Wall Painting Tips

CBP_blue_before_667_500_sInterior Wall Painting

Prepare the Room
The carpet and the furniture need to be protected from paint splatters. Place all the movable furniture in the middle of the room, and remember to cover everything, including the floor with plastic sheets. By shifting the furniture, you will get enough room to move around freely while painting. Fix the sheets tightly using masking tape.

Prepare the Walls
All curtains, wall hangings, electrical outlets, light fixtures, etc., should be removed from the wall surface. Those which cannot be removed should be covered up with plastic bags. Any holes or cracks should be repaired. Clean the wall to get rid of dirt and debris as they can prevent the paint from bonding well with the surface.

Select the Right Paint
Opt for latex paints as they are easy to apply. Semi-gloss paints are ideal for kitchen and bathroom walls as these areas are exposed to a lot of water every day. Choosing interior paint colors is a major concern. When the size of the room is small, opt for light colors. Dark shades are suitable for large rooms only.


Tips on Framing Basement Walls

framing-basement-wallsFraming the walls of a basement can be an interesting do-it-yourself home improvement project if you are good at carpentry. The basement can be used as a room where children can entertain their friends or the family can use it as a reading room. It can be brightened up using handmade wall hangings, cushions, tapestries, and floor rugs.

  • Tools Required
  • Measuring tape
  • Plumb bob
  • Mason’s string
  • Hammer
  • Saw
  • Caulk line
  • Crowbar
  • Ladder
  • Framing square

You can frame basement walls in two ways:

  • You can build all the sections of the wall on the floor and then raise them up and put them into place.
  • The second method is to nail the top and bottom plates of the wall first, and then nail the studs between two plates.


You can choose the method depending on your convenience. If there are no obstacles such as water pipes and electrical wiring tubes in the basement, then the first method is the best.

  • Use moisture resistant and seasoned lumber for the bottom frames and plates. The lumber should be straight, the thickness of the wooden boards should be 1.5 inches, and

Hand-scraped Wooden Floors

hand-scraped-hardwood-flooring-5These floors are known for their antique and rustic look, that has been attained by a method of scraping, sanding, roughing, or denting. Dexterous artisans scrape these wooden floors by hand, so as to achieve their unique look.

Also referred to as hand-sculptured hardwood flooring, this flooring type has been popular among the masses since the 1800s. It is loved for its resilient urethane finish, that imparts a traditional wooden floor appeal. Although expensive, they are worth the cost due to the elegant and extravagant look they impart to a house or establishment.

Before the modern sanding techniques came about, wooden floors were hand scraped to attain a flat and even finish. Only then were they installed at their respective locations. However, with time this hand-scraping method is used more as a fashion statement, and is installed in opulent homes and commercial establishments.

What’s Special About Them?

These wooden floors are handcrafted by traditional techniques employed by expert craftsmen. The wood emanates timeless beauty in each contour of wood. Hand scraping gives the wood an older look, thereby imparting a rustic and naturally worn-out

Home Improvement Addition

Renovating your home is certainly the best opportunity, not only to step-up your living space, but also to add to the value of your house. There are many ways in which you can increase the value of your house. You can get attractive interiors done, expensive furniture installed, and even build a fireplace. However, all these things would not add as much value as a complete well-planned home re-modeling would. When you think of financing the plan, you need to be well-prepared by considering many factors. Getting to know all the important aspects such as home market values in your locality, minor home upgrade expenses, architectural plans and patterns, home improvement loans, timetable, and schedule for completion, can save you valuable time and preclude unnecessary stress.


Zoning Policies and Regulations
The first thing you need to do is receive permission from the local government authorities to commence with the construction. In a majority of regions, you are required to abide by your city or town zoning policies and ordinances, and also obtain a construction license before building an extension to your home. The expenses for such licenses may differ from state to state. However, you need to be ready

Home Improvement Tax Credit

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) releases a large amount of tax deductions every fiscal year for the benefit of taxpayers. Such deduction lists are principally used to reduce the amount of taxable income. After calculation of the tax component on income, a good way to manage the burden is to avail of these tax deductions, provided the requirements have been complied with. Even the smallest deductions go a long way in reducing the overall taxable income of an individual.

Tax credit on the other hand is a way to reduce the exact tax that you will have to pay for a particular fiscal year. In the case of a valid home improvement made by the taxpayer, he/she can claim the credit for it and reduce the net tax payable by the dollar amount permissible under the Federal Tax Credits for Consumer Energy Efficiency. Suppose the total tax payable in a fiscal year comes down to $1000 and home improvements have been made to the tune of $300, the net tax payable by will be $700. For homeowners looking to gain some tax advantage while cutting their energy footprint and also costs, this is a good way to go about

Home Improvement Plans Qualifying for Tax Deductions

It is important not to get confused between home repair and improvement, particularly from the point of view of taxes. Home repairs, like renovating a home or making permanent additions to the home, increase the value of the house while making it more habitable. This does not count towards tax deduction or credit.

However, if you replace energy-efficient windows or doors for your home (falls under home improvement) or apply for home improvement loans, for the purpose of making certain improvements, then it qualifies for tax deductions.

A tax deduction reduces the amount of taxable income. A tax credit, on the other hand, reduces the actual amount of tax that a person has to pay. Hence, a tax credit is better than a tax deduction, as the former reduces the actual tax liability. The following equation will explain it to you in a short and precise way:
Expenses for Home Improvement – Increase in the value of the home because of improvements = Amount that qualifies for a tax deduction

Home Improvement Plans That Qualify for Tax Deductions

Interest and Points on Home Improvement Loans
Interest paid on a home equity loan or a home equity line of credit availed for the

Home Improvement Tax Deduction

The state and federal government collects a variety of taxes at the end of every financial year. The Internal Revenue Service and the United States Department of Treasury play a very important role in the collection of these taxes. The IRS, and Treasury Department have made several provisions, and rules and regulations, in order to provide people with tax exemptions, and deductions for legitimate reasons. The home improvement tax break is a one such provision for deduction, that can be freely used by people.

Understanding Home Improvement and Tax Deductions

When elaborating on concepts related to finance, business and law; the best way to grasp the fundamentals is to simplify and sort them accordingly. Adhering to the aforementioned policy, we try to simplify the concepts in order to understand them well. Explicated below is the meaning of home improvement, and tax deductions, respectively;

Home Improvement
The meaning of home improvement is extremely simple and can be described in just a single statement – ‘beautifying and renovating your home’. It must be noted that home improvement is different from home repair. For tax deduction purposes, the IRS has systematically defined the term ‘home improvement’. The IRS portal proves to be a very

Important Tips on Installing Drawer Pulls

Most of you might have realized, how irritating it can be to use a drawer without a handle. There is no doubt that they make the usage of a drawer more convenient, but only few realize that installing the right handle (or knob) on your drawers, can enhance the visual appeal of a home. There are a large variety of drawer pulls to choose from, so, you should never be in a hurry to choose the one for your drawers. You can begin your search from the nearest home improvement store, or you can start online. Once you find the desired type of drawer pulls, with the right measurement, then it is time for you to install them.

How to Install Drawer Pulls

If you are replacing the existing drawer pulls, then it will be very easy for you. You just have to remove the old handles (or knobs), and install the new ones carefully (you do not have to bother about positioning and drilling). If you are installing drawer pulls for the first time, then it will be a little difficult for you, but you do not need to worry, I am here to guide you. In addition to

Must-read Tips for Hiring the Right Painting Contractor for the Job

Getting your house painted is a decision that will stay with you for a long time. And while no one really wants the much-advertised paints that last for more than a decade, they do want to make sure that when it’s done, it’s done right. We agree that the best way to get exactly what you want is to do the work yourself, but there are several reasons why this may not always be possible. Hence, hiring a painting contractor is a good idea. Here are some tips that will help you pick the right one.

Ask People You Know

You’re bound to know someone who’s had a painting job done in the recent past. Your friends, family, neighbors, colleagues; someone will surely be able to give you names. If this doesn’t help, you can even contact your local home improvement store. They usually have referrals that might help you find the right contractor.

Ask for Estimates

Once you have a few contact details, it’s time to compare and zero in on the right professional for your painting needs. Begin by asking for a cost estimate of the job. A professional contractor will be most willing to offer you a free estimate

Tips for Hiring a Kitchen Remodeling Contractor

Before Hiring a Kitchen Remodeling Contractor: Ask About These
Before you begin looking for a contractor, understand and establish the scope of work. You want to remodel the kitchen, which means, you will have to take everything down, and replace it with new material and designs. This will include electrical work, cabinetry, plumbing, tiling, and painting. All these should fall within the scope of work of the remodeling contractor. Some contractors may provide the kitchen design. Others may want a design ready to execute from a professional designer. Iron out these details before you begin.

Once this area has been cleared, look into the following details, and watch out for the signs that you should not be establishing any association with a particular contractor.

Licensing, Insurance, and Permits
Any home improvement contractor, regardless of his specialty, must:
❖ Possess a valid license for his area of work.
❖ Possess liability insurance and workers’ compensation coverage to protect you and his workers from damages.
❖ Be able to obtain permits necessary to perform the said work (this may vary from state to state).
Flee if he says: Obtaining permits doesn’t fall within my domain. You will have to get

How to Choose Window Well Covers

Window wells are openings that are dug around the basement window to allow more ambient light to fill up the basement. Apart from providing easy access to the basement opening, it also serves as a escape route during fires and storms. A window well is bolted to the outer side of the basement wall, and it keeps mud and debris away from the window.

If proper care is not taken to seal off the opening, it can result in many accidental hazards, mostly involving small kids, pets, and unwary animals. Installing a safety cover over the opening will thwart the possibilities of such accidents as well as provide good insulation for your home. A good cover will also help keep debris, dirt, water, and leaves from entering the vent, thus hampering your view from the basement.

The tips provided below will help you choose window well covers that suit your basement needs.

Measured to Fit
Before hitting the stores and selecting a well cover, you ought to measure the window well and the window you want to cover. While doing so, ensure you measure from the face of the window to the edge of the well. If the window extends above the ground,

Tips for Replacing a Sliding Glass Door

A clear sliding glass door can be an appealing addition to your home decor, allowing more access to fresh air and light in the home, as well as providing an eye-catching view of a beautiful patio garden. The bypass sliding glass door is the most commonly used type, while the folding sliding ones are a popular option. Sliding doors can also be used as secondary doors, and can be installed outside or inside the existing door.

Sometimes, you may choose to replace an old sliding door with a new one, or a modern vinyl frame sliding door or French door for home improvement. Replacing the old ones with the latest varieties is a unique way to impart a modern and stylish look to your home interior. There are a number of companies that provide replacement services, but you can also install it yourself.

Useful Tips

Before replacing the door, you have to take measurements for the replacement one. Measure across the top, center, and bottom of the door frame. Keep in mind the smallest dimension. Then, the measurements should be taken at the point where the frame ends and the plaster or drywall starts. When all the measurements are taken, check

Deck Lighting Tips

If properly chosen, with careful consideration, deck lights can convert the garden or backyard into a second living space, literally! You will be amazed at what innovative placements and the very presence of light can do for the home. Beyond the home, you will notice a considerable increase in the quality time you and your family spend outside, adding to the value of your property. There are many benefits that come along with the installation. The effect enables you to flaunt the space to its best advantage, especially at night, highlighting the bonsai or regular garden, fountains, and statues. Most importantly, it minimizes the chances of anyone tripping or falling in dim light.

Importance of Low-voltage Lighting
It is important to decide on the lighting as a long term solution. The installation of low-voltage lights is a delight on the electrical bill. The low-voltage accessories reduce the energy costs by leaps and bounds, and at the same time offer the benefit of exterior lighting at a fraction of the expenses associated with older, higher voltage fixtures. There are a number of different types of low-voltage bulbs available that deliver equal amount of lumens as the traditional incandescent bulbs. However,

Tips to Clean Tinted Windows

Car windows are often tinted for protecting the car’s interior from unwanted sunrays and glare, and also, for providing privacy to the passengers. To serve the same functions, homeowners prefer using dark window films as a part of their home improvement projects. These thin films help in blocking sunrays, thereby protecting the curtains, furniture, flooring and room’s interior from becoming faded. Also, they provide privacy and insulate the rooms in winter. But when it comes to the maintenance part, you need to learn proper cleaning of tinted windows, and follow the same for increasing their durability.

Instructions to Clean Tinted Windows

Tinting house windows is a great way to conserve energy in the long run, and that too at a cheaper price. You will find various types of window films in the market. For both car windows or home windows, the tint used is a thin polyester film coated with an anti-scratch layer. Available in different shades of bronze hue, stainless steel and gray, it can be applied to existing windows by gluing tinting film or applying tint coating. For those of you who are interested in installing new windows, opt for the tinted glass windows. Simple tips for how

Tips to Remove a Window Film

Window film, as the term suggests, is meant for covering the surface of the window. As far as improving the comfort level of home is concerned, installation of this film is cost-effective and less troublesome. You can apply a window tint film to minimize solar heat penetration, protect ultraviolet light, create privacy and also, to retain heat inside the room. Some films are designed for decorative purposes.

Based on the type of window glass, you can select from a wide range of films, either the regular transparent type or tinted variety. A correctly installed film usually lasts for a couple of years. If there is any sign of wear and tear, you can consider replacing the film with a new one. In such a case, removing the film is the first step before installing a new one.

Things to Consider and the Procedure

The steps for removing a film may vary depending upon the type of window glass and the type of film that has been installed. These films are available in several types, each of which is used for specific home improvement purpose. To mention a few, there are insulating, privacy, and glare-reducing films. You can refer to the manufacturer’s

Tips On Drilling Through Stainless Steel

If you are planning to install a new sink or rack, then drilling through steel is a skill that will come in handy. This is distinctly different from drilling through wood or a wall. It requires a considerable amount of expertise, which you can only gain through experience. If you are especially the kind of person, who likes to undertake small home improvement projects, then you must master this skill.

Drilling Tips

The instructions that I provide here are simple and straightforward to follow. They are generic instructions for any job, including drilling through sinks or sheets. Here are the things you will require:

  • Power Drill With Variable Speeds
  • Clamp
  • Center Punch
  • Hammer
  • Oil
  • C-Clamp
  • Gloves
  • Safety Goggles
  • Earmuffs
  • Drill Bits
  • Thick Tape
  • Metal File
  • Rough Cloth

Consult your local hardware storekeeper, for the best steel drilling bits. Let us talk about the actual procedure now.

Clamp With Work Surface For Firm Hold
First thing to do is to clamp your drilling surface firmly, using a C clamp or a spring action clamp. This is very important as otherwise, your surface will move and vibrate too much. This may lead to a botched up hole and be the undoing of the whole project. That is why, clamp the surface firmly in

Basement Framing Tips

The basements in our house are more often than not neglected. However, you can render a wonderful outlook to the space by framing it, which is a part of home improvement projects. Although a professional expertise is much preferred, you can still take it up as do-it-yourself (DIY) project. Once it gets framed, you can utilize the area for entertainment activities or for various other purposes.

Framing a basement will be much easier if you correctly follow the following tips. You have to lay out the design and then procure all the materials beforehand. Make sure you wear gloves and be a little careful while hammering or nailing.

  • This step is about procuring the materials required to work out the basement remodeling plans. The materials required are measuring tape, caulk line, crowbar, framing square, mason’s string, saw, hammer, plumb bob, nails, goggles, and a ladder. Design the plan on a paper by yourself or with the help of an architect. You should follow the steps exactly as laid under the framing plan. The final result will prove how aptly you have followed the architectural layout.
  • The purpose for raising the wall will depend on the area of the basement.

Engineered Wood Flooring Manufacturers

Engineered wood is nothing but wood that has been engineered, or made, to exact specifications. Though most people seem to think that engineered wood is inferior to solid wood flooring, this is not true. If installed properly, very few can make out the difference between engineered wood flooring and solid wood flooring.

In fact, in some cases, like, for example, in basements, it is better to use engineered wood instead of solid wood. This is because engineered wood is more resistant to moisture, and is perfect for basements, that are usually damp, and have higher humidity levels. Invented in the 1960s, engineered wood, instead using a solid plank of wood, uses several layers (up to 12) of ply, that are compressed and glued together to form a single plank. This is then topped off with different finishes, giving it the impression and look of solid wood. Thanks to the multiple layers, engineered wood proves to be stronger, more durable, and more resistant to moisture and damage. These planks then can be glued, stapled, nailed, or just placed on the current floor or sub-floor, with gravity doing the job of keeping it in place.

If you have decided to install engineered

Tips to Make a Stained Glass Window with Tissue Paper

Stained glass windows look cool. To observe them, you can go to old churches. You will surely observe beautiful windows there. Or you can simply go to a home improvement store near your place. There check out various designs, patterns and styles of stained glass windows. Mosaic design is a pretty popular design used to make such glass windows. Many glass windows which are stained have a design which is created inside a circle. Also, religious symbols are quite commonly seen on stained windows. Some stained windows are so huge, that a full scene is stained on them by the artist. Stained windows are attractive home fixtures.

The real process of staining windows can be quite tedious. Hence, there are professionals who do staining for windows. Also, special materials are required for staining windows. The process of making stained glass window goes like this. During the manufacturing procedure of the glass, the glass gets colored by the addition of metallic salts. This colored glass gets added to the window glass. The small pieces of glass are arranged in a specific desired pattern, and it is made to stick to the window glass with the help of lead and a

Tips to Get Streak-Free Laminate Floors

When it comes to choosing floors for a home improvement project, many homeowners opt for laminate flooring to get an elegant look at a cheaper price. They appear similar to wood and alike floor materials, but are easier to install and less expensive than natural flooring alternatives. On top of this, ease in maintenance is one of the advantages of laminate flooring. So, getting streak-free laminate floors is definitely not a herculean task, or something that you should be concerned about.

Streak-Free Laminate Floors

Laminate floors are prized for their attractive looks and increased durability, much more than superior quality carpets. But, to extend their longevity and make them gleam, regular cleaning is a must. A common complaint raised by customers is increased likeliness to develop streaks, scratches, lines and unsightly marks on the floor surface. Another problem is bending, warping and expansion of the laminate planks, which are mainly because of accumulated moisture.

The root cause for developing scratches over laminate floors is deposition of sand, dust, dirt and grit particles on the floor surface. When rubbed with another surface, these particulate materials produce grinding effect and result in scratches. So, keeping the upper decorative coating free from dust is