Choose Your Own Spring Cleaning Plan

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Instead of trying to do it all — and ending up doing nothing — pick a spring cleaning approach that suits your motivation

The thought of spring cleaning can be as entrancing as a fairy tale — but getting through a giant list of tasks while having a busy life can be just as unrealistic as a cheerful Snow White twirling about in the forest, with birds tweeting and helping sweep with brooms in their little beaks. The key to successful spring cleaning, then, is to not try to do it all. Instead, pick from one of these six themes for your spring cleaning — and focus your energy where it will count. And if you decide to put on music, fling open the windows and twirl around with your mop, we won’t tell.
by Murchison-Hume
Murchison-Hume
Spring cleaning focus: Bust dust and clutter. This can be a satisfying plan to follow because when you’re done, your home should be noticeably cleaner and less cluttered. Start with clutter clearing, because the less stuff is in your way, the easier it will be to clean surfaces. Just don’t consider the decluttering done until you have actually removed the items you don’t want from your home; otherwise, it will have a way of working itself back into your closets, cupboards and drawers. If you know you will have many items to donate (especially if some of them are furniture) call around in advance and see if a local charitable organization will do a pickup — having a pickup scheduled can be a good way to get motivated to get the work done.
Transitional Entry by Thorsen Construction
Thorsen Construction
For any clutter-clearing endeavor to be a success, it’s best to get the other members of your household onboard. Ideally, each person would be responsible for decluttering his or her own belongings — at the very least, try to garner some support for your clutter-clearing efforts and encourage people to pitch in as they can. In each space (room, closet or cupboard) you tackle, follow these three steps:

Remove everything.
Vacuum or wipe down the empty space.
Put back only what you want to keep.

Modern Kitchen by Giulietti Schouten Architects
Giulietti Schouten Architects
Spring cleaning focus: Get cooking. If you love to cook (or want to cook more), it can be well worth the effort it takes to give the kitchen and pantry a thorough cleaning. Start by clearing out old food and spices, and wash the interior of your fridge and food cupboards. Clean all of those forgotten nooks and crannies, including inside the oven, microwave and toaster oven, plus the dish drainer. Finish by wiping down the walls (which can get surprisingly grimy) and windows.

If you have a bit more time, give your breakfast nook or dining area a once-over. Chairs and table legs (especially in households with kids) can use an occasional cleaning. Put pads on the feet of chairs to protect your floors, clean dust from the corners of the room and set something pretty in the center of the table.
Eclectic Living Room by Luisa Volpato Interiors
Luisa Volpato Interiors
Spring cleaning focus: Textile refresh. If it’s been a while since you’ve cleaned your rugs or upholstery, this could be the right focus for you. Start by laundering small washable items, like shower curtains, cotton rugs and washable slipcovers, at home. When laundering slipcovers, try putting them back on while they’re still barely damp for a better fit.
Transitional Entry by Brett Mickan Interior Design
Brett Mickan Interior Design
Take larger area rugs and removable pillow covers to be professionally cleaned. If you have wall-to-wall carpeting, have it professionally cleaned or rent a carpet cleaner and do it yourself. Drapery and upholstery that cannot be cleaned by another method can usually be safely steam cleaned using a real steam cleaner designed to be safe for textiles — not a carpet shampooer or hard-flooring steam cleaner. (Always check for care directions and test a spot first.)
Entry by Shift Interiors
Shift Interiors
Spring cleaning focus: Green and clean. Around Earth Day (April 22) is a great time to give your home a healthy, ecofriendly makeover. Consider making one or more of these changes during your spring cleaning:

Use natural cleansers (or baking soda and white vinegar) to tackle cleaning projects like mopping, wiping counters and caring for furniture.
Cut up old T-shirts to make rags and use them in place of paper towels.
Replace disposables with reusable items, like glass water bottles, stainless steel straws, cloth shopping bags and cloth napkins.

To clean the air, bringing in an air purifier is a good idea — but don’t neglect simpler methods as well, like opening windows to let in fresh air and keeping plenty of healthy houseplants.
Eclectic Bathroom by Studio Stamp
Studio Stamp
Spring cleaning focus: Deep clean. Let’s face it: In the course of a regular weekend, it never seems like a good time to get to those truly deep (and often pretty yucky) cleaning projects you know you should be doing. Why not dedicate a day to doing all the dirty work you’ve been putting off? Just be sure to plan a nice reward at the end of it!

Here are a few tasks to consider putting on your deep-cleaning to-do list:

Vacuum all of the hard-to-reach places you usually skip, such as deep under the beds and behind furniture.
Clean out the dryer hose and vacuum inside the lint trap.
Clean behind the fridge and vacuum the coils.
Scrub the grout in the kitchen and bath.
Clean out the garbage can and recycling bins.
Dust the light fixtures.
Clean the blinds.

Victorian Exterior by Anthony Crisafulli Photography
Anthony Crisafulli Photography
Spring cleaning focus: Exterior scrub-up. Perhaps staying indoors to clean just when the weather outside is getting bearable sounds like a horrible idea altogether. In that case consider making your spring cleaning all about the exterior of your home. Hose down the siding, clean out the gutters and downspouts, wash the windows and stain the deck. If you feel really inspired, make your way into the garden and clean your tools, edge the lawn and mulch the flowerbeds.

Tell us: Do you do spring cleaning?

original post https://www.houzz.com/ideabooks/45420038/list/choose-your-own-spring-cleaning-plan

Outdoor Living Spaces

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What is a get together without a hot juicy Bar-B-Q involved. That’s where outdoor living spaces come into play, the better your outdoor space, the better the outdoor party and your awesome barbque.

 

Paradise Living, At Home!
Enrich your home and life with the stunning accents and designs that a Columbus, Ohio professional design and remodeler can offer.  With glamorously upgraded counters, cabinets, floors and lighting, any home that lacks something special will become rejuvenated.  With Columbus also being a prime location for outdoor living and seating areas, the possibilities to glamorize and re-energize your Columbus surrounding home have never been as numerous as they are now.  So get ready for the summer breaks with your own resort-style leisure right at home. We are all inspired by and like different types of rock, wood and fabrics, and each of our choices tells others a little more about us.  While some materials such as marble and granite are much more popular than others in the home, you can have a chance to stand out as a style maverick with more unusual or versatile options such as quartz, stainless steel or glazed lava stone.  If there are places you have visited where the surrounding natural beauty appealed to you more than anywhere else, you can mimic the colors and textures of that destination in the materials and fabrics in your home design.  Not only will you trick yourself into believing you are on vacation all of the time, your unique design will certainly be a conversation starter at parties! The lighting options employed in your home really have the power to produce the kind of mood you desire, or may be inadvertently causing unwanted feelings as well.  If it often feels like your lighting doesn’t tailor well-enough to the layout of your home, with too many dark spots or excessively bright ones, mention it to your local Columbus, Ohio design and remodeling experts, who know of many options that have worked wonders for other Columbus and neighboring homeowners.  Nothing says cozy like a well-lit home and there are also energy savings that could be achieved with a more environmentally-conscious lighting approach. In San Diego, possibly home of the most envied weather in America, you can’t let the outdoor seating and living enthusiasm pass you by.  What could be more relaxing and fulfilling than spending an evening with good friends out of doors in cozy chairs and a fire? An outdoor sleeping area with a cozy bed and mosquito nets would be absolutely heavenly and a wonderful way to reconnect with nature.  Throw in an outdoor private shower and you are now officially in paradise.  Enjoy your home like you never imagined you could, with a marvelous home, kitchen and bath remodel from your Columbus, Ohio design and remodeling experts.


From kitchen upgrades to total home remodeling, SemBro Designs and Remodeling knows how to do it right and we love to build the confidence of every Columbus client, year after year.

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A Perfect Home Improvement

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A More Perfect Home Improvement – No Matter What!

For the best your home has to offer, let Columbus Ohio’s Best Local Construction Company, Best Contractor and Best Kitchen and Bath Remodeler for the fifth straight year guide your family on the home improvement journey of their dreams.   Here are some ways that working with Columbus’s most talented home design crew – SemBro Designs and Remodeling – will ensure your home design is a success for countless years to come.

  1. SemBro Designs and Remodeling uses the most straight-forward processes to completely plan every step of your home remodel and help ensure that it will be exactly as you hoped and more.  With a digital rendering process, it is possible to view how the finished look in your home will be before the work crew gets started!  If you aren’t happy with the projected changes, let our talented and award-winning designers know your concerns and help you plan a remodel you are sure to love for years and years.
  2. In our SemBro Designs and Remodeling showroom, get ideas for inspiration in your home from viewing photos of other Columbus home remodels completed near you.  Check out what the neighborhood is doing to its homes to make your remodel as similar or unique as you are.  And with all of the samples for wood and stone right on sight to put together in countless combinations, you will see how it feels to become excited for the beautiful new home that will soon be under your hands and feet!
  3. SemBro Designs and Remodeling was voted Best Kitchen and Bath Remodeler with the Union Tribune for the past four years in a row.  That attests to our Columbus clients’ continued loyalty and support, and so does the fact that a high percentage of customers return for other parts of their home to be improved.  Whether you are looking to live more elegantly, get more function and durability for your kitchen or bath, or simply to increase your home’s value, you can’t go wrong with a stunning Columbus SemBro Designs remodel.
  4. Our SemBro Designs and Remodeling crew takes great pride in working for a company voted Best Local Construction Company and Best Contractor for the past four consecutive years.  And one of the reasons is because our crew members are so multi-talented.  We hire team members with a wide array of skill sets and experience to ensure that our clients know who is working on their home at all times, no matter what complexity the work entails.




Tell your friends bring them with you and let’s get this new kitchen project started today.

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5 Columbus Home Remodeling Tips for Summer!

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We all know how amazing Central Ohio’s summers can be, especially after a long winter. Summer is a cherished time so prepare your home for the upcoming summer with simple home remodeling tips and advice.

1. Consider remodeling or renovating your outdoor deck or patio

When you plan your home’s outdoor living space it’s important to keep in mind the layout you will need to accommodate both large and small gatherings. Making the necessary home improvements will take away the stress of hosting and will allow you to relax and enjoy the gorgeous Columbus, Ohio weather with your guests.

 

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2. Avoid bathroom and kitchen disasters with a simple inspection

It’s always frustrating when kitchen appliances don’t perform with efficiency when you need them to, but during a party it can mean disaster. Tune up these sensitive areas with a home inspection by your local general contractor to ensure your high traffic areas run smoothly. Making home improvements to your kitchen and bathroom before you host will save you time and money.

 

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3. Room additions to add value and comfort

When hosting summer parties it may be necessary to let friends and family stay overnight. Having kids or needing a home office can drastically reduce your home’s storage and sleeping space. Prepare for the needed space with a room addition remodeling so you can be ready for anything.

 

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4. Increase home energy efficiency

With the longer and warmer summer days come the higher, unpredictable energy bills. Go green and take advantage of the Ohio’s winds with the latest in wind energy options. These types of upgrades can be subsidized in part by central Ohio’s energy providers to encourage more efficient homes.

 

5. Remodeling and renovation for a potential home sale

If you’ve been thinking about selling your central Ohio home, summer is a great time to do it and simple home, kitchen, or bathroom renovations can add significantly to the resale value of your home. Summer invites a rush of potential home-buyers who are looking for the best modern home designs. Give your home the updated feel and look that home-buyers are attracted to by improving your presentation for open-house season.


Get an early start on remodeling and renovating your Columbus, Ohio home for summer. With an award-winning home design and remodeling team from SemBro Designs, you too can add value to your home, decrease your energy bill, and party in comfort this summer season!

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8 Tips for Hiring a Contractor

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Sometimes it makes sense to hire a professional contractor rather than take on a job yourself. But choosing the wrong contractor can lead to delays, subpar work, and even legal problems. This guide will help you choose a contractor and ensure a good working relationship.

A contractor could be in your home and around your family for days, weeks, or even months while changing the way your house looks and functions. So if you don’t like a contractor for any reason, don’t hire him or her, says Tony LaPelusa, past president of the National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI).
“The biggest thing is choosing the right contractor,” he explains. “If somebody says something that’s even an embellishment, it’s enough of a reason not to trust him and move on to the next contractor. You have to trust the contractor 100 percent, not 95 percent.”

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1. Make Sure the Contractor is Licensed, Bonded, and Insured

Having a license and insurance demonstrates a contractor’s credibility and knowledge. The license shows that contractors have taken an exam and proved they know building codes and processes. A license minimizes the risk to homeowners of getting ripped off. To be sure, get the contractor’s license number or look up general contractors registration.
If a contractor doesn’t have insurance and a worker gets hurt on your project, you could be liable. The same goes with accidents that damage your next-door neighbor’s home. If you have scaffolding that fell and damaged the property next door, you want the contractor’s liability to cover the cost of that damage.

Get proof of insurance.

2. Pick a contractor who specializes in your project type

It’s important to research contractors to know if they have experience in a type of project. Today, so many projects are regulated and code-specific that you want someone who knows the details of what’s required.
The professionals often take classes and research the kinds of projects they undertake, so they’re experts in their fields. This enables them to address potential problems and perform the work correctly. A good Remodeler knows how to anticipate the nuances of the work.
If you’re asking several contractors for a bid, make sure each one is using the same set of plans and specifications, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) advises on its website:

“You can’t effectively compare estimates from contractors who plan to use different brands of building materials.”

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3. Have a Detailed Contract in Place Before any Work Begins

The contract should cover costs, brands of items being installed, approximate start and finish dates, and the complete set of drawings being used with written specifications. There’s never too much detail in a contract. If a specific brand for a part hasn’t been agreed upon yet, the contract can include allowances instead, such as “up to $500 for a front door.”
A lot of homeowners talk to multiple contractors to get bids on the job, and then they can’t remember who told them what. The contract spells out everything. A contract is really an expectation setting, right down to what color the hinges are. It’s all about expectations. If we agree on everything upfront, then there are no surprises.

4. Find out Who’s Performing the Work

Will the person you’re hiring do the work himself, or will it be subcontracted to someone else? It’s nice to know who will be showing up on your doorstep, and large jobs like additions and major kitchen remodels often involve multiple subcontractors, such as electricians and plumbers. General contractors often subcontract specialty jobs, like roofing or vinyl siding, to other pros.
Having subcontractors is sometimes a good thing. They have a more thorough knowledge of their part of the job. It all goes back to hiring a contractor you can trust because he’s never going to put a bad subcontractor on your job.

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5. Give the Contractor Guidelines for Working In or Around Your Home

If you don’t want the workers showing up before a certain time, staying past a certain hour, using your bathroom, or you need to have the project finished by a specific date, tell the contractor before you hire him. The contractor may not want or be able to accept the job based on your parameters.
The contractor has to know what your limits are and what your expectations are. If people don’t want you starting until 9:30 and want you out by 4, that project—instead of taking 30 days—might take 45. That means it might cost additional money.

6. Know Your Responsibilities

You may have to move everything out of a room so it can be painted or remove a fence so a concrete truck can be driven into your backyard.
SemBro Designs, for instance, doesn’t move items out of a room because they don’t want to be responsible for broken TVs or stereos. Because we recommend a furniture mover, we hold a pre-construction meeting with homeowners to discuss their roles. We set all of those expectations in writing. It may be that you need to take everything off those six walls and move the furniture out of the room.
The biggest fear, to be honest, could be losing someone’s dog or cat. It’s good to know upfront where you’re putting the cat or dog.

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7. Look at Work Samples

This lets you see a contractor’s handiwork and may spark ideas for your project. Samples are more important than references. They allow you to see the quality of our work. You can see the designs we came up with and how creative we are.
Looking at a contractor’s past projects also lets you see the variety of work the company has performed, such as contemporary, Craftsman, or historic designs.

8. Think Local

Area contractors who have been in business for a long time are usually reliable and safe bets for projects. If they didn’t do good work in your community, they wouldn’t still be around. You should look for an established business location with a show room on site. You could check the Better Business Bureau for any unpleasant complaints, how long they have been accredited with the BBB and what rating they hold. Shopping locally is the best approach. The company is involved in the community, the workers are probably local, and if you have a problem later, a local contractor is going to be on top of it.


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