Frequently Asked Questions
A Collection of Questions you may have ...
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A Collection of Questions you may have...
Make a list of the work that is required, and indicate the characteristics of the project. Go and see a designer or an architect to discuss your plans – they can help you to create a space that will suit your existing home, your needs and your budget (detailed plans and sketches also help us to prepare a more accurate quote). There are several interior designers & architects who we can recommend to you.
For inspiration, why not check out the Ideabooks on our Houzz page?
We will come out to discuss the project details with you.
We will gather quotes and prices from suppliers and sub-trades such as plumbers and electricians (they may require a ‘walk-through’ meeting at the property, so that they can fully understand the work involved).
We will provide you with a detailed quote, listing each area of work separately – this allows you to see exactly what is being included, and gives you the ability to make any amendments to it before we proceed any further.
Once you are happy to proceed we can draw up a contract (based on the finalized quote). The contract will re-iterate exactly what work is being done and will specify the payment terms (usually an initial payment is due at the signing of the contract).
We schedule a time to start your project, apply for any necessary permits (if applicable) and then the work begins!
During the stages of work we will keep you informed of any issues that occur so that they can be resolved quickly. If you decide that you need to change certain aspects of the project while it is in progress we will always try to accommodate this, depending on the individual circumstances (and costs) involved.
Work is completed to your satisfaction, the job site is cleared so that you can start to use your new space, and we receive our final payment.
And here are a few Design Tips & Ideas
Planning for the long term & thinking ahead can avoid short term renovations that may need to be redone – by discussing your long & short term goals with us, we can offer suggestions for an effective sequence of work over a period of time that can suit your needs and your budget.
The balance of a room can affect how its inhabitants feel – good design balance can give a feeling of stability & wellness. If a room feels ‘unbalanced’ try placing small items that are bright and colourful, unusually shaped, dark, or have varied textures at the opposite end of the room to a large feature (i.e. a fireplace) as they tend to draw our attention – heavy furnishings or décor can weigh down one side of the room so you need to try and counteract this. Having a clear idea of what you want to accomplish with your renovation will help to keep your costs within your budget. Involve the whole household in your initial discussions and work out what are ‘essentials’ and what would be ‘nice to have’ to set priorities for the end result.
To achieve flow throughout the home you need a balanced colour scheme that will connect one space to the next. Try using different shades of the same colour throughout the house, or create continuity by selecting hues with similar undertones. Pick colours from existing furnishings, choose 3-5 colours & alternate the primary (dominant colour which is typically for walls), secondary (ceilings, cabinets, floors), and accent colours (trim, molding, doors & accessories.)
To make the most of a small space try keeping the floor clear – the more of the floor that you can see, the more open & airy a room will feel. Try using furniture with exposed feet rather than covers that reach the floor. Try to keep windows clear of obstructions such as plants and ornaments, and curtains that block the windows when pulled back. This helps to give a sense of a more ‘open’ space.
A designer or architect may be able to suggest ways to create space within your home by re-arranging interior walls, eliminating separations & installing larger windows without the need for adding extra floor space (and therefore enabling your renovation budget to stretch a little further).
Top living room decorating ideas:
- Create a focal point with a fireplace, a large mirror or a piece or artwork
- Create an ‘accent’ wall
- Keep 1/3 of open shelving clear rather than packing everything tightly, & leave a little breathing room between objects
- Plan for a ‘clutter zone’ where you can drop items as you walk in through a door (such as car keys, purses, mail, groceries) as this helps keeps the rest of the home clutter free
Most paint manufacturers produce their colour chips in a low sheen, so if you want to see what the colour will look like in an eggshell or semi-gloss just wet the colour chip with water.
Sanding wood prior to staining doesn’t just make the surface smooth but it also increases the porosity of the wood, which makes the penetration of the stain more uniform.
There is a limit to the number of coats of paint that a surface can support. As paint thickness builds, the coats lose their flexibility & can no longer expand & contract which makes them liable to crack or flake & peel away.
You can improve the energy efficiency of your home through your renovation project. Browse Efficiency Nova Scotia's website for ideas such as adding insulation, replacing windows & doors, installing high efficiency heating systems & choosing the most energy efficient appliances. Don’t forget that energy loss includes both heat in the winter & cool air during the summer!
Did you know that Nova Scotians reduced their electricity use by an additional 1.2 per cent in 2015? According to EfficiencyOne’s Annual Report? This prevented more than 89,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions from entering the atmosphere.
Heating systems can use between 40-60% of your home’s energy so ask us about the energy efficient heating options that can be included as part of your renovation such as Heat Pumps, Heat Recovery Ventilation and heating zone controls. Check out Efficiency Nova Scotia's website for tips and ideas, plus details of the the savings and rebates that are available to help you become more energy efficient.
Efficiency Nova Scotia has helped more than 225,000 program participants complete energy efficiency projects, saving $110 million on power bills in 2016 alone and preventing the release of 590,000 tonnes of GHG emissions annually.
There are 3 main types of renovations:
- Lifestyle Renovations to convert a space to suit your changing needs such as a sun room, or an unused attic space,
- Retrofit Projects which are usually focused on the mechanics of the house or it’s shell such as upgrading insulation, or re-siding a property, and
- Maintenance & Repair Renovations such as reshingling your roof or replacing eavestroughs.
The way you light a room can dictate how it feels & functions. It can alter your mood and change the colours of the walls so it’s important to spend time getting it right. There are 3 types of light:
- Ambient Lighting which provides the overall illumination (usually ceiling, wall, or recessed lights),
- Task Lighting for specific jobs like cooking & reading, and
- Accent Lighting which illuminates key features of a room. A combination of all 3 will give the best results.