does. Ask around and see if anyone has some extra space and are willing to store some items for you. Just make sure that you check timelines with them and clarify if they expect a certain pickup date for those items.

5. Use Self Storage

If you won't need to access your items frequently or you can't keep a portable storage container in your driveway, a traditional self-storage facility is a great option. You can also opt to just store your furniture in the facility and just keep smaller items in your home. If you can’t transport your things on your own to the facility, you can always rent a portable container and have the company pick it up and store it for you. They will just drop it right back off when you’re done with your remodel.

What you need to know before renovating a NYC Co-Op

Renovations are sometimes a must, no matter if you have only lived there for a year or if it has been a long time. However, by living in a Co-op there is a list of rules and regulations that you need to follow and that includes renovations. Here are some questions you need to ask and the information you need to know before starting.

Can I even renovate my NYC Co-Op?

The answer to this very important question lies in your property lease. Reread your lease and that should tell you the guidelines you need to follow. Every property has slightly different rules but here are some general alteration guidelines that are pretty standard for co-op association renovation approval.

Approval needed

  • Removing or adding walls – If you want to do any change to the layout of your unit will require approval. Even if the removal of the wall between your kitchen and living space seems simple, speak with your board before starting.
  • Electrical or plumbing updates – If your project involves any wires or pipes it will need the board's approval. The more pipes or wires that are hidden under the floor or ceiling the harder it will to get approved.
  • Any Full Updates -  If you are trying to completely update a kitchen or bathroom be prepared for a lengthy approval process. You will need to provide every detail and may have a deadline to get it done. This deadline might come with heavy fines for you if your contractor misses the deadline.

No Approval needed

  • Painting - This normally doesn't need approval but definitely before painting you should check with your building manager just to be sure.
  • Small Cosmetic Changes - Switching out small details like faucets or showerheads normally doesn’t need approval. But if your building is LEED certified, make sure the new fixtures meet the standard requirements.
  • Hanging Wall Art - Most people assume this is a small change but make sure you ask before you drill holes in the wall. Some Co-ops don't allow you to drill any holes in the wall.

How to get approval?

Be aware that even though there aren't that many steps to get approved it still might take some time. The first step is to contact your co-op’s managing agent. You don't have to go to the board yet since the managing agent will be able to provide you with the updated list of building's alteration agreement. Then if your alterations require approval, write a formal letter to the board outlining your proposed work. In this letter, you should inquire if consent is required and if there are any other details you need to provide. Some buildings require contractors to be licensed and insured and may have guidelines about what time of year renovations can occur.  You also may even have some fees associated with your project.

As long as you are following your buildings alteration policy then it should be approved. If the board wants anymore information make sure that you provide it as quickly as possible.

Renovation Tips

Speak about renovations before buying your co-op - By making sure that you understand what is allowed with renovations going in to buying your co-op then it will save you many questions later. Also if you are buying an older co-op and know that you will need to renovate, think about adding your renovation plans with your application.

Seek approval before doing anything - This is incredibly important. Even if you make not think you need approval, still speak to the building manager. This will save you a lot of trouble if you do end up needing approval.

Find the right contractor- Always hire a contractor. If you know your board will need to approve your renovations, having a contractor can help you come up with plans and the proper details to share with them.

Have a plan and a backup plan - Having multiple plans in case something goes wrong is very important. You can never predict how a renovation will go. It could be a minor or major issue so make sure that you have multiple different plans. Have less expensive options if your budget gets out or control or have lodging set up elsewhere in case you miss the deadline and you’re without a bathroom or kitchen for several days.

 

Essential Tips to Choose the Perfect Bathroom Tile

Are you nervous or overwhelmed with choosing a bathroom tile? I can understand why, since there are so many sizes, shapes, colors and designs to choose from. Luckily, there are a few tips that can narrow down your options and make your final selection a lot easier.

1.Think about size

Tile comes in a huge range of sizes in any store. The range from less than one inch-by-one inch to several feet-by-several feet. You may think large tiles doesn't make sense in a smaller bathroom but they create fewer grout lines making the floor feel like more of a continuous surface. If the tiles are smaller like  mosaic tiles, require more grou and then more cleaning especially if they are in wet places like the shower.

2. Balance Different Tile Types

Most bathrooms use multiple types of tile to create a cohesive design. When you are selecting tiles it is highly recommended that you don't choose no more than three different tiles. If not, too many tile types, colors, and sizes will seem overwhelming. If you only use one tile type there will be very little variety meanng that it needs an accent tile with a different size, finish, or color.

3. Opt for a Neutral Floor and Ceiling

If you decide on using a neutral floor color it will allow you to experiment more with accent colors on the walls. Having a neutral floor allows you to push your eye upwards to the color on the wall. Also by painting the cieling a neutral color it has the same effect.

4. Consider your Whole Color Pallette

Developing a color pallete is one of the hardest parts. A good starting point is to start with a neutral pallete and then find one tile that you love and then work around that tile. This tile could be a simple tile you use almost everywhere, or a more extravagant tile that you use more like an accent. By having one tile this will make it easier to pick out complimentary tiles as needed.

5. Don't Neglect Texture

Bathrooms require frequent cleaning and smooth tiles may be easy to clean but can also be a slipping hazard if they are under feet. Because of this, it is better to put a slightly textured tile under your feet and a smooth tile on the wall. A textured tile can also feel good on your feet.

6. Pick Tiles that Share Dimension

It is helpful to choose tiles that share similar dimensions so that grout lines line up and so it is easier to install. A way of doing this is by making sure the dimensions are a ll multiples of each other. For exampl, using a 12 inch-by-12 inch floor tile, with a four inch-by-four inch wall tile and a one inch-by-one inch border tile.

7. Don't Forget about the Grout

Grout is not only important to make sure the surface is water resistante but it's color is also essential to your design. If you are using a darker tile, white grout lines will contrast sharply, while a grout with a similar tone will be more subtle and, if desired, can almost blend in with the rest of the tile. There is also a trend right now of using a very simple, neutral tiles, like a while subway tile, and then using a brightly colored, eye-catching grout in a fun color for an unexpected, playful touch.