Spahn & Rose Blog

Is Upgrading your Kitchen Necessary?

Ahh yes, the kitchen! It is where everyone naturally gravitates to in your home. Whether you are having a party with friends over, or just living another day with the family. It is quite the phenomenon if you actually think about it.

So we know that everyone gathers in the kitchen, and maybe your kitchen is not as attention grabbing and memorable as it could be. Ohh, I should remodel my kitchen! Not only does it increase home value, but will be remembered by friends and family!

Yes, a kitchen remodel can increase home value, and you will have a kitchen that will be remembered. Think about this though. If you plan on moving out of your home in the future, let’s say within five years, is the kitchen going to be worth the cost?

Here are a few things to consider before you update your kitchen….

  1. So you know that within five years or so you are going to sell. You really want to update the kitchen because it will increase resale value. This is true yes, but that is within the home. Everyone talks about this thing called curb appeal… Is your home an inviting place when people drive by? Take this into careful consideration, because this is what brings buyers to your home when it is put on the market.
  2. Is your roof leaking or damaged in any way? Buyers want to know that they don’t have to spend money on the basics of the home. The roof being one of the basic maintenance issues. If you get a new roof, you will be sure to get a majority of your money back when it comes time to sell.
  3. Siding is also huge and falls right in with curb appeal. If you have terrible siding that looks bad from years of wear and tear, this is one of the things you should put your money towards. It will increase curb appeal, and ultimately home value too because a buyer will not have to worry about spending their money on fixing the siding of your home.
  4. Another one that you should consider is the basement. From what I have observed, the basement is becoming more and more of a popular spot in the home. A lot of my friends and family have updated their basements to be the hangout spot. Whether they put a bar in down there, or have couches and TV’s to entertain. If you are not one of those people, you should make sure that your basement is clean and has no water leaks among other problems. Everything can be great in your house, but if your basement needs work, it can make a buyer shut down. So check to make sure all leaks are taken care of, and there is no musty smell like some basements tend to have.

Okay, now that we have gone through just a few of the basic maintenance issues, let’s say that you have all of these taken care of. Everything is up to date and there are no problems. You have a budget set aside for the kitchen. Go For It!

As I stated earlier, the kitchen tends to be the focal point of the home, and can ultimately increase home value. So if you want the home value to go up, and have a kitchen that people remember and love to spend time in, go for it. It really is an investment that you will make all of your money back on and then some.

So to answer the question, is upgrading your kitchen necessary? My answer is yes. But only after you have the basic maintenance of the home done and the budget to upgrade your kitchen. Then by all means go for it, because it really is a smart investment.

Choosing The Right Finish When Painting Your Home

You want to re-paint your home but maybe you don’t know where to start? Or, maybe you do have painted a few times but could use a little help. Either way, here is some advice on picking out the right finish for the room you are painting.

You may hear it be called finishes, sheen level, or shine level. Regardless, they are all the same when it comes down to it. There are certain areas in your home that may require a higher sheen level. Then there are some areas that do not require a higher sheen level, but rather a low one.

Our first question is where your are paint and what you are painting. Those answers will determine what sheen level you will need. As you go up in sheen level, Flat, Eggshell, Satin, Semi-gloss, and Gloss, the wash ability and scrub ability go up, meaning they tend to be stronger. So we will go through each sheen level and tell you where they would be best applied.

 

Flat

CONCEALING Most, if not all flat paint will be applied to your ceilings in your home. Reason being you typically don’t have to worry about scrubbing your ceiling because it’s not exactly something you can reach in most instances.

Where to apply: ceilings, dining room, living room, closets

 

Eggshell & Satin

EASY MAINTENANCE Your eggshell finish will be applied a majority of the time in your living spaces along with the hallways in your home. So the living rooms, maybe a den and so on. The hallways are pretty self-explanatory, but if you do not have the best of lighting in your hallways, and want it to pop a little bit more, my recommendation would be going to a satin.

Using a satin finish gives you more of a shine than the eggshell, and is more durable. With that being said, you should think about places in your home that may need a little bit more of a durable paint. You can use a satin in a bathroom, kitchen and even a garage. As I’ve said before, you will be able to wash this a lot easier or scrub harder on those things that may end up on your walls. It’s also nice because it doesn’t pop like a semi-gloss or gloss would, and if you were looking for something like this, it would be the perfect fit.

Where to apply: high-traffic areas

 

Semi-Gloss

DURABILITY When it comes to using a semi-gloss, you want to think of surfaces that might get banged against, or a high traffic area where it is susceptible to being damaged. A strong finish that is typically used on kitchen cabinets, trim around your home and doors and other woodworking that you may want to do. I would always tell my customers for cabinets that this finish is the way to go if you have children. We were all young at some point, and we’re not necessarily easy on objects like that.

Where to apply: trim, woodwork, cabinetry

 

Gloss

HIGHLIGHT As for using a gloss finish within the home, it’s not widely used. A majority of the time when thinking of a gloss finish, it is on old furniture that needs some touching up. Which in most instances from what I’ve experienced has been outdoor chairs that sit on the decks and patios of homes. Gloss finishes deliver the highest level of shine and durability.

Where to apply: doors, trim, other architectural elements

 

Although this is just some of the basics of getting started on your house for painting, I hope it does help you when the time rolls around and you want a new look. Obviously everyone has their own opinion on what finishes they want where, and that is perfectly okay. If you are not sure about doing it on your own, or want more in depth advice, I would stop by somewhere with paint and pick their brains for more details. If you don’t want to paint your home at all by yourself, then I would recommend finding a contractor because they will be able to take you step by step through the process of what will be done and what is best.

 

The Tiny Home Movement

It seems as if the tiny home trend has taken off, and is here to stay. Until the next new trendy item hits the market… which we all know will be in the near future. For the meantime though, let’s focus on the pros and cons of the infamous tiny homes.

As we can all figure out, they are sufficient with respects to overall cost of living, which is very low. Then you have utility bills that are also in turn lower.

Unless you do have to install plumbing and water, then that may add on to the overall cost of buying the tiny home. Nonetheless, they are still cheaper than the alternative of buying a home that is bigger than 400 square feet.

It’s also maybe well known – maybe not – that you can easily move these tiny homes. A majority of them can be on wheels, so when you’re tired of living where you are, you can just up and leave. For some of us who like to move around, that’s a nice benefit. Call it a modern mobile home if you will…

With pros there are always cons in almost any circumstance, if you like to have your personal space, but also enjoy your significant other, this could be a tough situation. If you get into an argument and need to cool off, your only real option is to go outside. But who fights with their spouse? Hah.

If you’re a person who likes to make the occasional quick run to Target and ends up stocking up on bulk size quantities of laundry soap and toilet paper and hitting up every clearance aisle, you may have to change your ways. Limited space, limited storage, means more trips and smaller trips to the store for food and toiletries.

Those are just some of the more obvious pros and cons that are associated with living in a tiny home. Now let’s look at three pros and the next three cons that may not have been so obvious. Nonetheless, they are things to keep in mind if you are thinking about trying the tiny home lifestyle.

PROS
  1. Customizing your tiny home can be fun and the possibilities are endless. The main issue would be storage, but you could figure out how to store the must haves. If designing isn’t your thing, you could talk to one of our designers who would be happy to help you.
  2. Ah yes, storage, as mentioned above seems to be the main issue when it comes to these tiny homes. Cabinets can be a solution to this problem. Yes they would have to be smaller than the norm, but we can help you maximize the space in your tiny home.
  3. The big reason a majority of people decide that the tiny home is right for them, is money. These homes on average cost around $23,000 but it depends on the size and materials. We would be happy to sit down and work through the details of your project needs and develop an estimate to see if the tiny home is for you.
CONS
  1. Are you a person who likes to host? These tiny homes are not the ideal space for hosting a get together for friends or family. You certainly wouldn’t be able to create a gathering space as fabulous as those on our gallery page…
  2. From just plain hot and humid, to frigid cold (sometimes the next day), you never really know what to expect. The winter months can be especially harsh because of the cold and keeping your home warm can be a challenge. Weather barriers and extra insulation is a must have if you choose to live in a tiny home in the Midwest.
  3. The tiny home may not be the safest place during severe weather in the summer. We can experience high winds, flooding, and the occasional tornado where we are located. If you live in tornado alley, we would not recommend living in a tiny home.

In My Opinion…

For some of us it is a wonderful idea. It is cost effective, you have the ability to move around at your own convenience and you can design the home any way you want to. There are many more pros to this. I’m a 6’1”, 225 lb football player that needs a lot of space. I can also eat a lot of food, need a bed that is bigger than I am tall, and like to have an area where I can escape for a while with no distractions. A tiny home is just not in my future. Is it in yours?

Holy Shiplap!

Holy Shiplap!  When you think of ship lap, what comes to mind?

If you have seen any of the recent DIY shows lately like Rehab Addict, American Pickers or Fixer Upper, you have probably heard a lot about shiplap.

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