Texture, texture, texture. Integrate texture into a space for added interest and appeal. "When working with a monochromatic or single color scheme, wall texture will provide depth and warmth," Zimmer says. The addition of bead board, paintable wall coverings or glazing over an already painted surface will provide subtle interest and a three-dimensional appearance.
And as long as you don’t mind the work, most homeowners can DIY the flooring installation for these options (linoleum is especially straightforward) in order to save even more. Depending on the flooring you choose, this can be one of the most involved parts of a DIY kitchen remodel. If you’re not sure where to begin, some flooring manufacturers offer workshops for DIYers where you can talk to an expert about how to tackle your project.
"Many designers will suggest lighter, pastel paint colors or whites or grays for small bathrooms. Yes, these colors are easy to work with and will make the space feel light and airy. But, you can choose a deeper hue as long as you go with a semi-gloss finish. The sheen in the semi-gloss paint will reflect light and help the room look bigger." - Dawn Falcone Lifestyles
When it comes to things like flooring, ask your subcontractor if he has odds-and-ends stock left over from other jobs. While renovating a Civil War-era bed-and-breakfast in New Jersey some years back, contractor Bill Asdal needed wood flooring. He made a few phone calls and came up with hundreds of square feet of hardwood, in various lengths and widths, that otherwise would have gone into the trash on other job sites. Just by planing it to uniform thickness, then sanding and refinishing it, he saved his client almost $9,000 in materials costs.
"A great way to maximize a small bath's space is the use of wall hung cabinetry and toilets with oversized floor tile. Today's product offering in both of these areas is much more expansive than in years past and there are styles to suit everyone's taste and decor. The wall hung toilet and cabinetry show more of the floor and give the illusion that the room is larger than it appears." - Banner Plumbing Supply
If you jump into a remodeling project with an ambiguous contract or no contract at all, you may as well hire an attorney and set a court date right away. "The contract needs the right address, a start date, a completion date, and a detail of what is and is not going to be done," says Rosie Romero, founder of Legacy Custom Builders in Scottsdale, Arizona.
Pros take a "load and go" approach to painting. They load the bottom 1-1/2 inches of their brushes with paint, tap each side against the inside of their container to knock off the heavy drips, and then start painting. By contrast, homeowners often take a "load and dump" approach of dragging the loaded brush along the sides of their container and wiping off most of the paint. "It doesn't do you any good to dunk your brush in paint, then immediately wipe it all off," a 16-year veteran painter says.
Instead of using white primer, pros usually have it tinted gray or a color that's similar to the finish paint. Tinted primer does a better job of covering the existing paint color than plain primer, so your finish coat will be more vibrant and may require fewer coats. This is especially true with colors like red or orange, which could require three or more coats without a primer.