Outdoor Kitchen Remodel

Designing the Outdoor Kitchen Remodel – The grill is the main ingredient, but there’s a lot more to a successful recipe.

Today’s outdoor kitchen designs—whether part of a new home or a remodel—are more likely than ever to complement a home’s architectural aesthetic and environment. To create inviting and functional living spaces, where all the features work together, you need a refined and thoughtful approach. Here are a few design concepts to help you make that happen.

Start With the Grill

The heart of any outdoor kitchen, big or small, is the grill. It can make or break a client’s satisfaction with a project, so select the best one that fits within the budget.

When it comes to grills, there are no uniform depths, heights, or widths. This means that upgrading a grill sometime in the future could present a challenge, so its selection should be based on the cooks your clients aspire to be, rather than on the cooks they are now. Also keep in mind outdoor cooking options other than the standard gas grill, such as pizza ovens, smokers, cooktops, and charcoal- or wood-fired grills.

Once the grill has been selected, the next big decision is placement. If your clients entertain often, position the grill so it is perpendicular to the dining area to keep the cook in the party. That way, the cook can work without having his or her back turned to the guests and without having the open hood in the way.
In the Zone

The perfect outdoor kitchen for entertaining is about more than just the appliances. Like indoor kitchens, outdoor kitchens are made up of functional zones. These include hot, cold, wet, and dry zones.

Hot zones, not surprisingly, consist of all cooking areas, like grills, pizza ovens, and cooktops; cold zones include refrigeration and freezers; wet zones include sinks and adjacent workspace; and dry zones are dry prep counters and storage. The key to designing an outdoor kitchen that functions well is planning for all four zones to work together, along with providing plenty of countertop space to support the “workflows” of prepping, cooking, serving, and cleaning. For example, the cold zone should be next to the wet zone, to facilitate moving food from the refrigerator to the sink to wash it and get it ready for grilling in the hot zone.

Think about other outdoor living activities, as well. If there is a pool, consider placing beverage refrigeration near it.

Defining Size

Outdoor kitchens come in all sizes. When you’re determining design, layout, and available space for your clients, it’s helpful to think in terms of four basic categories.

Small (10 linear feet). A small kitchen generally includes a grill, a cooktop, a sink, and storage. It needs at least 36 inches of usable countertop frontage, no less than 24 inches deep.

Essentials (13 linear feet). A bit larger, this size typically has a refrigerator in addition to a grill, a cooktop, a sink, and storage. It should have at least 48 inches of countertop frontage, at least 24 inches deep.

Medium (16 linear feet). To the essentials kitchen, a medium kitchen adds more storage and counter space and sometimes more refrigeration. There should be at least 72 inches of countertop frontage, 24 inches deep.

Large (more than 20 linear feet). A large kitchen has all the amenities and can accommodate multiple cooks. Provide 156 inches of countertop frontage at 24 inches deep.

Space to Land

You can almost never have too much countertop space. Outdoor kitchens are typically smaller than their indoor counterparts, and insufficient countertop space is still one of the most common design shortcomings I see.

Ideally, you should provide your clients with free and clear “landing areas” on both sides of grills, sinks, and cooktops. This space can be used for ingredients, cutting boards, platters, colanders, and other items that the cook needs to have close at hand while using the station. When it’s time to pull the swordfish steaks off the grill, for instance, there needs to be space next to the grill where a platter can be ready and waiting.

Omitting landing areas on one side or both sides of key equipment such as the grill or the sink is the most common design mistake. Similarly, grills and sinks should never be placed at the end of a counter run; there should always be landing areas to the left and right sides of both.

To figure out how much space you should provide for your clients, you can use the following recommendations of basic landing-area dimensions for common outdoor kitchen workstations:

Grills. Be sure to keep 24 inches of open counter on one side and 12 inches on the other side.

Cooktops. Maintain 12 inches of open counter on each side. However, when you combine a grill and a cooktop into one station by positioning them next to each other, use the landing area recommendations for a grill (24 inches on one side and 12 inches on the other).

Sinks require 18 inches of open counter on each side, because your clients will be doing a lot of washing and cleaning in that area.

Pizza ovens. Landing areas are especially important for pizza prep work. Provide 24 inches of open counter on one side and 12 inches on the other side.

Kegs. Having room to place and set aside glasses is important for the keg tapper, so provide 12 inches of open counter on each side.

Under-counter refrigerator/ice maker. Be sure to have 15 inches of open counter above it.

When multiple workstations are combined, the minimum landing area between two pieces of equipment may be determined by adding 50% to the largest landing-area width recommended for the two pieces of equipment. For example, the landing area between a grill and a sink should be at least 36 inches wide because the largest recommended landing area related to those two pieces of equipment is 24 inches next to the grill.

Storage

Many homeowners want fully functioning outdoor kitchens. That includes having places to keep pots and pans, as well as dishes and plates, during the season. Other items, like wood chips, hot mitts, charcoal, and grill brushes, normally remain outdoors at all times, and need permanent storage there.

Because it’s outside, cabinetry needs to be able to withstand the elements. Whatever you select should be able to keep the items inside dry when it rains. I recommend weathertight cabinetry with seamless rain gutters around the door and drawer openings to help divert water.

The recommended amount of linear storage frontage varies depending on the size of the kitchen. The following suggestions assume that smaller kitchens will need to store fewer items outdoors, while larger kitchens are more likely to store pots, pans, and serving pieces:

• Small outdoor kitchen: 21 inches

• Essentials outdoor kitchen: 36 inches

• Medium outdoor kitchen: 72 inches

• Large outdoor kitchen: 96 inches

Seating

There are three main types of seating to think about: dining, bar, and lounge. Having all three is ideal for entertaining. When laying out a space, always try to keep the cook nearby; make sure the primary cooking areas are not isolated from the seating areas.

When planning for seating in an outdoor kitchen, you need to allow adequate width for each seat, as well as space for knees below the table, counter, or bar, and adequate space for traffic behind the seats. Typically, you should allow 24 inches width for each seat, but for more accessible seating, allow 30 to 36 inches.

If there won’t be any traffic behind the seats, you need only 32 inches between the table, counter, or bar and the nearest obstruction. To allow people to just edge past behind the seats, provide 36 inches. If you want guests to be able to walk past unobstructed, make sure you leave at least 48 inches.

For counter and bar seating, also provide space for knees. Here are recommended measurements:

• Lowered-counter/table-height seating (30 inches high) needs 18 inches for knee space.

• Counter seating (36 inches high) needs 15 inches knee space.

• Raised-counter/bar-height seating (42 inches high) needs 12 inches knee space.

• Accessible seating (30 to 34 inches high) needs 19 inches knee space.




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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How to Hire Bath Remodeling Contractor

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We’ve got Everything You Need to Hire a Bath Remodeling Contractor

It’s time for a makeover! Whether you’re buying, selling, or just want to update that late ‘80s powder room a bathroom remodel provides great return on investment. Remodeling’s 2016 Cost vs. Value Report shows a nation-wide 65.7 percent ROI for bathroom remodels, while areas like the Pacific region, bring back 76.2 percent. The numbers are on your side, it’s time to stop the bathroom suffering.

Alex, Paul, and Leo share their remodeling expertise to prep you for your bathroom redo. Because you might as well love your loo.

What are the financial benefits of a bathroom remodel?

The bathrooms and kitchen are the primary rooms a prospective buyer looks at when purchasing a home, explains Leo. Remodeling a bathroom, updating its features, and even reconfiguring the floor plan can greatly increase the return on investment of your real estate investment. Besides improving the appearance of the room, shares Paul, you improve the functionality of the room. In addition to the value it adds to the home, a space that accommodates you and your family is important for daily life.

How long does the average job take and what are the most common remodels?

There are typically 3 phases to any remodeling and construction project, shares Leo. The planning and permitting phase, the construction phase, and the punch list finalization phase. The planning and permitting phase varies from city to city due to different procedures in each building department—however, the average time for this phase is 3-4 weeks, he explains.

The construction phase can also vary depending on if the remodel is a straight same-for-same replacement, or if plumbing fixtures and electrical devices are being added or relocated. The average length of a full bathroom remodel—taking into consideration inspections—could take anywhere from 4-6 weeks, Leo shares, citing that the most common updates for a bathroom remodel are tile flooring, tub/shower wall tiles, vanity, counter top, and lighting.

SemBro Designs and Remodeling does a lot of what they call “facelifts.” These jobs are typically completed in five to eight working days, shares Alex, while more extensive bathroom overhauls take longer.

One to three weeks is common depending on the amount of work, says Paul. His clients often start with the shower area, he says, by customizing the plumbing, tile size, setting, and design. New paint is always in order after the shower is done, he says. Next, flooring and cabinetry can be modernized with updated materials. Last but not least, the lighting in a bathroom is very important, says Paul.

How much does the average job cost?

Wouldn’t you know, there is no average job! The remodelers share the ranges of what can commonly be expected.

Most jobs we handle cost between $10,000 and $15,000, shares Alex.

The baseline for a bathroom remodel averages around $3,500, according to Paul. More frequently, a bathroom remodel can cost between $5,000 and $10,000. I personally have been involved in bathroom remodels that have cost $22,000, says Paul.

The average bathroom remodel could cost anywhere from $6,500 – $12,250, depending on size, scope, and materials used, says Leo.

The moral here? Be upfront in your requests about budget and desired outcomes.

What happens from start to finish once someone books your quote with SemBro Designs?

First, we schedule an onsite visit to make sketches, take photos, discuss scope of work, and materials, explains Leo. Then we prepare floor plans, permit applications, notice of commencement and supporting documents for the building department. We then record the NOC and submit the application package to the building department. Once the permit is issued, we perform the demolition. After the demolition we do the rough plumbing, then rough electrical, followed by framing, drywall, plaster, paint & flooring. All in that order. There are several rough inspections that occur in that sequence as well, to make sure things are going as planned. After the walls, floors, and ceilings are finished, we install the vanity, plumbing fixtures, electrical devices, and trim out all of the accessories. From there we schedule final inspections and perform a walk through to address punch list items to complete, shares Leo. When the client is 100% satisfied, the project will be officially completed.

Bathroom remodels can be an enjoyable experience, says Paul. I speak with clients one-on-one by phone before a site visit to prepare myself for what they might need. After inspecting the site, I go over design options with the homeowner, then write out a specific and detailed estimate, explains Paul. Once the estimate is accepted, I send a written contract and we sign. At this point, a collection of 10% of the job’s estimated total is legal and common for a contractor to do. I find jobs go well when a client has done their homework and identifies the materials they want used. This process of material selections by the owner can take some time but is well worth the diligence, according to Paul.

SemBro Designs reviews the request and follows up with a phone call/ email to introduce themselves and set an appointment to meet and discuss a proposal for the requested work, says Alex. The proposal is written and presented to the homeowner during a secondary meeting, and if all is agreed upon, a contract is signed. From there, work is scheduled by the production manager to be completed.

What questions should someone ask before hiring a bath remodeling contractor?

Do you plan on applying for any permits? Do you have the proper insurance and licenses? Do you have before and after pictures of previous projects to preview? You want to make sure they are going by proper procedure, recommends Alex.

How long have you been doing this type of work? May I speak with past clients of yours? Who will be performing the work? How long will the process take? Will you be servicing other jobs at the time as my home? What can I do to make the process easier on you as the contractor? Get all the information you need upfront, suggests Paul, so there are no surprises later on down the line.
What do you wish new clients knew about the process?

I wish more clients knew how long some building departments take to approve a permit. Many people are surprised by the time it takes, although we do our best to communicate the timeline before any contracts are signed, says Leo.

That you get what you pay for, says Alex. And that it’s always best to have a General Contractor handle the management of the job.

Not everything goes as planned, states Paul. For example, after demolition problems like bad framing by the original home builder might be revealed. That needs to be dealt with before contractors can move forward. Another example of the unexpected could be structural water damage from previously undetectable or unnoticeable leaks. A homeowner should be prepared for these possible problems, because the total cost of the remodel will increase due to the additional work that was unforeseeable but is necessary to do a good job.

Any advice about choosing a contractor?

Unfortunately, in Ohio, licensed people will often illegally “rent” their licenses to unlicensed companies, says Leo. Look out for companies where the licensed qualifiers are not present. A second warning sign is a company asking for a large deposit up front. We only require a 10 percent deposit up front; followed by progress payments as work progresses. The key is not to overpay up front so the contractor owes you a substantial amount of work to get caught up, explains Leo. Keep pace with the work as far as payments go and request partial lien releases with each payment to be released from liability for materials or to subcontractors.

Homeowners should always check out the contractor’s insurance policies and their accreditation, suggests Alex.

Investigate the contractor’s past work and clients, recommends Paul. Good, clear communication is very important. If you can’t communicate with the contractor, look for someone else. Also, a contractor that asks for too much money up front is someone you want to stay away from.

Where can clients save money on a bathroom remodel?

Find a contractor that does most of the trades himself, recommends Paul. Although it’s not easily accomplished—because it is difficult to be good at more than one trade—it will reduce the cost of having a general contractor subcontract out to multiple companies to tackle various parts of the project. Price shopping is very important when it comes to the materials. Local retailers are the best places to buy your materials, opines Paul, because you don’t have to pay for shipping costs and there are fewer problems if a return needs to occur.

Select materials that are within a budget you can afford, suggests Leo. The actual rough work and labor will always be more or less a fixed price, but the costs can jump substantially if you select really expensive tiles, vanities, and fixtures are selected.

Alex agrees that when the client purchases their own materials it’s a cost-saver, but warns against doing so without the guidance of a professional contractor.
Where should someone absolutely not cut financial corners in their remodel?

All three resoundingly agree that you should never cut financial corners when hiring a reputable, licensed contractor. Someone who is not skilled can damage your home or your materials, costing you more money in the long run. Do your research to avoid sorrow later.

You’re all set with the questions to ask, are you ready to redo your bathroom and hire a bath remodeling contractor?


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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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.

Please don’t be shy, share with others.

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Your Home is Your Castle by Design

Your Castle is your Confidence

With the homes of friends and family, it can be easy to see the many ways that their design is efficient or not for their lifestyle.  A fresh eye always adds new perspective on any matter, and a home where people live, work and play can be no different.  This year, make it your resolution to accept the input regarding your home from outsiders.  The number one best way to do this is to get the opinion of a professional such as SemBro Designs and Remodeling. Voted Columbus Best Local Construction Company, Best Kitchen and Bath Remodeler and Best Contractor with the Union Tribune for the fourth straight year, SemBro Designs has proven to be a leader in the home improvement sector of Columbus, Ohio area.

a well designed home improvement

With a second opinion on the structural efficiency, general layout and flow as well as the design impression that your home exudes, trust the professional knowledge of SemBro’s award-winning designer.  She has the capability to assess a home based on the myriad of other home designs she has planned and witnessed, and can offer much fresh insight into how new visitors feel about your home.  With the tools SemBro Designs and Remodeling has at their use, no project you can think of is too big or too small to affect an amazing transformation in your treasured home, and SemBro’s designer can get all the pieces into play perfectly.

When considering the efficiency and aesthetic appeal of your own home, kitchen, or bath design, consider some of the following essentials.  There must be appropriate lighting that is not too harsh and also is not too dull or warm that it makes one feel sleepy.  Also, a focal point in any room in question is a must so that the eye does not become overwhelmed with many competing points of interest in the same space.  The materials you employ in the service of your flooring, counters and cabinetry, all tell something about your personality, tastes, passions and goals so choose wisely!  And last but not least, your home design sends a big message to your friends and family about the attitude that is most prevalent in your home and life.  For the most peace-loving, relaxing and calming atmosphere, choose clean-cut lines, appropriate hues and add the personal touches that make the home all your own.

See how SemBro Designs and Remodeling can help transform your home into one you are confident in no matter who comes to call.