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Preview: AK Complete Home Renovations - President's Blog

AK Complete Home Renovations, Atlanta - President's Blog

Insight Into The Dynamic World Of Home Renovations & Design From An Atlanta Remodeling Professional

Updated: 2018-02-23T07:20:07.329-05:00


Winter Updates For Your Home


  The holidays are fun - merry and bright and all that... but we all know the long cold months of January and February loom ahead. Before you ring in the new year, consider planning some home improvement projects that will have you singing "there's no place like home" in 2018! There are many things you can do without a major renovation that will add value and beauty to your home.Add The Splash To Your BacksplashPinterestMany people think that adding a backsplash, or redoing a backsplash is a small part of a larger job. But if you have drywall or tile back there, changing it up may not be as big a project as you think! Talking to an AK pro you can get an idea of all the options you have to update and change the look and style of your kitchen with a relatively simple change!Trim The WallsPinterestAfter trimming the tree has passed, take a look around at your walls: Do you have crown molding everywhere you want it? Do you want higher baseboards? Maybe wainscotting in a bathroom or foyer? Even adding some faux beams to the ceiling for a more rustic look! Custom trim adds so much personality and style to a home. AK's team can assist with design, installation, painting and else you need. Most small trim projects don't take more than 1-2 days!Swap Out Some DoorsPinterestReplacing interior doors is an affordable way to give your home an updated look. Builder grade doors get dirty, scratched and easily damaged. There are so many styles of doors that will suit the look and feel of your home and really add a custom, luxury, look. Most doors don't just fall into place so AK can help with hanging, trimming, hardware and much more. You'll be amazed by the change!We are still booking appointments in December and January - so call or email us today so we can schedule your winter update today! [...]

What Is A Spice Kitchen?


Pinterest Wok Kitchen
  If you are an avid HGTV watcher, you may have heard the term "spice kitchen" and wondered what in the world it was! One might think of all the specialty spice drawers, hidden pullouts, herb storage and other items that design firms like AK use as places to store herbs and spices in a kitchen. But a spice kitchen is way more than storage! A spice kitchn is a second kitchen, typically it is built adjacent to the main kitchen, and it is used for cooking foods with strong odors (ex: curry, kimchi, etc) Spices may be aged, roasted and fried in this space.
  In order for the spice kitchen to serve its intended purpose, or keeping spicy odors
This Spice Kitchen Was Built By Gary Tiwana
contained, it needs a high-volume exhaust hood over the oven and a door. Powerful vents like those by Broan, Vent-a-Hood and Cavaliere are some of the top of the line options. Further, the foods that are going to be prepared in the spice kitchen should also be stored in the spice kitchen, so there should be cabinetry, counter space and a sink. 

   You may hear a spice kitchen referred to as a Wok Kitchen, however the name is slowly transitioning.  

   Houzz has come great inspirations for Spice Kitchen designs and material recommendations. Do you love to cook spicy foods? Would you add a spice kitchen to your home? Tell us on Facebook!

Renovating An Old Home - The Biggest Challenges


From Pinterest: HGTV Fixer Upper  The older homes we have around Atlanta and Marietta are fantastic reminders of the rich history of our beautiful city. Older homes have great character, and with shows like Fixer Upper and Home Town topping the ratings on HGTV, renovating these homes is very hot right now. But tackling the challenges that come with remodeling an older home are not to be taken lightly.    Here are some of the things that HGTV shows tend to glaze over in 60 second montages that are actually a bit more work than they are made to appear:Old Plumbing and Electrical LinesElectrical wiring and plumbing problems are common in older homes. Before the 1960s, galvanized pipes were used both within the house and for sewer lines as well. The problem with galvanized pipes is they easily get clogged or corrode over time. Old electrical wiring can be a safety hazard and will need to be brought up to code. Consider the fact that homes in the 1920s didn’t have hair dryers, and even something as small as that can draw more power than old household electrical systems can handle. Old wiring is also just an inconvenience: If you’ve ever lost power when running the microwave and the coffeemaker at the same time, you know what we mean. Materials & Sizes Used to Build Your Home Are No Longer AvailableOlder homes were constructed to different building standards and codes than today, and often with completely different materials. Bathtubs were smaller, doors narrower, and rooms were smaller too. If want to maintain your home’s old character, it can be tricky finding materials that will match the rest of your house for your renovation. Renovating an old Brownstone? You’ll need solid wood paneled doors and thin oak flooring—all of which are completely different from today’s standards and common materials used in homebuilding today.Unsafe Materials Like Lead and AsbestosIf the house was built several decades ago - or more, there’s a good chance there is lead in the paint and asbestos in the flooring, ductwork, popcorn ceilings, roofing, and HVAC system. Left undisturbed, these aren’t harmful, but if the project calls for scraping or cutting these materials, the powder or dust can be very hazardous. Outdated Layouts / No Open FloorplansWatch an episode of HGTV’s House Hunters, and you’ll quickly learn that the features andfloorplans that today’s homebuyers are searching for differ significantly what you’ll find in many older homes. Master bedroom with walk-in closet and attached bath? Open floorplan layout between the kitchen, dining, and living room? Not in older homes. Back in the day, homeowners had live-in staffs who cleaned and cooked for them, and Victorian-style homes had a room for every. Single. Purpose. Common building plans in earlier decades also involved tenement housing, so large buildings were cut into small apartments. Possibly, no one then thought anyone would ever want to live in an “open layout.”Tearing down walls can be both expensive and dangerous if it’s a load-bearing wall, and if you’re thinking about opening up a floor so you can see from the living room through the kitchen, odds are you’ll have structural issues to deal with.Want to know more about remodeling or renovating an older home? Contact Us!Tips Credit To Lifehacker, Melanie [...]

Basement Remodeling - The Top Trends & Best Ideas


   Requests for basement remodeling or basement finishing around Atlanta have gone up over 50% in 2017.  For many homeowners, their basement space has been a location full of untapped potential. Often times just left and used for storage, now that home prices have rebounded and home equity is rising homeowners are ready to invest in this great space.

   Long ago, basements were seen as a "hidden" place to create a kids playroom or an in-law suite. And while these are still popular options, most basements serve multiple purposes today. Have a look at some of the most popular design requests we're seeing for Atlanta basements!
Open Concept Basement On Pinterest

  • Open Concept Basements - Open may seem like a strange way to described an often underground room, however much like the rest of your home, open floor plans can be used to create a multi-purpose space!
  • Open TV Space - Home theaters had a ring of luxury a few years ago; having a private dedicated movie-theater like space seemed like the ultimate in basement desires. However most families are finding an open TV space is actually a more practical way to use their space - more open plans, less partitions, means more can gather together and the space feels larger!
  • Guest Suites - Adding a guest bedroom has always been a popular idea, but these days adding
    Basement Bedroom On Pinterest
    a whole guest suite is preferable. These can be for over-night or extended stay guests and offer their own kitchen space and bathroom. Imagine how enjoyable hosting the in-laws would be with a dedicated and well appointed suite in the basement?
  • Home Gyms - Busy homeowners who still find it hard to fit in their gym time and their family time often seek for a solution from a home gym. A private space to store equipment, play music and even have a steam room or shower are popular requests for those with space in their basement!

Elegant Navy Kitchens: 2017's Hot Color


  Navy blue is an elegant, classic and even serious color. In it's truest form Navy blue appears almost black; so it's no wonder why Navy is the "new black" for 2017 home design. Interestingly, the color gets it's name from the British Royal Navy, who wore dark blue uniforms. This may be also why Navy has developed a masculine and powerful association over the years.   But don't let that history dissuade you from using it in a multitude of applications - from nurseries, to living rooms and kitchens - Navy can be a dramatic and timeless choice.  Houzz contributor Samantha Schoech says "pair it with crisp white and you get a brisk maritime feel — think yachting with the Kennedys. Put it with bright colors — lime green, bright pink and sunny yellow look great with navy — and you get something modern and vivacious."     Here are some of our favorite ideas on using this color in the heart of the home, the kitchen.Via Pinterest  A navy blue kitchen island creates a high-end, custom feel to an otherwise neutral space. Navy pairs so well with white as well as cream. Consider a Marakesh Cream Tile floor with this stunning cabinetry.  Via PinterestContrasting cabinetry is another kitchen trend that is a great way to incorporate navy cabinets. Shaker style cabinets and white subway tile keep this look simple and classic while the Navy makes a bold statement.Via Sabon Home TumblrA Navy blue pattern backsplash gives this rustic chic kitchen a designer feel. Light fixtures and fabrics would be more changeable ways to incorporate a bold accent color into a kitchen.[...]

Step Out On A Better Deck


 Homeowners know that a great outdoor living space not only maximizes their home value, but also their use of their whole home! During beautiful weather, which we're lucky to have a lot of in Atlanta, having a great deck or patio and yard to enjoy can make your home feel so much bigger. Here are some of the top deck trends and design requests that deck designers like AK have been getting during the past year:

Homeowners want their deck and outdoor living space to be personalized. This means using different areas of a deck for personalized purposes such as cooking, entertaining, sitting around a fire, relaxing in a hot tub, a children’s play area, and even meditation.

Focus On Railings
More and more attention is being paid to deck railings! More often than not in the past our clients would have considered deck shape, use, material and more - but not the railings. Today that is not the case. Railings are speaking volumes to a homeowner's style. From traditional and classic iron balusters to modern industrial cable rails to craftsman style, there are many options for decks, patios and stairs! Clean lines with less ornamentation is quickly becoming the top requested look.

Have you considered installing technology or automation - in to the outdoors? Remodelers like AK have been installing grills, TVs and entertainment systems that can emerge from water-resistant hulls under the deck space with the touch of a remote-control button.

Go Green
You might think of environmentally friendly decking as only using renewable resources or sustainably harvested wood, however there is another option - Composite Decking. Composite materials are typically a combination of recycled plastics and wood fibers, which are less susceptible to splintering, warping and cracking. Win. Win. 
Bonus? You can pick from numerous color choices with composite decking - and even incorporate more than one color or material in to a custom deck design!

What If Madonna Was A Kitchen?


   We heard someone describing the iconic style of Audrey Hepburn the other day. Timeless. Strong Lines. Tailored. High End. Use Of Color. We immediately thought of what that style would look like...if it were a kitchen.   Now fashion and interior design are not very different animals. Popular style in one often translates in to the other; most recently the use of geometric prints and shades of gray. Therefore seeing similarities is a celebrity wardrobe and a trending kitchen is not that unusual. But we were wondering about the real icons - like Audrey Hepburn, Madonna, Grace Kelly, etc. - could their unique style translate into interior design? Can an expertly designed space add the je ne sais quoi to the materials and products?   We wanted to take a look, and see if we could match a kitchen to some celebrity icons. These spaces below are not the celebrities' actual kitchens, these are the ones that remind us of them. We'd love to get your opinion - Did we hit the nail on the head or miss the mark?Madonna  Is this a "Madonna Kitchen?"We see these as her style elements: Grace KellyIs This A Grace Kelly Kitchen?Or This?We feel her style would appreciate the old stand-bys, antique pieces and the simple parts of life.Sarah Jessica ParkerDoes this kitchen ooze SJP's style?Or this?  If your style was embodied in a kitchen, what would it look like?Show us here on Facebook [...]

Small Bathroom Remodel In Tucker


  Just because a bathroom is small, doesn't mean it can't suit your needs! What matters is that it has storage and function that is specifically designed for how you use the space.

  These homeowners in Tucker, GA emailed AK Renovations to help them remodel a secondary bath that was not making the most of it's small space. Now every inch of the bathroom is utilized to it's full potential; and it looks clean and sophisticated to boot.

East Cobb Window Renovation


 There is a great appeal to a home with plenty of windows, even more so for large windows. Most of us would agree that a home with bigger windows tends to be more desirable than one with fewer and smaller windows. This beautiful family home in East Cobb is getting a facelift via it's windows! The new design calls for larger windows and new doors to give this home an updated look with more natural light and greater energy efficiency! Beautiful windows are pleasing to look at, make a room appear bigger and add value to a home in the event of resale.  Did you know that if designed properly, large well-positioned windows can help heat a home through passive solar gain in the winter when the sun is shining. The new windows are about to go in. Can you tell what a dramatic difference this change will have on the look of the home?  [...]

Kitchens For Busy Families: Black Stainless Steel


  KitchenAid recently introduced the first ever black stainless steel appliances! Black stainless steel makes a bold addition to any kitchen. The soft, brushed metal of the black stainless is offset by chrome details and satin-textured handles. The premium color of KitchenAid appliances is stated to be a softer, warmer alternative to traditional stainless steel. Designed to blend with other black and stainless appliances, it makes a bold statement and complements the kitchen design.  KitchenAid offers a PrintShield™ Finish that resists fingerprints and smudges, your appliances will stay as stunning as ever. LG quickly followed suit and is offering a black stainless that is coated with a darker hue and topped with a protective coating, the LG Black Stainless Steel Series makes every appliance fingerprint and smudge resistant. A dry cloth is all it takes to bring back its original luster. LG Black Stainles     Black stainless makes a great option for busy families who want a more contemporary look than black or white, with less maintenance than stainless steel.Get More Information About Kitchen Remodeling & AK Complete Home Renovations          [...]

Is Now The Time To Refinance For Remodeling?


   World events rattled the markets last month and interest rates dropped noticeably. In the last few weeks, Zillow reported a 132% surge in refinance requests through its online mortgage marketplace, while the Mortgage Bankers Association’s weekly measure of application volume showed the highest level of refinance applications since January of 2015.   Refinancing can be a way to cut monthly payments, if rates fall considerably below a homeowner’s original mortgage rate. It can also help in other ways, enabling homeowners to pay down debt more quickly on a shorter-term loan or tap into equity for home improvements and other needs. And available equity has grown in recent years, thanks to rising home values.  Homeowners who have been dragging their feet about refinancing still have time to act. Zillow experts predict that rates will likely stay below 4 percent for the remainder of the year. And according to the most recent consumer credit access survey by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, the rejection rate on refinance applications has dropped in the last year, indicating that credit is easier to get.  Could this be the right time for you to refinance and use some home equity to put towards renovations?    According to the New York Times recent article, Astrid Hanenkamp, 45, was pleasantly surprised to find that she could do significantly better than the 4 percent fixed-rate mortgage she carried on her two-bedroom co-op in the Hamilton Heights neighborhood of West Harlem. After making a casual inquiry with Jordan Roth, a vice president of Guardhill Financial Corporation in Manhattan, who helped with her purchase loan in 2012, Ms. Hanenkamp, a fashion designer, is planning to close on a refinancing next month with another 30-year mortgage, at a rate of 3.375 percent. Even after taking out a little cash from her equity for a bathroom remodel, she expects her monthly payment to drop from about $1,100 to around $980.   Talk to your preferred mortgage professional or have a look at AK's home improvement loan information to make your first step towards refreshing your home![...]

Enough Already! Alternatives To "Spa" Bathroom Remodels


    We have a really deep, dark secret we've been holding in for a long time...We're sick of "spa" bathrooms! Whew. Feels good to get that one of our chests.    Now let us explain... It's not that we don't appreciate the minimalist beauty and simplicity that spa bathrooms aim to provide. We love clean lines. We love muted tones, calming colors, natural textures and tones... But there are also SO many other looks we love! Modern, Earthy, rustic, transitional, vintage, glam, Victorian, contemporary and more. Here are a few ideas that appeared recently in the Washingtonian that we think show many options for all your bathroom has to offer! The closet doors that once hung in the Old Executive Office Building were originally all wood-paneled. But DC native Darryl Carter replaced some panels with glass so he could reference his wardrobe more easily. Photos of Carter's home by Christopher Shane.   Vintage ShowpieceThe entire second floor consists of a master suite- bedroom, sitting room, and bathroom- that ends in this airy soaking room overlooking Rock Creek Park.Carter built the niche in his shower hoping to find the right sculpture. He already owned the marble horse—one day, it dawned on him that it was perfect for this pedestal.Bringing a piece of furniture, like this secretary desk and chair, into a bathroom warms up the space. Photo by Christopher Shane.Carter’s gas fireplace keeps bath time toasty and the setting regal.Feminine, Not FussyShine on: The antiqued-gold mirrors are by Uttermost, the sconces by Hudson Valley Lighting. Photo by Stacy Zarin Goldberg/Case Design Remodeling.Soak it up: The freestanding bathtub is “Amiata” by the British manufacturer Victoria & Albert. Photo by Stacy Zarin Goldberg/Case Design Remodeling.Clean LivingPianura’s minimalist wall-mounted bathroom systems, such as the one in this Reston bathroom, feature built-in lighting as well as cabinet doors that revolve 180 degrees to maximize storage space. Photo by Angie Seckinger/Boffi Georgetown.   Are you dreaming of a remodeled bathroom like these? From classical to modern, Mediterranean to rustic - when selecting the feel of your new bathroom the options are endless. Even if you think your update is a simple one, a design professional from AK with 20 years of experience can help you plan and complete your project most effectively. In conjunction with our vendors and partners your bathroom remodel can be addressed in a turn-key fashion. AK Atlanta Bathroom Design Images: May 2016 issue of Washingtonian. TAGGED IN: Boffi, CASE Design, Darryl Carter, Home Design, Master Bathrooms, Washingtonian Instagram[...]

Atlanta Remodeling Trends: Paradigm Shifters


"Trends" is a common keyword searched online; when it comes to remodeling and home design, many trends come and go. There are also new ideas and advancements in home design that are called a trend when they first emerge, but in reality, they are ideas or materials that shift the industry as a whole! These so-called trends are so much more lasting and significant. These can impact your quality of life, comfort and health. These are trends we want to look at today...Trend No. 1: Technology Integration And Automation You’re probably seeing this trend almost everywhere in your life right now. Your phone syncs There are many home automation options on the market nowautomatically with your car to play music through its speakers and take calls hand-free. You scan your energy bar’s wrapper into your fitness app to add its calories, protein and carbs to your daily counts. You watch TV on your tablet while riding in an Uber car that you summoned with it, too.It’s not surprising that this digital integration and automation trend has extended into the remodeling realm. There are ovens that are controlled remotely from your phone, outlets that include USB ports along with standard electrical receptacles, countertops and medicine cabinets with built-in chargers, home security systems and much more Jetsonian excitement to come. Some of this isn’t really new. Home automation has been around for a while, but it is now becoming far more mainstream and user friendly. Image courtesy of myenergymonster.comTrend No. 2: Healthy Home LivingHow many times in the last 24 hours have you heard the term "Clean Living?" Beyond just the food Alpharetta Master Bath Remodelwe eat, healthy living is ranked as one of the major remodeling goals of millennial parents in a recent survey. This has spurred the growth of products like hands-free faucets and toilet flushing, steam ovens and steam showers.All of these innovations are aimed at taking the best care possible of yourself and your family. Stress management is part of that equation for many, and the reason why amenities like steam showers are experiencing double-digit growth. And there's nothing like a functional, organized home to reduce it's owners' stress; this is one of the major reasons we hear from our Atlanta remodeling clients as to why they want to renovate! The focus extends beyond products into space planning and design. There has been growth in home fitness rooms, wellness centers to accommodate medicine and vitamins in the kitchen or bath, a major emphasis on spa-style master baths and an overall focus on using materials that are less toxic for humans and pets alike. Healthy living trends are likely to expand as more millennials become homeowners.Trend No. 3: SustainabilityHere's another word we hear a lot these days! There is a strong connection between the healthy living and sustainability trends. There are also overlapping benefits. If, for example, the paint you use is healthier to breathe, it’s also healthier for the planet. Hands-free faucets reduce the spread of germs in your kitchen and bathrooms.AK offers a line of FSC Certified cabinetry, we've used sustainable materials like concrete and recycled glass on kitchen countertops and we help our clients design kitchens that make recycling and even composting easier!Trend No. 4: User-Centric DesignPerhaps it’s our smart phones and tablets spoiling us into wanting every area of our life to be personalized and user-friendly. This has certainly been the approach to home technology. Just about every control pad you operate today — whether it’s cooking or showering — has been influenced by Silicon Valley to be friendly and customizable. User-focused d[...]

Ready To Remodel Your Bathroom?


 When you're ready to remodel your bathroom consider these tips from Consumer Reports: seven bathroom design upgrades that'll make you happy, and seven you may regret.An expertly remodeled master bathroom will provide years of pleasure and comfort. But do an amateur job and you’ll be reminded of the fact every day. It’s a tricky space, unfortunately, with lots of moving parts crammed into a tight footprint, not to mention the volumes of water ready to exploit any and all leaks. Setting a budget and planning ahead are two ways to keep your project on track. (See Bathroom remodeling trends and costs.) And also take care to choose the best sink, countertop and toilet for your space. The following list of dos and don’ts will help you master the remodel, whether you do the work yourself or a hire it out. Seven good ideas When you’re investing in a home remodeling project, you want to make sure that the results not only please you but add value to your home and save you money on energy and water as well. These seven steps will help you take advantage of the latest design trends, technologies and products.  Budget for the unexpectedHidden water damage is a common problem in bathrooms, whether from a leaky shower pan or Mother Hubbard's Custom Cabinetry in Mechanicsburg, Pa. Other issues are truly hidden, for example a vent stack inside a wall that you thought you were going to knock down.An experienced contractor will do exploratory work early in the project to sniff out as many issues as possible. “In the case of the vent stack, we’ll investigate above the bathroom to see the pipe coming up through the house,” says Petrie. But contractors can’t see through walls, so don’t expect them to catch every possible pitfall. That’s why it’s important to build a 10 to 15 percent cushion into your budget. If nothing goes wrong, you’ll have a nice little windfall.Atlanta Bath Remodelrunning toilet. “If the floor feels spongy, that’s a sign of serious water damage,” says John Petrie, owner of Hide the toiletA master bath that’s stylish and functional can also be discreet. That’s why it’s nice to hide this fixture away, either in its own “room-within-the-room” or behind a half wall. A piece of furniture—an armoire or dresser, say—can create the necessary barrier without the expense of a framed wall.Do choose appropriate surfacesYour master bathroom’s surfaces do more than just contribute to the overall aesthetic. They also take lots of abuse. Porcelain tile is a favorite among designers, for use on the floors and walls alike. “You can find some versions in the $5 per square foot range that look like natural stone,” says Petrie. He recommends larger tile sizes to minimize grout lines, easing the upkeep. That might mean 18-by-18-inch tile on the floors and 12-by-12-inch on some or all of the walls, perhaps transitioning to 6-by-6 tiles on the diagonal with a glass mosaic transition strip.Porcelain is also a popular option for bathroom sinks, though it proved prone to chipping in our tests. Enamel-on-steel sinks were especially durable and stain-resistant, as were stainless steel sinks, which are becoming more popular for use in bathrooms. Solid-surface sinks are another durable option that allows the sink to be integrated with the vanity countertop and, if you like, the adjoining cove or backsplash.When it comes to the countertop, granite and quartz have migrated [...]

Houzz: Top Atlanta Remodeling Trends


•Farmhouse entryways. Stripping away the need for fancy flourishes or decor for decor’s sake, farmhouse style gets at the root of function. That’s why the style makes sense for mudrooms, where simplicity in storage and durability in materials are paramount.•Fireplaces and fire features. New advances mean you can have all the ambiance without the smell or hassle of traditional wood-burning fireplaces. Plus, fireplaces are making a comeback as living room focal points in lieu of the dark void of a TV screen.•Mixing modern materials in the kitchen. Looking for something a little more lively than white cabinets and granite countertops in your kitchen? Consider mixing several modern materials, finishes and colors. Butcher block countertops get broken up with soapstone near the stove and Carrara marble on a nearby baking station. These mix with olive-green cabinets and stainless steel appliances for an eclectic, sophisticated look. See more Atlanta kitchen trends here•Punched-up white kitchens. White kitchen walls and cabinets — and even countertops in many cases — is a trend that will continue for years to come. To avoid a too-sterile look, however, many designers and homeowners are learning to punch up an all-white space with smart, colorful details through tile, floor-to-ceiling bookcases, raw materials and more. See a beautiful white kitchen in Alpharetta here•Sunrooms. A sunroom is a top dream space for many homeowners. Even those who don’t have the luxury of having — or adding — one, are finding ways to carve out a special sun-drenched corner in their homes.•Surprising backsplash and countertop pairings. You could play it safe with white subway tile and granite countertops, but sometimes safe is so boring. Instead, consider a different combination, such as a brick backsplash with concrete countertops or yellow ceramic tile with butcher block. allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="" width="420">•Workhorse islands. Kitchen islands provide additional workspace, but they’ve taken on so much more than that. With deep storage, prep sinks, room for seating and more, workhorse islands are becoming the central feature in modern kitchens. Want to see some inspiring AK kitchen islands?•Niche appliances. Looking for a little added luxury in the kitchen? Steam ovens promise to cook food more thoroughly and healthily than microwaves; warming drawers give cooks a little wiggle room to deliver hot meals to family and guests; induction cooktops save space and are safer for homes with young kids; and kimchi refrigerators offer fans of the popular Korean condiment a chance to make their own at home.•Deep kitchen drawers. Houzz data shows that ease of storage is the top kitchen priority during a remodel. And while deep drawers have been creeping up to replace lower kitchen cabinets for a while now, they’re only getting better — and more affordable. Dividers and inserts let you organize any shape or size of dish, pan or utensil under the sun, and there are even clever options for deep corner drawers, and drawers under range tops and kitchen sinks.•Bidets. The separate bidet unit in bathrooms never really took off in America. But since manufacturers began creating combination bidet and toilet units. They’ve been catching on. According to Houzz data, 5 percent of renovated master bathrooms now include bidets.•Extra-large-format tile. Large-format tiles (such as 12 by 24 inches) have been making an appearance in kitchens and bathrooms for some time now, but be on the lookout for extra-large-format ones. Just how extra? Try 31 [...]

7 Designer Secrets For Small Kitchens


Having a large kitchen space could be a luxury for many homeowners because most kitchens are cramped and tiny. However, you can do some changes to your small kitchen by incorporating some of these designer tricks:1) Keep it all white. AK Classical KitchenWhite reflects light best, making the kitchen space look bigger. Paint the countertops and cabinetry in white so that it will look seamless with the walls and ceilings. For some depth and shadows, use recessed-panel cabinets with crown moldings.2) Keep color contrasts in the same color value.If you do have to add some color, maintain similar hues of the color scheme. This way, the sudden "pop" of color won't let the eyes see the shifts and breaks in the room. Like white, using similar hues can bring an expansive effect.3) Go for a mirrored backsplash.houzz.comUsing mirrors is an old designer's trick that can help open up the space and add more light. "Mirrors are especially useful when there is no, or minimal, natural light in a kitchen," said New York designer Jenny Wolf, according to Architectural Digest4) Use glass doors for your cabinets. Glass cabinet doors gives the room depth, as the walls can be seen through it. The challenge is to make sure to keep the cabinets orderly and, if possible, color-coordinated.    5) Have an open shelf.AK Marietta Kitchen FaceliftIf glass cabinets aren't your thing, perhaps having open shelves is better. Aside from creating an illusion of space, it also feels warmer and more welcoming. "Open shelves invite visitors to feel at home and help themselves to whatever they need. They don't have to ask where things are, or go rummaging through cabinets because it's all in plain view," said homeowner Jamie, according to Good Housekeeping.AK Contemporary Kitchen Remodel6) Flood the space with lights. Use little window treatments so that natural light is not blocked off. Add additional lighting fixtures on walls, backsplashes and countertops to open up the space.7) Use slender furnishing.Pick counter or bar chairs that have slim legs, or if you have a working table to use as an island, it should be long and narrow with clean lines. Ditch furnishings with thick bases, as they will make the room visually bulky.Get More Information About Kitchen Remodeling & AK Complete Home Renovations          Text By Rachel Cruz [...]

2016 Kitchen Design Trends


It's another year, and with that comes a huge number of new home design trends. These 2016 trends are based upon what AK designers are seeing from our clients and additionally the interest from metro Atlanta homeowners. These are remodeling and design trends that you can bet on seeing in the crop of 2016 kitchen remodels around Atlanta!  Warm Metals Design Crush: Amy Meier• Warm Metals Are On The Rise- Step aside silver tones, hotter gold completions are en routein. Following quite a while of brushed nickel, chrome and cleaned nickel being the most well known completions for apparatuses, hotter brilliant tones are making a colossal rebound. Cool Tone KitchensSplash!• Simplified Styles Are Best - This is the year we keep our kitchens spotless and uncomplicated. A couple of things you can hope to see are straightforward profiles and level section entryways. Plans will likewise fare thee well not to present an excess of materials or hues. • Cooler Tones Are Still Cool  - Cooler shades are the shade of decision this year. Known forbeing quiet and relieving, they are connected with water, sky and cooler temperatures. Samples on this shading range incorporate dim, blue and white. You can hope to see these hues consolidated in an assortment of ways, including cupboards, backsplashes or accent hues. • Backsplashes Are Making A Splash - Backsplashes will keep on being smooth and lovely, yet with limited grout lines. You can hope to see glass tile backsplash, vibrant patters, color and geometric designs.• Smart Storage - Design ideas keep on enhancing, prompting a plenty of custom inserts, dividers, coordinators and pull-outs. These add another level of comfort and effectiveness to your space, whether putting away plates, utensils or flavors. • Steam Ovens Are Hot -  Convection steam oven are grabbing hold. This new machine utilizessteam to defrost, heat, moderate cook and warm sustenance things. Advantages incorporate offering your sustenance some assistance with retaining a greater amount of its vital vitamins and supplements. On the other hand, this new appliance isn't going to take up precious space in your kitchen or change the look and feel. Rather, it will supplant or show up nearby the microwave. Peekaboo!• TV  - It appears that TVs may be viewed as a standard 'kitchen appliance' in 2016. Whether it is to take after alongside your most loved cooking appears or find the news while making breakfast, TVs are getting to be ordinary in the kitchen. With such a variety of choices for customization, creators can flawlessly include a corner, retire or set of pocket entryways that consolidate this media part consistently into the design.Get More Information About Kitchen Desgin and AK Complete Home Renovations          [...]

Six Step Guide to Moving Versus Remodeling


  From our friends at Design/Build Pros   Moving vs. Remodeling is an age old question that is very much alive today, now that the economy has somewhat bounced back and homeowners are spending more of their discretionary income on their homes.   Rather than agonize over whether to move or improve, we recommend gathering as much information as possible, considering all of your options, and making an educated decision that puts you and your family in the best possible position.   Moving or remodeling is a life decision, and most people can gain more clarity when they understand the reasons behind their desire for change. Are you considering moving because…You want to live in a more desirable neighborhood?You want to shorten your commute?You want better access to a downtown area?You want a larger or smaller yard?Your at-home family is growing or shrinking?You want to be closer (or further) from family?You want a better interior layout or floor plan?Your home is old and just needs too much work?   Your answers to questions like this will be a great starting point. You might find out that, based on your answers, remodeling is really not an option for you. Or you may surprise yourself and have a realization that you can transform your existing home to make it what you really want.Read more about home remodeling investments and value.You can definitely do a lot of good research online (such as reading this article!), but we also recommend gathering some professional opinions about your specific situation. a contractor friend to come over and give you some ideas on what you can do with your home. When homeowners ask us for our opinion, we always discuss the Three D’s of the Remodeling Project Budget.Ask a local real estate agent to give you a basic market analysis so you can get an idea of what your home is worth, what it might be worth after a remodel, and what homes in the area are selling for.  Or if you don’t know a real estate agent to ask, you can do your own research on sites like Realtor, Zillow, and Trulia.There are so many variables in making a decision like this that you want to assume as little as possible. The more information you can gather, the better.Evaluate CostsWe like to say that there are two categories of costs involved in remodeling or moving – Obvious Costs and Hidden Costs.The obvious costs may include:[...]

Personal Planning Before Bathroom Remodeling


We enjoy hearing what the average homeowner has in mind when they decide the want to redo their bathroom. We really chuckled at this personal account from Prentiss Gray, an NJ columnist ready to plan his bathroom remodel. Gray says "Bathrooms can be pretty boring. It’s amazing that we can take so little thought when putting in or refurbishing a bathroom. Most bathrooms are a major investment and we not only use them every day, but also spend a good deal of time in the process. It should be a nice room but so many of us try desperately to get them to be as inexpensive as possible. Unfortunately, it can’t always be both.Instead, why not start from what we’d like to have? How do you imagine your favorite bathroom?I once had a contractor tell me, with a very dour look, that bathrooms shouldn’t ever be bigger than a Marietta Bathroom Remodeljail cell, otherwise it was very wasteful and people would spend too long in there. Maybe that’s what accounts for how a lot of them feel. What do you really want? A deep comfortable tub, with massaging streams of warm waters? A wide open double sink with acres of counter space and voluminous mirrors? A grand throne of a toilet with a heated seat and plenty of legroom? Maybe one big enough for two people to use at the same time without intricately dancing around each other?Most bathrooms have three major fixtures — the sink, the toilet and the bath/shower. In our latest bathroom, we are forgoing the bath entirely, just going “shower only” so we can really get the shower of our dreams. Bathtubs have never really been big enough anyway. Remember swimming around in warm soapy water, what happened to that? Sitting all scrunched up in a cramped tub is just not the same, no matter how many candles or bubbles there are. Give me a shower with a comfortable seat any day.  That sinking feeling  Sinks haven’t changed much since we used bowls and pitchers, in fact the bowl is back. Some of the nicest bathroom sinks today are effectively bowls placed on top of the counter. The nice thing about this above-cabinet style is that the sink can show off its styling, with many color and patterns available and we don’t have to lean over as far to use them, making it much easier on the back. It also means that just about any cabinet can be a stand for the sink, because plumbing has become so modular. For that matter, any bowl can become a sink basin just by drilling a hole for the drain and stopper. Imagine the possibilities for creating your own signature piece.  Le toilet  Although Consumer Reports says the best-rated toilets are the standard ones — big tanks on the back Atlanta Custom Shower with cold plastic seats and old flush levers on the tank — we don’t have to go that way if we don’t want to. On a recent trip to Europe, I was pleased to notice that the toilets were far and away above our own toilets. Water savings has been the style in Europe for a long time, so that fits our needs beautifully. Most toilets flush using less than 1.7 gallons of water these days, some as little as 0.85 gallons. Minimal water usage has become a requirement in most building codes. But the Europeans also have a lot of models that are wall-mounted. The tanks are either hidden in the wall behind the toilet or don’t exist because the flush is assisted by design, pumps or both. There are huge benefits to wall-mounted toilets. Not only do they save a lot of space while providing more seating room and variable height, since they don’t touch the floor it makes it eas[...]

Proper Basement Renovating To Add Square Footage


Moisture due to condensationReduce condensation in the air by insulating your cold water pipes to avoid “sweating” in the summer (theirs, not yours). To deal with a serious condensation problem, operate a dehumidifier and apply a waterproof coating to the walls.Water can seep into your home through the foundation in a variety of ways, and if it does, the Moisture Leads To Moldbasement is where it will end up … unless you take proactive measures to keep it out.Grade the soil of the surrounding yard so that it directs moisture away from the foundation. The ground should slope downward 1 inch per linear foot.Any cracks in the foundation or in your concrete driveway and walkways can also permit water to accumulate below grade. You can attempt to fix these yourself, using one of the kits on the market, but be warned: concrete cracks are both tricky to repair and potentially very hazardous to your foundation. For the most reliable work, consult a professional concrete contractor.If you happen to live in a locale with an especially high water table (the natural level of water under the ground), you may need to have a sump pump (be sure to get a battery backup system!) or perimeter drains installed to control moisture below the surface of the soil.When the remodeling project begins, have a vapor barrier installed on both the walls and the floor. Use metal or wood furring strips to offset the framing from your exterior walls. Add insulation, which should include vapor protection to make sure that you stay warm and dry.By Laura Firszt Networx[...]

Why We Love To Remodel Marietta Homes


  For those poor souls who don't live in or around Marietta, Georgia...let us tell you a little bit about this wonderful city. Marietta is the largest city in Cobb County with about 59,000 residents. The first city plat was laid out in 1833, depicting a quaint town built around a city square that still exists today! Though many places in Marietta were set on fire during the first strike of General Sherman's "March To The Sea" in 1864, many historic homes and sites still stand. The Oakton House in Marietta has been continuously occupied since 1838 and the original barn, milk house, smoke house and well still stand on the remaining five acre property.  The History  Even newer homes or homes that are not officially deemed historic hold within them a heritage of the city it stands on. The new homes are beautiful and luxurious family-centric spaces while the older ones are being renovated and restored with such care. The homes in Marietta show the great pride their owners have!The Hagood-Sheeler-Musolf House, c. 1929The People We might be a little biased, but we have the best clients on the planet. Our Marietta remodeling clients have been some of the most wonderful, fun and kind people we have met. We have been able to explore all styles and trends in homes around Marietta and it is the variety of people and styles that really adds interest and spice to the city! allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="" width="420">The Style    Marietta grew as one of the first "suburbs" in the country. After the civil war this city would help invent a distinctly American form of house. The American Craftsman style and the Arts and Crafts movement created some incredibly interesting bungalows around Marietta that now flow seamlessly into the eclectic revival homes of the later 20th century. Get More Information About Marietta Remodeling And AK Complete Home Renovations          [...]

5 Truths About Our Homes


AK Atlanta Kitchen Remodel  When we work in a home, we are often times making significant changes that the homeowner has been thinking about, and wanting for a long time. The best part of our job is giving a family a beautiful space that improves their life at home. But it doesn't always take a renovation to fall in love with your home again, sometimes it just means remembering (or realizing) some basic truths about the place we call home.Comparing your home to someone else's takes away from authentically creating yoursThere's certainly something to be said about absorbing inspiration from as many sources as you can find. But comparing your home to others in a jealous, why-can't-I-have that sort of way just takes away from the energy of discovering what it is that you love. What it is that makes a home a home to you. Comparing yourself to others can lead to buying things that you'd never normally buy. You've got to step away from scrolling through people's Instagram accounts and focus more on creating spaces you'd want to Instagram.You really probably don't need all that stuffClutter is a happiness killer. We're not talking about collecting things — if you're someone who loves a home full of fun finds that you've picked up throughout the year, fill that space up to your heart's delight (just maybe dust pretty often). We're talking about homes that are filled with unneeded things. Items bought out of boredom, because you wanted to impress someone else. Bought impulsively and without thinking. That kind of stuff? That's clutter. And you don't need it. It'll only physically and mentally bog you down. Learn that lesson as soon as you can — and be open to relearning it in every new home you live in (as it's easily forgotten).Home is who you share it with So learn to get along with whoever shares your home, whether it's a roommate or a spouse. Communicate with roommates calmly (and don't leave passive aggressive notes — even if they're funny). Work with your spouse to come up with designs that make everyone comfortable. Consider your pets' needs so that they don't get bored or restless and tear the joint up. Celebrate your home by inviting people over, even if it's just for tea and packaged snacks. And learn to be alone if you live alone. Don't always be seeking out distractions. Use quiet time at home to listen to your surroundings and get to know yourself.You don't have to learn how to fix everything, but knowing what's "off" makes life easierAK Home MaintenanceCreating a nice home means paying attention to what's going on within — how the appliances are working, noticing if the toilet's constantly running. You don't have to be an expert at fixing everything, but you should know when something's not quite right. Just being attentive to your home's normal state means you'll catch when things aren't quite right, and it might save you time and money on repairs later on.Even the smallest studio will seem like a mansion when you learn that "home" actually extends beyond your wallsWe've really encouraged you to explore your neighborhoods this summer. Though your home is your sanctuary — the place that recharges you and you find peace and solitude in, really delving into your neighborhood could be another way to find joy in where you live. Even if you don't live in your dream location, there might be a restaurant that could become your favorite Friday night hang out. There could be a small hardware store that makes buying home supplies a m[...]

Elements For A Glamorous Kitchen


  It sounds almost like a oxymoron, doesn't it. A glamorous kitchen? For those who are serious about their cooking, or have little ones running around, a kitchen isn’t a place for glamour. It’s for making a mess, feeding the masses and wreaking havoc in. Despite how strange it may seem, making your kitchen a glamorous space will actually make you want to spend MORE time in the kitchen - gathering with family, friends, cooking, creating even doing homework.     Wallpaper can have the same effect- a bold, feminine design that will instantly draw the eye and excite the senses. If you don't like wallpapering all walls, consider using panels, or an accent wall.  Glamour is a quality that makes a person or a thing appealing or special. Imagine feeling drawn to and happy in your kitchen space. Sound nice? We think so too.   A chandelier will inject instant glamour into any room, whether it’s a fuchsia pink plastic one or a glittering cut glass one. A charming light fixture helps to create a more ambient area as opposed to the harsh brightness of the central light. Consider adding some over the breakfast area, island or peninsulas.   Add drama to the room with a splash of color. A passionate red or a regal purple, or if you’re feeling brave, something darker will make the room feel warm and sumptuous, as opposed to clean and clinical. Alternatively, go for a classic white, glossy kitchen with pastel accessories for a 50’s Hollywood glamour feel.  Whether it’s through the reflective, glossy surface of your cabinets, or glittering glass mosaic tiles or simply through some sparkly accessories, sparkle is essential for a glamorous kitchen.   [...]

The Death Of The Chevron & 5 Other Home Trends


 Judging by how often these images, and ones like them, are flooding our Pinterest feeds - we're going to go ahead and call these the 6 home trends hitting homes near you by fall 2015! From paint trends to predicting the imminent death of the chevron, these "In" and "Out" predictions are very specific....And very controversial!   You can see below there is one that we just DO NOT agree with. What do you think? Will be you be an early adapter of these latest home design trends?In: Oversize ArtOut: Gallery WallsJust as we were starting to perfect the Tetris-like picture placement of gallery walls, oversize art has become the wall statement du jour. Supersized paintings, blowup photographs, and gargantuan art of every sort are dominating huge swaths of walls to stunning effect.Source: Nicole LaMotte via One Kings LaneIn: Sleek Modern TubsOut: Vintage Claw-Foot TubsThe freestanding tub still reigns supreme, but the romantic claw-foot look is being usurped by clean, single-slab models.Source: Signature HardwareIn: Open Kitchen ShelvingOut: Kitchen CabinetsGood news for those needing extra kitchen storage: open kitchen shelving is now a fashionable (and affordable) way to stash your dishes.**AK Is Calling A Quick Death On This One: Cabinets Are Not Out, They Can Never Be "Out"! While Open Shelving Has It's Place, And May Be A Trendy Look Now... We NEED Cabinets To Store Our Not So Pretty Stuff, And Keep Our Kitchens From Feel Crazy Cluttered!**Source HouseBeautiful PinIn: Matte Brass HardwareOut: Polished Brass HardwareThis It material is starting to look more contemporary in kitchens and bathrooms in brushed and antique finishes. Source: Lesley Unruh via One Kings LaneIn: ShiboriOut: ChevronJust as you were starting to OD on chevron stripes, artistic shibori prints entered the picture. The popularity of this tie-dye-esque look is growing rapidly, jumping from pillows and bedspreads to curtains and rugs.Source: West ElmIn: Accent TrimOut: Accent WallsThe accent wall feels passé next to its trendy cousin, accent trim. Paint that white crown molding glossy black or whatever statement-making hue suits your fancy.Source: Brittany Ambridge for Domino[...]

AK Awarded For Exceptional Customer Service


AK Complete Home Renovations Recognized among North America’s Best Customer Service Leaders within the Residential Construction Industry GuildQuality’s2015 Guildmaster Award Honors AK Complete Home RenovationsMarietta, Georgia, May 19 2015- AK Complete Home Renovations, has been awarded a 2015 Guildmaster Award for exceptional customer service. GuildQuality, an independent customer satisfaction surveying company, has powered the Guildmaster Award since 2005 to celebrate service excellence in the building, remodeling, contracting, and home services professions.AK was selected as one of the over 300 North American builders, remodelers, developers, and contractors recognized by GuildQuality for their superior delivery of customer care. Over the past few months, GuildQuality reviewed numerous survey responses submitted by customers of Guildmaster candidates. In granting awards, GuildQuality considers two primary metrics for each candidate: the percentage of customers who would recommend and the percentage of customers who responded. AK Complete Home Renovations achieved a recommendation rate of greater than 90% from their customers, who were surveyed through GuildQuality. “We are very proud to have been awarded with this great distinction for the fourth year! Great service is at the core of what we do for our clients; we're thrilled they feel we have fulfilled this goal and would recommend us to their friends and family.” Ed Cholfin, AK PresidentFor more on the 2015 Guildmaster Award and qualifications, visit [...]