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The Holiday Host

Tis the season for family time! With many of us looking forward to spending time with our family, relatives and friends it’s also time to remember the effort and work that is assumed by the host.

Check out the Houzz story, “10 Tips for Stress-Free Holiday Hosting” for some really useful tips that will make your family time memorable and enjoyable.

Click here for the house clean-up guide: “Holiday Organizing Checklist.”

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Basement Playrooms

After meeting two very rambunctious brothers (ages 3 and 6) this weekend in their Seattle home, I began to wonder how parents provide space for high-energy children when living in a rainy place where outdoor playtime opportunities are infrequent. Their solution was creating a basement playroom. What are some other ways to make your home rainy day activity-ready?

Turn Your Basement into a Kids Playroom on Houzz.

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Homeowners are prioritizing quality of life at home.

Even in this economy, homeowners are prioritizing quality of life at home before profit when it comes to remodeling and decorating. Among homeowners planning to build, remodel or decorate in the next two years:
• 86 percent cited “improving the look and feel of the space” as an important driver for remodeling projects, while only 47 percent cited ”increasing home value.”
• “Making the space more functional” was also cited as an important driver by 63 percent.
• These results were consistent across all income and demographic groups.
While the economy is having an impact on their home projects, they are more likely to cut back in other areas, such as vacations and other big-ticket purchases, than to delay or decrease the budget for their home improvement plans.

Other Key Findings:
• In the next two years, 72 percent of homeowners surveyed plan to decorate or redecorate, 40 percent plan to remodel or construct an addition, while 10 percent are planning to build a custom home.
• 57 percent of homeowners planning to complete a project in the next two years will hire a general contractor, 35 percent a kitchen or bath professional, 32 percent a carpet or flooring professional. 30 percent are planning to hire an architect, 26 percent an interior designer, and 24 percent a landscape architect or designer.

Source:Houzz

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1st Kitchen & Bath project of 2012

Below are some of the pictures of the latest project we completed this year. Work included complete redesign of the kitchen, master bathroom and garage as the new reck room.

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Piedmont Home Tour 2012

For all of you who visited us at the ‘Heart of the Home Tour’ in Piedmont last weekend , thanks for stopping by our table to say “hello”. We were happy to sponsor this fun two-day event. See you again next year.

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Evaluate your house for a garage addition

If you want to get the most investment value from a garage addition, build in quality details.

We has found that home owners who sell stand to recover a higher percentage of their costs if they build a garage that is tricked out with finished walls, a decorative floor coating, and designer storage solutions.  The national average cost to build a midrange, 26-by-26-foot freestanding garage addition is $57,824, of which you can expect to recoup about 52% at resale. With upscale finishes, the cost jumps to $86,347 and the payback of about 57%. With a little planning, you can maximize the use and benefit you’ll get from a basic garage addition.

Here are the top features to incorporate:
Layout and design-roof,doors,windows,floor space
Storage solutions
Workspace
Power and Lighting
Walls and Floors

Below is a picture of a garage addition done by Canyon Design Build. Added a elevator to the garage from the main house, two levels down.

Garage addition by Canyon Design Build

 

Garage addition by Canyon Design Build

Garage addition by Canyon Design Build

 
-Canyon Design Build
One company, One team – Concept to Completion

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Considering Building a Pool

The decision to build an in-ground pool isn’t one to take lightly. Apart from the substantial installation costs, you have to factor in ongoing maintenance expenses as well as insurance and tax implications. But if you want the ultimate backyard entertainment amenity and social gathering spot, nothing fills the bill like a swimming pool.

Pool project by Canyon Design Build

Thinking about taking the plunge? Here’s whats to consider,

-Ballpark your instillation costs
-Decide on a filtration and heating system
-Account for ongoing maintenance expense
-Factor in insurance and tax implications
 

Pool project by Canyon Design Build

Pool project by Canyon Design Build

-Canyon Design Build
One company, One team – Concept to Completion

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Smart Upgrades for Decks

Smart Upgrades for Decks

A few cost-effective add-ons can give a modest deck an edge and deliver a handsome payback should you sell your house. A deck is one of the most cost-effective of all home improvement projects. In fact, according to Remodeling Magazine’s 2011-2012, a wood deck project returns an average of about 70% of the investment cost — one of the highest values in the survey.

You can ensure you’re getting the most from this smart investment with low-cost add-ons and special features that increase your deck’s appeal and that will make your deck one of your home’s most enjoyable living spaces. Some of the upgrades include,
-Hidden fasteners for decking
-Adding style with planters
-Cable railings
-Taming the sun with shade sails

Deck by Canyon Design Build

Deck by Canyon Design Build

 

Deck by Canyon Design Build

 

 

-Canyon Design Build
One company, One team – Concept to Completion

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Design trends that will have an influence on new home designs in 2012

Design trends that will have an influence on new home designs in 2012 and into the future.
Unlike in the recent boom years, when just about anything built was sold, strong competition in the current market is forcing all builders to improve… home design.
Design trend 1: classic yet contemporary. The new house design with strong sales now are those that blend modern and traditional elements to create cleaner and simpler elevations. Interior spaces are clean, bright and simple. Gone are the heavy detailing and generous ornamentation of the recent past.
Design trend 2: outdoor spaces as an extension of living space. Whether for a single-family house or a multifamily house, home buyers are looking for private-outdoor spaces that blend seamlessly with the indoors. This trend cuts across geographic regions, being as true in the colder sections of the country as in the warmer, milder areas.
Design trend 3: good, cost-effective designs. To keep construction costs low, we’ll see multiple roof lines and complexity give way to simplified forms. Innovative and creative approaches to layouts, storage, curb appeal and so on will be established in the early design stage to ensure that the new designs don’t become boring.
Design trend.4: the family triangle. It used to be that open floor plans were limited to certain geographic regions and buyer profiles. Now the open floor plan is desired throughout the country and by every market segment. The old living room has been replaced by a flexible space that can be used as needed while still being close to the family triangle.
Design trend.5: multigenerational living. Whether it’s because more are children returning home after college or more parents are moving in with the family, multigenerational homes are increasing in popularity. In fact, one study indicated that the construction of such homes has jumped 30 percent in the past few years. Amenities such as wider hallways, elevators, grab bars and so on are all becoming the norm.

Country Home by Canyon Desigh Build

Design trend.6: kitchen entertaining with a view. Kitchens continue to be without a doubt the center of the house. But with square footage being trimmed, designers have to develop innovative solutions for storage and functional needs. There’s also an increasing use of large windows to keep the kitchen light, bright and airy so it can live large. The loss of wall space for cabinetry is made up with walk-in pantries, where it’s not uncommon to find the (messy) kitchen desk hidden from view.

-Canyon Design Build
One company, One team – Concept to Completion

source: NAHB

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Some Good News

Some Good News – Recent research on consumer attitudes toward housing shows that 42% of homeowners believe it is a good time to remodel. That number increases to 56% when household income is $100,000-plus, and it is 54% when home value is more than $500,000…..
Source:Houzz
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Kitchen Tile Shopping Guide

Everything you need to know about materials, installation, and more
Choosing new tile for kitchen floors and backsplashes can be fraught with uncertainty. There’s a bewildering array of options, including a variety of materials, treatments, and sizes to choose from. How do you know which options will perform the best and be easiest to maintain? What are the latest product offerings? And, what should you keep in mind when it comes to installation? To help narrow the field, read on.

Material
Ceramic and glass are great options for a backsplash since they are easy to maintain and come in an incredible variety of colors, shapes, styles, and price points. Porcelain is an excellent option for floors since it’s low maintenance, and the tiles tend to be large format.
At the high end, natural stone is also very popular, but isn’t necessarily the best in terms of carefree performance. Many varieties of stone, including limestone and marble, are sensitive to acid and can become etched with marks or stains, so they need to be carefully sealed.
For a lighter look, Carrara marble is acceptable—but be aware that it will show age over time. For a floor that looks like stone, but is easier to maintain, we recommends the latest stone-inspired ceramic tiles. They’re a fraction of the cost of natural stone, far easier to care for, and less expensive to install because they’re easier to work with and don’t need to be sealed.

Size
Large-format tiles are popular, not only because they create fewer grout joints but because the scale adds drama and sophistication.
For backsplashes, long, skinny tiles, such as 1″ x 4″, as well as other unexpected shapes. Just don’t use the most common tile size—12″ x 12″. They look awful pretty much anywhere, but they look particularly bad as a backsplash.
Finally, be creative when deciding on the layout. Think about the orientation of the tile, to make a kitchen feel more modern, I might take a 3″ x 6″ tile and run it vertically or run it horizontally, rather than brick bond, so that everything lines up.

Kitchen by Canyon Design Build

Putting it all together
We are very, very cautious when a client makes their final tile selection. We order samples. We mount it on a backer board, we grout it with the selected grout, and we either seal it or enhance it. Seeing a sample section can help avoid disappointing, costly mistakes.

Canyon Design Build
One company, One team – Concept to Completion

Source: Elle Decore

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Master Suite Addition

A master suite addition is limited only by your imagination. Here’s a look at master suite must-haves.

Options for a master suite addition are limitless: Indulge yourself, express yourself. Here is your guide to the …master suite features that matter most.

A master suite addition typically is about 400 sq. ft. and includes a spacious bedroom, a walk-in closet, and a bathroom with a walk-in shower, designer toilet, separate soaking tub, and double-sink vanity. With midrange finishes, such as ceramic tile and solid-surface countertops in the bathroom, a master suite costs an average of $106,196 ($265/sq.ft.) and returns about 59% at resale, according to the 2011-2012 Cost vs. Value Report from Remodeling Magazine.

An upscale master suite addition is bigger—650 sq.ft.—and includes a separate sitting area in the bedroom with custom built-ins, fireplace, French doors leading outside, and even a wet bar and refrigerator.

The bathroom is more luxurious, too, with multiple body sprays in the shower, a separate toilet area, a soaking tub for two, and twin sinks, each with its own vanity. Instead of solid surfacing and ceramic, the countertops and floors are stone. According to Cost vs. Value, an upscale project averages $227,178 and returns 50.5% at resale.

Master Suite by Canyon Design Build

When you dream about a master suite addition, drool over a deep soaking tub. But when you plan, think about privacy, convenience and view—the gifts to yourself that keep on giving.

-Canyon Design Build
One company, One team – Concept to Completion

source: houselogic

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Hot Trends for Bathroom Remodeling in 2012

From toilets that double as sound systems to water-conserving spa experiences, here’s what’s trendy for bathroom improvements for 2012.

Conservation rules-
All around the country, water reserves… are stressed. In response, regional governments are implementing conservation measures. As a result, there are likely to be new regulations that’ll affect your construction or remodeling plans. Here’s what to watch for:
Your new toilet will have a lower flush-per-gallon rating than the one that’s in there now. Consider a dual-flush version, or any low-flow toilet coming on the market that meets your style preferences. The WaterSense label, launched in 2006 by the Environmental Protection Agency to promote water conservation by plumbing manufacturers and home owners, will become as well-known as Energy Star. You’ll start seeing more shower heads — especially rain shower models — using Venturi principles that deliver strong water pressure by adding air, not water, to the mix. They’re available in every price range, from ultra-affordable standard heads to luxury rain showers.

Technology advances-
You may not think of your bathroom as a high-tech space, but that’s about to change. Here are some of the trends that can benefit your home:
You’ll be able to create a custom showering experience more affordable than ever. For $300 for simple controllers to $3,500 or more for a complete luxury installation, programmable showers let you digitally set your preferred water temperature, volume, and even massage settings before you step in. Luxury models may include a steam system, a wi-fi source for music, multiple body spray outlets, tankless water heater, and a secondary controller to start the system from another room.
Dock your iPhone or MP3 player directly with your speaker-equipped, high-tech toilet so you can entertain yourself.
Catch up on news and weather while you brush your teeth. Television screens are being integrated into medicine cabinets and vanity mirrors. Cost? Early entries to the market command a premium $2,200 to $2,400 price tag.
Plug your smart phone or MP3 player into your medicine cabinet so you won’t miss a call or song while getting ready for work or bed. A built-in jack keeps your unit charged (and away from wet countertops) and linked into a built-in speaker system.

Bathroom by Canyon Design Build

What improvements — big or small — are you planning for your bathroom this year?
-Canyon Design Build
One company, One team – Concept to Completion

source: houselogic

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Hot Trends for Kitchen Remodeling in 2012

Mulling a kitchen remodel? Here are some trends that emphasize options and high-tech wizardry.

Trend: Simpler, warmer styles dominate
… Excess have faded away in favor of pared-back looks that present a more timeless, value-conscious style.

Cabinet decoration continues to streamline. For example, massive corbels, once fashionable as under counter supports, will give way to sleeker countertop supports and cantilevered countertop edges. Elaborately glazed finishes will yield to simpler paints and stains.
Kitchen finishes will continue to get warmer and darker, and feature natural and stained woods. Walnut especially is growing in popularity.

Laminate countertops will continue to surge in popularity, especially in contemporary design. The latest European-inspired laminates offer more textured and naturalistic finishes than ever before. While exotic wood kitchen cabinets are not out of reach for most home owners, look-alike laminate versions can be had too.

Trend: Technology expands its kitchen presence
Many of the techno products and trends that relate to your Smartphone’s and tablets have just started making their way into your local showrooms and home centers.

Appliances will be equipped with USB ports and digital screens so you can display your family photographs and kids’ artwork.

Smart, induction built-in cooktops remember your temperature settings as you move your pans across their entire surface.

One light finger touch is all it takes to open the electronically controlled sliding doors of your kitchen cabinets — a boon to people with limited mobility. You’ll pay 40% to 70% more for cabinets with electronically controlled doors than standard models.

You’ll be able to use your smart phones and tablets to control lights and appliance settings from anywhere you have a Wi-Fi connection, as well as to shop for appliances from major manufacturers.

You’ll be opting for LEDs for your recessed lights, under-cabinet task lighting and color-changing accent lighting. You’ll see more LED-powered pendants and chandeliers from major manufacturers as inefficient incandescent bulbs continue their march toward extinction.

A wide selection of affordable microwave ovens with convection and even steam features gives owners of smaller kitchen spaces more high-end cooking power.

Kitchen by Canyon Design Build

What improvements — big or small — are you planning for your kitchen this year?
-Canyon Design Build
One company, One team – Concept to Completion

source:houselogic

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Come see us at the Lamorinda Home Expo '12

Lamorinda Home Expo '12

Lamorinda Home Expo '12

We just signed up for the first Lamorinda Home Expo that will be held on Saturday, January 28, in Lafayette. The Home Expo ’12 will feature local companies that are established in the Lamorinda region and we are truly excited to be participating in this inaugural event. From 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. the Lafayette Events Center (formerly the Veterans Memorial Building) will be buzzing with speakers, workshops, seminars and kids activities. You will be able to personally ask professionals your most burning questions and see what’s new in products and services. And, the event is free to the public.

We will be there to answer questions and share our ideas, and hopefully we will see you there.

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