Affordable Renovation Finishes

Beautiful Daniela is back again! This time she is writing about Affordable Renovation Finishes. If you would like to secure her services, don’t be afraid to email her by clicking here. It looks like Daniela will be writing articles regularly in the future for WhereDoesAllMyMoneyGo.com since she has been so popular. Welcome aboard D! :)

Over the years and after hundreds of clients, I know first hand that the idea of a renovation can bring on a whole slew of emotions. But, you too can have a stress free renovation if you go into it with a realistic budget, a plan of action and an informed decision. When it comes to finishes in particular, you want to look for those that are not only pleasing to the eye, but are worth the investment to protect the integrity and value of your home – or better yet, increase it!

Generally speaking, man-made materials typically come in under cost when compared to natural. But what’s the better choice? Natural or man-made? The cheapest or the most expensive? Which begs the question: how often do you want to renovate? Read on for 5 finishes that are not only worth the money, but can last as long as your home is still standing.

1)         The Chopping Block

The beauty of a kitchen counter is that it can really set the look of your kitchen in one shot. I also believe it to be a finish you just shouldn’t chince out on because it always seems to be the home’s headquarters. Plus it gets the brunt of abuse – you cook, chop, serve, entertain, touch, stain, scratch, and spill on it!

Daniela’s Pick: Quartz! Quartz countertops are man made and engineered from a mixture of minerals, bonding agents, resins and color which are ground, compressed and heated until solid. It’s then polished to bring out a high gloss shine. Quartz is super hard, scratch resistant, non-porous and impervious to water, moisture and bacteria.

As an affordable alternative, granite is often the number one choice for countertops because of its durability and resistance to food stains, heat and burn markings. It does need to be sealed every now and then, but because it’s all natural, each piece of granite is unique!

2)         Have a Seat!

With how much you invest in a renovation, consider ditching that bush league futon from your college dorm, and invest in some quality pieces of furniture that will not only help you achieve your desired look, but are strong enough to take you into the next decade (or two!)

Because a sofa is subject to daily wear and abuse, three fabric clinchers to look for are, fade resistance, impermeability to stains and a high weave or fiber content which helps the fabric holds its shape and prevent tears or pilling (those annoying little fuzz balls that develop after repeated wear. Ick!)

Daniela’s Pick’s: Leather (faux or real, it’s up to you!) is a great choice for upholstery fabric because of its durability, longevity and versatility. Its colour choices are endless, it’s super easy to clean, it doesn’t absorb odors and it becomes softer with age.

If you have a tighter budget, try Microfiber! It’s a suede-like material made from ultra fine polyester. It’s durable, extremely affordable and it’s amazingly resilient when it comes to cleaning and stain removal.

D’s Tip: When shopping for fabric, the retailer may present you with a “fabric grade”. This is based on the intricacy of the weave, fiber content and construction. Grade “A” is considered cheaper leading up to “F” which is more expensive. However, don’t be hoodwinked by the grade as it does not necessarily mean the fabric is of higher quality!

3)         The Checkerboard

When it comes to flooring, the first thing you should consider is where the finish will be used. More importantly, something that won’t discolor over time and can really stand up to the elements or high traffic areas. Natural tiles can be porous and stain easily if not properly sealed, while others can be slippery or show imperfections if not treated suitably.

Daniela’s Pick: Porcelain tile. It’s hard-wearing and fireproof! Plus, its scratch, fade, moisture and stain resistant! It can actually be more affordable than natural finishes, and it has a great “what if” factor – because it has an extremely low absorption rate, the floor will remain undamaged if you were to ever have an unfortunate leak or other potentially damaging problem.

D’s Tip: To prevent your floor from looking too choppy, try matching your grout as close as possible to create the look of a seamless floor.

4)         Walking on a Cloud

Carpeting is always an affordable and practical option for flooring, as it really adds an instant softness to the home. It absorbs sound, is warm and toasty on the feet and is offered in literally thousands of colors and patterns. Because carpet can be susceptible to spills and heavy traffic, look for carpet fibers that offer durability, crush resistance and are low maintenance when it comes to removing dirt and stains.

Daniela’s Pick: Nylon. It’s the strongest of the synthetic carpet fibers which makes it the perfect choice for an active and traffic heavy household. Nylon is very resilient, has great abrasion resistance and can repel mildew and moisture. Also, because nylon has a strong yarn memory, it has minimal pilling and shedding and has high resistance to crushing!

D’s Tip: Try choosing carpet that has anti stain treatments designed directly into the fiber for easier cleaning and stain removal.

5)         The Scrubbing Factor

Choosing the proper paint finish may seem like an obvious choice, however, difference finishes offer different advantages. Some create a certain atmosphere, while others are easier to clean and even hide blemishes and flaws. Truth be told, the shinier the paint, the easier the cleaning. But perhaps a higher gloss isn’t for you? There is a right and a wrong choice for paint finishes to be used throughout the home – you just need to know where to use them! This week’s picks are based on durability, ease of cleaning, suitability to the room and endurance.

Daniela’s Picks:

  • Semi-gloss – For rooms subject to steam or moisture like kitchen’s and bathroom’s
  • Matte/Flat – Great for hallways and can hide bumps or cracks as it doesn’t reflect light.
  • Eggshell – The happy medium! Perfect for living rooms, bedrooms and family rooms.
  • Satin – Great for kids’ rooms and any area of heavy traffic.
  • Glossy – Celebrated for use on furniture, some cabinetry or trim

D’s Tip: Remember, sparkle and shine means mega glitz and glamour! Try leaving the high gloss finish to doors and trim!

Next time: Is your home lingering on the market? How to get more than your asking price!

Over the years and after hundreds of clients, I know first hand that the idea of a renovation can bring on a whole slew of emotions. But, you too can have a stress free renovation if you go into it with a realistic budget, a plan of action and an informed decision. When it comes to finishes in particular, you want to look for those that are not only pleasing to the eye, but are worth the investment to protect the integrity and value of your home – or better yet, increase it!

Generally speaking, man-made materials typically come in under cost when compared to natural. But what’s the better choice? Natural or man-made? The cheapest or the most expensive? Which begs the question: how often do you want to renovate? Read on for 5 finishes that are not only worth the money, but can last as long as your home is still standing.

1) The Chopping Block

The beauty of a kitchen counter is that it can really set the look of your kitchen in one shot. I also believe it to be a finish you just shouldn’t chince out on because it always seems to be the home’s headquarters. Plus it gets the brunt of abuse – you cook, chop, serve, entertain, touch, stain, scratch, and spill on it!

Daniela’s Pick: Quartz! It’s synthetic and engineered from a mixture of minerals, bonding agents, resins and color, which are ground, compressed and heated until solid. It’s then polished to bring out a high gloss shine. Quartz is super hard, scratch resistant, non-porous and impervious to water, moisture and bacteria.

As an affordable alternative, granite is often the number one choice for countertops because of its durability and resistance to food stains, heat and burn markings. It does need to be sealed every now and then, but because it’s all natural, each piece of granite is unique!

2) Have a Seat!

With how much you invest in a renovation, consider ditching that bush league futon from your college dorm, and expend in some quality pieces of furniture that will not only help you achieve your desired look, but are strong enough to take you into the next decade (or two!)

Because a sofa is subject to daily wear and abuse, three fabric clinchers to look for are, fade resistance, impermeability to stains and a high weave or fiber content which helps the fabric holds its shape and prevent tears or pilling (those annoying little fuzz balls that develop after repeated wear. Ick!)

Daniela’s Pick’s: Leather (faux or real, it’s up to you!) is a great choice for upholstery fabric because of its durability, longevity and versatility. Its colour choices are endless, it’s super easy to clean, it doesn’t absorb odors and it becomes softer with age.

If you have a tighter budget, try Microfiber! It’s a suede-like material made from ultra fine polyester. It’s durable, extremely affordable and it’s amazingly resilient when it comes to cleaning and stain removal.

D’s Tip: When shopping for fabric, the retailer may present you with a “fabric grade”. This is based on the intricacy of the weave, fiber content and construction. Grade “A” is considered cheaper leading up to “F” which is more expensive. However, don’t be hoodwinked by the grade as it does not necessarily mean the fabric is of higher quality!

3) The Checkerboard

When it comes to flooring, the first thing you should consider is where the finish will be used. More importantly, something that won’t discolor over time and can really stand up to the elements or high traffic areas. Natural tiles can be porous and stain easily if not properly sealed, while others can be slippery or show imperfections if not treated suitably.

Daniela’s Pick: Porcelain tile. It’s hard-wearing and fireproof! Plus, its scratch, fade, moisture and stain resistant! It can actually be more affordable than natural finishes, and it has a great “what if” factor – because it has an extremely low absorption rate, the floor will remain undamaged if you were to ever have an unfortunate leak or other potentially damaging problem.

D’s Tip: To prevent your floor from looking too choppy, try matching your grout as close as possible to create the look of a seamless floor.

4) Walking on a Cloud

Carpeting is always an affordable and practical option for flooring, as it really adds an instant softness to the home. It absorbs sound, is warm and toasty on the feet and is offered in literally thousands of colors and patterns. Because carpet can be susceptible to spills and heavy traffic, look for carpet fibers that offer durability, crush resistance and are low maintenance when it comes to removing dirt and stains.

Daniela’s Pick: Nylon. It’s the strongest of the synthetic carpet fibers which makes it the perfect choice for an active and traffic heavy household. Nylon is very resilient, has great abrasion resistance and can repel mildew and moisture. Also, because nylon has a strong yarn memory, it has minimal pilling and shedding and has high resistance to crushing!

D’s Tip: Try choosing carpet that has anti stain treatments designed directly into the fiber for easier cleaning and stain removal.

5) The Scrubbing Factor

Choosing the proper paint finish may seem like an obvious choice, however, difference finishes offer different advantages. Some create a certain atmosphere, while others are easier to clean and even hide blemishes and flaws. Truth be told, the shinier the paint, the easier the cleaning. But perhaps a higher gloss isn’t for you? There is a right and a wrong choice for paint finishes to be used throughout the home – you just need to know where to use them! This week’s picks are based on durability, ease of cleaning, suitability to the room and endurance.

Daniela’s Picks:

· Semi-gloss – For rooms subject to steam or moisture like kitchen’s and bathroom’s

· Matte/Flat – Great for hallways and can hide bumps or cracks as it doesn’t reflect light.

· Eggshell – The happy medium! Perfect for living rooms, bedrooms and family rooms.

· Satin – Great for kids’ rooms and any area of heavy traffic.

· Glossy – Celebrated for use on furniture, some cabinetry or trim

D’s Tip: Remember, sparkle and shine means mega glitz and glamour! Try leaving the high gloss finish to doors and trim!


Next time: Is your home lingering on the market? How to get more than your asking price!

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