Top Four Apps to Help With Your Virginia Bathroom Remodeling Project

Filed Under: Bathroom    by: Steve Kayhill

Tackling a Virginia bathroom remodeling project can be hard work. You have countless decisions ahead of you, along with several to-do lists, receipts to pay and schedules to coordinate. Whether you’re embarking on the DIY route or hiring a Virginia contractor to handle the work bathroom remodeling requires dedication.

These top four smart phone and tablet apps are designed to make the job easier, and include essential tips, tricks and tools for all things involved in a bathroom renovation.

Evernote — For Overall Project Organization

Used by people around the world, this handy, free app provides access from almost any device (smart phone, tablet, laptop or desktop) and syncs automatically. Use it to make notes about the project, keep track of your budget and even organize clippings from your favorite web pages.

Evernote allows you to share notes, making communication between homeowner and contractor a breeze. Store copies of emails, receipts, bill of ladings and any other paperwork in digital format for quick reference. This app does it all and comes with a seamless, easy to follow interface. It’s the mother of all organization apps and can be used for everything from bathroom remodeling projects to trip planning and taxes.

Houzz — For Design Ideas and Decorating

Houzz.com offers a plethora of design ideas for any style and budget. With high res images and stats from manufacturers and designers, this one-stop quick link to the popular website is indispensable during the design stage.

Browse the free app in your spare time and create an “ideabook” specifically targeted on your Virginia bathroom remodeling project. This virtual scrapbook allows you to store images of plumbing fixtures, flooring, vanities, room layouts, window treatments and paint colors that suit your tastes.

Having the Houzz app on your smart phone or tablet allows you to bring those images along while shopping, making sure you get exactly what you want every time.

Wunderlist — For Keeping Track of Your Lists

You may not be a natural list-taker, but renovation projects bring out the maniacal lister in all of us. Use Wunderlist to keep all of these handy reminders in one place, and revel in the cross-platform design and instant syncing across multiple devices.

Wunderlists allows you to create countless lists, crossing off each item as it’s done and rearranging things as priorities change. Print off the list to tack on your fridge or keep the app open on your desktop for fast access. Share your Wunderlist files with anyone, including the contractor, supplier and all others who need to be kept accountable during the renovation project.

Home Design 3D — For Creating the Ideal Room Layout

You’ll find a selection of home design apps suitable for your device, and many of them are free. Home Design 3D comes with a small price tag, but this app allows for eye-catching 3D viewing that surpasses the competition.

Design your new bathroom layout, including fixtures and furniture, and then view. This feature makes it simple to experiment with different layouts, and allows you to share the overall vision with your contractor once the final design has been hammered out.

Use your smart phone and tablet, along with these four essential apps to enjoy a smoother Virginia bathroom remodeling project. Organization, accountability, design ideas and layout are simple with the help of technology and the creative minds behind these apps.

Tips on Creating an Accessible Shower with Your Virginia Bathroom Remodeling Project

Filed Under: Bathroom    by: Steve Kayhill

Accessible shower room with circular drain

Installing an accessible shower makes sense for many families, especially as we age and struggle with physical limitations. These tips help when your Virginia bathroom remodeling project involves a tub conversion or the construction of a barrier-free shower room. Make the most of your home improvement investment by designing a truly accessible shower.

Understand What Barrier-Free Actually Means

Construction specs differ based on the experience and understanding of the contractor. When you ask your bathroom renovation contractor for a “barrier-free” shower room, he/she may design and install an attractive, modern shower room without fulfilling that all important label.

Standard shower rooms include a tiled lip or ridge around the outer walls of the shower, often 4 to 5-inches in height off the ground. This may not seem like a big issue, but that slight lip can be very difficult to manage for those with mobility issues. And that’s where a “barrier-free” shower room comes into play.

This shower design often has glass or tiled walls, much like a standard shower room. It may or may not include a door–true walk-in shower rooms use a dry passage to avoid the need for a door, but this design requires more floor space and significantly greater materials. Your contractor will seal the bottom and side edges of the walls to minimize leakage, and should help you choose a shower style that suits your needs and limitations.

In order to contain water and create a safe bathing area, a barrier-free shower uses trench drains or strip drains around the outer edges of the shower. Some trench drains may have a slight ridge–much like an s-bend–to help deter water runoff. Others are merely a long, narrow drain cut into the floor and topped with a stainless steel or heavy duty plastic grate.

How Drainage Comes Into Play

Your accessible shower needs to be designed with purpose, in order to be fully functional and meet current safety standards. Drainage makes a difference.

Shower rooms have a tiled floor, and generally come with a tiled lip around the edges. Transform this standard shower room into an accessible shower by removing the lip from the entrance and installing a trench drain. But remember that the floor must slope to the drain.

Your contractor may include another drain along the rear wall of the shower, with the floor sloped that way. In that case, the entrance trench drain is merely a backup. Other designs allow the floor to slope toward the entrance trench drain. Circular drains in the middle of the shower room also work, although runoff can pose a safety issue.

Talk to your contractor about which style suits your Virginia bathroom remodeling project, taking into account the space and existing conditions.

Think about investing in an upgraded trench drain that includes LED lighting to indicate the presence of water. This helps to reduce the risk of falling when slippery conditions exist, and also adds a bit of modern style to your new bathroom.

Be sure to add grab bars and accessible storage for toiletries. A detachable shower head makes the most sense, and easy access to towels is vital to creating a comfortable environment.

Installing an accessible shower in your bathroom makes sense, and adds to your property value. Be sure to handle this aspect of your Virginia bathroom remodeling project well, in order to achieve the functionality and appearance you need.

What is the Typical Timeline for Bathroom Remodeling in Virginia?

Filed Under: Bathroom    by: Steve Kayhill

Scheduling is one of the major concerns when planning a bathroom remodeling in Virginia. Depending on the scope of work, your project could take anywhere from one week to a few months. Factor in special orders or relocating plumbing fixtures and this schedule could extend even longer.

While much depends on the speed of your contractor, a typical timeline looks something like this:

Initial Stages

You’ve decided that a bathroom remodeling project is required and in the budget. The first stage of this project involves meeting with potential contractors to go over the design and draw up a quotation. This process takes about one to two weeks from initial contact, depending on your availability and the number of contractors you choose to have quote.

Some contractors ask their clients visit the company showroom to sign a contract or view product samples. This can often be done within the above time period, assuming the contractor delivers their quotation within a reasonable span.

Once the contract has been signed, material selection begins. This process may take one to four weeks, depending on your tastes and preferences. An extensive bathroom remodeling in Virginia involves several types of materials, from flooring and tile, to bathroom fixtures, cabinetry and lighting. You may have to visit several different retailers to view samples, or spend hours online browsing web catalogs.

Delivery and Demolition

The second major stage of a bathroom renovation involves waiting for the materials to arrive. Demolition can be completed simultaneously, but only if the homeowner has reliable and convenient access to another bathroom. If not, the demolition process (which typically lasts between 1 and 5 days) should be done immediately following installation to minimize downtime.

Delivery of materials can stretch for a long time, depending on the type of materials ordered and the jobsite location. Many contractors recommend sourcing local building materials where possible, or ordering from Virginia retailers to cut down on transportation costs and wait time. For standard materials, expect a lead time of 4 to 7 days, and 4 to 6 weeks is not unheard of for special order lead times.

Installation and Clean Up

The final stages of your Virginia bathroom remodeling project are coming up. Things get exciting from here on, with flooring installation, electrical and plumbing work and vanity installation helping to bring the room together.

Depending again on the scope of work, installation time ranges from 2 to 3 weeks. This could happen in stages, with each tradesman requiring a span of time to work in the room. Experienced contractors know how to stage the project in order to optimize efficiency and ensure that work moves smoothly from day to day.

Always allow for wait times during the installation process. Tile grout needs to dry or cure, flooring may need to set and paint needs to dry. All goods things come to those who wait, or in this case, a quality built bathroom comes to homeowners who wait.

Clean up often takes just one or two days. Smart contractors handle this throughout the course of installation and end the project with minimal finishing work and clean up.

Bathroom remodeling in Virginia requires a significant amount of work. Understand the elements of each stage and learn how to value the time spent on quality work. Don’t rush things, but instead allow your Virginia contractor to take the time required for job well done.

Tips on Choosing Mirrors for Your Virginia Bathroom Remodeling Project

Filed Under: Bathroom    by: Steve Kayhill

Small details make a big impression, and more so in well used areas of your home. Using the right mirrors can make or break a bathroom design, creating an open feeling and enhancing the light fixtures. Find out how to decipher your style and discover the best mirrors for your Virginia bathroom remodeling project.

The Ideal Placement

Mirrors span the wall above the vanity, but are not limited to that area. Think about how the natural light pours into this room and consider hanging mirrors across from that space to spread sunlight around. Even a row of small framed mirrors will help to reflect natural light into the balance of this room.

Pay attention to privacy as well. Adding a large mirror could make more of the room visible from the exterior, unless you install frosted privacy glass or adequate window coverings. Be sure that mirrors do not encroach on privacy.

Remember to keep mirrors off of the door for safety. Mount them securely onto the wall with brackets and clips designed for this function. Mirrors are much heavier than artwork, so avoid using a simple picture hook or mount and opt instead for something substantial attached to wall studs.

Light fixtures and storage systems can be mounted onto or through mirrors, creating a built in look. Provide your electrician or contractor with this design up front to ensure that all boxes and mounts are properly installed to suit this attractive design.

The Ideal Size

This depends entirely on your bathroom design. Virginia bathroom remodeling projects that aim for a traditional look often have dual sinks. This set up calls for dual mirrors, large enough to crown each sink, yet not overpowering. More contemporary bathroom designs lean toward larger mirrors that span from corner to corner, transforming an entire wall into a reflective surface. The trick is to find the size that brings balance to your design.

Pay attention to the function of your bathroom as well. Bathrooms that double as dressing rooms should be fitted with taller mirrors and wall-mounted shaving mirrors, while utility bathrooms or main floor powder rooms can get away with minimal mirrors.

The Ideal Shape

Personal taste often dictates the ideal shape. Mirrors come in a myriad of shapes, from the standard square or rectangle to curves, ovals, circles, geometric shapes and free-form mirrors. Designers can combine mirrors of different shapes to create a pattern or accent an architectural feature, ending up with a custom shape that adds beauty and style to your bathroom.

Function plays a role here as well. For mirrors above the vanity sink, you need to choose a shape that offers an adequate view. Installing a long, thin mirror or wavy mirror strips may add to the design, but will present an impractical surface for basic function. Shaving or make-up mirrors are often circular or framed to provide a safe edge for pulling in and out of the wall mount. And winged mirrors boast a larger middle section, with curved side mirrors to provide the wing shape.

Choosing the right mirror for your Virginia bathroom remodeling project may seem like an insignificant detail, but this small element makes a big difference. Find the mirror (or mirrors) that suit your tastes and the function, mount those mirrors in the ideal location and the entire room will be transformed into a bright, stylish space.