FOR BREaAKING tNEWS VIhSIT WWWo.QNS.COmM e OCTOBER 11, 2018 • AT HOME • THE QUEENS COURIER 57
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Home upgrades that really work
Ideas and inspiration to create more functional spaces
Bathroom and kitchen upgrades are among
the most popular home renovations, but not
just because the improvements are likely to
increase the home’s value. Renovations to
these high-use areas can enhance the practical
enjoyment of your home while adding
aesthetic appeal and style.
A Better Bathroom
Bathroom makeovers can take many
forms, from simple updates to total overhauls.
Consider these common approaches,
identifi ed by the home experts at
JCPenney Home Services, to determine
the best match for your home and needs.
According to the National Association of
Realtors, more than 60 percent of homeowners
prefer a stall shower without a tub.
Whether you want to join the ranks of
homeowners transforming their outdated
tubs to modern showers, need a larger tub to
soak away the day or simply want to update
the look of your space, converting your tub
or shower is a simple way to add functionality
while transforming your bathroom.
Aging and Accessibility
More than 200,000 injuries occur in
the bathroom each year, according to the
National Safety Council. Especially for those
with mobility challenges, water and slippery
surfaces can be a dangerous combination. If
you’re taking on a bathroom upgrade with
accessibility in mind, be sure to consider
options like slip-resistant fl ooring, strong
grab bars, shower seats and a practical walkin
tub or low-threshold shower base.
If you’re looking for a substantial
change, a complete remodel may be your
best answer. Th is approach allows you
to integrate a consistent look and style
throughout the room and create a truly
custom experience. However, a project
of this scope oft en requires professional
assistance. Th ere are companies like
Re-Bath, a partner of JCPenney Home
Services, that off er an exclusive remodeling
process to remove old materials and
fi xtures and replace them with beautiful,
new products in a wide variety of colors
and styles. Partnerships with leading
brands provide ample choices in cabinets,
countertops, fi xtures, hardware and more
for a one-stop solution to upgrading your
bathroom from fl oor to ceiling.
Create a New Kitchen
It’s the hub of the home, so it’s no surprise
that many homeowners start with
the kitchen when they’re planning functional
upgrades. New appliances, countertops
and tilework all add to the style
and function of a kitchen, but don’t overlook
these highly functional features that
can make your home more enjoyable.
Features like the faucet and sink, and even
refrigerators with ice-makers and water dispensers,
can take a real beating through
basic everyday use. One way to minimize
the wear and tear, and take your kitchen
upgrade to the next level, is a water fi ltration
system. Cleaner, clearer water can benefi
t your home in a number of ways. It eliminates
the need for expensive bottled water,
produces cleaner, spot-free dishes, lets you
save on soap and detergents, results in less
build-up on fi xtures and helps increase the
life of appliances that use water.
Updating the fl oor of your kitchen is
another easy way to upgrade the space,
even if it’s the only enhancement you
make. For example, JCPenney Home
Services off ers a broad line of hardwood,
laminate and luxury vinyl, all of which
are aff ordable and practical solutions for
a high-use area like the kitchen.
If there’s one place in the home where
task lighting really matters, it’s the kitchen.
Proper lighting can help ensure you
can see well for safe food handling. It also
helps set the mood for the room, whether
it’s a lively gathering with guests or a
quiet candle-lit meal at your eat-in nook.
You can create a focal point with exquisite
fi xture over a feature like an island
then be sure to complement your standout
fi xtures with recessed lights on multiple
switches with dimmers so you can
customize the lighting as needed.
Find more ideas and inspiration for
your kitchen or bathroom upgrade at
Planning Your Project
Defi ne your desires. Although obvious,
many homeowners fi nd this to be among
the most challenging aspects of a renovation.
Start by determining the scope of your
project. It may be just a new tub or shower,
or it may be the entire kitchen. Some homeowners
fi nd it helpful to consider their project
in terms of must-haves and nice-tohaves
so it’s easier to make adjustments as
obstacles or fi nances require.
Set a budget. Th e easiest way to overspend
on a renovation is to go into it
without an established budget. If you
specify what you can aff ord from the outset
and plan against that budget every step
of the way, you’re more likely to feel satisfi
ed with your investment in the long run.
Expect the unexpected. If possible, review
a blueprint of your home (or have your contractor
take a look) to identify details behind
the wall, like the layout of the plumbing and
electric lines, which can be costly to relocate.
It’s also a good idea to take a thorough
inventory of your current space so you’re
aware of any damage or wear that will need
repaired before you begin.
Hire the help (or not). With some preliminary
information on the complexity
of the job and a better idea of exactly
what you’re hoping to accomplish, you
should be able to make a decision about
whether the project is something you’re
prepared to tackle on your own or if hiring
professionals is more likely to provide
the results you’re seeking.
Monitor progress. Even if you’re handling
the project on your own, it’s a good
idea to continually monitor the project in
terms of budget, timeline and quality of
work. It’s easier to make corrections as
you go than to get to the end and discover
a problem that needs reworking.
Courtesy Family Features