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6 Steps To Starting Your Kitchen Renovation

September 1, 2019 Blog, Kitchen Comments Off on 6 Steps To Starting Your Kitchen Renovation
6 Steps To Starting Your Kitchen Renovation
Van Dolder Kitchen and Bath Kitchen Renovations

Step 1- Know why you’re renovating your kitchen

There can be many reasons why you want to change your current kitchen, but if you can
identify the number one reason, it will help you better plan and budget for your renovation.
Is it to improve the ergonomics of the space, bring it up to date, create more dining space, add
or remove a kitchen island, or is it an upgrade to assist in selling your home? This will help you
to establish your needs and your budget. The clearer you can state your goals, the more
successful you will be.

Step 2 – Assess Your Wants and Needs

Now that you know why you’re renovating you can begin to sharpen your focus on what you
want and need in your new kitchen. This will vary based on your personal circumstances.
What type of cooking happens most often in your kitchen? (baking, microwave, gourmet)?
What kitchen equipment and appliances do you use most often?
What other activities take place in the kitchen (computer work, paperwork, entertainment)?
Do you need more counter space; and if so, where?
Do you need more storage?
How easy is it to access the trash? Do you store recyclables in the kitchen?
What do you want to keep from your current kitchen and what would you change?
What ideas do you have that you would like to incorporate into your kitchen?
Do you have any preferences for style or colour to include in your kitchen?
It pays to be thorough. The more clearly you can state your wants and needs, the easier it will
be for your kitchen designer and contractor to follow your specific vision.

Step 3 – Set a Reasonable Timeline

Setting a reasonable timeline can be difficult because everything will depend on the size and
scope of your project and the availability of products and tradespeople. Since most people
don’t have much experience with what’s involved in doing renovations you will need to rely on
the advice of designers or contractors. However, if you’re just starting the process, a good
benchmark to set for yourself is about nine months. Allow about five months to plan your
project (searching, shopping, designing, preparing and ordering of products) and four months
to build it out. If you are working with a designer or contractor, they can better advise you
based on the size of your project and their schedule. Many homeowners can complete their
projects much faster depending on how well prepared they are and how they use their time.
But don’t take time for granted; shopping and research can take longer than anticipated. If you
are looking to have your kitchen renovated in time for the holidays or a special occasion, be
sure to give yourself enough time and start planning early.

Step 4 – Research & Shopping

A remodelling or renovation of your kitchen is considered to be one of the top five purchases
you will make for your home, so be sure you allow yourself enough time to get it right. If you
are working with a contractor or interior designer, they can assist you by narrowing your
choices to products they know will meet your expectations and will work in your home. If

you’ve decided to do your own research and shopping, here’s a short list of key products you
will want to consider and spend some time looking at: cabinets, countertops, backsplash, sinks
and faucets, lighting, flooring and appliances. Within each of these product categories there is
much to learn about the different brands, materials, installation methods, costs, warranties,
maintenance, care requirements and more. Try to keep track of your options in a detailed list or
a spreadsheet. As you do your research, you will come to a better understanding of just how
much certain items, features, and upgrades cost, and how much you personally value them.
Eliminate the products that don’t work and try to trim your options to one or two items.

Step 5 – Determine Your Budget

“What is your budget?” is one of the first questions a renovation professional will ask you.
Setting a budget will depend on what you have, what you’re willing to spend, as well as your
personal financial situation. But you may want to wait until you’ve had a chance to shop and
compare different product options before you set a budget. To help you get started,
HomeAdvisor suggests the gold standard in helping homeowners estimate and budget the
correct amount for remodels is 5 to 15 percent of the current value of the home or
approximately $150 per square foot of your kitchen’s floor plan. Generally, cabinets are about
25-30 percent of the remodeling budget.

Step 6 – Bring in the Pros

An experienced and reputable kitchen designer will listen to your needs and wants and help
translate your thoughts and ideas into a functional, actionable plan that is possible within your
budget. A contractor will work with the designer’s plan and coordinate the build-out and
installation. The contractor will organize and schedule work for the trade professionals typically
involved in kitchen renovations such as electricians, plumbers, tile setters, and carpenters.
Start early and be proactive with bringing in professionals. Their expertise will help you make
better remodelling decisions, and making early appointments will ensure that you have a spot
on their calendars. The most well-regarded pros have very busy schedules, and it’s common for
a contractor to be booked months in advance.

Between you, your designer and your contractor, you should be able to make sure that your
kitchen is designed, built and decorated to your liking. Of course, at Van Dolder’s Kitchen and
Bath, we can help you with design, product selection, installation and the organizing of all other
trade professionals so you just have one point of contact. When you’re ready to begin your
kitchen renovation, just remember, you can find everything you’ll need renovation at Van
Dolder’s Kitchen and Bath.

Happy remodelling!

6 Easy Steps To Bathroom Renovations

May 7, 2019 Bathroom, Blog, Uncategorized Comments Off on 6 Easy Steps To Bathroom Renovations
6 Easy Steps To Bathroom Renovations

Six Easy Steps To Starting Your Bathroom Renovation

Bathroom Renovation by Van Dolder's Kitchen and BathPhoto: Custom bathroom designed and built by Van Dolder's Kitchen and Bath and styled by Bare Birch. Featuring a floor to ceiling cultured marble shower surrounded in "pearl grey", a custom cultured marble shower base, 10mm frameless custom glass shower door, Riobel Mizo shower kit and single hole faucets, and a Cambria Swanbridge vanity top in 4cm thickness with Double Treeline Edge.

You’ve finally decided it’s time to renovate your bathroom. Congratulations. You’ll have a lot of different things to take into consideration as you layout your beautiful new bathroom, so we’ve put together some tips to help you get started and make your way through the process.

Identify your primary reason for renovating.
Is it to update your current bathroom, make the space larger, add a shower or bath, or simply to make the house more appealing to a prospective buyer? Knowing your number one goal will help you allocate budget in the proper areas and assist your contractor in the recommendations they make for fixtures and materials.

Know your current and future needs.
Is your family growing or are your children ready to fly the coop? Do you think you’ll be moving as you age or do you plan on spending your retirement years in your home? Do you have or anticipate any special physical needs as you age? Review your storage needs and make certain you have enough closet or cabinet space to meet your needs. Most homeowners can go 15 to 20 years before renovating a bathroom, so take your future needs into consideration now as it will be less expensive to make those changes now rather than later.

Do some research.
While a bathroom renovation may seem to be a simple process it can be one of the most demanding and costly rooms to renovate in your home. Spend some time getting ideas from magazines, Pinterest, and bath ware showrooms. Speak with some bathroom design experts to find out about new and improved products. Visiting a showroom will allow you to examine and test the actual bath ware products to get a true sense of what the final product will be like in your home. It’s also wise to get some professional opinions on whether the renovation ideas you have are even possible. Finding out early in your plans that you cannot move the location of a toilet, or if you are dealing with a load bearing wall will save you much design time, heartache and possibly money.

Set your budget.
Knowing how much you have for the total project at the beginning of the job will save you time when you’re in the showroom shopping for products. Sharing your budget with your renovator will also help them better recommend products and services that will fit within your budget.

Consider “The Full-Service” solution.
While some consumers may consider doing the renovations on their own with the idea that they can save some money, hiring professionals for more complex projects will ultimately save you time and much frustration. In most cases, the full-service solution will often pay for itself because a reputable professional can help guide you through the entire renovation process, provide references, and assist you with after-sales support.

Have a plan for living without a bathroom during the renovation.
Finally, depending on the scope of the remodel, you could be without a functioning bathroom for 2-6 weeks. So you will want to make provisions for you and your family to get by with limited or no use of the bathroom during the renovation period. This is where a second bathroom comes in real handy.

Whether you decide to do the work yourself or want to hire a professional to complete your renovations, Van Dolder’s Kitchen & Bath showroom is the perfect place to begin your bathroom renovation journey. A visit to our showroom will allow you to open and close your new shower doors and actually see the sink, tub, cabinetry and toilet you are considering purchasing. And our experienced professionals can help you with your design questions too.

Small Bathroom Solutions

September 1, 2017 Bathroom, Blog, Uncategorized Comments Off on Small Bathroom Solutions
Small Bathroom Solutions

Renovation Day: Small Bathroom Solutions

It’s finally time to do it; turn that cramped bathroom into a relaxing home-spa “escape” room. You’re headed into quite a process, but the end result is so worth it. To make it easier, here’s a “Reality Checklist” to help you understand the process before you find yourself in the midst of it:

Small Bathroom

  1. Plan, plan and then finalize plans

Knowing exactly what you plan to do is the first half of the battle. There are so many amazing small bathroom solutions. For example, you can remove an old tub, shower and surround, replacing it, in nearly the same footprint, with a 5-foot deep soaker tub and stand-alone shower. New fixtures and furniture add personality and breathe new life into a tired old bathroom.  You can create a lot of air and space with off-the-floor cabinets and by separating the toilet from rest of bathroom with a half wall. Changing to polished stone countertops and creating back lit, in-wall storage with glass doors, adds light and reflection in small bathrooms with little or no access to natural light.

No matter what you choose to change, once you have a detailed plan, set it in ink, set the budget and set your install dates. And don’t forget: you’ll need access to another bathroom in your home while the one you are working on is under construction.

Bathroom Design


  1. The Budget: Set it with wiggle roombudgeting

Once you have a plan, set your budget based on the items you have chosen to include in your new bathroom, the cost of installation, plumbing, carpentry charges, flooring, lighting, tile, and glass installation. These are your fixed costs. Once you have these, you can figure out how much you have left over for fixtures, furnishings, and extras. Then consider wiggle room: often in the midst of renovations things pop-up, like old wiring, plumbing replacement requirements, insulation additions…these are the unseen things in your floors and walls that tend to get uncovered and are best dealt with during the renovation.

  1. How Long Will It Take

Timing depends on how many things you are changing in the bathroom, not the size of the room. Big or small, changing just a few things will take less time than changing a lot.

Ordering and purchasing everything you need before your install day, will decrease wait time and ensure your contractor has everything they need when they need it. Tiles, fixtures, vanity, cabinets and all of the plumbing items and hardware need to be close at hand when required. Know in advance what you are going to do with the items you are removing. If you are doing a full renovation of a 4 piece bath, have a clear plan for your old toilet, shower, tub and sink before they are removed so they can be cleared off premises immediately.

  1. Step by Step

A professional bathroom installer knows the sequence in which your renovation needs be done. In most cases, they’ll start at the top and work down to ensure that the new items being installed in your bathroom are in pristine condition after the reno is finished. If you are planning a major floor to ceiling overhaul, let your contractor gut the room and start fresh. It can actually save time if they have more space to work in and can be less cautious around existing tile work and cabinetry. If you are planning a smaller reno, cover the pieces you plan to keep to maintain their integrity during the renovation.

  1. On the Wall and Floors

Bathroom tiles

Before your new flooring goes in, finish the walls. Painting, tiling, installing cabinetry, mirrors…anything that goes above your floors should be installed before the flooring is installed. Although, in some cases, the flooring does need to be laid before the cabinetry is installed. If this is the case in your new bathroom, cover your new flooring on the day your fixtures are installed.

  1. Check List of Final Design Effects

To to checklist

Pay attention to the little details because they can make or break your new bathroom design. Consider the look and function of your faucets, shower heads, toilet flushers, mirror frames, door handles, window trim, drawer pulls, tub enclosures, shelving and shower doors. Accessories like towel bars, toilet paper holders, robe hooks are really important and the most forgotten items in a bathroom install. Get on top of this before your walls are finished. Most bathroom renovation folks have a great selection of these items and often they can be ordered to match your fixtures and faucets.

  1. Clean and Usable

Before finalizing your bathroom reno plans, consider this: is your new bathroom going to be easy to clean and maintain? Clean-ability is crucial in a bathroom. The other question you need to ask is, “Will everything in your new bathroom be accessible to those who need to use it?” A window over a soaker tub brings in lovely, natural light but can you get to it to open it, use the window covering or to clean it? Can you access your extra supplies of bathroom tissue from your new toilet? How handy will your towel be when you step out of the shower? It’s best to sit in your bathroom and consider these questions before renovation day arrives. If your plans don’t work in practical terms, change your plans.

  1. Lighting & Electrical Outlets

Bathroom lightingTo make your new bathroom feels like a home-spa “escape” room, you need to consider the light. How much natural light will flow in during the day? How much light do you need to put on makeup? Do you want each area of the bathroom to have its own lighting source? For example, you can install shower lighting, some soaker tubs have mood lighting,  night-lighting around your toilet area is a great idea, bright lights around the mirror are important and recessed lighting in the ceiling is wise. Glass-front cabinets can be back-lit, cabinetry can be installed with lights in the base that shine down on your bathroom countertops. There are lots of lighting solutions to choose from, so choose what you need to make the new bathroom reflect your desires.

  1. No Access

On the day that your plumber arrives you will have no access to water in your home, so consider your water needs for the day before he/she arrives (like filling your pet’s water dish). You may also have a day or two when your electrician needs to shut off sections of your home’s power, so plan ahead for that as well. If you are tiling you’ll have tile setting and grouting days which will block access to your bathroom and before you use your new tiles it is best to seal your new grout. Three coats of silicone grout sealer with one day of drying between coats is suggested for easy cleanup in the future.

  1. The Finished Product

While the finishing touches are being done, shop for towels, artwork and other items that will add to your new room’s decor.


The Ultimate Do-It-Yourself Flooring

June 7, 2017 Bathroom, Blog, Design, Entryway, Flooring, Kitchen, Laundry Room 0
The Ultimate Do-It-Yourself Flooring

We’ve been designing and installing kitchens, bathrooms and closets for a long time.

 Over the years, we’ve become known as the “good idea place”. To continue to meet that expectation, we are always coming up with fresh, new ideas for our customers. So, when we discovered EZ Lay Flooring, we said “Now, that’s a good idea”, and decided to add it to our list of fine quality products and services.

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A Spring-Clean Kitchen Every Day

May 8, 2017 Blog, Cleaning, Flooring, Kitchen 0
A Spring-Clean Kitchen Every Day

When you are designing your new kitchen or refreshing parts of your current kitchen, you have so many choices to make. Most are about style but a lot of your decisions are about functionality. 

This is your “food prep” room after all, so considering design choices that will reduce the amount of time it takes to clean-up in kitchen is a great place to start. Most budding chef’s love to cook but cleaning up…not so much. So let’s look at some low-maintenance materials, time-saving placement ideas and easy-clean storage solutions. Mix and match your favourites and turn your Spring Cleaning time into a Spring Celebration time.

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